The youth of Jammu and Kashmir once again proved their mettle by featuring prominently in the list of 933 successful candidates who cracked the civil services exam, the results of which were declared by the Union Public Service Commission on Tuesday.
From Anantnag in Kashmir to the border districts of Rajouri, Poonch and Jammu, successful candidates said their determination and consistency to crack the exams has borne results.
Waseem Ahmad Bhat, 23, from Dooru Shahbad in Anantnag district, who had already cracked the coveted civil services exams in 2021 and was allocated Indian Revenue Services (IRS) based on his 225 rank, had been undertaking training at Nagpur.
His determination shone through as he bagged a seventh rank on the merit list.
Born and brought up in Dooru Shahbad, Bhatt completed his schooling at his hometown before pursuing civil engineering from NIT Srinagar and later moving to New Delhi.
“Presently, I am undergoing training at Nagpur. It was my fourth attempt and I stood seventh in the merit list. Anthropology was my optional. I studied eight to fourteen hours a day,” he told HT, adding that he strengthened his foundation with NCERT books before moving on to other study material.
“It is very tough and mentally taxing, but if you have the passion, you should go for it,” he said of his message to the aspiring civil servants. “One has to be in it for the long haul.”
Parsanjeet Kour, 23, from Poonch, meanwhile, pulled a rabbit out of the hat by nearly cracking the top-10 — ranked 11 — in her first attempt. A science graduate, Kour completed her Master’s in chemistry from the Jammu University before going for the civil services exams last year.
“I was not inclined towards medicine. While no one from my family is in civil services, I was keen to crack the exams. It was my first attempt and the internet was a big source of information and help for me. I did self-study and relied on the internet,” she said.
Kour, who studied seven to eight hours a day without fail, said, “Patience along with hard-work is the key and then importantly one should have faith in the almighty.”
Her father Nirmal Singh and mother are employees in the health department back home. South of Pir Panjal range, Poonch is close to the Line of Control.
Mohammad Irfan, 26, from Jammu cracked the exams in his fourth attempt and scored an all-India rank of 476. His journey, however, was not easy.
“I completed my B Tech in 2018 and 2019 onwards. I started preparing for the civil services. On an average I devoted eight hours to my study in a day,” he said.
“Initially, I worked very hard for a year, but didn’t get success because it was directionless. Make a strategy and then go for the result oriented hard work,” he said.
Irfan attributed his success to his mentor, Suchiter Sharma, who stood at 146th rank in the exams in 2020. “He is younger to me, but I consider him my mentor because guided me,” he said.
Iram Choudhary, 28, from Rajouri, ranked 852, also in her fourth attempt.
“I did my MBBS from Government Medical College, Jammu, in November 2018. While I was doing my internship, I appeared in the civil services exams in 2018. I did not give up and finally succeeded in my fourth attempt,” she said.
The medico-turned-civil servant did not go to any coaching institute except for economics. “Medical science was my optional. I did not go to any coaching institute, but did join a test series for mains in Delhi. Largely, I studied at home,” she said.
“It has been a long journey since 2012, when I cracked NEET to join MBBS, which I completed with an internship in 2018. During my internship, I was inspired after seeing some of my friends were preparing for civil services,” she said.
Four other candidates from Jammu and Kashmir have also figured in the merit list. They were Nittin Singh (32), Naveed Ahsan Bhat (84), Manan Bhat Rank (231) and Nivranshu Hans (811).