In All-Time High, 25 From Gujarat Clear UPSC Exams; Vapi's Vishnu Tops List - Vibes Of India

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In All-Time High, 25 From Gujarat Clear UPSC Exams; Vapi’s Vishnu Tops List

| Updated: April 17, 2024 11:42

In a new high, Gujarat saw a record 25 UPSC candidates clearing the central services exam, surpassing the previous record of 22 in 2014. Among them are five women, which too is a first for the state. Out of the 25, three finished in the top 100, while three others carried ranks between 101 and 200.
Vishnu Sasikumar clinched the top spot in Gujarat with an All India Rank (AIR) 31, followed by Anjali Thakur at All India Rank 43. “It is a dream come true. I started preparations in 2019 and worked hard during the Covid pandemic. In my second attempt, I was selected in Indian Post and Telecommunication Accounts and Financial Service for which I was undergoing training,” Anjali said.
For Atul Tyagi, ranked 62nd, said, “I studied in Kendriya Vidyalaya in Gujarat and did my bachelor’s degree in English from the MS University of Baroda,” said the son of a central govt employee, who has set his eyes on Indian Foreign Service (IFS).
“This was my third attempt. In the previous two, I secured 291st and 145th ranks respectively. I had selected only IFS as the choice of cadre, and hence several of the questions during my interview were on that,” said Tyagi.
There are no short cuts, he says, advising aspirants to focus on basic books. “Stick to basics in the prelims and be creative with a clear vision in the mains – I opted for balanced arguments in my answers,” said Tyagi.
Kanchan Gohil (rank 506) is the daughter of a farmer and hails from Gir Somnath district. “This was my second attempt as I had cleared the prelims in 2022. My focus shifted to civil services after Class 12. I opted for political science for my bachelor’s degree and devoted eight to ten hours every day, after my graduation,” she says.
Chief Minister Bhupendra Patel congratulated the successful candidates.
Mohammed Shahid, director of state govt-run Sardar Patel Institute of Public Administration (SPIPA), said that this has been the highest ever number of successful candidates from Gujarat. “All the hard work put in by candidates has paid off. This success will inspire others from the state to opt for the exams,” he said. So far, 285 SPIPA students have been selected in UPSC.
Meanwhile, in another progressive change, there are at least 352 women among the total 1,016 recommended for appointment in the civil services this year the results of which were announced by the Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) on Tuesday.
For the second year in a row, over one-third of the candidates selected for the civil services are women, including six of the top ten, according to the results.
Traditionally a male bastion, the civil services have witnessed a gradual increase in women’s representation. Till 2006, their share in the total selection was around 20%. It touched 29% in 2020, before hitting an all-time high of over 34% this year. In the late 1980s and early 1990s, it was below 20%.
However, the top spot, after a gap of two years, was claimed by a male candidate — Aditya Srivastava (27), an Indian Police Service (IPS) officer currently undergoing training in Hyderabad. Besides Srivastava, there were two more IPS trainees among the top five.
A dual (BTech and MTech) degree holder from IIT Kanpur, Srivastava worked at a multinational company in Bengaluru for 15 months before quitting his job in 2020 to focus on preparing for the civil services exam. This was his third attempt.
“In his first attempt, Aditya didn’t qualify for the interview. In the second attempt, he secured 236th rank and got selected for IPS. Despite being in training, Aditya continued his preparations diligently. We anticipated a rank between 30 and 40, but the result exceeded our expectations,” said his father, Ajay Kumar Srivastava, an assistant audit officer with the Comptroller and Auditor General of India (CAG) in Lucknow.
Of those in the top 20 this year, five were selected on their third try, while nine were selected after more than three attempts. As many as seven of the top 20 candidates succeeded on their fifth try. Almost half of the top 20 are aged 27 years and above. Only three were selected on their first attempt, including Animesh Pradhan (24) from Odisha, who ranked second, and Donuru Ananya Reddy (21), who ranked third.
A computer science engineer from the National Institute of Technology (NIT), Rourkela, Pradhan dedicated his success to his mother, whom he lost to cancer during his preparation for the interview stage of the UPSC selection process. “I knew she had very few days left as she was suffering from terminal cancer. And that was the biggest motivation for me. I wanted to crack it as soon as possible so that I could make her proud,” he said.
Reddy is the youngest in the top 20. A Delhi University graduate with a BA (Honours) degree in Anthropology, she advised UPSC aspirants to decide their own preparation strategy based on their strengths and weaknesses. “Do not blindly follow whatever other toppers tell you. Every candidate should make a customised plan for themselves, and follow what suits them best. I did not stick to conventional methods of preparation and kept changing my strategy as per the requirement of that moment,” she said.
The fourth and fifth place were bagged by two IPS trainees, PK Sidharth Ramkumar (27), an architecture graduate, and Ruhani (28), an economics graduate from St Stephens College, Delhi University.
“The civil services (preliminary) examination, 2023, was conducted on May 28 last year. A total of 10,16,850 candidates applied for this examination, of which 5,92,141 candidates actually appeared. While 14,624 candidates qualified for the main examination, which was held in September 2023, “a total of 2,855 candidates qualified for the personality test (interview),” the Commission said.
Of the total 1,016 candidates selected, 347 are from general category, 115 from economically weaker sections, 303 from other backward classes, 165 from Scheduled Castes and 86 from Scheduled Tribes, it said.

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