30 July, 2021

‘Our Education Must Be Culturally Rooted And Suit 21st Century Needs’

Sultanpur, in UP, Class X in a state board Hindi medium, and public spaces hostile to girls…nothing deterred Pratibha Verma from first cracking IIT, then IAS

‘Our Education Must Be Culturally Rooted And Suit 21st Century Needs’

Pratibha Verma, daughter of schoolteacher-parents from Sultanpur in UP, has secured the top rank among women candidates in the civil services examination this year. The 27-year-old, who had earlier done her B.Tech from IIT-Delhi, speaks to Neeraj Jha on her success story: Excerpts:

How has been your journey from the small town of Sultanpur to the top...?

I had resolved in my childhood that I would become an IAS officer. Even though I had made it to the Indian Revenue Service last year, I was still focussed on IAS. But it was a difficult journey. You need a lot of energy to stay focussed on your studies for ten hours a day...It was difficult to groom myself as an IAS officer but with practice and focus on my goal, I completed this journey.

What was your daily routine?

I used to religiously spend two to three hours every day reading newspapers, whether it was before the Prelims, Mains or the interview. I would then spend the next three hours on theory, and another three...

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