UPSC Topper Success Story:
A 2018-batch Indian Administrative Service Officer (IAS) of AGMUT cadre, Soumya Sharma has all the qualities to be a successful civil servant who can make a real difference in the lives of citizens.
Despite the severe sensorineural hearing loss (very little hearing in both ears) IAS Saumya Sharma decided not to use the benefits of reservation and cracked the UPSC Civil Services Examination in her very first attempt after securing 9th rank.
So, in this article further, we will know more about IAS Saumya Sharma’s success story and preparation strategy.
Saumya Sharma lives in Delhi with her parents and younger brother. Both her parents are doctors while her younger brother is studying medicine from Maulana Azad Medical College. Saumya has been promising in her studies since the beginning and topped her school in the 10th board exams. Despite getting admission in the National Law School of India University (NLSIU) in Bengaluru, Soumya opted for National Law University (NLU) Delhi.
Saumya says "It started with a very loud buzzing in my ears in August 2010, but the hearing loss was sudden and went to the extent where I could not hear my voice. Most of the time during my class XI, I used to go to the hospital. But with the support of my family, friends, and modern technology, I have the medium of hearing again.” Now Saumya listens through a hearing aid.
Soumya explains “Once you study law, your inclination naturally turns towards social issues. You read about constitutional law, human rights, and many other things, which makes you eager to do something for society. Though I took the final decision about writing the exam in February 2017. I had only 4 months to prepare for the exam. But coming into civil services, my passion to do something for the people encouraged me. "
Saumya started preparing for UPSC in her final year of college. She did not resort to any coaching class for this and kept on preparing for prelims along with her college studies. Her last college exam was on 2nd June 2017 and only 16 days later, Soumya appeared and passed the prelims exam.
A few days before the mains exam, Soumya developed a high fever. While suffering from fever, Saumya wrote her essay paper and when she returned home after giving the paper, her fever had reached 103 degrees. Soumya shares that at that time my condition was so bad that it was difficult to even get up from the bed. But she decided not to let her hard work go to waste due to fever and she went to give GS paper 1 in 103-degree fever.
During the lunch break, Saumya had to take an IV drip due to a high fever, but she still acted courageously and wrote GS paper 2. Although many times during the paper she felt dizzy due to weakness, her high spirits kept her going.
It was the result of Soumya's hard work and courage that Saumya Sharma secured the 9th rank in the first attempt without any coaching.