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Sunday, 5 July 2015

Ineligible to be sweeper, but I am IAS officer: UPSC topper Ira News Today 5 july 2015

I still haven’t checked the rank myself. Hope my friends and you guys saw it properly and confirmed it’s in fact me,” Ira Singhal, the UPSC topper laughs. Her phone has been ringing since the news broke. And even as HT was talking to her, she received a call from a top official of the Department of Personnel and Training (DoPT), informing her that the minister wants to meet her on Monday.
This is the same DoPT, that along with the Central Board of Customs and Excise, had rejected her for the IRS she was selected to in 2010. Reason — Singhal, 31, is affected by scoliosis from birth and is physically challenged to perform the job.
Singhal refused to oblige and waged a battle, taking her case to the Central Administrative Tribunal, CAT, that ruled in her favour in February 2014. Singhal currently is in the Dr MCR HRD Institute in Hyderabad as part of her training. She not only refused to give up but went on to prepare with the target of getting into IAS.
“Irony is that on medical and physical grounds, I am not eligible to be an IRS, a clerk or even a sweeper, but the rules do allow me to become an IAS,” Singhal says. She says her struggle to get into IRS taught her the best lessons of her life. “Actually, every struggle teaches you something. There is a possibility of defeat but in life you have to fight on.”
Singhal, born in Meerut, is from New Delhi’s Safdarjung Enclave. An engineer and an MBA, her father and mother are into the business of financial and insurance consultancy.
“They never treated me like I was physically handicapped. From childhood they taught me to take things like a normal person does. My struggle in this world was not because I am physically challenged but as a woman ... like any other woman subjected to discrimination or some backward thinking.”
So, one of her endeavours as an IAS would be to work for women, children and the physically challenged.
Singhal has a lot of hobbies - dance, drama, and on top of it all is travel. Her friend and fellow IRS Manudev Jain says she is a shararati person. “She plans the pranks, we execute them together.”
“I have not been able to take my sisters call till now,” Singhal says as she takes another call from a media house. "I am burnt now. Haven’t eaten all day and I am hungry now,” she declares as it is dinner time.

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