Aruna Mahalingappa from Karnataka has cracked the UPSC civil services exam 2021 and bagged rank 308 after five failed attempts. However, it is a bittersweet moment for her. Aruna's father committed suicide in 2009, when she was pursuing engineering. He ended his life as he couldn't repay the mounting debt which he had incurred to pay for the education of his five children.
Hailing from the Tumkur district, Aruna is the third of five siblings. Unlike most candidates, cracking civil services was not her first goal.
Wanted To Get Engineering Degree
Initially, she intended to pursue engineering and get a decent job, but life had other plans for her.
After her father's death, Aruna's two elder sisters agreed to work for a few years to support their family, however, he always wanted his daughters to be independent and wished for them to sit for the UPSC exam.
Aruna then changed her plans to fulfil her father's dreams. "I had no intention to clear the UPSC exams. I just wanted to become an independent woman who could earn Rs 10,000 to 15,000. My father took it as a challenge to make us independent. But during my engineering course, I lost my father because of the debts he made to provide us with an education. After his death, I felt like giving back to society. I wanted to find his lost smile by serving farmers of my country", said Aruna, according to News18.
Aruna, who started studying hard in 2014 and attempted UPSC five times, had little prospect of passing on her final attempt. She was also afraid of the frequent failures, yet she refused to give up.
Encouraged Rural Youngsters
She established her own UPSC coaching institute, Aruna Academy in Bangalore, where she encourages rural youth to apply for the civil services exam.
"I had no hopes of clearing the UPSC examination and get 308 ranks. I gave five attempts but couldn't it. So I started my own academy where my focus has been to help rural aspirants. Finally, I cleared in my sixth attempt," she said.
Aruna, who hails from a backward class, had the option of using the reservation quota in most of her life events, but she declined and took the UPSC test under the general category.
"My father's dream has come true now, but my wish to serve my country's farmers and not let them attempt suicide will start now. My family had made me an independent woman by providing education, so I wanted to pave the way for other farmer's kids who are more backward than me to take advantage of reservation", said Aruna.
"Doesn't matter what post I will get but all are equally powerful in this field. Right now, I am just celebrating these moments with my family and thanking my father for his hardship," she said.
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