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Failed In STD 6, How This Self-Taught Girl Topped UPSC

Exams for Indian Administrative Services (IAS) are considered one of the toughest in the country and often people with only straight A’s throughout their career succeed in cracking the exams. Except the time when people like Rukmani Riar clear it without any coaching and despite having failed in STD 6.

Unbelievable, right? Well, it happened many years back when Rukmani was lodged into a boarding school Dalhousie. The little girl couldn’t cope up with the sudden change in setting and the pressure that came with the boarding school and began losing her grip on academics. Months passed by and she couldn’t get her to improve resulting in crashing results in STD 6.

This led her into depression and she sulked for several days over her result. It was one of the worst feelings a child can experience at that age. But it also came with a strong, life-long learning. She recalls that facing her friends, family and even parents had become embarrassing for her. She hated to be in that spot and resolved to make this fear and disappointment her biggest motivation in life.

“Ever since I failed in Class 6, I am scared of failure. It can be very depressing. But after that incident, I made up my mind that I won’t sulk and complain. I will work hard and give things my best. I believe that if one decides to persevere and come out of that phase, nothing can stop you achieving success,” Rukmani says.

Life, then on, was full of vibrance for her. Rukmani learnt from her failure and never let that enter her life again. After completing her school education she went to Tata School of Social Sciences to get a degree in social entrepreneurship. To everyone’s surprise, she topped every semester leaving no space for failures. She definitely knew learning from mistakes was vital to succeed in life.

After the completion of her degree, she worked with several NGOs with an intention to understand the social fabric of India better. She resolved to bring about the needed changes in the society through the route of public services. She chose political science and sociology as her main subjects and was determined to do this without the help of any coaching.

When the results of 2011 UPSC exams were out, she had scored second position in the entire country! Her mantra has always been consistency in hardwork, planning, and persistence. She is a living example of how failures just mean pushing your limits further and bite into success.

Go for it. If I can do it, everybody else can, and nothing can stop you – Rukmani

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