For two years, Sandeep G Rajappa, 29, led a comfortable life working as a software engineer in an MNC in the city. He was even offered an opportunity to work in the USA. But Sandeep, a graduate from RV College of Engineering had different plans.
He wanted to be a civil servant and be an ‘agent of change’.
He is presently the Assistant Commissioner of Income Tax at the Centralised Processing Centre (CPC). After his fourth attempt in the UPSC exam last year, while already in service, he secured 412th rank and is expecting a position in the Indian Administrative Services (IAS).
“Working in a technical environment did not give me satisfaction. I wanted to bring about a change in the society and find solutions to the problems that people are facing,” Sandeep said.
Citing the Uttarakhand rain fury that killed thousands of people, Sandeep said the Deputy Commissioners have the power to handle such crises and improve situations. “They are the next in command after the Prime Minister or the Chief Minister,” he said.
Snehal R from Belgaum, who secured the 77th rank, said that preparing for competitive exams while working full time is not a far-fetched idea as it is widely believed.
The former lecturer of Psychology at Maharani College in Bangalore was exposed to the barriers faced by the economically backward students in fulfilling their ambitions and this strengthened her desire to be an IAS officer.
In the eighth month of her training at the Post and Telecommunication Accounts and Finance Service, after securing 789th rank in her previous attempt, Snehal’s new rank is expected to get her into the IAS cadre.
“My goal was always the IAS and I spent four to five hours a day preparing, while I was teaching at Maharani College,” she said and added: “Besides, being in service, attempting the UPSC makes you more confident because you have already cleared the process once.” The soon-to-be IAS officer aspires to work in the state as she understands the people here and will be able to connect with them better since she knows Kannada. “The real challenge lies in the way you work and serve people and listen to the underprivileged and marginalised,” she said.
Dr Manjunath Kanamadi, 27, an MBBS graduate from Kempegowda Institute of Medical Sciences, was motivated to become a civil servant after practising medicine and interacting with patients. “As a doctor, remedying health problems made me realise that my true goal was to serve the community,” said Kanamadi who hails from Jamakhandi in Bagalkot district. He secured the 900th rank after three attempts. He expects to get a position in Customs and Central Excise Department, but will continue taking the UPSC exams until he secures an IAS cadre.