NEW DELHI: Beno Zefine, the first 100 per cent visually impaired officer to have joined Indian Foreign Service (IFS), was today felicitated by Union Minister Jitendra Singh.
At a function held at Indian Civil Service Officers' Institute here and attended by a large number of women officers, Singh said he was impressed by Beno's determination when she initially sought his help to get into the service as existing norms did not allow any such candidate to become a diplomat.
Singh, Minister of State for Personnel, said he took it upon himself as a challenge to find a possible way out to get Beno accommodated in IFS even though there were constraints due to the existing government rules, a press release said.
After several months of exercise, continuous correspondence with the Ministry of External Affairs and appropriate interpretation of rules, he said, it was finally possible to allocate Indian Foreign Service to Beno, it said.
He felicitated Beno on the occasion of International Women's Day.
Singh said, it would be an under-estimation of Beno's talent and diligence if she was hailed only as a woman, because her achievement is indeed an example to be followed by all the potential achievers regardless of their gender or social background.
He said Beno could achieve what she did because her parents allowed her absolute freedom to realise her potential
"The day the society is able to rise to that level of evolution, there will no longer be any need to observe International Women's Day, because a woman is capable of doing it on her own without requiring any special patronage," the Minister said.