Despite all the challenges that came her way, 29- year-old Pranjal Patil has achieved the feat of clearing the Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) exam for the second time in a row with an impressive All India Rank (AIR) of 124.
Patil, a visually-impaired student from Ulhasnagar had cleared the exam in 2016 with AIR of 773 and was allotted the Indian Railway Accounts Service (IRAS). In July 2016, Patil got a letter from the Department of Personnel and Training (DoPT) that she has been allotted a job in the IRAS and that the training would begin in December 2016. After receiving no response, Patil approached the DoPT, a central body that does the allocations for all the selected candidates and was told that the railways had sent an email stating that a fully blind candidate cannot join the service in their department. The DoPT later allotted her the Indian Post & Telecommunication Accounts and Finance Service, considered to be a lower cadre than the railway.
She joined training at Faridabad but did not give up and applied for the exam again, making it to the top cadre-IAS. “I was determined to get a better cadre than what was allotted to me and reappeared for the UPSC. I gave my best, which is reflected in my rank,” said Patil, adding that, “I am confident about getting IAS this time. This is an answer to all those who doubted my potential,” she says.