Optional Subject has got power to make or break your Dreams; says Misha Singh (AIR 64; CSE 2015)

Misha Singh, a Law graduate from National Law University, Lucknow and an ardent fan of RBI Governor, Raghuram Rajan has cracked Civil Services Examination 2015 in her third attempt and has secured 64th rank.

She had kept faith in her own subject - Law that she picked as optional subject.


I met Misha Singh, (AIR 64; CSE 2015) a few days after Civil Services Examination 2015 results were announced and my daughter, who has just completed schooling and is developing an idea about preparation and is keen to take up CSE preparation little later, was with me.

Initiating the conversation as I asked what success in Civil Services Examination means to her and expressing her emotional state after knowing the outcome, Misha said, “As an aspirant, conjuring up all sorts of stories relating to success in Civil Services Examination make you feel enticed; you have two options - either appreciate topper's determinations or being inspired, you make efforts to achieve it to believe it.”

“I tell you the moment I got to know I am going to get ‘IAS’ I went numb and it took me a while before I could gather what I have achieved. After all, I had stumbled in my last attempt; so, moments of self-doubt vanished with this accomplishment” she added.

Bring together reminiscences she said, “I come from a family where my mother is a farmer and my father has his own business; he helps my mother in her pursuit as well."Misha-singh-ias-topper-parents"I have one sister, younger to me; she is completing her graduation (B Arch). My father always wanted that I give it a try, but I never really was fond of it. Then gradually I learned more about it and decided to appear.”

Misha got fascinated by ‘Civil Services’ primarily due to the opportunity of getting to work in different fields associated with Administration.

In the last academic year of my college I got into the habit of reading newspaper daily and developed an awareness of socio-economic and political developments and also the problems plaguing the country. The importance of civil services became very clear and I decided to become part of the solution and offer my bit.

"Once successful, it get you all the fame and glory; but, what about chances of success; is it really so easy to achieve?" I inquired.Misha-singh-ias-topper-upsc-cse-2015-64-Rank-Law

Retorting to my query, triumphant Misha said, “Besides talent and commitment, there are a few factors that brings you close to success One, ability to identify your strengths and weaknesses; Two, recognize specific requirements associated at each stage of examination; Third, peer-group as a credible source of motivation and Fourth and the most significant, finding a mentor who help you perform at the level you aspire to.

Third and fourth are really crucial and if you get these, it becomes relatively easy to take first two factors into account.

In my career advancement, the main help came from my mentor Mr. K S Gill, as he constantly guided me throughout the examination. Talking about peer-group influence, among many others two people whom I looked up during my preparation were Munish Sharma (AIR 2, CSE 2013) and Himanshu Khurana (AIR 42, CSE 2014). When you get to know about success of people around you, it becomes quite easy to analyze their success from our own perspective.

Mesmerized by its charm, I started my foray in 2012 and my first attempt was to Civil Services Examination 2013. I lacked preparation and time management in my first attempt; but, I saw Munish getting 2nd rank. In CSE 2014, I performed very well in Main Examination but, my Personality Test score doomed me; but, I realized, I can mend my shortcomings and precisely that I could do in this attempt.

Each time, I could overcome unexpected bout of uncertainty only by looking at my peer’s success and knowing them personally, I was always inspired to work equally hard.

In the end, Misha share her viewpoint about preparation, “Optional Subject can make or break your chances of clearing the examination. Many students do not do the adequate research about the subjects before opting them that ultimately lands them in soup. Syllabus, its length and one’s comfort level with the subject is necessary. Also, previous year question paper should be perused too.”

Last Update Thursday 18th July 2019     

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