MOTIVATION & TOPPER’S STRATEGY:
Visually Impaired, NLSIU Graduate, Rank – 562 CSE-2018, Law Optional
Very Inspiring Journey
“Every Cloud has a Silver Lining” This is one of the most cliched lines that one would hear. But, this fits perfectly to the journey so far I have had in life. From having cataract by birth and gradually loosing my vision in both eyes, has always inspired and motivated me to achieve greater heights.
From being the All India topper in Special Category in my 12th class board for which I was awarded by the then President to finishing my B.A.,LLB (Hons.) degree from National Law School of India University, Bangalore, despite all odds. And now getting 562 rank in CSE 2018 which is the most competitive and prestigious exam in the country, this has been a roller coaster ride so far.
It is my strong belief that there is nothing called physical disability, disability is always a mental barrier. If one can break that barrier, there is nothing that one cannot fulfil in one’s life and make it meaningful. And if someone has doubts about that, my journey so far is a testimony to the same. There may be times where you will face challenges and roadblocks in meeting out the targets that you have set for yourself. But that is the time when you have to dig deep inside your subconscious mind and gather the strength to fight the society and all odds that come in your way and accomplish your goals with that positive attitude. And at these times, it is your parents and closed group of friends who are your pillars of strength and will help you sail through wavy waters.
If I say, the journey was straightforward, it would be misleading, it wasn’t easy at all. From fighting for your rights and to getting recognition, these are still huge challenges for differently abled. And lack of awareness among society and various institutions aggravates the task at hand. When I started my journey for civil services, the biggest challenge was to arrange for the reading material, books and sources which were accessible and therefore, my first attempt went in identifying relevant sources and finding if they were accessible and if not getting them accessible so that they are compatible with my text to speech software. The National Association for the Blind was of immense help in this endeavour and I am extremely grateful to them. My physical movement was also restricted so I could not attend various coaching and classes in the first place.
And it was at that moment that I stumbled upon ‘Insights on India’ website. Due to improvements in technology, there is so much better access in today’s times and insights was extremely helpful in initial days. I cannot imagine how people like me prepared in previous years as the digital platforms were not available as they are now.
The various initiatives by insightsIAS like the daily CA quizzes, static quizzes, daily current affairs have been extremely helpful in longer run. The revision timetable before prelims and the revision modules are that one can get at that crunch time of preparation. But what takes the cake is the various motivational posts that insights keeps posting and the various toppers strategies that are always inspiring. They are a reality check and are extremely helpful when you are down and feel nothing is happening in your life. It was these posts that kept me motivated after the failures in the first two attempts.
And as the destiny would have it, I always dreamt of someday seeing my post on insights and how lucky I have been that that has come to fruition.
CSE is a long process and one needs to have extreme faith in oneself to cross the line. And the role of parents and a good atmosphere and a closed circle of friends are extremely important. In addition, good mentors and guides are an integral component of this journey. And I have been extremely fortunate that I have found positive and inspiring people at various points who kept motivating me to pursue my dreams and here I stand now.
In conclusion I can only say if you have the willpower and strength to keep persevering what you have set out to achieve, no disability or any of the hurdles can stop from fulfilling your dreams. I feel privileged now that I have got an opportunity to serve the society and position from where I can promote awareness about the rights of the differently abled and create knowledge in the society about the same.
All the best to all the current aspirants.
P.S.- Please feel free to contact me on firstname.lastname@example.org for any guidance (specially for people who are either low vision and blind and face accessibility issues).