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Living Up To Her Name, Vidushi Cracked UPSC With AIR 13 at Age 21

‘Vidushi’ means ‘wise woman’, and this name was chosen for her by her parents Vidushi Singh cracked CSE 2022 at age 21 in her first attempt, without coaching She prefers Indian Foreign Service to IAS

Her religious parents had named her ‘Vidushi’, soon after her birth, which means ‘wise woman’. This name is sometimes identified with Goddess Saraswati who is considered as the Goddess of Knowledge in Hinduism.

But, perhaps, at the time of naming her, her parents might not have thought that their daughter would literally live up to the true meaning of her name in such a short span of time. Vidushi Singh from Ayodhya is just 21 years old and has cracked UPSC CSE 2022 with AIR 13 in her first attempt, without any coaching.

Interestingly, she prefers Indian Foreign Services (IFS) to IAS. Her idol is CB Muthamma, the first career diplomat woman of India. In those days, women did not get Ambassador post, but Ms Muthamma fought hard for it. Hence, she has been Vidushi’s biggest source of inspiration in the UPSC journey.

Vidushi with her parents

SUPPORT

Vidushi’s success proves yet again that family is the biggest strength in this journey. “My family did everything for me. I came home in the first Covid lockdown and started preparing for the exam. My family did not bother me for anything. My only work was to study and study,” she said.

JOURNEY

She comes from Ayodhya, Uttar Pradesh, but was born in Jodhpur, Rajasthan. Her father is an engineer in UPPCL while her mother who has PhD degree, is a school teacher.

She did her early education from Faizabad, now recognized as Ayodhya. She completed her 12th from with 98.2 percentile from JB Academy. After that, she did B.A. Honours (Economics) from the prestigious Shri Ram College of Commerce, Delhi University.

She was always inclined towards humanities. History was her favourite subject in childhood. Growing up, she took up economics because “economics help you to understand the world better. It will definitely help me in my IFS postings.”

With mother and family friends

INSPIRATION

Her grandparents always wanted to see her as a civil servant. So, since her childhood, Vidushi wanted to fulfil their dream and had a clear mindset about it. Apart from them, she took inspiration from toppers of her college.

“Every year, you will see many aspirants cracking UPSC from our college. That motivated me a lot, and I followed them to make a good strategy,” Vidushi told Indian Masterminds.

Vidushi Singh, AIR-13, UPSC CSE-2022

PREPARATION

She started her preparation in the third year of her college. She built the foundation that time only by reading NCERTs and other basic books. After that, she realized that she did not require coaching. So, she only enrolled for many test series and mocks.

However, for her optional, Economics, she took help from a renowned teacher for four months.
She said, “In the third year of college, I realized that there is no need of coaching and I can manage my preparation by myself, as I had ample time. Then, I analyzed myself where I was making mistakes and how to make it right. After college, I focussed on test series. I enrolled for various test series exams which helped me to crack the Prelims.”

With her mother

INTERVIEW

Her Interview was cordial, but she was grilled properly. She was asked questions from her DAF and her home town, Ayodhya. As Jodhpur was her birth place, she was asked the names of a famous celebrity couple who married in Umaid Bhawan.

She was asked many questions from her Optional Economics, too. Like: “How do you see India’s growth after Covid?” “How world economy was hampered by Covid?” “Should India focus more on supply chain in this global era?”

She was also asked some situational questions. According to her, board members check one’s analytical power in the interview, not knowledge.

With her parents and elder sister

SUGGESTIONS

Giving suggestions to aspirants, Vidushi said, “Keep yourself positive about the exam. There are times when you will feel disappointed, but you don’t have to worry. Things change soon. In this journey, always follow basics and don’t go for shortcuts. Make your own strategy and notes, and be consistent in your studies.”

She also added that people preparing for UPSC should strengthen their base by reading NCERT books first, and keep their mind focused at all times while giving the paper.

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