UPSC CSE 2021 Achievers Who Fought Acute Financial Constraints to Come Out Successful

UPSC CSE 2021 saw many candidates from humble backgrounds cracking the exam. These achievers struggled hard against financial constraints to prepare for the exam and clear it. We present few inspiring success stories from this year’s CSE results, of candidates who proved that when there is a will, there is a way.
Indian Masterminds Stories

There is no dearth of UPSC success stories, but there are some that leave a deep impression on us because of the hard struggle behind them. Today, Indian Masterminds presents the stories of families’ struggle to provide education to their children, and how these children cracked India’s toughest exam UPSC CSE 2021 and are set to join the country’s prestigious civil services.


Deepesh Kumari secured AIR 93 in UPSC CSE-2021 in her second attempt and got 4th rank in the EWS category. But, behind her success was the incredible struggle of her family.

Her father Govind, who lives in a small house with two daughters, three sons and wife, has been selling snacks on a cart for the last 25 years. The UPSC result brought reward for a lifetime of struggle and his happiness knew no bounds. His wife has not stopped shedding tears of happiness since then.

Deepesh Kumari hails from Bharatpur, Rajasthan. Her father Govind sells snacks on a handcart. Her mother Usha is a homemaker. The father says that Deepesh was smart in studies since childhood. She passed 10th with 98% marks and passed 12th with 89% marks. She even invested her salary money on the education of her siblings.

Deepesh Kumari rejoicing with her parents after securing AIR 93 in UPSC CSE 2021

The house in which Govind lives in the narrow street of the city is very small. He is a happy man now because of his daughter’s success. Anyone can see happiness on his face, but at the same time, the struggles of decades are visible on his body. He is proud of his daughter, but still very humble and down to earth. Even the very next day after the UPSC result of his daughter, he took his handcart and went out on the streets of the city to sell snacks.


Akavaram Sasya Reddy lost her father at very young age, and ever since, her life was not easy. Her mother took up the responsibilities of both the parents and they both had to lead a very simple life because of financial constraints.

Sasya is from a small town of Andhra Pradesh. Although, she lost her father in 2010, her mother did all she could to provide her with the best of education. “For some time, we lived with my grandparents but from the last many years, we are both living alone. My mother has been doing something or the other to manage the finances. Due to financial crunches, we have been living a very simple life and didn’t have any sort of celebration or function in the last 3-4 years. In all these years, this is the first time when we are in celebratory mode,” she said.

Akavaram Sasya Reddy, AIR-214

They live in a small rented house on the outskirts of the city. Sasya also shared some financial responsibilities by doing content writing on UPSC-related matters.

She secured AIR 214 in UPSC CSE 2021 and is all set to become a bureaucrat.


Sometimes success can bring bitter memories back that might force you to go back in time to relive them. That’s what has happened for Aruna Mahalingappa, who secured AIR 308 in UPSC CSE 2021. Ever since her name figured on the coveted list, the hurtful memories of her father’s ultimate sacrifice for her future have started disturbing her afresh.

Her family’s economic condition was not that good, but her father wanted all his children to be independent and so provide them with good education. For this, he had to take loans but couldn’t pay them off. This led to his suicide.

Aruna was doing her engineering when her debt-ridden father committed suicide. After this unfortunate incident, her sisters started to work and took care of the family. The death of her father pushed Aruna towards pursuing a career in Civil Services because he wanted her to sit in this prestigious exam. During a media interaction, she said, “I had no intention to clear the UPSC exams. I just wanted to become an independent woman who could earn Rs 10,000 to 15,000. My father took it as a challenge to make us independent. After his death, I felt like giving back to society. I wanted to find his lost smile by serving farmers of my country.”

Aruna Mahalingappa

She is determined to serve the farmers of our country and wants to prevent the suicides cases. She says that the service doesn’t matter, she will work for the betterment of farmers in whatever service she is
assigned. “My father’s dream has come true, but my wish to serve my country’s farmers and not let them attempt suicide will start now.”


Vishal Kumar’s father Bikau Prasad was a labourer and by some means or other, he used to take care of the family. After his father’s death in 2008, the situation worsened as there was no other source of income and Vishal was also in 7th grade. However, his mother Rani Devi took the responsibility and started rearing buffalos and goats to make ends meet.

Vishal being an excellent student cleared his 10th grade from RK High School Chapra with outstanding marks after which he got selected for the Super 30 programme which is run by Anand Kumar, a mathematician from Patna.

Vishal Kumar

Vishal prepared for the JEE exam and got selected to IIT Kanpur to pursue BTech in Chemical Engineering. He completed college and started working in Reliance. As Vishal was not satisfied with his job, he left it and shifted to Delhi for full-time preparation. He cracked it in his fourth attempt in 2021 after which he was listed in the final list with AIR 484. Vishal is contemplating preparing for the exam again to try and get into IAS the next time.


This year, 52 candidates from Jamia’s Resident Coaching Academy cleared the UPSC exam, which also includes a son of a food vendor. He is Masoom Raza Khan who cleared the exam in the fifth attempt. Masoom scored AIR 457 to finally get into the civil services after preparing for five long years.

Masoom originally belongs to the Sitamarhi district of Bihar. However, he completed all his studies in the national capital. Masoom’s father is a food vendor and has a stall in Safdarjung Enclave. His mother is a homemaker.

Masoom Raza Khan (from right, second)

Masoom’s parents always supported him in his studies and never forced him to work and contribute to the family. To support his daily expenditure, Masoom used to provide coaching to the children living in slums and also worked at the Vision IAS as a counselor.

Masoom got selected for Jamia RCA ‘s free coaching and after facing failures for four straight years, he cracked UPSC 2021 with AIR 457.


Vishal Dhakad’s father owns a small motor winding shop in Guna, Madhya Pradesh, while other family members are engaged in farming activities. Vishal’s father wanted Vishal to pursue IAS as he knew he had the right calibre and also because he wanted his son to be in a respectable job.

Vishal said, “I not only wanted a decently paid job but also a diversity of opportunities along with it. I wanted to help people and make a change in their life as, ultimately, money doesn’t suffice, but this thing does.”

He sat for the exam for the first time in 2020 but failed to clear it. He didn’t lose heart after the failure but took it as a motivation and sat again for the 2021 UPSC exam. This time he cleared all the stages of the exam and made it to the final list with AIR 39 and made his family, especially his father, proud.


Swapnil Pawar, the son of an auto-rickshaw driver, made it to the final list of UPSC CSE 2021 in his second attempt and brought laurels to his family.

Born and brought up in the Nashik district of Maharashtra, Swapnil was brilliant in academics since his school days. He scored 93% in his 10th board examination from Pethe Vidyalaya. Once his schooling was complete, Swapnil took admission in the Vishwakarma Institute of Technology, Pune after clearing the JEE examination. While completing Chemical Engineering, he worked as a Project Engineer at Fabus International. However, it was Swapnil’s childhood dream to crack UPSC and become a civil servant that kept him up at night. He finally decided to begin his preparation for the examination but decided not to quit his job, in case things didn’t pan out well for him.

Swapnil Pawar

His challenges came along with financial constraints but his zeal to keep on preparing for UPSC, and his parents’ support, helped him in pursuing his goal. He cleared CSE in his first attempt securing AIR 632. He got posted in the Indian Railways Service and began his training. However, he wanted to get into the Indian Police Service, and so he decided to give CSE once again. He started studying alongside his training for IRS. He scored AIR 418 in CSE 2021.

Indian Masterminds Stories

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