Inspiration for Youths : An Autorickshaw drivers son Clears IAS Exam
The son of an autorickshaw driver and brother of a garage hand, Ansar Ahmad Shaikh, at 21, cracked the Civil Services Examination by securing 361 rank and that too in his first attempt . The boy hails from the Shelgaon village in Jalna district, Marathwada region and completed his schooling from Jalna district school. Ansar explained that his father is an alcoholic and often physically abuses his mother. Despite adverse circumstances, Ansar focused on his studies – went to Shelgaon Zilla Parishad School and secured 76 per cent in 10th standard, opted for arts in junior college and cleared 12thstandard with 91 per cent. He then came to Pune for further studies. Ansar took admission in Fergusson College for his BA. Simultaneously he started studying for the UPSC exams.He was forced to change his name to a Hindu surname in order to get accommodation and food in the city without facing any discrimination.
Ansar put in 13 hours of study every day for UPSC. He passed BA with political science as special subject, with 73 per cent in 2015. In the same year he appeared for UPSC exams and opted for political science.
“I am happy to see my name in the final list of UPSC and told my parents the good news. My brother, who works in a garage, has supported me through it all. Without his help, it would have been impossible for me to achieve this,” said Ansar. He added, “I am marginalised in three categories – I come from a backward region, I am a Muslim and am from a poor economic background.”
Remembering his tough days, Shaikh’s eyes swells with tears.
He said “My father has three wives, my mom is the second. In my family, education wasn’t so important. My younger brother dropped out of school and my two sisters were married off at an early age and didn’t study much. When I called home and told them that I cracked UPSC and in all likelihood will be an IAS officer, they were shell shocked,” said Shaikh, adding after a small celebration with friends, he is headed home for a bigger celebration.
He said, “I think I would tell students to question themselves, Why do they want to be in the system? Once they have answered this question, the path will get clear.”
As for his future plans, Ansar wants to focus on some key areas once he joins the services. “I want to work for religious harmony, women’s empowerment and rural development. As an administrator, I will be able to work on these issues. I want to work for Hindu-Muslim harmony as I have seen religious tension in my village.