IAS 2012-13 results: Waning of interest in IT and resurgence in bureaucracy
That's common between Haritha V Kumar and Indian ambassador to the US Nirupama Menon Rao? They're both Keralites Kumar is from Thiruvanthapuram and Rao was born inMalappuram who topped the Indian Civil Service examination. Whilst Rao was a topper in 1973, Kumar came to know that she has been ranked first in the Civil Serviceexamination on May 3.
To be sure, the civil service results for 2012-13 were particularly sweet for Kerala, for more than one reason. The last time a Keralite won the first rank in the civil service examination was in 1991. It took 22 years another Malayalee to bag the top honours in the civil service examination.
What is more, a quick look at this year's results suggests that the era of Malayalee dominance in the civil service examination might have just started. For, of the first five ranks in 2012-13 three have gone to candidates from Kerala: V Sriram from Kochi came second while Alby John Varghese came fourth in this year's examination.
The result shows a huge shift in the priority of youngsters as far as their career options are concerned. For the past couple of decades, a dream career for youngsters started and ended at one of the IT majors in Bangalore. The best students always opted for engineering and medicine. But this year's result suggests a shift; in fact Kumar will be joining the civil service after getting a degree in engineering, whilst Sriram and Varghese have degrees in medicine.
Says Sriram: There is a massive resurgence in interest in civil service not just in Kerala but all over the country. According to him, the economic recession and the uncertainty prevailing in the global economy have made people realise that there are only a few stable professions that youngsters can pursue: one is medicine and the other is that of the civil servant. The image of the typical civil servant always at the beck and call of the politician has long since changed.
Many IAS officers have shown that independent work can be done, adds Sriram. The civil service training academies that have come up in different parts of the state is a pointer to this changing trend. Says Joseph Vettikkal, head of the Civil Service Institute, Palai: We had good results this year. Twenty three students from our institute, including the first-rank holder Haritha, cleared the examination.
The institute has a branch in the sate capital, Thiruvananthapuram. In Thiruvananthapuram, the state government itself has taken the initiative to start an IAS training academy. For all those who have cleared the preliminary examination, the institute will provide coaching free of cost.
Interactive sessions with experts, interview coaching, mock interviews, free train travel and a week's stay in Kerala House in New Delhi to attend the interview are the other facilities that are offered to the students. Around 55 students from the state have cleared the examination this year, says PM Rajeev, coordinator of the institute, adding that a good number of them had registered with the institute.
Interestingly, the training institutes are being launched by different communities. The Nair Service Society (NSS) has set up its institute in Thiruvananthapuram while the Christian church has training centres in Palai and Kochi. Enthused by the good results in 2012-13 examination, the education minister PK Abdu Rabb has announced that two more state-run training academies will be started in Palakkad and Kozhikode.
According to Jojo Mathews who runs the Delhi-based civil service training academy called Alternative Learning System (ALS), More students from Kerala will naturally get into the IAS if more candidates prepare seriously for the examination. According to him, today, Uttar Pradesh dominates the civil service examination because the maximum number of candidates appearing for the examination is also from that state.
He, however, believes that Kerala may have to wait several years before it gets another topper. This is because the difference between the first and the second or third ranks is so narrow in the examinations, he explains. Students from our institute have got 6th, 9th and 12th ranks this time. We have got better ranks in the past. But in my experience one can never foresee who will emerge as topper as the difference would be of just 1 or 2 marks. For the moment, however, Kerala and Kumar can take a bow.
Source : By , ET Bureau