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Why should you choose Civil Services as Career?

The Medicine and Engineering fields have always conjured up visions of fantasy and glory for many a youth and numerous parents who keep entertaining ambitions and dreams of their children blossoming into Doctors and Engineers. That is particularly true for this part of the country-the valley of Kashmir. Though there is nothing bad in it, but in many cases I have personally observed that many people choose rather I should not say choose but go for career simply because his father or mother has a dream or there is a pressure from the social circle. You know the mimic attitude of our society. (The other day I told Faesal that since you did it like that, I have an apprehension now our fathers would expect their children to become doctors first and then qualify IAS.)
I believe Career is one of the most important issues in your life. We should actually go for career planning in our life right from I suppose 10+2 level. Whether we have a taste for Medicine, Engineering, IT, Management, or the Civil Services (IAS/KAS etc), our academic line should actually follow that taste. We should consider the type of work that we would like to do before we consider the degree. I mean career should not be something imposed on you. It should come from your heart.
Motivation rather “adequate motivation” is must for preparation for civil services. Best motivation is which comes from inside. If you are yourself convinced and attracted by these services than only you can prepare properly. This exam is not like IIT-JEE/CET or any other Engineering/Medical/University Entrance Examination. It demands at least one and half-year full time preparation with solid determination, which is possible only if the desire for Civil Services is burning your heart incessantly.
As against the traditional careers of Medicine and Engineering and the contemporary careers like Management and IT, a career in the Indian civil services still is a dream for lakhs of youths in India. The prestige associated with this career, mainly the IAS and IPS, is evident from the number of students appearing for the exam year after year.
There are a variety of reasons for people to join Civil Services. For some, the three letter of English alphabet I.A.S remains a childhood dream for some a route to corridor of power while for others, it is a divine opportunities to serve the mankind.
Firstly, it has a lot to do with the sense of Status, Power, Money, recognition, responsibility and opportunities that this career gives you. What does an average educated person look for in a career? It is usually three things - position, respect and security. And a career in the Civil Services offers you all these in a relatively short span of time. The charisma of Civil Services has inspired lakhs of young aspirants to gear themselves to prepare for the coveted services to fulfill the desire for achieving tag of IAS/IPS etc. True, the power and social status along with job security that a civil servant enjoys is unimaginable anywhere else. But the powers vested in an IAS/IPS officer should not be the yardstick which one should use to decide on the option of joining the services. Joining the services would certainly be very different from most other placements, as almost all the latter are jobs, whereas IAS is a career. You will have to take your own decision based on your temperament, competence and interest in administrative issues. For many, becoming an IAS officer is just another way to get authority and things for free. I know this because I know a lot of people who want to go to IAS for the very reason.
How one finds the execution of powers would be a personal decision though. Enjoying powers at relatively lower level, for me it has been an immensely satisfying experience till date. I could not imagine myself in any other job. That’s the reason why after 4 years of a Degree in Forestry Sciences and in spite of my selection in MBBS, I choose to opt for the Civil Services. But then, it’s a personal decision and may vary from person to person.
Secondly, Civil Services offer the most challenging career and working for public welfare is the most demanding one. Besides the lure for power and perks the service provides enough scope for a dynamic person with zeal and desire to bring qualitative changes in the functioning of the government and even opportunities which could ameliorate the lives of thousand of people. If you want to do something for others, you can do through these services. There are a lot of problems that our society is facing. IAS/IPS/KAS gives you a multitude of options to address these problems. Administration of a District, Rural Development, Social Welfare, Tax Collection, Policing etc, as an IAS/KAS officer there is so much one can do. From addressing micro issues such as these to tackling a larger natural disaster the spectrum of service that an officer can render is amazing. Your motivation to prepare for Civil Services should be to help the hunger and ignorant people and to drive out the poverty from the society. If you have this desire in mind, then the Almighty will also help you to succeed in Civil Services.
It is true that rather than a service motive, some show a preference for the civil service charmed by the flashing red light on the official white ambassador cars, some might even think of it as a heaven for the indolent and the status quoist, and thus wish to be a part of it. Yet it is also a place for the dedicated workaholic, the reformer, the man of ideas, the man who wants to replace red-tape with flexibility and initiative. It is not fair to assume that individual motivations to opt for the civil services are always malevolent. There are several examples of civil servants who valiantly crossed seemingly insurmountable hurdles, sometimes at a great cost to their personal lives, and contributed to social development or sought to clean up the system.
Thirdly, IAS/IPS is the best career at such an age of 23 to 30. These services provide you best possible start in life. You will be at the top right from your youth. Imagine being Deputy Commissioner or SSP after seven year! These two and many other top administrative positions can be attained only by jumping the Civil Services Examination hurdle. With this in mind, a cynic once said that however big a cat grows, it will never become a small lion. You have the real chance of realization of your potential – you will have the resources and opportunities to implement your thought.
Moreover, since the recruits enter the services in their mid-20s, they can even choose to opt out after serving for a few years, as indeed some do. The wide and varied experience gained as a result of their postings to a diverse variety of jobs stands them in good stead in finding employment opportunities not only in large corporations, but also if they choose, in the voluntary sector, or even in electoral politics. Civil servants work in various capacities as representatives of the government, implementing programmes of the popularly elected governments as heads of district administration to jobs at the United Nations and the World Bank, formulating policies which touch the lives of millions of people across the globe. So far, no civil servant has complained that he `wasted' his time while in service, whatever other misgivings he might have.
And above all, civil services gives you a chance for the development of your own personality – There are also umpteen opportunities for personal development and knowledge expansion in the career despite the systemic constraints. You will get a lot of exposure during your career, attending meetings with your political bosses and executive seniors on one hand and hearing the public grievances on the other. Very few jobs can be as rewarding, enriching and as challenging as that of civil services in this regard.
But I wish to provide a realist picture There are few limitations too, limited salary, starting around 30,000/- and other perks (vehicle, accommodation, phone etc.) Salaries in private sector may be much more. But considering the amenities you get as a public servant you get much more than what it may seem. You get here what is called “leave not due”, which you can not imagine anywhere else.
Lengthy process of the exam is another issue. Exam process takes one year and at least one year of preparation is must.
Limited vacancies – every year on average 700-800 vacancies are advertised, which makes it risky affair. You may not be able to make it at the end of the day.
Anyone with the right aptitude, perseverance, tenacity, Decision making ability, leadership qualities, commitment and stamina can make it to the Civil Services as career. Our nation needs honest, efficient, competent, and dynamic officers in Government. The Civil Services promise an excellent career for those with the right aptitude. This path takes you to positions of authority and prestige. The career in civil services has no parallel in terms of power, prestige, idealism and the ability to make a change. Civil services both central and state, the backbone of the government machinery constitutes all departments which run the State administration. A highly competitive and challenging field, it involves variety of jobs in different departments. Compared to private sector jobs this profession has job security. The prestige and power that comes along with these top-notch jobs is a definite reason for anybody to join this profession. The salary, allowances and facilities like healthcare, housing, conveyance etc. also make it a lucrative career.
Many of you may be having presumptions that you should have come from a reputed Institute with brilliant academic record to succeed in Civil Services. But the fact is that you need not have come from a reputed Institute. You need not to have a splendid academic background. You need not to have great scores in your 10+2 or graduation. You need not have come from a rich family. You only need to have a dream to become an IAS officer and the rest will follow. Because it is the human nature, it is the human nature to gain knowledge and succeed. I say it is your human right to succeed. Anyone can succeed.
Before taking a leap into this fray, take a pause and ask yourself - Do you have all that it takes to be a civil service? If your heart and mind together say an emphatic ’yes’, then there’s no time to look back. Take your first step with confidence and a positive frame of mind. Invest your most precious possession, your ’youthhood’ into it and find a new meaningful life in return. Have faith in yourself and your ability. If you think you can do it, you can certainly do it. Leave no room for doubts in your mind.
Many of the great people have done it before, Dr Faesal, Mr Imtiyaz, Dr Showkat did it and now its your turn to achieved it.


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Overview of comments


(faheem, 2010-10-27 16:13)

what do you say about reservations like RBA and others in IAS and KAS.dont u feel that those u really need it,never get it and others enjoy its benefit even though not talented and not residing in backward areas.similarly children of SC and RBA -IAS officers enjoying the benifits for generations together.please give ur views.thanks

Re: reservations

(Bukhari, 2010-11-01 14:43)

Yup. You r right.It is high time we review this policy. May be we need reservation on economic basis...