Kerala woman overcomes adversity secures 282nd rank in UPSC exam


Alappuzha:  Parvathy Gopakumar of Ambalapuzha, Alappuzha, who secured the 282nd rank in the Civil Services exam, has always been a bright child. To the parents and teachers, the future seemed happy and straightforward for young Parvathy. But, when she was a Class 7 student, in a cruel twist of fate, an unfortunate bike mishap ended in the amputation of her right hand.

That is all I have to say about that,” says Parvathy, not wanting to ponder over the past. Instead, Parvathy’s vision is set steadfast into the future, determined to overcome what was seemingly a debilitating handicap.

”I trained myself to write with my left hand. I used the Cursive Writing book for LKG students. I still cannot write as fast as I would like to, but I can write fast enough.” Fast enough to secure the 282nd rank in the Civil Services exam, this was Parvathy’s second attempt.

Parvathy’s success is also proof of the quality of public education in Kerala. Growing up, Parvathy’s education comprised entirely of government schools – first the Government School at Kakkazham and then the Government Higher Secondary School at Ambalapuzha.

As a testament to Parvathy’s nature to think differently, Parvathy chose to go with Humanities for Plus-Two, a decision that confused some but ultimately paid dividends in the Civil Services exam. After Plus-Two, Parvathy pursued Law studies in Bangalore. Then, she joined a private coaching centre in Thiruvananthapuram to pursue her dream of becoming an IAS officer.

Gopakumar, Deputy Tahsildar, Revenue Department, is the father of Parvathy. Sreekala, a high school teacher, is the mother.