Poonam Singh

Securing a coveted position in the Indian Administrative Service (IAS) through the highly competitive UPSC exam is a daunting task, causing many aspirants to abandon their pursuit. Among the lakhs who apply for the UPSC Civil Services Exam (CSE) with dreams of becoming IAS, IPS, or IFS officers, only a mere thousand make it to the final list. 

While coaching is a common approach for UPSC preparation, some individuals opt for self-study and achieve success. One such achiever is Laghima Tiwari, an electronics and communication engineering graduate from Delhi Technological University, who secured All India Rank 19 in UPSC CSE 2022 in her maiden attempt.

According to a News18 report, Laghima, who hailed from the Alwar district of Rajasthan, completed her graduation in 2021 and embarked on her UPSC journey without coaching. 

Over a year, she meticulously covered static portions, basic General Studies, and current affairs, drawing inspiration from toppers' interviews on YouTube. 

Choosing anthropology as her optional subject for the UPSC Mains exam, she relied on test series and self-study to clear the exam without coaching.

In an interview with Indian Masterminds, Laghima attributed her success to her parents, emphasising the significance of a clear mindset from the outset, enabling her to focus wholeheartedly on exam preparation. 

She advised aspirants to devise a flexible preparation strategy, emphasizing the importance of consistency, continuous effort, and revision. 

Laghima stressed the need to learn from mock test mistakes, conduct thorough analyses, and promptly transition to Mains exam preparation after the prelims, even for those on the borderline.