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Mrunal Manmay Dash

Sheer passion to achieve success, hard work to complement it and keeping negativity aside are the success mantras of Biswajit Sahu, a truck driver’s son from Chitri village under Jajpur’s Danagadi block who cracked the Odisha Civil Services exams this year and secured an enviable 19th rank.

Biswajit lost his father three years ago to a road accident and after that he decided to shoulder the responsibility of his family—widowed mother and a younger sister.

He thanked the God, his family and teachers who never gave up on him and encouraged him to chase his dreams despite all odds. “I dreamt of helping the society in any possible way. And I am glad that the opportunity came through the Odisha Civil Services,” Biswajit said.

“The exam was postponed for a year during COVID lockdown last year. While that resulted in a lot of anxiety, it also paved way for introspection. I got ample time for revision, and that helped me a lot in the preparations,” he added.

Similarly, Umashankar Koya, whose father repairs broken cycles in the Southern Odisha town of Koraput, secured 117th rank in the same examination this year. His father Laxman Koya’s joys knew no bounds after the news of his son’s feat was broken to him.

An elated Umashankar said, “My father is my inspiration. He works hard to keep the family afloat. He repairs bicycles days in and days out. As far as my success goes, I learned the ropes from my failures. It was my third attempt after failing the mains exams on the initial two occasions.”

Giving the privileged a run for their money, another lotus bloomed in the Nabarangpur district in the form of Pratap Chandra Pujari who secured 151th place in the OPSC exams.

Belonging to the tribal infested Gambhariguda village in the district, which rarely saw anyone achieving anything noteworthy, Pujari was a deviation. He was a brilliant student right from the beginning. Like the proverbial ‘morning shows the day’, Pujari got into the State Health department in 2006 as an additional Revenue Inspector in 2013. He did not stop there. His talents helped him crack the Odisha Civil Services with flying colours.

“Though there are many teachers in our village, no student could manage to get into the OPSC. Pratap is the first person to achieve this feat. We are proud of him,” said Suranjan, a friend of Pratap.

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