AARYAN SHARMA
JAMMU: At least 16 candidates from Jammu and Kashmir on Wednesday made it to the final list of prestigious Union Public Service Commission Examinations.
A former KAS Officer currently serving Indian Forest Service (IFS) Bilal Mohiuddin Bhat,from Kashmir, made it to the prestigious list of top 10 candidates this year.
Another top ranker, an engineer from NIT Hamirpur Zaffar Iqbal cracked UPSC by securing All India Rank (AIR) 39.
He hails from remote area of Surankote near Jeran Wali Gali.
Ayushi Sudan from Jammu made Jammuities proud by securing All India Rank (AIR) 65. Akhil Mahajan from Jammu secured 213 rank and Dr. Mohnish Digra from Janipur, Jammu stands at AIR 776. Bisma Qazi from Srinagar secured rank 115. Suhail Qasim Mir, son of a J&K Police Head Constable Mohd Qasim Mir secured AIR 125 in the prestigious list.
Saqib Yousuf, rank 472, Faisal Javed, rank 610, Inabat Khaliq, rank 604, Amir Bashir secured 1087.
Vivek Bhagat secured 1038, Sahil Digra 917, Aditya Bhardwaj 441 rank. Danish Agastam from Udhampur made it to the list by securing 814 rank, Anayat Ali Chowdhary from Rajouri secured 808 rank in the list.
Bilal attributed his success to the maxim, ‘try try again’.
“Words can hardly describe my feelings. I feel on top of the world today,” Bhat, an Indian Forest Officer at present based in Lucknow, said.
Bhat, who had appeared for the examination four times, would have in November this  year crossed 32 — the cutoff age for appearing for the elite services. “I believed in this quote — Try, try, try again. I have been trying from 2010,” Bhat said, his voice choking with emotion.
Bhat, who belongs to the Yunsu a remote border village of District Kupwara in North Kashmir, completed his schooling and college from Srinagar before studying Veterinary Sciences in Jammu.
The product of a government college, he cleared the Kashmir Administrative Services (KAS) and later the Indian Forest Services.
“However, my aim was IAS and now I am sure that I will get my home cadre,” Bhat said. “I had to sacrifice every comfort to achieve my goal,” Bhat, who has three brothers and a sister, added.
His father, who was also a KAS officer, was “elated” by his son’s success. “He is longing to see me back in my home State so that I can serve my people,” Bhat said. The father in him credits his success to his seven- month-old daughter, Mariam.
“After she was born in September, I cleared my preliminaries. And since then there has been no looking back,” he said. Zaffar Iqbal Choudhary, an engineering graduate presently working as Assistant Engineer with J&K’s Public Works Department in Poonch Sub Division, secured impressive All India Rank 39 in a select list of over a thousand successful candidates. Zaffar has a brilliant academic record, securing heavily in CBSE’s board exams and in college. He had secured 89.2 per cent and 87.4 per cent in 10th and 12th CBSE board exams respectively while he fetched 8.55 grade points in graduation.
Born to Zatoon Begum and Mohd Iqbal Zaffar, he dedicated his success to unrelenting support and encouragement of his parents and guidance of his teachers and friends besides inspiration from local IAS officers. He said Dr. Shahid Iqbal Choudhary, first IAS officer from Pir Panjal region as his role model who greatly inspired and motivated him.
Hailing from village Jaran Wali Gali of Mendhar Sub Division of Poonch district, Zaffar is a product of Jawahar Navodaya Vidyalaya (JNV) system of education. Having passed his secondary school education from JNV Surankote, Zaffar qualified All India Engineering Entrance Examination (AIEEE) and did his Bachelor degree in Civil Engineering from National Institute of Technology (NIT), Hamirpur.
“Socio-economic transformation of society and empowerment of vulnerable sections will always remain my motivation as I go on to join and take up one of the most challenging jobs,” says Zaffar while adding that in ushering an egalitarian social order, IAS plays a vital role.
Cracking one of the most difficult exams in the world, Zaffar has become 4th officer from Poonch to join the elite service. Earlier, Mohd Aijaz DC Ramban, Owais Ahmed SDM Karnah, Tangdhar and Qummer Ul Zaman Choudhary, SDM Udaipur had cracked this exam.
Various social and political personalities of Poonch district have congratulated Zaffar and his family and commended his extraordinary achievement. They hoped that Zaffar’s outstanding performance will inspire and motivate hundreds of youth in the district to emulate him.
Dr. Mohnish Digra, BDS, resident of Janipur has qualified Civil Services Examination 2016 with AIR 776. He is son of Dr.Nasib Chand Digra, who is working as Professor of Surgery in GMC Jammu. His mother Sunita Digra is working in School Education Department as Senior Lecturer Chemistry at Govt Girls Higher Secondary School Canal Road Jammu.
As the news of Bhat’s success spread, congratulatory messages were flashed by Union Minister Jitendra Singh and former Chief Minister Omar Abdullah.
“It is encouraging to see that youths from militancy-hit areas are appearing and emerging as toppers in the civil services,” Singh said.
In his message, Omar said Bhat had made the state proud and hoped that “all the dreams of the son of the soil” would be fulfilled.
As many as many as 1,099 candidates being recommended for various government services. There are 220 other candidates in the waiting list.
Nandini KR, who hails from Karnataka, has topped the prestigious exams.
Anmol Sher Singh Bedi and G Ronanki have secured second and third positions, respectively.
The civil services examination is conducted by the UPSC annually in three stages – preliminary, main and interview – to select officers for the Indian Administrative Service (IAS), Indian Foreign Service (IFS) and Indian Police Service (IPS) among others.