A total of 10 boys and girls from Kashmir have cracked the coveted IAS exams, bringing optimism to the Valley which had been in the boil after allegations of molestation were made against an Army officer recently. The success of female candidates was especially encouraging, said academicians.
“Women and girls have very little to celebrate in Kashmir and such success stories give them a reason to say goodbye to despondency,” said Dr Sabiya Mufti, an academician in Srinagar. Sheema Nabi, a 28-year-old law graduate, is among those who have qualified in the Indian Administrative Service exam. Hailing Sheema for her success, Dr Aaliya Ahmad, a professor in the University of Kashmir, said: “Sheema will be an inspiration for many girls, especially in the rural areas of Kashmir, who want to make a mark in their lives.”
Interest in civil services grew in the Kashmiri youth following the success of Shah Faisal in 2009, when he created history by becoming the first Kashmiri to top the IAS examination. Close to this feat was Athar Amir Khan from Anantnag district of South Kashmir, who stood second in the IAS exams this year.
Another success story that has inspired women folk in the valley is that of Ayesha Aziz of Baramulla district in North Kashmir. Ayesha became a licensed pilot at the age of 16 years, and now she has become India’s youngest woman pilot at age 20.
In recent years, girls from rural areas have done well in civil services. The list includes Deeba Farhat and Ruveda Salam, who have become motivational forces for all in the valley.