Bhubaneswar: From a mud house in an Orissa village to the corridors of power as an official of the government - it is no longer just a dream for Madhusmita Sahoo, the daughter of a pan seller, who has made it to group A in the Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) examination. But 21-year-old Madhusmita, a resident of Talbarkot village in Dhenkanal, about 150 km from here, is not going to stop here. She is aiming higher - for a place in the Indian Administrative Service (IAS).
"I have got a rank of 612 in the merit list and am eligible for the central government's group A service. I am not happy with it. I will reappear in the examination this year and will try to come within 100 to become an IAS officer," Madhusmita, a final year economics student in Bhubaneswar's Utkal University, told IANS.
While Madhusmita has qualified for the central group's A service as per her ranking, a higher score would have entitled her to the IAS, Indian Foreign Service, Indian Police Service and other government services.
Her father Lingaraj Sahu, 60, runs a pan shop in the village and barely manages to earn a living for his family living in a mud house. But that did not deter Madhusmita, who lost her mother when she was only eight, from pursuing her dreams - and qualifying for the civil services through the prestigious and tough UPSC examination.
Madhusmita studied in the village school and got 88.8 percent in her Class 10 examination; thereafter she went to a college in Dhenkanal.
Her potential was realised when the Vikash Educational Charitable Trust gave her a scholarship.
"We spotted her and provided her a scholarship to help her fulfil her ambition," said L.N. Das of the trust.
"She appeared for the IAS prelims exams last year and took the mains in October. We organised her stay in Delhi, where she took coaching in a private institute for only six days to appear for the final exam," he added.
The drive to succeed extends to other members of her family.
"I want to see my elder sister as a collector (top official of a district adminitration)," said Madhusmita's sister Rashmita who is doing her postgraduation in economics.
With the will that Madhusmita has shown so far, that dream may also be within reach. IANS