Vishakha Yadav is an Indian civil servant who got 6th rank in the 2019 UPSC Examination. She was the 2nd topper among women candidates.
Vishakha Yadav was born in 1994 (age 26 years; as of 2020). She grew up in West Delhi where she did her schooling. Later, she attended Delhi College of Engineering where she studied software engineering and graduated with a bachelor’s degree in Computer Software Engineering in 2014. Thereafter, Vishakha took up a job as a software developer in a firm, Cisco Systems, in Bangalore where she worked almost 2.5 years. Later, she quit her highly-paid job in 2017 to prepare for UPSC exams.
Height: 5′ 5″
Eye Colour: Black
Hair Colour: Black
Family & Caste
Vishakha Yadav belongs to a Yadav family of West Delhi. Her father, Rajkumar Yadav, is an Assistant Sub-Inspector in Delhi Police in Dwarka. Her mother, Sarita Yadav, is a homemaker.
To prepare for the UPSC exams, Vishakha quit her highly-paid job in 2017. For almost three years, she abstained from social media, including WhatsApp, and concentrated on her studies. After attending a coaching centre for almost a year, she spent her days immersed in books at a nearby library. According to Vishakha, to de-stress, she would sketch, paint, and solve a lot of sudoku puzzles; moreover, to get herself relaxed, she also watched TV series, engaging documentaries, interviews, and TED talks. In her initial two attempts, Vishakha couldn’t even clear the prelims. While talking about it, and the support given by her mother during her UPSC preparation, Vishakha says,
When I failed in my first attempt, it was a huge setback. Three years of preparing and taking exams knowing that you may not even get through need a huge amount of psychological and emotional support. My mother has been there to pull me out of every dark moment. She would take care of my food, my clothes and everything. All I would do is study.”
According to Vishakha, when she felt like giving up, her mother would say:
I am sitting with you, you study, nothing will happen.”
Vishakha Yadav finally cleared the UPSC examination in her third attempt in 2019 and scored the sixth rank. According to Vishakha, soon after her interview in her third attempt, she started preparing for her fourth attempt, as she was not sure about her success. While talking about it in an interview, she said,
My interview was on March 18 but as usual, I wasn’t sure if I will get through. So I started studying for my fourth attempt.”
While elaborating on her preparations, she said,
In my previous attempts, I was not able to maintain consistency. If you have set your daily targets, then you should not miss them and put them to another day. You should complete them. Follow the schedule religiously. If you try to break it, then it gets piled up and you will be falling back on schedule. This time, I ensured to set daily, weekly and monthly targets, I will finish them and revise. I kept track of my progress.”
- Vishakha Yadav cleared the UPSC examination in her third attempt; she was unsuccessful to clear even the prelims in her first two attempts.
- In her second attempt, she couldn’t qualify for the prelims because of just 1.3 marks.
- According to Vishakha, her mother is her true inspiration. While praising her mother for supporting her during her UPSC preparations, Vishakha says,
My mom was there for me all the time, to pull me up from all the low moments. She was the biggest support and force in motivating me. I think I drew a lot from her.”
- According to Vishakha, she has also learned a lot from her father’s job who works in the public sector and has a direct connect with people.
- Elated on her daughter’s success in the UPSC examination, Mr. Rajkumar, who is posted in the DCP office in Dwarka, said,
She was working so hard. So I had a feeling that she will get through. But I didn’t know that she will bag the sixth rank.
- After her success in the UPSC examination, she was honoured by the DCP West in Dwarka, Delhi.
- In an interview, she revealed that almost all her friends were married; however, her parents never brought the topic of marriage to her, Vishakha said,
They never put pressure on me for getting married or getting a job or do anything else. They gave me complete freedom to build my life.”
- She loves to play basketball in her leisure time, and she played for a forward position in the basketball teams of her school and college.
- When it comes to her role model, it’s the late Indian President and one of the most renowned Indian scientists, Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam.