Visually impaired Haryana man fulfils civil service dream

At the age of 5, he lost his vision due to acute diarrhoea. But that did not stop him from living his dream of becoming an IAS officer. The journey has been far from smooth for 32-year-old Ajit Kumar from the non-descript Kheri village in south Haryana's Mahendergarh district, who has cracked the Civil Services Exam.

"I am very happy today. My dream has been fulfilled. I am packing my bags and will be off to Mussorie this week where I will undergo training from February 19," Ajit who is only the second in the country with total loss of vision to get into IAS told PTI on Thursday.

His journey bears striking resemblance with 26-year-old Sukhsohit Singh, a Panchkula resident who became the first thalassemic in the country to make it to the UPSC examinations in 2008. Like Ajit, Sukhsohit also had to fight not only the odds he faced on health grounds but the system as well after he was declared unfit by a medical board due to his blood disorder condition.

Ajit's brother Amar Singh said it was Kumar's steely grit which helped him achieve his aim. "When he was about 5 years old, he suffered acute diarrhoea and lost vision in both eyes. Despite meagre resources, we got him checked at many places including Delhi and Jaipur but doctors ruled that his blindness was total and could not be cured," said Amar, a school teacher at Kheri village bordering Rajasthan.

Ajit's father Rampath Singh retired as a block development and panchayat officer while mother, who never went to school, is a housewife, said Amar. They are a total of five brothers and one sister, he added.

Rampath said that a spiritual man in the village had insisted that Ajit should get education despite the odds he faced. "Even after admitting him in a school in Delhi, we had to bring him back because our mother resisted the move. Again, the spiritual guru known to us insisted that he must be taken back, after which Kumar was admitted to a school in Karol Bagh. Later, he took admission in Springdale School, Karol Bagh, where he was the only blind student and topped in Class IX and X examinations," he added.

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