Beno Zephine, India’s first visually challenged IFS officer | Fusion - WeRIndia

Beno Zephine, India’s first visually challenged IFS officer

Beno Zephine, India’s first visually challenged IFS officer

If you have strong willpower, you can fight all odds. This Chennai woman proved it.

Beno Zephine is 100 per cent visually challenged since her birth. Despite her struggles, she aimed to achieve a good position. She succeeded in reaching her goal and became the country’s first fully visually challenged Indian Foreign Service (IFS) officer.

Beno cleared the prelims in her first attempt when she appeared for the UPSC exams in 2012. However, she could not succeed in the mains and attempted in the next year.

She secured the 343rd rank in the Civil Services Examination 2013. But, it took almost a year to get an appointment for the same as the central government modified some parameters for her. Many diplomats also supported the decision as several candidates lost the opportunity to get a job due to lack of 20/20 vision.

Beno’s father is a railway employee and mother is a homemaker. Beno is a post-graduate in English. She worked as a probationary worker at State Bank of India before joining as an IFS officer.

She has a strong mind and perseverance to achieve her goal. Knowing her limitations, she worked very hard to compete in the UPSC exams.

Her parents supported her a lot. While her father brought many books whatever she required for her study, her mother read the lessons to her for long hours.

Beno used Braille and Job Access With Speech (JAWS) software to study the lessons. However, due to non-availability of all study material in Braille, her friends and teachers helped her prepare for exams by reading to her.

Beno is socially active. She expressed her desire several times to make a difference in society. Her story is also motivational to many people. She advises not to get discouraged by tough odds and not to give up your dreams if you want to make them real.

Image Credit: Patrika

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