Even cerebral haemorrhage couldn’t stop Smaran Raj from cracking Civils

Published: Published Date – 11:30 PM, Sat – 2 July 22

Bachu Smaran Raj.

Hyderabad: Having had high hopes in life, Bachu Smaran Raj was pursuing Chemical Engineering from IIT Madras. However, in the last semester of the course, in 2017, Smaran suffered a cerebral haemorrhage and all his dreams of him came to a halt at once. Having lost his job that he got in placements because of his condition, Smaran put all his efforts into rehabilitation for over two years and got back out with further more zeal than before. Soon after, Smaran was seen pursuing what is considered to be one of the toughest examinations in India – the UPSC exam.

“I actually wanted to become a civil servant from my childhood. But when I got to know from a few friends that it is very tough to crack, I had decided to pursue something easier than Civils – like an MBA in a foreign university or from IIM. But unexpectedly, I had cerebral haemorrhage and then all my plans had changed,” recalls Smaran Raj.

Sharing that it was his father who motivated him to prepare for the Civils, Smaran says he took up the job and began spending his time amid books and gathering knowledge from all possible sources.

Unwavering confidence

When Smaran decided to take up preparations for UPSC, he had approached a few institutes in Hyderabad for guidance. But since he could not write properly owing to his condition, Smaran had requested written notes in addition to the material provided in coaching centres.

“When coaching centers didn’t accept to help me, I got to know about Balalatha, who cracked Civils twice (2004 and 2016), and had to go through something similar owing to her physical limitations. I had then approached her and she offered me help without any hesitation,” Smaran shares.

However, after all this hardship, it was difficult for Smaran to find a scribe to write his examinations. After many failed attempts to find a scribe, Smaran’s mother Naga Rani stepped forward. “My mother had left education around 25 years ago and so it was tough for her to cope up and also for me to dictate answers to her. Our speeds didn’t match and also, there was no coordination. But with continuous practice, my mother became my successful scribe for the written tests,” shares Smaran.

Admitting that at many instances, he would get mentally and physically low, Smaran says he could lift up his spirits and challenge himself further at every stage with the constant support of his family members.
“As I had to spend close to 8-10 hours a day or sometimes even 16 hours a day studying, I could not find time to focus on physiotherapy. But that is how it works, to do something more important, we have to give up on something that is less important. However, memory and focus were never a problem for me even after the incident,” shares Smaran.

Clarity in thought, sincerity in effort

It is very important for applicants to know what they are doing and why they plan to crack the Civils examinations. Once they know this, in addition to sincere efforts, success will surely follow suit, Smaran shares.

He also suggests that aspirants should give their maximum effort without worrying about or expecting the best result. “In the beginning even I would get anxious as there were lakhs of applicants and only a thousand were shortlisted. However, with time, as I got busy in the preparations, I didn’t have the time to worry about the result and thus, simply gave my best,” shares Smaran.

“Stability in thought and mind is very important. Even if situations change, the personality of the person should not be altered,” he concludes.


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