S Divyadharshini IAS Topper of 2010, who ranked first in the Civil Services Exam at the age of 24 years. She says, “It’s a way to go forward with confidence and belief in yourself. It’s not too easy but neither too hard. Right amount of effort would pay good results”.

Divyadharshini was working at State Bank of India (SBI) for the past six months as she cleared SBI Clerical Recruitment Exam, 2010 before clearing her Civil Services Examination.

Must Read:Books for UPSC Civil Services Preliminary Exam Preparation

Marks Obtained

 Total Marks  Marks Obtained
Total (Written)  2000  1109
 Interview  300  225
 Total  2300  1334  (58.00%)

Family Background

Divyadharshini was born and brought up in Chennai. Her father V. Shanmugam is a custom consultant while her mother S. Padmavathi is a home-maker. She have one elder sister Priyadarshini who works in Bangalore and younger brother Gokulnath.

To become IAS was Divyadharshini’s personal decision and had thought to continue preparation until she exhausts her attempts. Her Parents always supported and encouraged her decision.

Educational Background

Divyadharshini completed her schooling from Asan Memorial Sr. Sec School, Chennai. She scored 74% marks in the CBSE board class 10 and 86% in class 12. She then got graduated in BA BL (Hons) from School of Excellence in Law College, Tamilnadu from Dr Ambedkar Law University in Chennai.

S Divyadharshini says, “Adopt your own strategy and no one can be a better judge of yourself than you”.

Don’t Miss: IAS Exam Preparation Strategy for beginners by Rachit Raj, UPSC Exam Topper

Optional Paper

S Divyadharshini selected Public Administration in her Preliminary Exam due to easy availability of books and study materials, availability of guidance and above all it was her interest.

While giving Mains Examination she opted for Public Administration and law as her optional subjects. Law was her natural choice, as she had done her graduation in Law and found the syllabus feasible enough to be covered within the available time.

Attempts by S Divyadharshini

In her first attempt she couldn’t clear the UPSC Civil Services Preliminary Examination but in her second attempt, she emerged the first ranker!

Success tips for Future Aspirants

  • Newspaper reading builds ideas which helps immense in essay.
  • Cover the entire syllabus and prepare concrete points for each topic and always revised before exams. Notes are really helpful especially during exam times.
  • Select the subject that you are comfortable with and confident enough of doing well.
  • Hard work, dedication and perseverance will always give what you deserve.
  • Be open minded. Devise a planned approach and follow it.
  • Have a balance between study and play so that you don’t wear out at any stage.

Important : 11 must do things in last 20 days IAS exam preparation


  1. Good evening,I want to became an IAS topper, presently a top student But how much time I have to spent for my prepared.

  2. I wanna become ias so how do i study about all subject. Please help me how i prepare ias exam.am last year student of b.tech cse.

  3. will ias exam be easy after completing our study with b.a llb .wat type of preparation is needed in the course of llb degree

  4. Congratulations divya…Somebody pls help me to find out the access to write IAS exams becs my DOB 1984 Aug (muslim minority), my age is above 32 yr….


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