Meet UPSC Topper T.V. Anupama IAS, AIR – 4, 2010

T.V. Anupama did the entire Kerala proud by secured AIR 4th in the Civil Services Examination 2010. Civil Services Examination is one of the toughest nuts to crack which requires constant and sustained hard work. With a well-defined strategy she achieved her dream goal, that inspired thousands of students.

T.V. Anupama wanted to be a part of the Administrative machinery of the country which she thought, would help her to channelize her potential for the service of the nation and its citizens as she had set her mind on finding better ways and means of helping society.

Family Background

T.V. Anupama comes from Maranchery, near Ponnani, in Malappuram district, Kerala. She is the elder daughter of Late Mr. Balasubrahmanyam and Mrs. Ramani. She has one younger sister Nisha. Her family and friends had immense trust in her ability and their support helped her to remain focused.

Educational Background

T.V. Anupama did her schooling from Vijayamatha Convent High School, Ponnani, in 2002 and St. Clair’s Higher Secondary School, Thrissur, in 2004 respectively. After completing her schooling she did BE (Hons) in Electronics Engineering, from BITS, Pilani’s Goa campus, one of the premier engineering institutions in the country in 2008. And she scored 92 per cent marks in her BE (Hons).

T.V. Anupama dreamed to enter the Indian Administrative Service right from her school days. In achieving that aim with glory, she has done Kerala proud. Soon after finishing her BE (Hons), she started off with Civil Services preparations — 11 months before the Preliminary Examinations.

Read Also: Success Story of Mihir Patel IAS, 2015

Optional Paper of T.V. Anupama

T.V. Anupama opted for Geography and Malayalam as her optional subjects for the Civil Services Examination which have surprised many of them. But her strategy paid dividends when she cracked the IAS with ease and elan. According to T.V. Anupama, taking engineering or science subjects for the examinations is like gambling. But no subject will help you unless you have a genuine interest in it.


T.V. Anupama cracked Civil Services Exam in her first attempt. She says, “one’s longing for this service can be the sole guiding factor when one pursues this goal. Therefore, passion and determination are very important. One should make up one’s mind to put adequate efforts as demanded by this examination”.

Preparation Strategy of T.V. Anupama

T.V. Anupama started preparing for the examinations in earnest from June 2008. Her preparation was focussed and intensive. She started preparing for the Mains Exam first. Because that is where you need to strengthen your concepts. During the 11 months of her preparation, Ms. Anupama used to spend 13 to 16 hours a day with books and journals. She slept six hours without break, and used to take a 10- or 15-minute nap during studies.

T.V. Anupama depended on magazines for preparing for the general studies paper in Mains, particularly Frontline. Apart from taking a glimpse at the local newspapers, she used to go through The Hindu from front to back. Since 2004, she used to spend a lot of time with The Hindu and The Times of India.

Also Read: Meet IAS Topper S Divyadharshini – A law graduate got 1st Rank in 2010

Strategy for Prelims, Mains and Interview

Prelim: Don’t overdo things here. For GS, find out the areas of your strength and prepare thoroughly (T.V. Anupama studied geography, polity, mental ability, current affairs and biology). For Optional, focus on concepts first and then take up facts. One should also keep in mind Main’s patter here.

Main: Prepare notes and revise, Practice answer-writing. For Optionals, use standard text books, plan your answer beforehand. For GS, list out the probable topics and prepare thoroughly. Unlike Prelim, try not to leave out any answer.

Interview: Develop balanced opinion about the current events. Take the help of newspaper editorials and multiple magazines here. Prepare bio-data thoroughly. Be truthful while filling up the bio-data form.

Advice for UPSC Aspirants

  • Never opt for a subject without an interest in it. You won’t be able to study for a year unless you have an interest.
  • Keep yourself constantly motivated.
  • You don’t need to mug up everything for Prelims. Your preparations for the Mains will automatically help you for the Prelims.
  • Knowing facts are not just enough. You must read the comments, opinions and analyses. Then only you will be able to analyse the issues. What you need is depth, particularly when you aim high.
  • One should read newspaper as a source to, Facts for Prelim and Development of opinion about the events and issues. Focus on editorial, International and national events, economy, environment and science and technology.

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