Girl from Tamil Nadu becomes India’s first 100% blind IFS officer
Chennai: N L Beno Zephine, 25, from Tamil Nadu has been inducted into the Indian Foreign Service as its first 100% visually challenged officer.
Zephine became Friday the first visually-challenged woman to be selected for the prestigious Indian Foreign Service (IFS) after clearing the civil services exams in her second attempt.
Zephine is a probationary officer with the State Bank of India. Since the news broke, she has literally been on her toes, giving motivational lectures at schools and colleges across the Chennai.
“I am really thankful to Prime Minister Narendra Modi for taking this big decision. I am told the IFS was not identified for the blind with certain exceptions made for candidates with low vision,” Zephine said.
“I may not have vision, but that did not stop me from achieving my mission to become an IFS officer. One should make the most of whatever resources they have rather than lamenting over what they don’t have,” Zephine added.
Zephine said she had been informed about possible postings both in India and abroad and that she was raring to go.
She credits her parents for what she has achieved, saying her father took her wherever she wanted to go in pursuit of her dreams and managing to buy every other book for this purpose. Her mother would assist her in studying the books, sometimes reading them aloud.
Zephine, who secured an all-India rank of 343 in the UPSC exams in last year. She completed her masters in English at Loyola College and is now pursuing Ph D at Bharatiyar University, is set to join the ministry within the next 60 days for training.