He became a police constable at the age of 19. Ten years later, Manoj Kumar Rawat is likely to become an officer of the venerable Indian Police Service (IPS). When Rawat decided to leave his job as a constable in Jaipur rural police district in 2013, many were critical of his decision of voluntary forsaking a comfortable government job.
For the last two days, Rawat’s phone has rarely stopped ringing as scores of people congratulate him for qualifying in the All India Civil Services Exam 2017. Now, with an all India rank of 824, the 29-year-old Rawat is likely to become an IPS officer, in sync with a dream that he had nurtured since childhood. “I come from a lower middle class family and knew right from the very beginning that I have to make the most of the opportunities that I get. After my younger brother also got a job as a police constable, I decided to focus on cracking civil services exams and left my job,” Rawat told The Indian Express on Sunday.
A resident of village Shyampura near Jaipur, Rawat is the second of three siblings. His father is a teacher and Rawat says that the encouragement of his parents were instrumental behind his feat. Before cracking civil service exams, Rawat had bagged a total of three government jobs, all of which he left for exam preparations. Rawat says after watching the Sunny Deol starrer film Indian, he first aspired to become an IPS officer.
“After leaving the job of constable, I got another job of a lower division clerk in 2014. Following that I was also selected as an assistant commandant of the Central Industrial Security Force (CISF) which too I left to dedicate all my time in preparation of civil service exams,” said Rawat. A member of the scheduled caste community, Rawat didn’t have many examples to look up to for inspiration.
“The situation has changed a lot for better now. I remember that during my childhood, people in my village didn’t even want to give water to Dalits…,” said Rawat. For the future, Rawat says that if he is selected as an IPS officer, he would take lessons from his experiences as a constable to ensure better policing in areas under his jurisdiction.
“Working as a constable has helped me to understand how the legal system functions in our country. Even administrative issues such as sanctioning of leaves and people friendly methods of policing matter a lot when it comes to the smooth functioning of law and order system. It’s likely that I will be given IPS cadre and then I would try to use all those lessons,” said Rawat. Rawat added that it was especially the support from his mother, which strengthened his resolve to crack the civil services.
He is also doing his PhD after being selected for the Junior Research Fellowship. “My PhD subject is Ambedkar View: Dalit Empowerment and Social Justice and I will be submitting it within the next year. The stipend from JRF also helped me to be self sufficient with the expenses, since I had left my job for the civil service preparations,” said Rawat.