woman IAS officer

Visually impaired woman IAS officer as new Thiruvananthapuram Sub-Collector

October 15, 2019

India’s first visually challenged woman IAS officer, Pranjal Patil has taken charge as sub collector and Revenue Divisional officer of Thiruvananthapuram district on Monday, October 14. Patil, who is from Ulhasnagar in Maharashtra lost her vision at the age of six.

She went on to complete a postgraduate degree in International Relations from Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU). Later, in 2016, she cracked the Union Public Service Examination (UPSC) with a rank of 773, in her first attempt.

She was offered a job at the Indian Railway Accounts Service (IRAS) when they found out about her visual impairment. Although the offer was cancelled later. The following year, she prepared for the exam again and secured the 124th rank in UPSC. In 2018, during her training in Mussoorie, she was appointed as Ernakulam assistant collector for a short period of time. She returned to complete her training.

Social Justice Department Secretary Biju Prabhakar and RDO Senior Superintendent TS Anil Kumar were present at the event who gave her a warm welcome. 

“We should never give up. We will get that one breakthrough we’re hoping for,” she said in a media statement. In earlier interviews, she said she felt disappointed after being rejected by the Railways Department and that she had gone through severe pain after her surgeries on her eyes,which had been unsuccessful.

After signing the Report of Transfer of Charge to take over from Sam Cleetus, the Deputy Collector (Land Acquisition), who had been holding charge of Sub-Collector, she said, “With our efforts, we all will get that one big breakthrough that we want. I expect a lot of support from the people of Thiruvananthapuram and the staff here to be able to work for the people.”

In 2014, Krishna Gopal Tiwari became the first visually challenged district collector in India. He is from Umaria, Madhya Pradesh.

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