It is said that those who put in a lot of effort never lose. An excellent example of this is Sadaf Choudhary of Mohanpur village in Roorkee, who has an all-India UPSC rank of 23.

Friends and family haven’t stopped congratulating Sadaf since he received 23rd place in the UPSC examination. By becoming an IAS officer, she has brought honour to the entire family.

Let’s read about such an inspiring journey which brings us to the subject, ‘Nothing is impossible if humans truly want something.’ Read through.

Sadaf Choudhary Biography

Sadaf is the eldest daughter of Shahbaz Bano and Israr Ahmed of Roorkee, and she is 27 years old. Her father, Israr Ahmed, was a former manager at the Deoband branch of Gramin Bank. Sadaf has been ranked 23rd all over India in the recently released UPSC 2020 results. Among Muslim aspirants, she has the highest ranking.

Also Read: Arth Jain UPSC Marksheet: Here’s the Preparation Strategy of the AIR 16 for Other Aspirants


Sadaf, a native of Joya, a small town in the district along the National Highway, graduated from LSA Amroha with an Intermediate diploma. With a 10 CGPA on the board high school examination CBSE year 2010, she was the district’s top student.

In 2012, she received a 91 percent on the CBSE Board Intermediate Exam. Following that, she passed the JEE Mains exam. She was accepted into NIT Jalandhar. From here, she earned her bachelor’s degree in Chemical Engineering. In 2016, she started working for an American bank and remained in Delhi until 2018.

Journey to Become IAS

In the year 2018, she left her job. She began her preparation for the IAS on her own, without any coaching. The results of the IAS exam, which were released on Friday, 1st October, brought her great joy after two years of hard work. In the merit list, she came in at number 23. Sadaf’s joy, as well as that of her family and friends, knew no bounds when the news arrived.

Sadaf Reaction to Results

The state topper said,

“My parents have been a pillar of support. I had to fight stereotypes. Also, there is this mindset that a girl should be married off at the right age. A lot needs to be changed. I have opted for the UP cadre and aim to work for women empowerment and girl education.”

She added,

“I used to work for an American bank in Delhi after I completed my BTech (chemical engineering) from NIT Jalandhar. Later, in 2018, I decided to concentrate on my UPSC preparation. I was confident that I would crack the exam without enrolling into any coaching centre. While preparing for JEE too, I never took tuitions. Recently, I cleared the RBI officer-level exam.”

Sadaf Choudhary UPSC Marksheet

Below is the UPSC marksheet of Sadaf Choudhary.

Written Total 804
PT Marks 206
Final Total 1010
Rank 23

Sadaf Choudhary Optional Subject

Sadaf’s optional subject was Political Science.  She was always interested in the subject and that was a game-changer for her. She advises the candidates to also pick the subject of their own interests, which will add them a benefit.

Also Read: Apala Mishra Biography: Facts to Know About Her UPSC Marksheet and Optional Subject

Sadaf Choudhary’s UPSC Strategy

Sadaf stated that becoming an IAS officer has been a lifelong ambition of hers. The goal was challenging but not impossible to achieve. There was a search for a backup at first.

This is why she first completed her BTech and then worked for a while in the professional world. When it became clear that the steps had settled in place and that the goal of childhood dreams was not far away, she quit my job. She began preparing for the IAS with zeal. Saima Chaudhary, the parents’ younger sister, encouraged courage and encouragement at every turn.

Optional Preparation

#Make an effort to answer all of the questions.

#Three average responses are preferable to one exceptional response.

#The first two or three questions are the most important because the examiner will judge candidates and form an opinion of them based on the answers. Here’s the chance to wow the examiner.

#As much as possible, practise writing answers.

#Try to connect the dots with your imagination.

Also Read: How is Political Science as an Optional for UPSC? Pros & Cons of Selecting Political Science

Preparation at Home

#Candidates should prepare themselves for the journey before trying to figure out how to start preparing for UPSC at home.

#Prepare mentally and physically for the exam before beginning the preparation. Set objectives and allocate time wisely.

#Any exam’s soul is the syllabus. Before candidates begin reading the books, they must first understand the syllabus.

#The UPSC has laid out a detailed syllabus for the Civil Services Mains and Preliminary examinations.

Notes and Answer Writing

#Separate files or notebooks can be kept for different subjects. Many people prefer files because they make it easier to add notes to a topic. This is especially useful when adding current-events-related news to a specific topic.

#It requires candidates to think with conceptual clarity and flawlessly organise their perceptions, views, and thoughts.

#Another thing to keep in mind is the answer booklet’s time and space constraints.


When taking an exam as difficult as the UPSC, revision is crucial.

Because the UPSC syllabus is so broad and covers so many subjects, it’s natural to forget what you’ve already learned.


#The final stage in the UPSC exam process, as mentioned before, is the UPSC Personality Test or interview.

#This is a crucial phase in the procedure and here, it is something more than academics that will help the candidates.

#Aspirants will be assessed on qualities such as reaction to stress, communication skills, presence of mind, diplomatic skills, etc.

#They will also be asked questions about their education, interests, hobbies, and work experience if any. So, one has to brush up on these aspects.

Also Read: Worried about the Type of IAS IPS Interview Questions? Here’re Some Questions at Your Rescue!

Be Positive

#The most important aspect of the UPSC process is to maintain a positive attitude.

#There will be times when it becomes too much for you and you will become depressed.

#Remove all negative thoughts from your mind and focus on the task at hand.

IAS S A Huda’s Congratulations to Sadaf

Former Andhra Pradesh Director-General of Police IPS (Retd), S A Huda, congratulated Sadaf Choudhry on her extraordinary achievement. S A Huda, who is well-known in intellectual circles for his scholarship and brilliance, wished Sadaf well and wished her a bright future in the civil services in the service of the society, nation, and community at large.

He advised Sadaf to act as a beacon of hope for everyone in general and the community’s girls.

Despite the fact that there are numerous coaching institutes catering to the needs of students interested in pursuing a career in the civil service, representation in the civil service has always ranged between 3 and 5%, he added.


Sadaf took the IAS exam for the second time, but she had never been to an interview before. Political Science was her optional subject in the exam. She had decided to become an IAS on the basis of self-study and without any coaching since she was a child. Sadaf is now determined to use the Indian Foreign Service to represent India as a Rajput and to give the country a new identity on the international stage.

Hopefully, this article has enlightened the aspirants with hope and bigger dreams. Sadaf has shown us that nothing is impossible, one should only have the zeal and strategy to achieve it. Want to read more inspiring stories like Sadaf’s then, hop onto UPSC Pathshala’s Guidance section to boost UPSC preparation and confidence.

Also Read: IFS Sneha Dubey Wiki: Know the Biography of Third Secretary from Embassy of India

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Sadaf Choudhary Biography: Meet a Person Who Secured AIR 23 by Studying at Home
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Sadaf Choudhary Biography: Meet a Person Who Secured AIR 23 by Studying at Home
The eldest daughter of Roorkee residents Israr Ahmed and Shahbaz Bano Sadaf Bano, 27, got AIR 23 rank by preparing at home. She has proved that discipline is the biggest asset, know more about her here.
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About the Author

Amiksha Kantam

Amiksha is a budding Content Writer. A young writer who has written over 250 poems and quotes and also an author of a famous Wattpad novel named “Ma and the Magical Kingdom” and always sets her goals high with her determination like the sky. Her mother is her inspiration and her family is her biggest support. She has her interest in writing, reading novels and craft. She has developed her hardworking and disciplined persona from her mother. She is very out going and loves travelling, trekking and hiking. She believes in the quote “Creativity lies in actions not experience

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