Meet Bushra Arshad from UP, who cracked civil services thrice to land her dream job of IPS officer

Bushra Arshad with her husband and children. | Photo by arrangement

A mother of two, Bushra Arshad Bano’s story is one of grit and determination. Cracking the civil services exams for the third time last week, Bushra has finally secured her dream job of IPS. 

Aas Mohammad Kaif | 

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UTTAR PRADESH – It is no easy feat for Bushra Arshad Bano from Kannuaj, Uttar Pradesh, a mother of two, to crack India’s toughest and prestigious civil services exam thrice. 

Currently posted as a Sub-Divisional Magistrate (SDM) Sadar in Firozabad, Bushra resumed her studies after thirteen years of marriage and cracked the civil services exam thrice and will be an Indian Police Service (IPS) officer – which has been her lifelong dream. 

Bushra told that she has undergone four major surgeries but this didn’t deter her to fulfil her dreams. Expressing joy over being allotted the IPS category, she said, “I would join IPS as it has been my aim always.”

In earlier exams, Bushra Arshad was given IRS and was a top ranker in Uttar Pradesh Public Service Commission (UPPCS) exams. 

Her achievement has been lauded by one and all. 

Bushra Arshad, who hails from Saurikh village in Kannuaj, Uttar Pradesh, was the only Muslim participant to become SDM in UPPCS-2017. When she secured 277th rank in the UPSC result in July last year, she was selected for IRS, which as per her “did not satisfy her.” She appeared again in the exams and got 234th rank and secured IPS in the current seat allotment.

Bushra said she had resolved to continue to work hard till she came on top. 

Bushra is fond of breaking the ‘myth’, proving misconceptions wrong, and breaking stereotypes.

Her family and relatives said that they always believed in her. 

Bushra’s father is a farmer, and her mother is a homemaker. She comes from an educated family – both parents are graduates, and her siblings are well educated. Bushra, however, is extraordinary. After graduating at the age of seventeen, she completed her MBA degree before turning 20. She completed her studies till class XII from Kannauj and went to Kanpur to graduate.

Bushra said that she wanted to appear in the UPSC exam back then, but she was too young and wasn’t eligible.  

According to Bushra’s mother Shama, “Bushra was admitted to 2nd standard at the age of four and a half years.” 

“Bushra had learned so much at home that she never came second. She has a habit of being a topper. She has always been on top,” her mother told 

Bushra recalls relatives visiting her family and telling her family to make her (Bushra) a collector (considered a coveted job). Bushra has gone a step further and become a police captain. 

“Age was never a bar for me. It never occurred to me that that I cannot give the UPSC exams or the JRF exams,” she said. 

Bushra cleared the Junior Research Fellow (JRF) exam on her very first attempt and got a PhD in Distress Management from Aligarh Muslim University (AMU). It was while being at AMU that she married Asmar Hussain, an engineer. The couple went to Saudi where Asmar started teaching at a university there, and Bushra got a well-paying job in a company. 

Forsaking their jobs, the couple returned to India. 

“The only reason to return to my country was patriotism and unconditional love for the country. I often used to think that the knowledge that I have learned from the residents of my country in India, the skill generated from it should also benefit the residents of my own country. They should also get it, as it is their right,” she said. 

Her husband Asmar Hussain told that she (Bushra) got a job in Coal India while being a mother of two. “Ten years passed, but her hunger for excellence kept on,” she said. 

Talking about that period of her life, Bushra said, “I did the job honestly, and fulfilled my duty as a mother and as a wife.” 

“Bushra is a hard-working woman who accomplishes what she decides to do,” her husband said. 

Bushra’s story is a testament that nothing is impossible for this determined woman from Uttar Pradesh.