Skip to content Skip to footer

UPSC Vs Startup? The tradeoff.

0.08% students finally set to become IAS/IPS/IFS

Approximately 12,00,000 UPSC applicants, sweat it out for just 1050 seats, many took 9th attempt, is it worth a dream for masses?

#RahulMalodia rightly put it in his recent vlog and we are taking few inputs from his remarks in this blog, he may be wrong but sounds correct.

12 lacs of youth pushing it hardest for the last many years (few taking their 9th attempt), tirelessly running behind a dream, is it worth it. 

Since ever we have been trusting our governments to take the country in the right direction and we believe that the government has always done the right thing, for all the major policy decisions they were bang on target, be it industrialization of the country by Pt. Jawahar Lal Nehru, Women empowerment by Ms. Indira Gandhi, IT revolution by Mr. Rajeev Gandhi, Economic reforms by Mr. Manmohan Singh or Startup and entrepreneurship push by Mr. Narendra Modi.

We have seen that this government, on the backdrop of global economic scenario and power shift towards technology and AI is taking absolutely right steps in promoting more and more startups, pushing entrepreneurship and supporting innovation at all levels. Their programs are to lure the youth to stop fearing and start doing something that may have the ability to change the world and bring in a positive change in the lives of the people. The efforts of the government is also resulting in development of various startup ecosystems across the country in the form of Incubation centers and college innovation councils. These initiatives are directing the youth to push themselves into a wonderful and exciting world of entrepreneurship, where, in their young age, they have highest energy and positivity to excel.

The government is even more clear on the future of this country where the government will be more interested in the development and governance rather than running Navratnas and Maharatnas, as the corporates can do that in a better way and therefore the government is handling over these companies to the corporate to grow these further. This means in future there would be even lesser government jobs but more focused government in support and creation of policies, ecosystem, environment and support system. 

UPSC Vs Startup

What does that mean for the students still in college?


The message is now loud and clear, either work for yourself or improve yourself to be the best to work for the private sector.

Only those who secured top 5 positions in their class throughout their academic life, i.e. high school, intermediate and college should focus on the country’s topmost exam, the UPSC. Rest all must do a self introspection and decide more logically than emotionally.

Lets first dive into the UPSC exam details then will talk about startups.

Union Public Service Commision conduct the exam for IAS, IPS, IFS and other officer rank jobs in the central government. The rejection process has three parts, the preliminary examination where the majority of students faces the reality check and only around 45000 gets past this to enter the main. IAS mains exam is exhaustive and lengthy test of mental endurance, memory, precision writing and speed, this is normally cleared by only 20-25% of the students, these 10-12000 are finally called for personal interviews to grill them on their interpersonal skills, life understanding and personality. Only 8-10% of these are finally selected for the prestigious positions in the central government and the power associated with the same. Finally only 0.1% gets through and remaining 99.9% finds themselves in the middle of nowhere, out of these the ones who are rejected for the first, second or third time gets over this quickly and start preparing again for their next attempt, nowhere you can see such dedication and commitment to the target.

Life of a UPSC aspirant:

Tough study routine kills their personal life, the aspirant has nothing in hand, unless they succeed. Long study routines, loneliness, fatigue, doubts etc brings in frustration, tension and according to ICMR data, 15% aspirants of UPSC are undergoing some kind of stress related ailments or even depression. Life after completing your attempts are even worst for those who failed, their age reaches 30, their friends into corporate are now experienced managers managing large teams and earning six figure salaries and perks, other friends who started their careers as entrepreneurs have already overpassed their struggling period and are now setting down into their startups as semi successful businessman with clear direction and the failed aspirant is only left with one or two attempt into other services like state PCS, SSC, police and bank and all these places find the same aspirants hitting for the top spot, means the competition is almost the same.


Coaching Mafia fraud:

Brilliant marketing efforts from the coaching centers hiding the facts and selling the dreams to the Indian masses makes it difficult for the youth to understand the realities, success of a few aspirants (less than (0.1%) hides the failed dreams and shattered confidence of many (99.9%).

Coaching charges around 1.5 to 2.5 lacs per annum for this program, there are few multi millionnaires in this business who sells dream to around 15Lacs aspirants making this industry of around 30,000 Crore per year. 

Clearly, only the coaching mafia gains in this rat race.

These rankers are always highlighted heavily to attract the other million each year by these coaching centers selling the dream, they resort all measure to fill their seats, for example in year 2017 (as mentioned by Rahul) there were 990 positions to be filled but the advertisements from the top three coaching centers claimed to place 1100+ candidates. How?


Government's involvement

Government is getting over with the owned companies leaving a very small window of choices for the aspirants, there are few armed forces vacancies through CDS at this level then UPSC and state public service commission openings are very few. Furthermore the critics of the government calls this a strategy to keep the youth engaged and busy into this preparation and keep them away from asking for jobs from the government. Every year around 1.5 million well educated youth engaged in UPSC preparation and make a guilt circle around themselves if they do not succeed, they feel that they were not ‘good enough’ for the job and entrapped again by the coaching mafia to appear for one more attempt.

The student preparing for UPSC feels that he is doing something good, but actually he feels that the private job is a waste and startup is not my cup of tea, UPSC dream is really juicy and is something that deserve 5-7 years of ones life. 


What if get selected?

0.01% gets selected as there are fewer than 1200 seats every year and these seats are filled by the toppers and remaining others are either getting entrapped in reattempt cycle or left out to struggle even more with very low self esteem and lowest confidence.

That is true that the 0.01% who gets through are rewarded heavily with position and power, they become the elite workforce of the central government involved in policy making and key positions at the top level. These are indeed the best of the best, gets salute, status, dignity, large house, personal employees, town, district, division, state and even the country to manage. 

5 years to UPSC Vs 5 years to a Startup

Although it seems a vague comparison, people might say you cannot compare the two, we need apple to apple and so on, but forget the near end result and just have a look at the prospects and success rate along with the long time outcome of the two.

A startup if given 5 dedicated years same way as given to the UPSC, with all governmental support, ecosystem and the avenues and availability of funds, collateral free loans and investors ready to offer easy investment to your dream, has much better chances of success.

It is highly ironical that one can easily take another attempt in the UPSC but his motivation to take another attempt into a startup is a challenge. The success ratio if much higher than UPSC, one out of 20 startups grows really big and 1 out of 50 reaches stability and retirement that is huge 2% and that is 2000% higher than UPSC.

Startup doesn’t have any reservation, it is free for all, you might be coming from any type of background, social class or caste or location, you and your idea is equally great as another coming from any lowest or highest class or caste. It doesn’t have any expiry date and unlike the job, it can easily be transferred and handed over to your prodigy to expand and develop. Basically you are not creating a business for your own, but for your own next generations to come.

We at Polaris strongly feel that if taken into consideration of time and reward, startup has 2000%-5000% more chances of success and stability as compared to UPSC and therefore we put it on the youth to decide where to put in their time and efforts.

Polaris Educational and Cultural Trust the parent body of Polaris Academy of Excellence and Polaris Incubation Center is running one of its kind Free SAT classes for USA college admissions in Graduation. Polaris Incubation Center is the best incubation center in Aligarh, working closely with small and regional colleges to provide them the best business incubator in Aligarh. Polaris Incubator, work on startup ideas, the ideas those are innovative and can be developed into a real business. Polaris Incubator, the first private Incubation center in Aligarh work closely with young entrepreneurs while they are in their college and train them on entrepreneurship skills and motivate them to join the vision of new India with their own startups. PAE Stack is employability and entrepreneurship development programs run by Polaris within the colleges as well as outside to make the youth of the region more employable and better placed for entrepreneurship ventures. For more details and information about the programs run by us for schools, colleges and communities please get in touch with us by subscribing to our newsletter.