IAS is considered as one of the most prestigious professions in India. While many youngsters aspire to join the services, there are a few officers who quit their job to pursue another career. Here are 4 Civil Servants who left their charming positions to pursue their dream of becoming an entrepreneur. Let’s have a look at their incredible journeys.
Dr. Syed Sabahat Azim
Syed Sabahat Azim is a Doctor and a former 2000 batch IAS officer who resigned from his duties to launch the affordable healthcare chain Glocal Healthcare Systems. It was the untimely death of his father that led Azim, a trained medical doctor, to launch Glocal in July 2010. As he said in an interview “My father died due to unnecessary treatments. I thought, if this can happen to me, a doctor and an IAS officer, what about others?” and hence he started to work-upon this idea. He was closely supported by Mr. M Damodaran, the former Chairman of SEBI who is also the Chairman of Glocal.
At Glocal, his team has come up with a protocol-driven model, where the computerised system will help a doctor automate the diagnosis of 42 diseases, ranging from ischaemic heart disease to malaria, which they identified as affecting 95% of the patients. Glocal, which runs a chain of 11 hospitals, relies on innovation in processes and design for cost-effective healthcare in small towns. Dr. Azim says each Glocal hospital is built for Rs 15 crore, half the cost of a regular 100-bed hospital.
Pravesh Sharma is a 1982 batch Madhya Pradesh Cadre IAS Officer who voluntarily retired from services in 2016 after a career span of 34 years. After resigning, he set up a start-up named Sabziwala, a retail fruits and vegetables chain that sources and delivers quality fresh produce directly from farmers to consumers, ensuring everyone gets a fair price. Since March 2018, he expanded services to the KAMATAN platform with 3 dynamic partners. working with farmers and farmer producer organizations (FPOs) to create farm-market linkages across all crops.
Using his extensive knowledge of agriculture and food security, Pravesh started his second innings as a successful entrepreneur.
The 1979-batch IAS officer, who quit the services after 22 years, following his stint as IT and Biotechnology secretary to the Government of Karnataka has made one of the most successful transitions from civil services to the private sector.
In 2005, he co-founded Brickwork India, a knowledge process outsourcing firm that provides virtual assistants to global companies. By then, his wife had joined him too as co-founder. Today, she is the company’s chief executive officer. The Kulkarni’s claim to have clients across 116 countries. Vivek runs Brickwork Ratings, which was incorporated in 2007 as India’s fifth Reserve Bank of India accredited credit rating agency—it has so far rated more than 10,000 companies.
Sanjay Gupta is a 1985 batch IAS Officer who cleared the UPSC Civil Service Exam at a young age of 22. After taking voluntary retirement in 2002, Sanjay joined the Adani Group as CEO (Infrastructure). After spending a few years with the group, he launched his chain of luxury hotels, Cambay under the umbrella of Neesa Group. Some of his group companies are Neesa Leisure, Neesa Infrastructure, Neesa Agritech and Food, Orient Spa, Neesa Technologies, Neesa Financial Services, Neesa Township, and Properties and Cambay SEZ Hotels. In 2011, Gupta surprised many a sitting IAS and contender when he was picked up for building Gujarat’s first metro rail venture called MEGA (Metro-Link Express for Gandhinagar and Ahmedabad). He was made the executive chairman of Mega, a Gujarat government project of building a cost-effective metro rail project purely on an elevated track.