Hyderabad: Women trainee AIS officers, especially IAS ones, have a secret weapon that helps them clear the proficiency test easily — their domestic helps.
Most domestic helps — women usually — do not speak any language other than Telugu, and this forces their employers to do likewise. Since domestic responsibilities are still usually shouldered by women, it is the women officers who learn the basics of the language quickly and pass the mandatory language test easily.
Senior IAS officer Sumita Dawra, who is in the AP cadre at present, says that her domestic helps speak only in Telugu so she has no option but to converse with them in the same language.
“Slowly but steadily we got to understand what the maids conveyed to us. In fact, I know wives of senior IAS officers hailing from North India who speak very good Telugu, on par with their husbands, because of their regular communication with house maids in Telugu,” she said.
Those who don’t have this advantage engage tutors. Valasi Pydi, a Telugu school assistant in a government school in Warangal, used to give home tuitions to trainee IAS officers from Bihar.
“I used to teach them early in the morning (6 am to 7 am) for a few weeks every day. They had book material (which they got during probation at Mussoorie) and some knowledge about the language. I helped them to master it a little bit and they cleared the proficiency test easily,” he said....