“You can’t change the system through plain speaking; you need to get into the system and change it with your own will” – Srijana Tiwari

On 19th September 2019,  Integrity Icon Mrs. Srijana Tiwari visited King’s College Nepal to make future leaders aware about key issues of integrity in the civil society. In the presence of 31 students, Mrs. Tiwari, Undersecretary of Ministry of Industry Commerce and Supplies, shared her career history. “The first time I visited the District Administration Office, I faced a lot of issues just to get my citizenship which was one of the milestones in my life. That wait…
“The whole process of work and the way an employee should be treated wasn’t as it should be. That was the key moment I realized that it was time to change this and that you can’t change the system through plain speaking; you need to get into the system and change it with your own will.”

Her powerful statement got everyone’s attention and she had the listeners’ full concentration. After a powerful start, Mrs. Tiwari then took everyone’s focus to the true meaning of integrity in her life. Integrity for her is bringing happiness to people who come to her in need of support, and the smile she receives afterwards gives her a sense of integrity within herself. The students showed keen interest in this aspect of her work.

Once she explained about integrity, she then talked about how a person will be rewarded in life if they developed a deep sense of integrity in their life. Mrs. Tiwari’s  journey as a simple public servant gained more recognition and valuable meaning, she said, with her Integrity Icon award. She told the students that it was not only one day’s effort. Getting tired the next day was not an option at all, she added. Getting recognized as an Icon cemented ideals around integrity for her. That it is about doing good and doing what you are assigned to, while trying to do the extra mile to get things done.

To conclude her session, Mrs. Tiwari focused on addressing the generalized perceptions of people towards civil servants. She encouraged them to work on making a difference rather than complaining. She also advised them to start putting real effort into everything they do in life. Her ending remarks were memorable. “Be polite. Treat everyone equally and do not give preference to someone just because you know them. Try to lead a life with integrity. Then, everything will come towards you,” she said. 

In a short period of time, she successfully addressed all of the students and one could hear her powerful impact in the loud applause when she ended her session. Many of the young girls in attendance said Mrs. Tiwari had inspired them to make a difference in the society – with integrity. – Nagarjun Shrestha