717 men and 203 women clear the final hurdle

: The top two positions in the Civil Services Examination 2010, the results of which were announced by the Ministry of Personnel, Public Grievances and Pensions on Wednesday, have been bagged by women candidates.

A total of 920 candidates — 717 men and 203 women — have been recommended for appointment to the Indian Administrative Service, the Indian Foreign Service, the Indian Police Service and other Central Services.

While Chennai-based law student S. Divyadharshini stood first in the examination, Sweta Mohanty, who studied B. Tech in Hyderabad, took the second rank. R.V. Varun Kumar, who has studied dentistry in Chennai, is in third place.

A total of 5,47,698 candidates applied for the examination, of whom 2,69,036 appeared for the Preliminary examination held in May 2010.

While 12,491 candidates qualified for the Main written examination, 2,589 were shortlisted for the Personality Test held in March-April, 2011.

Among the top 25 candidates, five are women, 15 have an engineering background, five are from the medical sciences and five belong to Commerce, Management, Humanities, Science and Social Sciences.

Eight students among the first 25 cracked the prestigious examination in their first attempt, four in the second attempt, nine in the third, and three and one in the fourth and fifth attempts.

Of the 920 who qualified, 28 are physically challenged.