[Toppers Interview] Chakresh Mishra (AIR 412/CSE 2011) shares his journey and Study plan for Sociology Public Administration and General Studies Mains

[Toppers Interview] Chakresh Mishra (AIR 412/CSE 2011) shares his journey and Study plan for Sociology Public Administration and General Studies Mains

Charkesh Mishra, an IITian, writes on political issues, goes by the username “chakreshm” on Indianofficer.com forum and has cracked civil service exam 2011.
He agreed for an interview and has provided strategy for GS (Both prelims + Mains), Sociology and Public Administration.

Note: Even if you’re not a UPSC aspirant, but preparing for any other competitive exam, I still suggest you scroll down below and read his Message to the Aspirants for any competitive exam

  1. Introduction
  2. Your Study plan
  3. CSAT (Paper I) General studies
  4. CSAT (Paper II) Aptitude
  5. Mains Examination
  6. Compulsory Language papers
  7. General Studies paper I
  8. General Studies paper 2
  9. Optional Subject #1 and #2
  10. Public Administration (Mains)
  11. Sociology (Mains)
  12. Interview
  13. Marksheet
  14. Message to the Aspirants for any competitive exam


Name Chakresh Mishra
Roll number 214213
Rank (CSE 2011) 412
Optional Subjects
  1. Sociology
  2. Public Administration
Medium for Mains Exam English
Mains Examination Centre Delhi
Number of Attempts 2
Details of Graduation and Post-Grad. B.Tech. (Mechanical Engg. IIT Kanpur);
M.Tech. (Instrumentation Engg. IIT Delhi)
Schooling (Medium) Hindi
Extracurricular activities,
hobbies, achievements etc.
  • Blogging;
  • Debating;
  • Various posts in college student body (Senator, Coordinator literary club, Election officer)
Are you a working professional? No
Did you take Coaching?
  • Prelims: GS (Vajiram)
  • Mains: Pub-Ad (Mohanty Sir), Sociology (Upendra Sir)
  • Interview: Samkalp, Delhi
Did you buy any postal courses? Crack IAS for Pub-Ad and Sociology
Did you join any Mock test series? No
Did you appear in any other competitive exams? Yes
If yes, provide the details:
  • UPSC-2010 qualified in reserve list;
  • UPPSC-2010 couldn’t qualify prelims



Q. When and how did the inspiration and idea of joining civil service come in your mind?

Ans: Being from UP, the idea of preparing for the toughest exam in nation was always somewhere in my mind. During my 3rd year in B.Tech. I got the chance to work with an international engineering firm. The narrowness of canvas and supposed indifference of people in corporate sector towards general public got me thinking.

It was the time when I seriously started to consider civil services as a career. I talked to some of my seniors and made up my mind for this exam. I did not appear for campus placement at IIT as I had decided to make IAS my aim. But there was a twist in the tail. As I was only 19.5 years at the time of completion of my B.Tech., I wasn’t eligible for civil services exam. So I took admission in M.Tech. IITD and started my preparation.

The Choice of Optional Subjects

Q. After a person decides to appear in civil service exam, the first big obstacle is “Choice of optional subjects”. What factors did you consider before selecting your optional?

Ans. As I considered myself pretty good in physics, I started preparing with physics and geography at first. But then my seniors suggested that I should not take physics as it was not doing very well at that time (2009-10). So I shortlisted few other optionals and read a few basic books in each of them. I found geography a bit boring (personal opinion), So finally I decided in favor of pub-ad and sociology. The main criteria were interest in subject, availability of good coaching in Delhi.


Q. People initially prepare with much enthusiasm but then a boredom phase comes – they don’t even find the motivation to read the daily newspapers, let alone studying the books. How did you sustain the study-momentum throughout the year,

Ans: Finding constant motivation is a bit difficult. So I followed Gandhian strategy of taking small breaks between high intensity phases. I took a little break after prelims (2 weeks), a big break after mains (2 months) and visited my family/relatives/friends, did something that I enjoyed (blogging, learning driving, travelling, writing and reading short stories etc). After such breaks, when I returned to my desk, there was a sense of urgency and motivation of deadline coming up.


On an average, How many hours did you study per day? How many months did it take you to complete the core syllabus of GS and optional subjects?

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