[Toppers Interview] Sridhar PN (AIR 267 / CSE 2011) first attempt, Anthropology & Public Administration

[Toppers Interview] Sridhar PN (AIR 267 / CSE 2011) first attempt, Anthropology & Public Administration

  1. Introduction
  2. Essay
  3. Your Study plan
  4. CSAT (Paper I) General studies
  5. CSAT Paper II (Aptitude)
  6. Mains Examination
  7. Compulsory Language papers
  8. General Studies paper I
  9. General Studies paper 2
  10. Anthropology
  11. Public Administration
  12. Marksheet


Name Sridhar P N
Roll number 311458
Rank (CSE 2011) 267
Optional Subjects Public Administration and Anthropology
Medium for Mains Exam English
Mains Examination Centre Hyderabad
Number of Attempts 1
Details of Graduation and Post-Grad.
  1. MBA, IIM Calcutta
  2. B.E, Vasavi College of Engineering, Hyderabad)
Schooling (Medium) English
Extracurricular activities,
hobbies, achievements etc.
Playing Cricket, Watching Tennis, Browsing the net
Are you a working professional? Yes (Sales Manager, Dabur India Ltd)
If yes, then did you leave your job
or prepared while on the job?
Left the job before Prelims
Did you take Coaching? Prelims: Yes
Mains: Yes
Interview: Yes
Did you buy any postal courses? No
Did you join any Mock test series? Yes
Did you appear in any other competitive exams? Yes
If yes, provide the details: CAT



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

The idea of joining the civil services was there from my graduation days. Moreover, my family was always inclined towards a career in civil service for me. Finally, I took the plunge a few years after my Post Graduation

The Choice of Optional Subjects

Q7. 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?

I was always clear on my Optional Subjects – Public Administration and Anthropology. The easy availability of coaching and material for these subjects in Hyderabad was the prime reason.


Q. People initially prepare with much enthusiasm but then a boredom phase appears. How did you sustain the study-momentum throughout this journey?

I agree that boredom is bound to set in, especially when the exam process itself takes one long year. In my case, since I was married, I had added responsibilities. I used to relax by spending time with my family or going out for a movie on weekends. Also meeting friends with whom you can discuss/share your views also used to rejuvenate me after a constant phase of study.


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?

On an average, I prepared for 6-7 hours per day. The core syllabus of GS took me about 5 months to complete. Public Administration and Anthropology were mostly done after Prelims (4 months), although I attended coaching for a part of these subjects before the Prelims.


How did you use computer and internet for your exam-preparation?

By and large, I stuck to books and newspaper (The Hindu) for my mains preparation. Only for a few miscellaneous areas in Optional subjects, I checked up on websites.

For the interview, both for the probable questions on my bio-data and current affairs I used internet a lot for preparation.


How did you prepare yourself for the essay?

I did not prepare separately for the Essay. I did read some articles on how to structure a good essay. Regarding content, the preparation for GS was sufficient to help me write a good Essay.

Which Essay did you write in Mains-2011?

On Small states

What were your keypoints in that essay?

I gave a balanced viewpoint mentioning both the pros and cons of smaller states. I quoted some provisions of the constitution and current examples for the same.

How many marks did you get in that essay?

I scored 125 Marks in the essay.


Many aspirants fear the interview, thinking that “my profile is not good because

  • I’ve low marks in SSC/HSC/College,
  • I don’t have any extra-curricular certificates,
  • I don’t have work experience,
  • I graduated from some unknown college,
  • I’m from non-English medium and so on…”

So, how important or relevant is the profile of a candidate during interview?

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