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[UPSC Interview Transcript #41] :Bharat Bhushan Vyas Board, Rajasthan Home State, Geography Optional, Watching & playing Cricket, Teaching, Reading Non-fiction Hobbies

Interview Date: 19th Feb 2020 (First to go in the Afternoon Session)
Duration: 30-35 minutes
Board: Bharat Bhushan Vyas Sir
Home State: Rajasthan.
Background: Computer Science & Engineering, MNIT Jaipur.
Employee:  Software Engineer with Samsung India Electronics Limited.
Optional: Geography
Hobbies: Watching & playing Cricket, Teaching, Reading Non-fiction.

Chairperson

  1. Do you feel the weight of the UPSC Chair? (Pointing to my gentle sliding of Chair when offered the seat and smilingly saying you can push it harder too).
  2. What were you doing after resigning from your job? (Asked while reading out my DAF information regarding graduation and service experience).
  3. What is Census and how it is helpful in policymaking?
  4. What is so special about this year’s census? (1-2 follow-up questions on my response).
  5. Why is it conducted in a phased-wise manner and separate enumeration of houses & headcount of the population?
  6. Link between Census exercise and current NPR?
  7. What is SCO? Do you think it is just another multilateral organization without serving any an important purpose for securing India’s national interests?
  8. (1-2 follow up questions with regard to China, Indo-pacific and IRC).

Member 1

(Almost all questions asked from Hobby Section)

  1. Question from Hobby section…(Reading Non-fiction)…which books you have read recently?
  2. Listed 2-3 books ( ‘A Gentleman Spymaster: R N Kao’, ’21Lessons for 21st Century’, ‘Everybody Loves a Good Drought’).
  3. Questions asked related to the book ’21Lessons for 21st Century’
  4. What all lessons did you got from the book?
  5. Do you subscribe to the author’s point of view with regard to future scenarios discussed in the book?
  6. Various Schools of thought on Artificial Intelligence (AI) technology?
  7. Is regulating AI in the present time necessary to curtail future repercussions of this technology?
  8. What is India doing to reap the benefits of AI and other similar Industry 4.0 technologies?
  9. What is the Secularism concept? Is mentioning the word ‘Secular’ makes our constitution secular in its spirit? Are you aware of any debate on secularism in India? What is your view on all this debate?
  10. What is Institutional Memory? (Context: With reference to the book ‘A Gentleman Spymaster: R N Kao’). -> 1-2 follow up questions about R.N.Kao and R&AW.

Member 2

She also kept all discussions related to my hobby section, i.e. Teaching.

  1. What all teaching experiences do you have till date ?
  2. How do you adjust the teaching methodologies while switching from school level to college level students ?
  3. Do you think that urban students require same kind of educational and teaching strategies as that of rural students?
  4. Suppose you are a school principal in a rural locality, then what will be your priorities for betterment of education in that area?
  5. How do you assess the Right to Education(RTE) Act with regard to its efficacy of fulfilling the objectives of the act?
  6. Did all your knowledge or information regarding teaching pedagogy in india comes from theoretical studies or some ground-level experiences from rural, tribal and urban areas?

Member 3

  1. You have Geography as your optional subject and Rajasthan as home state, then tell me the role of geography as the contributing factor in backwardness or non-development of Rajasthan?
  2. Questions on Arawali Range…Its Climatic impact on Rajasthan, Illegal mining happening in Rajasthan, and recent supreme court directives on this. ->Suppose you are the DM of a district that involves illegal mining under your jurisdictional area, what will be your priorities to curb the same?
  3. Do you think that the MNCs have not contributed enough to the growth and development of the Indian economy in its manufacturing and services sector? (Context: Question generated out of the conversation while discussing my service experience in Samsung India Electronics Limited).
  4. Samsung’s investment plans in the next 4-5 years in India.

Member 4

  1. Why you choose geography as your optional despite having technical background?
  2. What benefits geography offers to an administrator in governance and policymaking?
  3. Simultaneous Elections of LokSabha and State Assemblies…Pro, Cons, and your opinion on the issue.
  4. 1-2 follows up questions on Elections and ECI.
  5. Do you know about the recent Locust Attack in India?
  6. Is Rajasthan suffering from this attack?
  7. Which region of Rajasthan under attack?
  8. Any suggestion to curb this? Chairperson :
  9. Have you heard about Green Crackers? Are such initiatives are sustainable in curbing air pollution in India?
  10. Suppose you are the government nominee in Monetary Policy Committee (MPC), what will you recommend about the stance of policy rate cuts?
  11. 1-2 follows up questions about the recent slowdown in the economy, rise in inflation, and issues in Monetary Policy transmission.

Chairman: Our conversation is going quite interesting but have to wind up due to time constraints. Your interview is over now.

Overall Experience: 30-35 minutes interview…Very nice and pleasing experience.

  1. BB Vyas Sir was quite cool, composed and interactive…Helped in maintaining my confidence and energy level throught out the conversation.
  2. Panel members asked questions from almost all sections…although 2 members heavily focussed on the hobby section.
  3. Bottomline: Prepare your DAF quite diligently.
  4. I hope this will help all those who are yet to go through the interview process or the near future aspirants.
  5. S.: Sharing the interview transcript with delaying of 2-3 days because of certain other commitments.

For more interview transcript, visit the Complete IAS Interview Preparation Guide

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