Civil Services Mains 2020 Results: In or Out ? Way ahead, gratitude and Pain - ForumIAS

Civil Services Mains 2020 Results: In or Out ? Way ahead, gratitude and Pain

The Civils Mains result has been declared. This thread is for sharing your grief , joy , mixed feelings - absolutely anything and everything.



jack_Sparrow,musaand61 otherslike this
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1st post. Silent spectator untill now.

Personal Profile:

2nd Attempt, 1st Mains. Not Selected

Job Ex 2.5 years (left in dec 2018)

Exam Overview:

Essay moderate to Difficult

GS 1 moderate

GS 2 moderate

GS 3 Easy

GS 4 Difficult due to Case studies

Optional (Sociology)

1st one Easy, 2nd one Difficult

Exam Experience:

Attempted all Questionsin each paper

Used flowcharts, diagrams and spider format in most questions.

Used SC judgements, Commitees/Commissions, Articles, Data, SDGs in almost every question especially GS2&GS3.

Optional was also well managed (some apprehension about paper 2 but used sociological terminologies extensively)

Did daily answer writing of PYQs (2017-19) without fail along with comparison of model answers.

Wrote 12 GS FLTs and 6 Optional Tests b/w pre & mains, analysed toppers copy also.

Before pre already wrote 12 GS & 8 Optional Tests (total 24 GS+ 14 optional) and had all my notes ready (1 pagers/crisp) for each topic of syllabus before pre itself.

Feedback for tests mostly good w.r.t content, context (especially) & presentation.

Basically ticked all checkboxes as most toppers says, literally.

Thought I would at least get interview call, though secretly thinking my marks will be in 850s +/- 20

Now back to Zero. Feeling disgusted and humbled at same time.

However, we must 1st accept the idea there would be some scope of improvement, otherwise for next mains no motivation for self improvisation.I learned

-we should not oversimplify inherently complex things (like calculating marks above).

-Smartwork NOT equal to Shortcuts.

-Complacency at any stage will kill your chances.

(If i compare my prelims hardwork vs mains, the ratio would stand 2:1)

-Never showoff your gyan untill final selection.

-Own your mistakes, rest assure there will be. Right now i am not good enough, not yet.

- Time to focus on Prelims and only when marks come, will improvise on my shortcomings. (May include some overlaping aspects of gs mains but not beyond april)

After looking many posts here, I feel i am not alone who is feeling the same way. Let's get rid of this worst hangover of lifetime and start afresh with new perspective. The caveat here is after this upcoming 3rd attempt, will take up job and prepare side by side as most things are done and incremental efforts are less.

Neyawn,ssver2and27 otherslike this
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@raymond_reddington Same feeling here... although doing preparation along with job... Mine is also socio.. be in touch brother


thejoker,raymond_reddington
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rootsaid

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Ok but@Neyawn can you comment if people have skipped and whether it has worked?

People do use a test series for a chartered preparation. However, I would also suggest you to take some modular classes if you don’t have content and don’t have the habit of making e notes from various sources + ability to make it concise for revision before exams. Any classes will help you develop the base material for individual topics of the syllabus.

BD,Jonathanand1 otherslike this
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I've been asked by many community members to share my experience. I didn't want to comment on anything with conviction without seeing my marks. Now that I'm writing about what I did, this in no way means to be a write-up on 'what is the ideal way'. Take this with a pinch of salt and do your own analysis in objective manner. This is going to be a long write-up as I'll try to be as comprehensive as I can about my approach. 

A brief background first. This year was my 2nd attempt. I wrote mains in 1st attempt. It was a disaster. I left around 120-130 marks blank. This event itself was a big turning point in my preparation. I was devastated after the optional paper. So, I did not waste much time and started preparing for mains straightway with a few learnings. These will be beneficial especially for people who'll be writing their first mains this year-

Do not blindly follow the advice of writing too many tests if you don't even have your mains notes ready. 

(If you're a first-timer, you just read something that can save you the hassle of repeating attempts. This advice is not to be taken with a pinch of salt. Read it again and again. Internalise it. If someone says otherwise, he's not your well-wisher. Give him a big F-word and keep on following this advice.) 


2nd attempt. 2nd Mains. Few things were clear by now. 

To ace Mains:

1) Write all questions. 

2) Must have 4-5 points for every sub-topic on the tip of the fingers to handle the bouncers. 

With these two goals in my mind, I began preparing for mains.

  • I revisited the idea of not writing tests after tests. The key lies in revising again and again. After a point, the revision was so intense, in my head, I actually had phrases ready to open and conclude, if a question were to be asked on water, agriculture etc.
  • I had identified thematic areas that are UPSC's favourite. I did this exercise for both prelims and mains. This helped me score in 120s in Prelims too. 

This was the bedrock of my strategy. So, I gave more emphasis on these areas-

  • Favorite themes of UPSC
  • PYQs
  • All the sub-topics mentioned directly in the syllabus. 

This made my life simple and super-easy. 


The D-Day:


Essay:I chose 'Being human.....and being humane' and 'Patriarchy'. The idea was to stick to the demand, no matter how average the content was.Kept on revisiting the topic questionafter making arguments after arguments in the body. Used a lot of linkers and rhetorical questions to maintain the flow. Expecting above average in Essay. 


GS1:I think I have a fairly good command on static subjects. Prelims reading helped me answering Pala empire, Persian literary sources etc. type questions. Made a few maps. (Learn to draw India's map. It leaves good impression). I have a fair drawing skill so, my map work is good. Presentation does matter here. In my first attempt, I scored 85 marks after leaving 50 marks worth of questions. Presentation was neat. Answers were crisp.


GS2: I do not know how will I fair in this paper. The questions were analytical like last year. Despite PSIR background, it was difficult for me. When paper becomes difficult, I generally feel I get an edge over others. This is so because, I do not write irrelevant content and bogus words. I write only what is asked. In GS2, I wrote 1 page for 2-3 10 markers and 1.5 page for 2-3 15 marks. These were questions where I didn't have much content, but whatever content I wrote in those pages were hitting 'bulls' eye'. This is how I finished my GS2 paper 5 minutes before the stipulated time. 

My GS2 marks will probably be a good yardstick to ascertain whether it's possible to score fairly good with less content if you hit the demand well. I really wish it breaks the myth associated with filling pages to get more marks. I do not believe in that practice anyway. 


GS3: This paper was all about data crunching. I used a lot of data in my answers. Drew beautiful maps in questions like potential of renewables, water and agri etc. This paper was loaded with content since the questions were straightforward unlike GS2. 


GS4: If there was a paper I was really concerned about, it was Ethics. The case studies were unconventional. Ate away lot of my time. I could not write one 10 marker and wrote 2 for namesake. The paper where I faced mismanagement of time. 

However, I wrote decent case studies. My approach was bit unconventional. I wrote them like short essays to strike a conversation with examiner. Except for the one on arms trade, all were written in Essay format. So, I was worried whether it would be liked or not. I guess I have gotten okay marks, not too bad. 


Overall experience after 2 Mains ( 1 successful and 1 unsuccessful):

1.Understand the demand. If a question is asked to show how a certain 3 laws affect federalism, show the 'how' part. No points for mentioning the features of those laws! 

2.Revise more, Write less tests.I will commit the crime of repeating this idea again. Do not trade off the time for revision and write tests. 

3.Mains is fairly predictable. Analyse the pattern. First timers can be excused, but if you're someone who's repeatedly failing mains, you should consider doing this exercise ====>>>

  • Favorite themes of UPSC
  • PYQs
  • All the sub-topics mentioned directly in the syllabus. 


That's it. It has been a long read! This is what I did this time and was able to see the light at the end of the tunnel. In no way, I intend to show this as the best possible strategy. This is simply what helped me. I'd try to elaborate more about this approach once I get to see the marks. Until then, this is it! 

ssver2,Joeyisthebestand61 otherslike this
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  @AzadHindFauz  considering the time constraints this time around and the fact that I don't have prepared mains notes as of now(gave 2020 mains as my 1st mains) would u suggest to skip 2021 attempt? Or that I should try as much as I can and give this attempt?? Pls do suggest...


7k views
Can anyone who has qualified IFoS cutoff or clears CSE cutoff with a big margin and could replicate that in prelims repeatedly tell me their last 2 months strategy or paper solving techniques. It's really difficult for me to cross that 110 barrier. Any suggestions would be appreciated.

+1

@sunnykumarroy658377   you scored 150??..any inputs/advice for last 90 days?? i really need to score 120/130+ this time.

6.8k views
@AzadHindFauz Thank you for the detailed post. 
Can you please shed some light on how you dealt with current affairs for mains?


6.6k views

Imomfsaid

  @AzadHindFauz  considering the time constraints this time around and the fact that I don't have prepared mains notes as of now(gave 2020 mains as my 1st mains) would u suggest to skip 2021 attempt? Or that I should try as much as I can and give this attempt?? Pls do suggest...


If your optional is ready, you may still consider. In addition to this, you must be absolutely clear about your sources for mains. If you think, you'd be able to do them at least twice, appear for 2021.

Ask yourself this question-Would you be able to recall 4-5 points for any topic?If your ability to interlink topics is strong, you may still consider going for 2021. You'd have to devote the first 40 days getting them ready. 


Revising everything in the last week prior to mains is absolutely mandatory. I remember there was a question on India-Israel relations in PSIR this year. I had good content on it, but I didn't revise it in the last week. I couldn't recall good points. I couldn't attempt that set and had to go for a relatively tougher set. 

What it meant in the end was I couldn't answer a question on Israel! The competition is so severe these days that you just cannot afford to write anything and expect above average marks. When we don't make structured notes for mains, we write anything! In the end, it translates into a failed attempt with low confidence. 

The point I'm trying to make is you should be able to revisit 90% of the things that you have read in the week prior to mains. If not, 7-8 minutes is not enough to brainstorm and write. 

Think about these aspects before making a decision. I cannot comment whether you should or shouldn't take attempt this year since I do not know your level of preparation. For that matter, nobody can take this decision for you. 

chamomile,AJ_and4 otherslike this
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@AzadHindFauz Thank you for the detailed post. 
Can you please shed some light on how you dealt with current affairs for mains?


I don't study current affairs as a different exercise. I integrated them in my notes under the sub-topics of mains. I use Evernote so the integration becomes easier. Evernote helps me enrich my notes on a daily basis with every newspaper read! 

  • If a news item corresponding to a particular sub-topic comes, I add it to my static notes. For example: If a news item on challenges to federalism comes, I add the points in my notes as it is a sub-topic in GS2. 
  • Secondly, I jot down data from CA that could be used given I feel its usage would be impactful. 
  • Lastly, I consolidate everything a month before and keep on revising them. 


Evernote was instrumental in helping me consolidate CA for mains. 

Joeyisthebest,sonderand1 otherslike this
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@AzadHindFauz Hey, you mention how you identified some key thematic areas for prelims and mains which are routinely asked? Can you shed some light on them?


Darvey78,
6.1k views
@AzadHindFauz thanks a lot man!


AzadHindFauz,TristanHarris
6.1k views

@AzadHindFauz . Thanks for the detailed post for GS. Could you please elaborate on similar lines for PSIR as well. Would help in getting clarity. There is atleast some time now for course correction. Any inputs will be greatly appreciated

5.9k views

@AzadHindFauz . Thanks for the detailed post for GS. Could you please elaborate on similar lines for PSIR as well. Would help in getting clarity. There is atleast some time now for course correction. Any inputs will be greatly appreciated

+1

5.6k views

Not being dismissive and pessimistic, but all these strategy wala post irks me after 4 failed attempts.



I never believed that mains is unpredictable, but this time, even after doing so much, i failed again. 


Maybe my optional was the culprit. But having an optional is itself  inviting unpredictability in the exam. 

I sometime feel that all the effort ib have put into this exam isn't worth it. 


To be honest this exam is ruining lives of young generation in India, who fall into trap of toppers and coaching wallas selling the idea that hard work surely pays off. 


Yes it does pay off, but the risk to reward is very high in favour of risk. 


I would only say that the decision to prepare wholeheartedly for this exam should be based on a rational analysis of risk and reward and never fall in the trap of - If I hard work more, I will surely crack it next time


This exam doest want individuals who are creative and innovative. It wants those who could rote learn, write fast, and have good writing skills. 


Sorry to be pessimistic again. 

EiChan,Monkey D. Luffyand9 otherslike this
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Deleted

Not being dismissive and pessimistic, but all these strategy wala post irks me after 4 failed attempts.



I never believed that mains is unpredictable, but this time, even after doing so much, i failed again. 


Maybe my optional was the culprit. But having an optional is itself  inviting unpredictability in the exam. 

I sometime feel that all the effort ib have put into this exam isn't worth it. 


To be honest this exam is ruining lives of young generation in India, who fall into trap of toppers and coaching wallas selling the idea that hard work surely pays off. 


Yes it does pay off, but the risk to reward is very high in favour of risk. 


I would only say that the decision to prepare wholeheartedly for this exam should be based on a rational analysis of risk and reward and never fall in the trap of - If I hard work more, I will surely crack it next time


This exam doest want individuals who are creative and innovative. It wants those who could rote learn, write fast, and have good writing skills. 


Sorry to be pessimistic again. 

You are not pessimistic,you are pragmatic.

Those who can rote-learn loads of facts-both relevant and irrelevant- and vomit in an eye-catching manner come across as good performers to the evaluators,who are accountable for nothing,to none.

Writing skill means not linguistic proficiency.Many recommended people are noticeably bad in this regard.

I laugh at those who waste time,energy and money on so-called test series,conducted by under-qualified  naive people.

BD,Maximus_
5.3k views
Does anyone here know if iashub (MK yadav), convertias, sunya etc. get their content through some freelancers not hired by them but through someone else? I received a message in this regard, hence wanted to know if such a practice exists in the industry. 
4.5k views
@AzadHindFauz Thank you for the detailed post. 
Can you please shed some light on how you dealt with current affairs for mains?


I don't study current affairs as a different exercise. I integrated them in my notes under the sub-topics of mains. I use Evernote so the integration becomes easier. Evernote helps me enrich my notes on a daily basis with every newspaper read! 

  • If a news item corresponding to a particular sub-topic comes, I add it to my static notes. For example: If a news item on challenges to federalism comes, I add the points in my notes as it is a sub-topic in GS2. 
  • Secondly, I jot down data from CA that could be used given I feel its usage would be impactful. 
  • Lastly, I consolidate everything a month before and keep on revising them. 


Evernote was instrumental in helping me consolidate CA for mains. 

Could you please delineate the word presentation! How do you present your answer

4.2k views

abc123said

» show previous quotes» show previous quotes» hide previous quotes

Not being dismissive and pessimistic, but all these strategy wala post irks me after 4 failed attempts.



I never believed that mains is unpredictable, but this time, even after doing so much, i failed again. 


Maybe my optional was the culprit. But having an optional is itself  inviting unpredictability in the exam. 

I sometime feel that all the effort ib have put into this exam isn't worth it. 


To be honest this exam is ruining lives of young generation in India, who fall into trap of toppers and coaching wallas selling the idea that hard work surely pays off. 


Yes it does pay off, but the risk to reward is very high in favour of risk. 


I would only say that the decision to prepare wholeheartedly for this exam should be based on a rational analysis of risk and reward and never fall in the trap of - If I hard work more, I will surely crack it next time


This exam doest want individuals who are creative and innovative. It wants those who could rote learn, write fast, and have good writing skills. 


Sorry to be pessimistic again. 

You are not pessimistic,you are pragmatic.

Those who can rote-learn loads of facts-both relevant and irrelevant- and vomit in an eye-catching manner come across as good performers to the evaluators,who are accountable for nothing,to none.

Writing skill means not linguistic proficiency.Many recommended people are noticeably bad in this regard.

I laugh at those who waste time,energy and money on so-called test series,conducted by under-qualified  naive people.

This response is not directed to any of you per se, but I have quoted your comments to set the context.  It is primarily to provide a counter to the thought process that some you have put forth above. This is going to be a long one, but bear with me.

First thing is that when we are unable to clear the Mains or the Prelims ( or the Interview ), we have two ways of thinking 

One, is that it is unpredictable ( and nothing can be done about it )

Two, there is something that I am not able to figure out or crack. Its simply not occuring to me. 

If you think from the first perspective, we can not have an action plan. And practically, we can go ahead and pay Russian roulette with the expectation that out of several attempts, we will be able to crack in one of the attempts. And exhaust our attempts.

Also, that, we need to make no major changes, do nothing and go on and on.

If you think about the second option, you have a massive task of figuring out what is not working, what you have not understood and what others are doing right. That will require looking outside to real people ( not toppers from internet - but meeting the same folks in person - and this year as the results will come, i am very sure that may people from this community will clear and you can ping them and actually meet them . I can help with this if some of you want it )

But the major point is that we need to believe that something is being missed by me - its simply not occurring to me - and I need to find that out. And the best people to guide you are the ones who have just cleared the exam. Meet several of them, and find out what is commonly held by them, and derive your conclusions from there.

Not on anecdotal evidence.

Also, do not go by exceptions. Or the path of minimum effort. Something like - "I only studied 15 days, and did not write any tests and still I got through / go interview call".

People got through / got interview callnot becausethey only studied 15 days or didn't write any tests , butdespitestudying 15 days ORdespitenot writing any tests. That is a big difference.

It is true that the exam has high-risk reward - which is true with anything where the rewards are high. The prestige ( I am not even going to say perks, power ( which I dont think exists much anymore ), privilege, public interaction ) are insanely high - and I will not go into whether it is right or not, and why it is there in the first place. )

But risks are high not because of the effort needed. The risks are high because this is a post graduate level examination. Which means two things. 

(1) Candidates are of a certain age where very soon there will be earning pressure / marriage pressure from parents / society - exceptions are always there.

(2) Candidates are already financially exhausted given that the education budget of the family is already spent in 12th coaching / graduation/ college. Hence, we have the minimum financial resources left at this stage of the exam. 

(3) The seats are so less, and that getting a lower score ( such as clearing the Mains or the Interview ) is not a ticket to lesser jobs / PSUs ( unlike CAT or JEE where you can get something even if you dont top ) 

We do not say IIT is unpredictable because of the science-maths and humanities dichotomy ( Humanities will always have subjectivity ) 

If we are stuck at some stage, please note that we have to find out what is missing.

I will tell you in Civil Services, how teachers get stuck. And that is, when their notes produces some good ranks, then they dont update notes and now the notes are common, and upsc does not award marks for those notes any longer. So teachers after a few years become unpopular, unless they changes his notes.

The same happens to students also.

Consider this that between 2002-2008 almost every IAS officer you meet will say , to crack IAS, just take psychology optional and join a certain Pathak Sir.

It is not a myth.

It is a reality.

And between 2007-2012 every IAS topper will say take Pub Ad with some Mohanty Sir .

When after some years the notes are not updated ( as we are facing with Value added material of some major coachings ), we see that we stop getting marks.

This is a very harsh reality.

So if you know some senior who has 3 interview calls or 4 mains and is not making it and is stuck, a good way to break the ranks is to entirely change the base material.

Of course the senior will be comfortable with the notes as he knows that those notes at least guarantee an interview call and will be reluctant to change it, just like teachers are reluctant to change their notes because they think it is the pinnacle of all wisdom that can ever exist in the subject.

But one thing is for sure - If we have to clear this exam, we will have to accept what "is" and go ahead with it rather than try to create what "should be". Our preparation always has to align is what is, instead of what "should be" as far as exam preparation is concerned. 

I will share with you something.

In the past 8 years, there have been exactly  twopeoplewhom I have consciously tried to discourage from writing the exam - on grounds that they are wasting their youth and parents money. I wanted them to help me with something.

My point was that one of them had a very slow handwriting and I knew that with slow handwriting there is a glass ceiling. The other had the habit of reading things back to back, end to end without thinking in terms of "ispe question aayega toh kya likhenge" . 

One of them told me point blank that "parents ne paida kiya toh kharcha toh bharenge, aur jab budhdhe ho jayenge toh hum unka bojh uthayenge ) . The other one kept quiet and doubled  his / her effort.

I never discussed this with them any further, but somehow, at least one of them took it as some challenge( which was not my intention at all ) and both these people somehow cracked the exam. After cracking one of them sent me a message - You never thought I would crack the exam. They were friends. Close ones.

I can tell you that people who have pulled themselves out have accepted that something is amiss and have looked for it somehow, found it and worked on it.

Success always looks effortless and easy once it is done, but a lot of effort goes into making things look effortless.

I will give you two case studies. Take a look at this.




He scored a single digit rank.

 A very common ( or common sensical ) thinking will be that he was genius and he did "nothing" - no class - no test series - and yet he got single digit rank.

When you will look from far, you will think "O he is a topper, and he is paid by coaching and what not", but the point is that you gotta meet people and see the amount of effort they are putting. It is intimidating even for me, though I see people slog day in and day out.

I can tell you that he had the choice of accepting his fate of not being able to score beyond a point and accept a certain service, ( and frankly if you ask me, I do not like the idea of leaving a comfortable service and rank and getting into the grind of rajinder nagar and ruining one's life for like six months ) 

He did not settle for his comfort zone, and I hate these guts, because frankly I dont have these guts.

He took classes, did test series and what not. He slogged like a beginner,and I think you should know these stories too.

Also, averagely, we cannot think beyond what we have seen or sometimes beyond our capacities. 

Some of you have mentioned that you would laugh at those who do test series. If we are looking for any improvements, we have to see what is the person doing.

I am not a great advocate of doing mindless test series, but let me tell you that out of Top 10 ranks, nearly 4 do a test series like an insane person, another 3 join a test series, but do not put so much effort,  and may wrote 5-6 tests and the remaining 2-3 may not join a test series.

You are practically laughing at all the people putting the effort.

Also, Let us say a student has written 8 Tests between Prelims and Mains with above average dedication. Do you know what that means.

First it means that he has done at least 24 hours of answer writing, which is when he would have fixed his speed, question handling issues.

Secondly, if he is a little sincere, he would hae studies at least 15-18 hours before every test. This means that he has done verified studied for least 120 hours - which also means that some changes would already occur in his personality as well as his preparedness, compared to someone who is waiting for prelims result.

And these are not people who are ignorant, lack exposure and are under misguidance. They are the ones who have friends and family in service, completely focussed, and they know what they are doing.

They are not doing some class or test series because they saw an AD. They did their due diligence, asked around and took decisions and held themselves accountable for those decisions.

I can tell you in my personal capacity I have met some people, whom I thought will never never never make it, and felt like telling them and yet some of them have gotten proper IAS and home cadre. To the point that I have stopped making an early assessment of anyone.

And there are at least a hundred people right on this forum ( and old discuss ) who slogged to a level ( which I personally think is not worth it - unless you want something that badly ) 


It is just that when results come and you make it, the joy kinda makes you reverse age for like 3-4 years. just like not making it to the list kinda ages you by 2 years.

Toppers Taking Money and Saying they did answer writing from Day 1 

So a famous educator had put a video saying that toppers take money and say that they did answer writing from day 1.

I will also like to throw some light on this phenomena here.

First is that, there is a myth that toppers of IAS exam get paid a lot by coaching institutes. This is a very clerical level thinking , very pedestrian and very low level thinking.

It is the same thinking that some people have when they pay a 100 rupee bribe to a constable and think that Delhi police commissioner gets a cut. And if a traffic constable by bribes earn 30,000 ( for the sake of example ) , then Delhi CP would be making x,y, crores.

This is a very simplistic thinking, but very popular because it appeals to the common man. Its easy, does not require any deeper digging .


I happened to be friends with a school and college juinor whose father was the then CBI director. There is this common thinking that CBI Chief would be such and such person, but he was very regular person and very honest. ( His father went on to be a Governor )

Also, a clerk level thinking is that a CBI director would make lot of money ( because constables / inspectors / SHOs make money ) , but the truth is far from it. Just because a CBI inspector may take bribe does not mean the DCBI would end up getting a "cut". People don't do that. He had a simple, but elegant house in a very posh area - govt accomodation that comes with the job.

Remember that the world is not as motivated by profit or money as it is by ideology or thinking. I can tell you the audience here that not a single coaching among the top 3-5 coachings would ever pay money to a topper to say something. 

Toppers are like you, and even if right now you think, that for money you will do something like this, trust me you wont do it when the time comes.  At best you may work at coachings and you may get paid for it. But that has been happening since ages!

And people dont take money / or gifts to promote someone. At best, if they get a gift, they may be asked by a smaller coaching usually not to take the name of any coaching which they had actually taken up.

Also when inthis video,the popular idea that is floated is that Toppers take money to say they did answer writing from Day 1, trust me there is no truth at all in it.

But you will have to dig deeper.

Let us wind the clock a decade back.

Since 2011, the Commission started reforms. There were huge protests for CSAT when it was introduced all of a sudden in 2011.

Then 2013 changes came is GS paper and now we had 4 papers instead of two.

Limites space writing and all that.

There was huge uproar. The govt then was a lot more democratic and actually gave platforms to students to raise their voices.

The UPSC was under tremendous pressure and the papers that came were on the easier side.

If you see 2012 -2016 papers, the questions were fairly straightforward and were actually asked from the mains news that were doing the rounds!

That was also the time when several dotcom websites came up with answer writing initiatives to cater to the directly asked questions.

Papers were current oriented and hence no foundation was needed so much. You could actually do answer writing on the internet and expect a lot of questions to come from there!

And they did!

It was because of this reasons that answer writing became a rage - it was no propaganda by websites or coachings or toppers. People actually did that.

And when paper turned to more analytical, or foundation level things - people who had spent doing coaching benefitted more.

Which is why you will find that toppers from that era vouch for current affairs like anything. They were not paid to promote answer writing.

They did answer writing.

In fact, everyone did!

And it helped too.

However, ideas such as floated above, are easy to understand, make immediate sense. Imagining the world to be a thief , scheming liars makes our life's woes easier to understand.

My point of writing all this at 12:45AM is because I believe that this forum is ( and can be ) a small community ofmainstreamaspirants who write the prelims, mains, interview and have the right perception of the exam, as opposed to the youtube crowd which has a completely different thinking about the exam.

We are a more aware crowd here, and some of us actually clear prelims, some of us actually clear mains, some of us actually clear in the final list. We are not an ignorant community. The world is a rational place.

Look , we all think while preparing that we are "the" ias aspirants ( and ias aspirants are like us ). But the pool of aspirants as well as people who clear the exam is very vast very varied. The exam caters to all.

It is not the best exam. It is not even an ideal one. But this is what we have. 

And it is natural to be pessimistic on days when it is not our day.

I apologise in advance to people who may be offended by my post, but please be assured that it is not my intention to offend anyone. The only purpose is to not end up with nihilism - nothing exists, nothing is true, and nothing can be done.



ssver2,Itachiand92 otherslike this
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UPSC mains base material should be vision or anything else?
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@Neyawn  I have been associated with this forum for long. I attach importance to your views. I am also an avid reader of your blog posts. I find many of your insights quite useful.

I also marvel at the brilliance of many active forum members. As for my candidature, I have qualified mains twice. This year I skipped. I will be appearing for the 2021-2022 cycle.                               Here I present two cases for you to consider in an impassioned manner.  The first case pertains to a candidate who is a Stephen's graduate, the economics topper of Delhi School of Economics. He also worked with RBI governor as a researcher. He has topped IES recently. But he has not qualified CSE mains even once in his 5 attempts. The second case pertains to a handicapped candidate who can neither make nor comprehend a complex English sentence. He wrote CSE in vernacular medium, and opted for vernacular literature. He emerged topper of CSE mains written. If knowledge, conceptual understanding and communication skill had been the sole strength to get through CSE, the former would have got an interview call at least and the latter would have found it difficult to qualify for interview, let alone securing the highest score.      

Neyawn,Auroraand4 otherslike this
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