Wednesday, 25 July 2018

How should I prepare for UPSC without any coaching? Part-1

How should I prepare for UPSC without any coaching?


Self Study is one of the ways in which a candidate can qualify for Civil Services. Self Study involves independent decision-making, independent corrections, a lot of self-understanding, a lot of trial and error and learning, a lot of experiments and enormous amount of satisfaction. If one doesn’t repent that they are not able to join any coaching institute, and do not allow themselves to become negative, then it is indeed one of the best learning methods while they prepare for the examination.
Self Study has many advantages and limitations as well.
The advantages include-
  1. Self Study involves a lot of introspection, constant introspection that is enormously helpful in constant up gradation.
  2. Self Study involves experimentation and exploration of ones personality to the maximum possible extent.
  3. Self Study involves maximum time utilization and management if the candidate so wishes.
  4. The candidates do not get an opportunity to get themselves spoiled, or their mindset contaminated and even customized to the directions of coaching institutes.
  5. It doesn’t allow the candidate with a noble personality to become infected and influenced by gullible coaches and equally gullible peer group by coming into direct contact.
  6. In this era of internet aided information flow and some site offering real quality materials such as Insight, IAS baba, Civils Daily, and some animated lectures, Ensemble and some all as well, it is really going to be a time saving effort.
  7. The candidates can surf to find some of the most desirable contents virtually at no price.
  8. It saves the candidates, time, money, effort, peace of mind, and health.
While it has some obvious disadvantages
  1. The amount of effort a candidate requires to do increases without the aid of coaching institutes.
  2. A feeling of deprivation sets in some candidates who may not be able to join coaching institutes. This may have pseudo effect on the candidates.
  3. Inability to gauge the level of their preparation and the direction of their movement, whether right or wrong.
  4. The dimensions of a topic and the chapter, how much to know, where to stop
However there is no method of preparation that doesn’t have its own merits and demerits. In any case if any one is preparing solo and on their own, they must follow some do's and dont's
  1. They must begin with Self-understanding; i.e. about themselves, who are they, what do they like, how do they study, what are their strengths and what are their weaknesses. This is a MUST AT THIS STAGE OF LIFE as there will be no other stage where it will be required.
  2. Language improvement must be emphasized since everything one imagines, everything one studies everything one learns ultimately has to be written. Inability to write what one has studied will compel the candidates to borrow someone else’s language and this will amount to memorization. Once Memorisation starts, preparation stops, and drudgery sets in. In the absence of language UPSC preparation becomes next to impossible.
  3. Balance your perception but must be able to look at the other side of coin. Keep some critics of yours. Take feedback from one or two. Be in a diversified group. Keep meeting your people who are very different from you, not similar to you.
  4. Explore options of methods of studies, not always following the beaten track or conventional track.
  5. Must finish your school books before you think of anything else. Only those books that you studied. NOTHING MORE.
  6. Change your way of studies. Follow this programme.
(a) Pick up a chapter.
(b) Read and understand it, then learn it from some sites who offer you composite chapter.
(c) Comprehend the chapter come what may. Don’t leave ununderstood.
(d) Prepare a summary after having read the chapter.
(e) Attempt an answer of some questions.
(f) Get it checked by an experienced person, (not by your age group people who have made answer checking in a thoroughly wrong manner a very good profession). Remember teachers always are good, and become good when they become older. Younger people are not experienced enough to evaluate you (which is what is done)
  1. Compare yourself in intellect with others. Look for an elderly company.
  2. Explore online option for education & entertainment- download files arrange them make it systematic.
  3. Try to learn from sources other than books, such as observation or discussion or travelling, and write the experiences as if you are writing answers.
  4. Be a part of peer learning group.
  5. Invest in yourself, invest in quality material, leader material not mass material. Read books that please you not which are popular. Always remember quality is respected it is never popular. Be a collector, on every topic have two books.
Of course there are certain things that you don’t do. These are-
  1. Don’t be a follower, don’t have a herd mentality. The world worships only those who are leaders. Herds are never meant for big work. They are like masses who are to be used, abused and are to be abandoned.
  2. Dont imitate any topper. His/Her strategy may not suit you at all. They are not always speaking the truth. Remember never to believe anyone when they are angry, or when they are in love or when they are under a bliss of success.
  3. Don’t compare you with coaching institutes’ students. You will be better than them ultimately.
  4. Dont squander your time in gossip and in rumour mongering,
  5. Never take too many advices. Everyone is right everyone is wrong. Follow only those advise what suits your heart.
  6. Follow what the toppers suggest. They are there to inspire you not to guide you.
  7. Never become a bookworm, Enjoy learning rather studies. If you enjoy, your receptivity, grasping capacity will be always high, your insights will be wonderful and your efficiency sky high.
Continued……look for PART-2

Thursday, 10 August 2017

What is the main requirement to change the bureaucratic system of India?

Beginning of the license raj, even and before that the Bureaucracy has devised various ways to harm the national interest. It is more apt to say that the Bureaucracy has devised ingenious method to harm the national interest and manipulate in a manner that the ultimate blame lie on the politicians and the government. 26/11 was not a policy failure, it was the failure of the people not to be able to, not to be willing to and not having the capability to implement policies in national interest.
It is indeed an irony that the country's economy has grown up, looked up, brightened up and moving forward. Despite all we may not have tasted development, but at least we are tasting growth, and all this despite the bureaucracy. Indian economy is growing at a rate of over 7% despite the bureaucracy. The bureaucracy has not managed the aviation sector despite the enormous inertia being available by way of Air India….. so what ? Aviation sector developed without that. The bureaucracy has almost completely devastated the Shipping Industry……. so what ? Indian exports have picked up. HEC, Ranchi and other public sector units have fallen from grace……. so what ? a lot of state-of-the-art industrial centres have come up that mock HEC. Every road-block the Bureaucracy can put up, despite that the road transport has shown growth – qualitative as well as quantitative. The Indian film industry has grown in universal appeal despite the bureaucracy; the quality of education (read information and literacy) has improved at least quantitatively if not value wise.........despite the bureaucracy. If so many things have shown an improvement inspite of obstacles put by bureaucracy then its left to anyone's imagination what would have happened with a responsive, efficient bureaucracy having a feeling for the country. The country's economy would have shown a progress unparallel in the whole of Asia.
A fall out of the existing corruption and red tapism is very detrimental to the Indian economy in the long run, as foreign investors in a rapidly global, economies of the world view entering into India as a challenge and plagued as it remains both with political and bureaucratic corruption as well systematic inefficiency which leads to long turn around period as project delays cause cost escalations in volatile market economies. Also in the recent years, several corrupt economies of Asia have faced setbacks, after the wave of economic upturn faded, this makes the urgency of corrective measures more than evident, they make it an imperative.
The only asset we have with ourself is our demographic dividend and time to take our country into 21st century with dignity. The bureaucracy with dilatory tactics and tapism more than capable of not only damaging but super damaging the economy.
Bureaucracy shows every ability, willingness and zeal to damage the psyche of the people and they have not only reasonably dented it, but are inflicting more and more damage to it.
The greatest damage is by way of allowing people they serve to make them perceive as dispensing favours rather than really serving them. They behave as Indian Administrative Masters rather than servants. Given the abject poverty and illiteracy, a culture of exaggerated deference to authority has become the norm. Obviously, this approach is not citizencentric. The reasons for the government not being citizencentric is primarily attributed to the attitude and work of the bureaucracy. Of course, there are other factors that are also responsible, such as the deficiencies in the existing institutional structures and also to some citizens.
Once selected and also by virtue of training, their company, the pressure by the peer group, not to speak of the constitutional protection, just as they get into the bureaucracy they start feeling superior, and in order to maintain that superiority they start suppressing any new idea, new innovation and consequently the rise of any talent. The emergence of any new talent undermines the brand IAS. The degree and amount of innovation promotion that the government thinks of, hardly gets implemented.
Unlikely to appreciate and encourage talent merely by being facilitator, the bureaucracy is often rude and insulting by showing an ignominious attitude. This is not only very derogatory to the citizens, it discourage them to no end. Having not stopped at deriving pleasure out of it, they continue in whatever capacity they can truly mindful of the consequence it is likely to have on the masses.
Innovation diffusion and management propels any civilisation toward a new sense of perception, new balance of perception, building new institutions, facilitates new institutions, new fresh thinking as well as prevent the death and decay of old institutions. Institution-building should have been more smooth, more progressive, more global as well as adhering to the roots of preservation of local wisdom, local cultures. Unfortunately this sense of responsibility towards the country and the humanity had not found in the workings of the bureaucrats. This only showed lack of love for the country and/or its people, as well as its past.
One pitfall of such a suppression of is the loss of opportunity for the general masses for the citizens. Indeed the bureaucracy wants to scuttle out any existence of opportunity which can allow the citizens to reach some height of success. They simply do not want to facilitate any equality of opportunity.
While the laws made by the Legislature may be sound and relevant, very often they are not properly implemented by the bureaucracy. The institutional structure provided at times may be also weak and ill-conceived, and thus, has neither the capacity nor the resource to implement the laws in letter and spirit.
"The system often suffers from problems of excessive centralisation and policies and action plans are far removed from the needs of the citizens. This results in a mismatch between what is required and what is being provided."
Even the commission observed that the civil services and administration in general had become "wooden, inflexible, self perpetuating and inward looking." "Consequently their attitude is one of indifference and insensitivity to the needs of citizens. This, coupled with the enormous asymmetry in the wielding of power at all levels, has further aggravated the situation.
The argument that the IAS serves to promote the unity and integrity of the Indian nation, transcending cleavages and differences which form the basis for states' identities, seems much less convincing in the contemporary situation than it might have been at independence. The contribution of the All-India Services to cementing or safeguarding the Union cannot be reckoned as crucial, compared with the historical, political and cultural factors which make Indians feel that they belong to the same nation, whatever their differences. The efforts to make the higher civil service more representative through reservations are limited to a purely quantitative approach to national integration and do not transcend the social, religious and ethnic cleavages that divide Indian society. How could an elite administration itself affected by casteism, communalism and regionalism offer the perspective of a collective quest for common goals?
The IAS officers form a powerful lobby at the national level, and they will certainly resist any proposal that threatens their position, even when the objective is to make them more accountable to the public, especially by removing the constitutional protection given to them. The officers who fail in their mission to public service, the openly corrupt, the partisan, still enjoy the security of tenure guaranteed to them by the Constitution, which makes their dismissal very difficult. The partisanship of high-level civil servants goes against their mission of national integration. If nothing is done to increase the effectiveness of the IAS as a binding force of the country, and if, instead of contributing to national unity, its members deepen even more the existing social cleavages by their partiality, then the whole institution loses its raison d'etre.

 When George Fernandes was the Defence Minister, he came across a very insensitive response of the bureaucracy. The soldiers of Siachen had applied for snow scooter to have a vigil on the borders in the most hostile atmosphere along the LOC. The request lay with the bureaucracy for five years before it came to the notice of George Fernandes, that too when he himself once had the chance of visiting the region and came to realise the harsh realities. The bureaucracy was debating over the need for snow scooters for the armed forces for five years, and many soldiers lost their lives due to frost biting and cold.
If the Administration Services keeps the progress of the country to ransom, sit over the files catering to the supply of essential snow scooters to the Siachen soldiers, who protect the country, try to humiliate armed forces, reduce the dignity of the country as country's representative on a flight by entering into drunken brawl and trying to molest air hostesses; disrespect country's past and its culture, its people and population, advocate the same British who did not disguise their hatred of the country and its people, and propagate British form of culture by not pressing in censor for the choicest Anglo-Saxon "gaalis" and blanch at a word "saali", meanwhile faithfully allow the enemy countries to encircle India, despite knowing very well of its consequences or totally mindful of its consequences........This is where, China has been bullying us right now.
Any organisation, any institution, any business-house, or any service, which indulges in such a despicable deed, for all of them, the question is ……. Will any one do that if they love their country, and everyone will do that who are, “I, Me. Myself”

What should be my next step after 12th? I want to be an IAS officer.


Before venturing into Civil Services, the students must get themselves acquainted about Civil Services.
These acquaintances will include
  1. What should you do after 12th to prepare for the IAS exam?
  2. Get to know about Civil Services, the nature of Civil Services, the challenges, the prospects from any IAS, IPS, IRS
  3. Pick up those subjects that you want to study in Civil Services. These include, Geography, History, Polity, Public Administration, Economics. These subjects are of immense importance to the UPSC syllabus.
  4. These subjects will then help you to choose your optional as well.
  5. Don’t lose touch with basic maths that you learned in school. This is needed for the CSAT paper in the IAS Prelims.
Now understand your preparation strategy
The students are in the best possible position to prepare for Civil Services examination if they are in their 1st year of graduation.
Advantages that a student has being in 1st year of graduation.
  1. His/her mind is uncluttered unlike people who have done their graduation and are undergoing some coaching.
  2. t’s a fresh canvas on which any picture can be made, anything can be done a clean blackboard on which anything can be written.
  3. It is much more easy to mould a student during this period. The flaws in the students can be easily identified and plugged.
  4. The students even if they make some initial mistakes can easily get it corrected as they have so much time.
  5. It’s easy to shape the personality and do a lot of trial and error to understand oneself.
Most of the students actually forget whatever they have learnt during schools after graduation and have to go back to schools and ultimately end up studying at school level only.
In any case even students who are doing their coaching, will take take 3 years of time to prepare well and have to go to the basics. This will again compound their difficulty.
How to proceed in three years
In the three years, during graduation, there are certain things that a candidate has to do.
The purpose during the entire three-year period has to build a base which can help the students to better their University examination, form a base on which they can build any type of future. At the same time, they have to be seen by their mentor that they do not develop any attitudinal flaws. Thus they
· Must, must and must choose a mentor.
· Look for sequencing the topics in such a manner that would minimize efforts in learning a particular topic; content and subject.
Phase wise Strategy
A phase wise implementation must begin by identifying the problem of the candidates and filling the gaps that have been left in their school education.
Phase “1” Foundation Stage. This will will comprise of
During this period, the students must train themselves into building social capital, social bonding, reading newspapers, magazines, observe people in editorial and teaching capabilities, etc. and master all school books that they ever studied.
All these ingredients are important for the candidates to ease their effort that will be required to gain knowledge in almost every subject a person should know. The essential ingredients have to-
· Counsel the parents to bring the best in their child.
· Filling the gaps in the education and personality of the candidates.
· Improve their language and observation.
· Develop in them a balance of perception.
· Subject them to Neurolistic-Linguistic Programming (NLP).
Thus the most important phase will constitute
1. Complete revision of School books and the practice of their questions and answers.
2. Communication & Body Language Improvement.
3. Language Improvement.
4. Understanding oneself, their parents and teachers.
5. Understanding their surroundings.
6. Learning to make bonds, and social capital.
7. Start Reading Newspapers.
8. Practice basic math and aptitude
Sources And Reading Material 1st Phase
The Prelims and Mains require different approaches of preparation and studies some of the most essential books for Prelims include
  • Geography Through Maps - K.Siddhartha & S.Mukherji
  • Basic Physical Geography- K.Siddhartha & S.Mukherji
  • Geography for Preliminary Examination- K.Siddhartha & S.Mukherji
  • Basic- NCERT history. This includes
  • 10th standard,
  • 12th standard NCERT history on India and World
  • NCERT Biology
  • Science, Technology and Society- K. Siddhartha
  • Indian Polity NBT
  • How our Government works-NBT
Current Affairs
  • Times of India
  • Hindu
  • Any competition magazine
  • regular columns with their threads
  • Ecology & Environment - K.Siddhartha
  • Ecology & Environment for Preliminary Examination Vol-I
Practice Question Bank
  • For offline books Ensemble Series
  • Ensemble question bank
Phase “2” Knowledge Stage
The candidates come to learn the basics of the entire syllabus of UPSC chapterwise. This phase must comprise of
  • Mastery of World Geography, Science and Technology, Geography, Indian and International Economy, International Relations, Indian Polity, Governance, History, Heritage, Culture and Society
  • Weekly exchange of news and community education.
  • Learning through various means-Films, Books, Interactions, Parents, Teachers, TV.
  • Basics of Internet and Social Media to utilize online wealth.
  • Background of events and World problems.
  • Socialization studies, principles and applications.
  • Learning to know the means and mechanism of teaching and learning.
  • Continue practicing basic maths and aptitude
Online Classes
These classes will help you get 7-8 dimesnsion of a topic with its chapter, its video adaptaion, its summary, its entire range of Q&A, MCQ, every topics current affairs update. There is only one such site in India now and also in the world
Before Advanced level preparation
The advanced level preparation begins thereafter, but the students must acquire certain habits and adaptations.
These include
1. Join one of these portals-Insight, IAS baba, Civils Daily
2. Be serious in your studies. Do not study like a college students..
3. Keep exploring book shops, libraraies, magazines in order to get interested in preparation, and also to know your interest.
4. Must study newspaper daily and keep abreast of the latest happenings in the country and the world.
5. Work on certain skills like communication skills. NEVER indulge in any gossip.
6. Learn how to make notes and start jotting from any source that you read.
Once you have passed the second phase ask this question again on QUORA
Phase “3” Interrelationship stage.
Having gone through the two stages, all the students will be prepared to take to study certain degree of correlation ship between the topics. Elevate the level by adding extra information and analysis. Develop an analytical ability as well and keep expressing it.
Phase “4” After graduation
Now you have one year of time to appear for PT. Start organizing yourself, Start moving step by step picking up each topic and completing it, writing at least one answer from the topic, remembering it and revising it thoroughly as you have to appear in that years exam. This should take at least six month from July to December.
Phase “5” PT Intensive phase with practice.
Having gained enough amount of knowledge, the candidate must take a deep plunge into PT preparation that should comprise of practice and practice and practice and perfecting Newspaper studies.
Phase “6” Mains only phase with Intensive writing practice.
After PT, go for preparation of Mains and focus has to be on appearing in tests and developing analytical abilities. It has to be Revision, analysis and Tests. This is what should become the norm till the mains Examination.