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    Interview Of an IAS topper

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    Interview Of an IAS topper

    Post  Admin on Tue Sep 06, 2011 11:57 am

    This interview is the actual interview faced by an IAS qualified student.


    Name: Vijay Kumar Mantri

    Roll. No: 61511

    Interview: CS 2006

    Date: 12.4.07

    Time: 4:00 pm



    Chairman of the Interview panel: Shri. Subir Datta (Retd. IAS)

    Description: There were 7 panels (1.Shri. Subir Datta, 2.Prof. D.P. Agarwal, 3. Air

    Marshal (Retd.) Satish Govind Inamdar, 4. Ms. Parveen Talha, 5. Dr. Bhure Lal, 6.

    Ms. Chokila Iyer, 7. K. Roy Paul). Each panel was interviewing 9 candidates per day

    (5 in the morning and 4 in the afternoon). After entering UPSC and finishing all the

    formalities, we were very curious to know whose panel we had got. Then came the

    news that ours was Subir Datta’s panel. I was the last person to be interviewed.

    When my turn came at around 4:00pm, there were only 3 people left in the waiting

    hall. I was guided to the Subir Datta’s room and asked to wait outside for 5 minutes.

    After 5 minutes, bell rang and the person told me to go inside.



    As I entered I could see a lady member, hence I wished her first. Then I went to

    my chair and wished the chairman and other male members. The member to my left

    (M3) asked me to sit. I took the chair and thanked him.



    C: (Looking at me and the photo – photos of all the candidates of that panel will be

    collected and sent to the panel) You are Mr. Vijay Kumar Mantri,…..working in BHEL

    since Aug 2003,….done B. Tech in Mechanical Engineering from IIT Madras.

    VK: Yes Sir (after each detail)

    C: You are from Parkal, Is it a coastal area?

    VK: Sir, it is a land locked area. It is in Warangal district, which is in northern part of

    Andhra Pradesh.

    C: It is a Naxal area…very dangerous place….

    VK: Sir, it is not very dangerous for common people.

    C: If you become IAS or IPS, then it will be dangerous for you?

    VK: Sir, I will take that as an opportunity to eliminate the Naxal problem.

    C: What opportunity??@#$?, it is very dangerous…. (he was talking to himself….I just

    smiled)

    C: You are working in BHEL…which area are you working?

    VK: Sir, I am working in Heat Exchangers Engineering department at BHEL

    Hyderabad. My job is to design Heat Exchangers.

    C: Heat Exchangers??

    VK: Sir, Heat Exchangers are auxiliaries in power plant, like Oil Cooler, Generator Air

    Coolers and Exciter Air Coolers….

    C: How do you design Heat Exchangers?

    VK: Sir, this Heat Exchanger is a Shell & Tube Heat Exchanger and the oil will be

    cooled….

    C: (interrupted) Explain to me as if you explain to a layman?

    VK: Sir, there will be oil in bearings for cooling and lubricating purpose. This is like

    grease and …

    C: (interrupted) By what is it cooled?

    VK: Sir it is cooled using water.

    C: Grease cant flow…!!

    VK: Yes Sir, grease cant flow. But to make it clear, I have taken the example of

    grease.

    C: But you shouldn’t make wrong statements in order to make it clear..(Actually I

    didn’t make a wrong statement; I just compared oil with grease. I thought it was a

    trap and didn’t argue further.)

    VK: Yes Sir,…(ready to proceed with explaining, but he asked the next question)

    C: OK, you participated in Athletics. What are the events you have participated?

    VK: Sir, I participated in 100m running and road race from my hostel in B.Tech.

    C: Road Race?

    VK: Sir, it is 7.5km marathon race around our campus.

    C: But 100m and road race are not compatible!!

    VK: Sir, there was no better participation from our hostel. So, I participated.

    C: Then you must have lost.

    VK: Sir I could finish….

    C: (Interrupted) Did you finish in first three places?

    VK: No Sir. (…Participation is more important than winning…)

    C: I don’t know your philosophy, Mathematics and Mythology…..so, let me ask you in

    Current Affairs….You must have been reading news paper since you started

    preparing Civil Services…So, you must have read about inflation in recent

    news…what is inflation?

    VK: Sir, inflation is the increase in rates of commodities comparing to the rates last

    year same week.

    C: what are its indicators?

    VK: Sir CPI and WPI.

    C: What is the difference between CPI and WPI? Is it the basket or method of

    measurement?

    VK: Sir, it is the basket.

    C: What causes inflation?

    VK: Sir, there are two causes for inflation, one is on supply side and other is on

    demand side?

    C: What is the demand side reason?

    VK: Sir, demand is growing up due to increase in living standards.

    C: But, there are still 25 crores of people living below poverty line???

    VK: Sir, there is an overall increase in living standards.

    C: OK, what is the supply side reason?

    VK: Sir, Supply is not meeting to the increase in demand and there are also crop

    failures.

    C: What are the steps that government has taken?

    VK: Sir, recently government has increased CRR, but that only can solve the problem

    on demand side….

    C: (interrupted) What is it doing on supply side?

    VK: Sir, government is concentrating on agriculture to increase output. It is also

    curtailing exports of sugar to meet domestic needs…

    C: Is it curtailing exports of sugars?

    VK: Yes sir, logically it should curtail exports to alleviate inflation…

    C: OK, take example of wheat, what is that government doing?

    VK: Sir, we are importing wheat to meet domestic shortage.

    Then, he made eye contact with next member (M1) to proceed.

    M1: There is a relation between philosophy and mathematics….(pause)

    VK: Ma’am, Philosophy and Mathematics are both fundamental and widely

    applicable….

    M1: OK, let me finish my question….blah …..blah….what is the relation between

    mathematics and philosophy that can be implied from ancient literature?

    VK: Ma’am, there is a sloka in one of the upanisads (actually from

    Isavasyopanisad….but I couldn’t recollect there). It says:

    Om

    purnamadah purnamidam purnat purnmudachchate I

    Purnasya purnamadaya purnmevavasisyate II

    Ma’am from mathmetical point of view it means: purnam means infinity. So, when

    infinity is substracted from infinity still infinity remains.

    From philosophical point of view it means: when infinite Brahman manifests as

    infinite atman and jagat still Brahman remains infinite.

    Thus philosophy and mathematics inspired each other and drew inspiration from

    same source.

    M1: blah…blah….(she was further discussing about it.)…What is the relation

    between mythology and philosophy? What are their sources? Can you explain?

    VK: Ma’am, mythology is body of literature, which explains about the lives of divine

    personalities and divine incarnations. This body of literature consists of 4 vedas, 18

    Puranas, Ramayana & Mahabharata. Philosophy mainly derives its source from

    upanisads and gita which are parts of Vedas and Mahabharata respectively. So,

    Ma’am, I believe that Indian Mythology and Philosophy drew from same source and

    always had relationship.

    M1: In ancient days, we observe that lot of importance was being given to humanities

    than the sciences. Now the priorities changed and the atrs subjects are being looked

    down…..blah….blah…why?

    VK: Ma’am, I believe that there is a growth of materialism. Industrilisation has

    science subjects as its base. Materialism requires science subjects to prosper.

    Humanities subjects caters to metaphysical aspirations of a person which are losing

    value (and further explained about it).

    M1: This is my last question,…you said you listen to music….what music?

    VK: Ma’am, when I was in IIT, I used to listen to lot of english pop songs, but now I

    listen to Old telugu and Kishore kumar songs.

    M1: What do you like in music?

    VK: Ma’am, I like melody and …. Lyrics.

    M1: OK, you actually listen to the song.

    VK: yes Ma’am.

    M2: Mr. Mantri! You read mythology….so, you must have read Ramamyana and

    Mahabharata. Which one you think is more relevant to present society?

    VK: Sir, I think Mahabharata is more relevant to present society. Ramayana depicts

    about dharma. But, Mahabharata depicts about dharma, artha, kama and moksa.

    M2: Mr. Mantri! Do you think kurukshetra war could have been avoided?

    VK: Sir, I think Kurukshetra war couldn’t have been avoided. Because, the very

    purpose of Krishnavatara was punishing dushta, that is killing of Kauravas and their

    vicked allies. Krishna plotted everything in such a way that war happens and all the

    Kauravas are killed.

    M2: Mr. Mantri! What is your opinion about Bhishma?

    VK: Sir, I think he is a great personality in Mahabharata.

    M2: Do you support him not doing anything to stop Draupathi vastrapaharana.

    VK: Sir, not actually. But, he is very strict to vows and he vowed to his father that he

    would protect and support the king of Hasthinapura. I think that is why he couldn’t

    do anything to stop Draupathi vastrapahara.

    M2:Mr. Mantri! Do you support BCCI’s decision of capping endorsements of players?

    VK:Sir, I don’t support BCCI’s decision of capping endorsements of players. These

    endorsements have been there for long time. Two bad matches threw india out of

    world cup. This shouldn’t make BCCI take such decision. Moreover, if you take

    sachin as example, he spends just one day for each advirtisement and he doesn’t

    even do dubbing. He has a separate manager to take care of his endorsements. I

    think they should have freedom.

    M2: You said that you will consider civil servant job as an opportunity to alleviate

    naxal problem. How do you approach to that problem?

    VK: Sir, The philosophy of naxalism is based on Mao philosophy. Mao asks them to

    do guerilla war by fish swimming. As a fish swims in water, naxal swim through

    villages and wage guerilla war. If we remove this support, then we can succeed in

    alleviating in naxal problem.

    M2: All the terrorists, militents and naxalites do fish swimming only. But how do you

    arrest this fish swimming?

    VK: Sir, we should get people’s support. There is a fear of police in people’s minds.

    The Police should try to remove that by more contacts with people through social

    service.

    M3: Mr. Vijay! You seem to be a serious guy with philosophy and mythology so on.

    Apart from this have you read about western philosophy?

    VK: Sir, I read Western Philosophy as part of Civil Service preparation.

    M3: So, which philosophers you liked most?

    VK: Sir, I like Spinoza’s theory of substance.

    M3: Why?

    VK: Sir, Spinoza’s philosophy of Substance is very much similar to the Advaita

    philosophy of Sankaracharya.

    M3: Have you read the philosophy of Bertrand Russel, who is a great philosopher and

    mathematician.

    VK: Yes Sir, I read his philosophy ‘Linguististic Analysis’ as part of my Civil Services

    preparation.

    M3: Can you explain his philosophy?

    123

    VK: Sir, he says that all the earlier philosophers used such a language which always

    had ambiguous meaning. He says philosophical language should be a common

    languge which is used daily by common people and should convey single meaning.

    By this method he says that many philosophical problems could be solved.

    M3: Can you explain Dialectic theory?

    VK: Dialectic theory….yes sir…..Dialectic theory says that for every concept there is

    counter concept, and these two give rise to a new concept, which always has a

    counter concept and so on goes….

    M3: Two great philosophers used it. Can you name them?

    VK: Yes sir,…..(not able to recollect)…..

    M3: Carl Marx has used it.

    VK: Yes sir, Carl Marx has used it for Materialism and called it Dialectic Materialism.

    M3: Do you do any other light reading like novels?

    VK: No Sir.

    M3: What music you listen to?

    VK: Sir, I used to listen to english pop music during my IIT days. But now I listen to

    Old Telugu songs and Kishore Kumar songs.

    M3: Why change?

    VK: Sir,during my last days in IIT, I picked up this Kishore Kumar songs and Old

    telugu songs from a nearby room. And I grew interest….(They actually laughed at

    it…it was a releif for me)

    M4: Mr. Vijay! Recently there was a comment on IITs that “IITs are good at

    conducting Joint Entrance Examination”, there is a negative connotation about it.

    Can you get it.

    VK: …uhhnn…no sir.

    M4: think.

    VK: ….I think it means that IITs are good only at conducting Exams not at

    academics..

    M4: Is that really so…

    VK: Not exactly sir,…for example…Before entering IIT, I new nothing but solving few

    mathematical problems. But after coming out of IIT, I am a confident man.

    M4:….blah…blah…Government is spending so much on IITs…..IITs are main source

    of intellectuals….Many IITians leave country…..blah…blah…What do you suggest to

    stop this brain drain?

    VK: Sir, I feel that there should be compulsory course on Ethics and Social

    responsibility. All my friends who had gone abroad have gone with academic

    zeal…they don’t know that 25 crores of their fellow Indians are below poverty line.

    M4: You were saying that infinity minus infinity is equal to infinity. Can you give an

    example?

    VK: …(thought for some time)….Sir, not getting any examples….its so simple to

    understand that iam not able to get example….(I thought…I shouldn’t have said this)

    M4: Ok, I will you a hint…take set of natural numbers.

    VK: Yes sir, (I actually jumped at the answer with that hint). Set of Natural numbers

    minus set of even number is equal to set of odd numbers, which is infinity minus

    infinity is equal to infinity.

    C: Ok, Vijay Thank You.

    VK: (I thanked all and left the room without looking back)

    I saw the time…My interview lasted 37 minutes.

    Finally, 195 marks were awarded for this interview.


      Current date/time is Wed Dec 19, 2018 8:31 pm