BPSC CCE Topper Gaurav Singh: In the Bihar Public Service Commission’s 65th CCE results declared Thursday, Rohtas district’s Gourav Singh bagged the first rank in his second attempt. Singh had also qualified for the 64th CCE in which he was allotted the assistant director’s position in the state social welfare department but before the results were announced, he had already appeared for the 65th CCE.
However, success didn’t come easy for Gaurav. “I was an average student throughout my school days. I was not able to crack the engineering entrance examination (JEE). There was a lack of self-confidence in me that kept me away from appearing for civil service exams for three years,” he said.
The 28-year-old graduated in BTech Mechanical Engineering from KIIT and worked with Accenture for three years. Despite working with a corporate company, the desire to join government services never faded and Gourav began his preparations for the defence services exam.
Although he cleared the preliminary stage of the assistant commandant exam, he was not able to go further after he was detected with colour blindness in his medical round. With the doors to defence services closed, he decided to prepare for the civil service examinations.
“My aim was to be in the government services and UPSC civil service was the next best choice. Hence, I began to prepare for the civil service examination and simultaneously prepared for state PCS as well. As the syllabus of both the exams substantially overlap, it wasn’t a hurdle to prepare for the BPSC CCE,” the topper shared.
While most UPSC aspirants shift to Delhi for preparations, Gourav chose not to follow the herd. “I was working in Pune and therefore I chose to continue my preparation in Pune itself. As all study materials are available online, shifting to a new city didn’t make sense,” Gourav said.
Talking about his strategy, Gaurav said he only prepared for the BPSC CCE 20 days prior to the examination day and largely focused on qualifying the UPSC civil services. “For BPSC prelims, I read Arihant and Lucent books for Bihar’s history section. For the mains, I referred to KBC Nano. Apart from this, I only revised my UPSC notes,” he shared.
For current affairs, he mainly followed Vision IAS’s monthly handouts as well as The Indian Express newspaper. “I have been religiously following The Indian Express’s Explained section and it has a major contribution in my practice of writing answers. Articles by C Rajamohan and Anand Grover are ones I never miss,” he said.
For aspirants preparing for BPSC, he suggested focusing on self-made notes for revisions. He also lay emphasis on solving previous years’ papers as many questions repeated in the mains exam. For the interview stage, he suggested focusing on current affairs.
“In my interview, not even a single question was asked about Bihar or from my educational background. Most of the questions were related to the Afghanistan crisis, Odisha and the national schemes. Hence, aspirants should be well-prepared with the current events,” the topper shared.
Gourav has also appeared in the UPSC Civil Service exam thrice but wasn’t able to crack the main exam. For his UPSC preparation, he largely followed the NCERTs, the conventional books like Laxmikant, Spectrum, Bipin Chandra as well as online lessons by Mrunal Patel.