1. CAPF Topper Profile
  2. Education
  3. Introduction
  4. Electronic Vs Paper material
  5. Tempo and style
  6. Working professional
  7. GS and Aptitude paper
  8. Accuracy in GS paper
  9. Descriptive paper
  10. Four Essays
  11. Argument For-Against
  12. Report writing?
  13. CAPF Physical Efficiency Test
  14. Interview by UPSC Panel
  15. UPSC Interview Transcript
  16. After the interview
  17. CAPF Marksheet
  18. Service preference
  19. UPSC CSE-2013 experience
  20. Career Backup
  21. Wisdom
  22. Credit: Friends/family
  23. Bogus Marketing Propaganda

CAPF Topper Profile

Name Paramjeet
Rank in CAPF-2013 175
Roll No. 029523
Age 25
No. of previous attempts in CAPF 1(Qualified written exam,but didnā€™t go for PET)
Home town/city Rohtak
Work-experience if any 1.5 year with Orange Business Services (Telecom Sector)
other competitive examsincluding success & failures
  • Cleared UPSC Prelims2012,Screwed in Mains like one has done ever before
  • Got selected for ACIO in IB 2012
  • Cleared SSB for Indian Navy 2011
coaching/postal material (if used) Not for CAPF ,but joined ALS for Civil Services
  • Hobbies
  • Extra-Curricular Activities
  • Reading Inspirational and motivational articles on Internet
  • Lawn Tennis
  • Jogging
  • Have done Bungee and River rafting
Do you have NCC certificate? No


% in class 10 86
% in class 12 72
Schooling (Medium) English
Graduation course & % 68
College & batch-year Gurgaon Institute of Technology and Management 2006-2010 ECE
Post-graduation No
Any professional courses No


Q. Tell us something about yourself and your family. When and why did you enter in the competitive exam field?

CAPF 2013 Paramjeet Ahalawat Orange Business Services

My name is Paramjeet.I have been born and brought up in different parts of Haryana(I have resided in 15 of 21 districts in Haryana at one time or the another) because of the frequent transfers of my father. My father works as a Sub-Inspector with Haryana Police and mom as a home maker. After completing my graduationĀ  I worked as a Technical Consultant with OBS for 1.5 year, then I left my job to prepare for civils.I gave my first attempt in 2013 but couldnā€™t clear the mains examā€¦.while at the same time wrote CAPF 2013 for job securityā€¦.and would join theĀ  same and continue with my preparation. ComingĀ  from a police background I always wished to join the same and landed up in this game.

Electronic Vs Paper material

Q. In recent times, there is spur in electronic material- blogs, sites, pdfs, RSS-feeds. Many aspirants feel bogged down by this information overload. So, how much do you rely on electronic material and how much on the paper material (Books, newspapers)? If possible narrate a typical day in your studylife. What is your style of preparation (e.g. I continue making notes no matter what Iā€™m reading, I just read multiple times but donā€™t maintain notes, I make mindmaps on computer ā€¦or xyz style)

In recent times there has beenĀ  a flood of electronic material all over the internet.Infact I myself know the name of many aĀ  sites which help in preparation of the aspirants.But like the old saying goesā€¦too many cooks spoil the broth. I would like to make a few points here

  1. E-material preparation should be limited to only those topics for which you have insufficient material at hand for eg current affairs are best prepared from internet
  2. Ideally you should not spend more then 2 -3 hours per day surfing the materialā€¦otherwise preparation is in serious dangerā€¦I used to do it at earlier stage
  3. The 3 best sites are PIB :for govt schemes issues, Mrunal: for everything(Environment Economy CAĀ  mains preparation, material are exceptionally brilliant), Gktoday.in for one markers the daily section in which daily quiz comes

And u need to revise these 3 particularly

Tempo and style

Q. People know what books and syllabus topics are to be prepared. But most of them lack consistency in their preparation. So, how did you keep study momentum going on? How do you fight against the mood swings and distractions?

I am not theĀ  right person to discuss about mood swings and distractionsā€¦.mine are horribleā€¦I would not studyĀ  for 3-5 days at a stretch ā€¦and then crib .Mood swings depression etc etc are inevitable part of preparation.it takes 1 entire year to get over with upsc exams and in mean while you will definitely start doubting yourselfā€¦its human nature.But try to be calmā€¦all are sailing in same boat ā€¦even theĀ  toppers have fearsā€¦I would suggest have friends who are also preparing for this examā€¦so you can discuss your problemsā€¦..and donā€™t think too muchā€¦keep studyingā€¦take frequent breaksā€¦.go outā€¦but then do come backā€¦

Working professional

If youā€™re a working professional, share some tips on how to manage studies with job

I began my preparation only after leaving my previous job.so no idea

GS and Aptitude paper

Q1. Please share the list of resources you used, your strategy and other tips for benefit of future aspirants.

Topic input
History Ancient NCERT
History Medieval NCERT
History Modern (Freedom Struggle) NCERT + SPECTRUM
Culture society NCERT 11 + Nitin Singhania notes
Polity (theory + current) Laxmikant
Economy (theory + current) Mrunal + wizard als
Science (theory + current) Ncert+ lucent
Environment (theory + current) Mrunal+ interent material
geography physical Ncert+ als wizard
geography India Ncert+ als wizard
geography world Ncert+ als wizard
other national/international current affairs Pib mrunal gk today
Schemes, Policy & Filler Stuff Pib
Maths Career launcher csat material
Data interpretation Career launcher csat material
Reasoning Career launcher csat material

Accuracy in GS paper

How many MCQs did you attempt? 90-95
How many of them correct (When solved at home)? 70-75 (approximate )
official score (when UPSC uploads) Would upload the same at the earliest

Q. Whatā€™s your overall experience with GS paper? (E.g. it was on expected lines as per my preparation, it was quite tougher than earlier years etc.)

I think the GS Ā paper was on the expected linesā€¦nothing new ā€¦except that the Current affairs was a bit more than other years.

Descriptive paper

Q. How did you prepare the Essay, grammar, prƩcis and report writing?

I solved previous year question papers prior to writing this exam so that helpedā€¦otherwise no specific preparation .

Four Essays

This time, UPSC required the candidates to write 4 out of 6 essays. Which of the following did you attempt? And what were your keypoints in them?

Topic your key points
doctor-pharma nexus
interstate water dispute Talked about how water is a scarce resource in our country (18%populationā€¦2.6 % land ) then its use agricultural industrial daily needs etc ā€¦then the geological nature of rivers (Godavari kaveri krishna and others) ā€¦y disputesĀ  are arisingā€¦then constitutional provisionsā€¦inter state water dispute accordā€¦problems underlying them and so on
social reformers in freedom struggle
falling rupee & Indian economy Was a straight forward topicā€¦talked about the causes of falling rupee and its effects
Chinaā€™s aggressive policy Talked about china as a country ā€¦its economy armyĀ  etcĀ  and then its aggressive foreign policy with neighbours indiaĀ  south china seaĀ  isssues with ASEANĀ  its aggressive nature on trans boundary rivers being a upper riparaian country and so on
media publicity on terrorism Started with how media brings issues to fore front expecially the electronic media ā€¦then gave pro and consā€¦how it sensitizes the public and govt ā€¦make them awareā€¦help form public opinionā€¦and then how it goes overboard with trp 26/11 caseĀ  need to regulate

Argument For-Against

This time, UPSC required candidates to write both arguments for and against the given statements. so what were your keypoint in it?

Topic Argument for against
casteless society becomes distant through issues raised by reservation Aggravate differencesCreates feeling of we and they

Merit issues

Reservation not reaching poorer sectionsā€¦usurped by upper layers

Necessary to bring obc sc st at par with common peopleGives them opportunity

Ensures healthy mix of people ..faciliate interaction

women empowerment is urban phenomenon Women empowered only in urban or metropolis cities..Job opportunityā€¦education opportunity ā€¦meaningful employment all available in urban areas

Meanwhile rural women continue to languish ā€¦sub human treatment met out to them

Not so empowered ā€¦crime ā€¦violent cases on rise in urban areasIt is in rural areas where actual empowerment is taking ..SHGā€¦panchayat members

Gave eg AMUL

Report writing?

Did you write report the same way you wrote essay? or did you apply any special format/structure here?

Almost in the same manner as a 3rd person

Topic keypoints
Uttarakhand tsunami & Military Inhospitable terrain..infrastructure issuesā€¦connectivity issues..admin not available in remote partsā€¦military much better equipped to deal with these issuesā€¦timely effective coordinated response ā€¦ITBP 1st force to response to disaster in Himalayasā€¦
Ethics crisis in cricket CricketĀ  kind of religionā€¦followed by massesā€¦opportunity to become hero in eyes of massesā€¦and huge remuneration ā€¦but off late credibility ethics issuesā€¦spot fixing ā€¦IPLā€¦easy access to player in partiesā€¦.easy money Ā booze etc ā€¦blurred the distinction between right and wrong ..need to set priority rightā€¦called for some institutional mechanism to deal with it

Q. What is your overall experience with descriptive paper (e.g. too lengthy paper, grammar tougher than previous paper etc.)

It has grown lengthy over the years. Initially we were supposed to write just one essay ā€¦now we have to write four ā€¦reports..Comprehension..Precise..u really need to have good ..actually great speed otherwise u wonā€™t be able to complete the paper

CAPF Physical Efficiency Test

Q1. To pass Physical Efficiency Tests (PET), what preparation did you do at home?

It was the toughest part for meā€¦I went to stadium for runningā€¦started going almost 4 weeks before the PET and practicedĀ  long jump there onlyā€¦brought home a shot put of same size and started practicing .one need s to start practicing one month before if he wants to make it to the interview .Although the requirement are not tough(12 feet long jump 3:45 for 800m)Ā  but when one starts preparing for these examā€¦u actually donā€™t indulge in physical sports and thatā€™s where the problem starts ā€¦fortunately made it

Q2. Where was your PET held?


Q3. Please narrate your actual experience PET test with readers.

We were asked to report at 9.when all the aspirants cameā€¦ a bus took us inside to the stadium where a small camp was built up

Initially theĀ  documents were checkedā€¦we were asked forĀ  10 12 and graduation degree .After it was completeā€¦ were allowed to changeĀ  and then measurements were taken chest height weight etc

Finally around 11 the exam startedā€¦1st event was 100 m.Then after a gap of 2 min 800m and then long jump and finally shotput.One word of advice to all aspirantsā€¦always do the 100m and 800m practice without break and if possible try doing them in a sunny and warm atmosphereā€¦as you will be made to run only after sun is up thereā€¦we were made to sit half an hour (10:30 -11) just because it was not hot enough there

The officials were very helpful and encouragingā€¦but they were not so at other camps as reported by others

Interview by UPSC Panel

Q1. How did you prepare for the interview? Particularly college graduation subjects related questions?

I prepared a lot from my DAF ā€¦my job profile and my home state.Since my home state(harayana) ,DAF and job profile provided enough fodderā€¦I was not asked about my graduation

Q2. Where did you stay for the interview? (Hotel / friendā€™s home ā€¦) and what books/material did you bring for the ā€˜revision before interviewā€™?

I stayed at my cousins house in gurgaon ā€¦with regard to books/materialĀ  nothing specificā€¦I was focued on my DAF job profile and home stateā€¦but used to read newspaper daily

Q3. Who was the chairman of you interview board?

Razni Razdan

Q4. How long was the interview?

15 -20 min

Q5. Why do you want to become an Assistant commandant? Why donā€™t you continue in your graduation field? [Since I donā€™t know whether they asked you this question or not. But if they had asked- what will be your reply?]

I was not asked this questionā€¦but would have replied that as I come from a police backgroundā€¦ I was always fascinated inspired by the role that police playsā€¦their role in the society ..law enforcementā€¦vip protectionā€¦investigationā€¦etcĀ  challenging jobā€¦job satisfaction ā€¦pride and respect in the eyes of peopleā€¦opportunity to serve nation and peopleā€¦and a decent career option

UPSC Interview Transcript

Q. Please narrate your entire interview- what questions did they ask and what did you reply and other pleasant or uncomfortable experiences during the interview. (Earlier some toppers only tell me their question but not their answer. I would appreciate if you give both Question + your original answers)

C: is this you ā€¦showed me a photo ..asked my roll number

Me: yes mam

C: ok, so what have you been doing since 2011(I left my job in 2011)

Me: preparing for competitive exams ā€¦wrote many exams upsc capf acio ssc etc

C: met with any successā€¦what about uspc

Me : replied honestly that cleard prelimsā€¦couldnā€™t go past mainsā€¦here for capf

M1: ok tell me where you jog..how much time you take ..since when

Me: I told in the stadium, gaveĀ  a vague number say 10-15min since graduation ..blah blah

M1: where do you go for riverraftingā€¦where it is doneā€¦safetyĀ  precautions etc

Me: I go to rishikeshā€¦done in upper portionā€¦safety: life saving jacket helmet etc

M1: ok tell me about the mandate of CAPF forces

Me: gave a copy book definitionā€¦ to assist state forcesā€¦then went on to brief about the mandate of each force in particular

M1: tell me the difference between left wing extremism and terrorism and why left wing extremism still persists

Me:Ā  told the difference ā€¦ideology etc ā€¦ the told him the causes poverty illiteracy unemployment apathy of admin political leadership etc etc

M1: what would be the first thing you would do when u are asked to do a operation in naxal area

Me: I gaveĀ  him a long list: verify the infoā€¦see whether civilians are there or notā€¦.prepare arms and menā€¦plan accordinglyā€¦inform the local admin and my superiorsā€¦long list

M2: why did you leaveĀ  the Indian navy

Me: wanted to go for police forcesā€¦had age on my side ā€¦so took a riskā€¦

M2: ok tell me about superconductor

Me: again a clichƩd definition

M2: started asking about my job profileā€¦wht kind of job it was ..how you helped people ā€¦its use etc

Me: replied to all of them ā€¦

M3: ok relate our relations with SAARC countries and their effect on CAPF

Me: told them about pak bsf ,china itbp, Bangladesh bsf , Nepal ssb ā€¦gave a positive answer that saarc forms our immediate neighborhood.. so peace and security essentialā€¦capf guards border with these nationsā€¦ so related all the stuff

M3: women empowerment why we should empower them

Me: told them about universal declaration of human rights gender equality inclusive sustainable growth

Women their role in society and their imp

It continued for 15 minutesā€¦and then I was told to leaveā€¦Board was kind of cordialā€¦all the questions were on expected lines except a fewā€¦ so was kind of comfortable ā€¦

After the interview

Q1. Was your interview on the expected lines of what you had prepared or did they ask you totally unexpected questions?Ā  Was it a stress interview, did they ask any uncomfortable questions? If yes, how did you handle it?

It was completely on the expected linesā€¦it was in afternoon..so I guess the board members were also tired ā€¦no uncomfortable questionsā€¦

Q2. Any side details about technicalities like ā€œmake sure you bring xyz document or do xyz thing, or youā€™ll face problemā€?

Pls bring your original 10 12 graduation degree and 2 -3 set of photocopy

CAPF Marksheet

Mail me your prelim, essay and interview marks, when UPSC uploads.

For sure would mail you when it arrives

Service preference

Q1. What is your service preference order BSF,CRPF, CISF, ITBP?


Q2. How/Why did you pickup that order?

  1. CISF: because life is easy
  2. ITBP: because no naxals plus the Himalayas
  3. BSF: because better infra
  4. CRPF: because left with no other option

UPSC CSE-2013 experience

If you had appeared in UPSC civil service exam 2013, please reply following

Q.Your marksheet for prelims and mains

  • 100 mark in paper 1
  • 170 in csat
  • Total :270
  • Mains:400

Q.Your overall experience and words of wisdom about CSAT, GS, Aptitude, optional and essay

Iā€™m Not the right guyā€¦.not at all

Career Backup

Q1. If you were not selected, what was your career backup plan?

Continue with Civil services while writing other exams too

Q2. When were you going to execute that backup plan (e.g. after third attempt, after dad retires, after girlfriend dumps me etc.)

  • CAPF was a backup plan onlyā€¦.would continue with my preparation for UPSC.
  • Before the joining takes place I would give my 2nd attemptā€¦till 3rd attempt couldnā€™t take a risk
  • Girlfriend dumped way backā€¦and dad has many years of service so no issues with that

Q3. If you were to re-appear in CAPF-2014 then what modifications would you make in your studies?

Prepare a lot of current affairs for 2014ā€¦


Q1. Through this journey and success, what wisdom did you gain about life and competitive exams?Ā  What is your message to new aspirants?

Keep going..it would take a lot of timeā€¦but the wait is worth itā€¦u wud have mood swingsā€¦desperationā€¦doubtsā€¦ in between ā€¦but at the end of day we all are humansā€¦so fight them offā€¦be happy make lot of friendsā€¦. Goof up a littleā€¦but at the end of the day work hard ā€¦nurture your dreams and belive in yourself

Q2. UPSC had cleared nearly 2500 candidates from CAPF-prelims. Youā€™re selected but many others did not. Theyā€™re feeling dejected with this whole competitive exam business. What is your message to them?

Life is toughā€¦there s no doubt about itā€¦you will have more failures than you ever succeed ..you will be pushed down..stepped uponā€¦but every time that happens you get back upā€¦success is defined and continues to be defined as getting back one more time than you go downā€¦work hardā€¦everything happens for a reasonā€¦may be destiny has greater plans for you

Credit: Friends/family

Q. Behind every topper are many people who stood by him/her during those uncertain times when he/she was merely an ā€˜aspirantā€™. Would you like to tell the world, who were those people in your case? Any specific incidence that you would like to share with the readers?

  • I have a truckload of peopleĀ  working behind my success:
  • first of all my parents and my auntĀ  who supported me throughout this process thick and thin
  • Then my elder cousin brother who motivated me and inspired me to start this preparation
  • Then my younger brothers : Ravi n Pradeep who made this journey easy by accompanying me along

Bogus Marketing Propaganda

Q. You are well aware for the sacred rule. The last question in topper interview, Ā must be about self-marketing. So, Did you use Mrunal.org for your preparation and if yes, how did it help you?Ā  And you can even reply ā€œNoā€. Iā€™ll publish your answer without tempering.

I have used only 3 sites PIB Mrunal and GKtoday during my preparation. And of the given 3 I Spent a huge chunk of my time on Mrunal for theĀ  right reasons. I think Mrunal rocksā€¦his articles are fabulous..whether it is environment polity economy ā€¦.u name it and he has written awesome articles from the point of preparation. I owe my success to this site without an iota of doubt.Thanx a lot

Not muchā€¦ you have been doing a fabulous workā€¦And Please ignore the spelling mistakes if any(actually there will be many).