As I have pointed out, there is no one strategy to score but many. You have to just chalk out yours and try your best to implement it. Keeping in mind this maxim and the fact that there are many optionals, I am putting up a list of some of the successful candidates and info about them which might be of use to you.

Name Rank Optionals Blog fb/orkut
Prakash Rajpurohit 2 Maths and Electrical Engg fb+o
Tanvi Sundriyal 6 Sociology and Public Admin fb
Garima Mittal 8 Sociology and Psychology

Rashmita Panda 13 History and Public Admin fb+o
Tarun Rathi 19 Geography and Hindi (a community on orkut for Civil Services aspirants) fb+o
Abhijeet Agrawal 24 Physics and Chemistry fb+o
Ghanshyam Thori 25 Geography and Psychology fb+o
Rahul Dwivedi 40 Maths and Pali fb+o
Ashutosh Salil 54 Law and Public Admin
Maitrey Kulkarni 103 Mechanical Engg and Pol Sc fb+o
Rajiv Ranjan Singh 191 Sociology and Public Admin
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37 Responses to References

  1. Rohit says:

    Thanks Anay for the valuable references.

    I have cleared the prelims and have some queries regarding the mains form :

    1) photograph : Is it has to be exactly the same copy as pasted on the prelims form or a recent one would do since I dont have a copy of the same photo I pasted on the prelims form ? Though that too was recent and now I can get a new one well matched with that one..Please help on this …Upsc no one is picking the phone

    2) In the service preferences it is mentioned that for IAS/IPS mention the state cadre I am not eligible for IPS should I write NA in every column against every state for IPS ?
    Similarly, in service preferences if there are any special requirements of a service if I by mistake mark a prefernce for it then what happens? I have a preference for the IIS say for example and I heard it requires some previous experience in the I am confused…
    Also , if no preference is there we have to mark NIL since NA doesnt seem logical but the space provided has only two columns ..please help…

    3) The pass certificate of intermediate-ICSE board( HSC certificate) has the date of birth is it accepted by the UPSC as the standard proof?

    I have asked very basic things but they are a bit ambiguously explained in the mains form thats why I am confused…waiting for your reply


    • anaydwivedi says:

      hi rohit
      congrats for clearing the prelims…now focus on the mains as it holds the key to success…all the best
      1. i dont think it is tht big an issue…and since the new one can b well matched, it isn’t a problem…
      2. the form is not read on the computer…so i guess u can write NIL without worrying if u r cutting across the line…but as to the other part…m really sorry, i dont have much idea…and it is a very imp form as ur interview is gng to be based on it…moreover, after selection…everything depends on ur choices and wht u filled in the i suggest u ask some1 who has really good idea abt this…i dnt think upsc people r gng to guide u tht well on the phone…it wud b better if u can get in touch with some experienced and reliable teacher or civil servant…but i can answer a part of the Q…if u have filled for a service…say IRTS and u knw u r colour blind and hence ineligible…even if u fill it as a choice…u will fail the medical and hence not considered for tht service…the med exam happens well before service alloc is done by dopt…so if it was ur 6th choice and u cudnt get first 5…they will not allocate irts to u and move on to ur 7th choice…
      now coming to the other parts…i am just guessing…based on wht i knw…it might b of some help…but get everything confirmed…
      if u r not filling up IPS as a choice in the form…then when it comes to cadres…u can leave it blank…leaving blank signifies u dnt prefer one cadre over the other…so EVEN if some1 fills ips as 1st choice but doesnt number the cadres…he is still allocated ips…and cadre will b alloc once all other candidates have been allocated ips cadres and this person will b considered in the end and allocated wht is left…so in ur case, since ips is not a choice…there is no point in numbering them and no need to write NA for each…but it is only a GUESS…get it confirmed frm some1 as i said…
      3. yup…it has to have ur date of birth…for me, since i was frm cbse…it was 10th std certi…but to the best of my knowledge, somewhere in the form they have mentioned tht if the board doesnt provide dob on the certi..then some other pass certificate or sth like tht…kindly get this confirmed as well…this the upsc guy on the phone will b able to tell u easily…
      i hope it helps…but to b very honest…i was really bad at filling up forms, etc and always left it to my dad… so even though i have tried my best to answer ur Qs…i repeat once again..kindly get it CONFIRMED…
      all the best!!!

      • Rohit says:

        Thanks a lot Anay for your wishes and patiently answering my queries…
        One more thing..if I make IFS as choice 1 and IAS as 2 then would the orientation of questions in the interview be foreign policy based primarily?
        Once again thanks for so much patience to answer my queries..

      • anaydwivedi says:

        hi rohit…
        yes, very likely tht wud b the case…coz if u have filled ifs as 1st choice, naturally ur interest lies there..and hence ur knowledge wud b tested…

  2. rohit dawar says:

    congratulations brother for achieving your 1st goal of life. please tell me how did you prepare your public administration, which books did u study, from where did you get coaching and is coaching really benefical????? plz reply i am waiting for it.

    • anaydwivedi says:

      hi rohit…thanks
      kindly go thru the pub ad posts on my blog…i have answered all ur questions there…

      • rohit dawar says:

        thanx brother for ur reply, brother i have my background in history and public administration and i have found psychology much more interesting than history, should i go for psychology as my 2nd optional, would it be beneficial for me?????????

      • anaydwivedi says:

        hi rohit…
        it entirely depends on ur interest and aptitude…kindly go thru my post on choosing the optional…

  3. ankur dwivedi says:

    hello sir,
    in the interview, let it proceeds too much disappointing,so is there any such provision of awarding certain minimum marks necessarilly(like 50% to each and every one) ,or minimum how much marks are given in interview?

  4. Rohit Garg says:

    Hi Anay

    Can you please connect me, or tell me, if someone you know, who took “Management” as an optional subject. I plan to take that as my optional.


    • anaydwivedi says:

      hi rohit…
      i knw mohd safiaulla (rank 55) and eldos mathew punnoose (rank 96) who took mgmt…but i dnt knw them tht well personally…
      kindly try to connect with them on orkut or fb if they r there…

  5. Anuj Nigam says:

    Hi Bhaiya
    i am a yr student nd wants to prepare for civil serv. i just want to ask you that how should i start preparing for this exam nd what are the basic books for GS nd Pub. Admin.
    Since i live in Lucknow(U.P) there is no one to guide us so please help me out nd also the strategy of preparing it.


    • anaydwivedi says:

      hi anuj
      kindly go thru my posts on gs prelims and pub ad mains…get the books i have suggested and u can start by gng thru the books as i have mentioned on the blog…
      all the best

  6. Ankit Sir says:

    Hello sir,
    congrats……..sir i am currently working in a mnc in mumbai and new to yhis city,can u please tell me about any good coaching here where i can join test series (weekend) and shop where i can get study material and books , i will give my first attempt next year.

    • anaydwivedi says:

      hi ankit…thanks
      as far as i knw..there arent any good coaching institutes in mumbai tht i can recommend… there r few instt tht i came to knw frm some friends…but the feedback wasnt tht good…
      neways, i feel for prelims coaching isnt required…u need to go thru previous yrs’ papers to get an idea abt wht is asked in the exam…get the books i have mentioned…and start reading them…they will b available in big book stores such as sterling (fort), madhu (matunga), etc…call up 28888888 and get the phone numbers and list of other book stores…

  7. amitava mazumder says:

    will you please give me the email id of Prakash Rajpurohit as In took his chemistry classes in FIIT JEE chemistry

  8. dr arul says:

    hi anay ji,
    let me congratulate u for ur great success in CSM,2009. and also for this wonderful options for main r med science n anthropology.Could u pls help me regarding prep for anthropology ….? thanx n advanz

  9. Simran says:

    hey anay, please reply to my question in your how to chose optionals….

  10. Ankur Yadav says:

    Hello anay sir congrats on ur success and wish all d best for ur bright future . I am ankur and i will be giving exam nxt yr i have started reading gs and done wd history part. My question is that i will be doing gs coaching in oct and plan to do geog along side it in coaching . I want to knnw if public admin can be done after prelims and suggest coaching also

    • anaydwivedi says:

      hi ankur…thanks
      yup, the plan seems to b good…
      pub ad can b prepared after mains…provided u cover indian polity well before the prelims…for pub ad coaching…pavan kumar sir is the best..kindly refer my pub ad posts for more…

  11. varun says:

    hey, just saw ur video on sriram’s ias site…i’m confused regarding where to do my gs and pub ad from…vajiram’s was my initial choice but there the batches are huge and there’s no individual attention…and i heard that sriram’s is a good place…kindly guide me..i have done my first subject history from rau’s and plan on starting with gs and pub ad in oct..i have a doubt though…treavelling and goin to classes takes up a lot of time and so i was considering the option of doing only gs in oct till the prelims and then go for pub ad…what is ur opinion?..should i finish pub ad also alongwith gs or wait till prelims are over?


    hello sir,
    i want to know abt the difference between policy and act?
    is it imp to write case study in answers?
    how can we write and include the current issues in paper1 as it is more theoretical?

    • anaydwivedi says:

      hi there…
      policy is any govt scheme or plan to achieve a certain goal…it can b thru an executive decision as well…an act is always legislative in nature…tht is passed by the parliament… and an act is passed to enable the govt to implement a given policy…
      nope, it’s not imp to write case studies…it’s always better to use as many examples as u can…and case studies if written in an answer consume too much time and words…
      relate the topics and try to b practical in ur approach…so even if SHG is asked, use current figures, performance, etc which u read in the newspapers in ur answers…

  13. anaydwivedi says:

    hi there…thanks
    for psych…try to enrol for mukul pathak sir’s classes at vajiram…he’s the best for psycho…but yes, u do need to work hard as far as psycho is concerned as it requires lot of prep…

  14. manisha pandit says:

    sir, my 2nd optional is pol sc , and as i dont have any guidance… regarding what strategy to follow for pol sc. u have mentioned that maitrey sir had pol sc. i asked maitrey sir about strategy on his fb account but i have not received any response…can u suggest some other source..or u can just ask him to reply to my query ?????

    • anaydwivedi says:

      hi manisha…
      m sorry, i dont knw neone personally with pol science except maitrey…
      he is unable to reply as the schedule here at lbsnaa is very hectic…i suggest u find a good coaching instt or ask others who r preparing for the exam…

  15. pritesh dwivedi says:

    sir, very congrats to your journey, sir i have done btech in textile eng. and working in mnc but now i leave the job finaly decided to go with the subject of geography. wahat is my first step to cover up current affair topics

  16. Hello Sir,
    First of all congratulations…

    I wanted to get in touch with someone who has cleared with Economics an optional paper.I haven’t been able to find some who could guide me regarding the subject and its feasibility as an optional to be considered for the exam.

    I m a graduate in economics, post which I did my MBA from KJ Somaiya, Mumbai.

    • anaydwivedi says:

      hi sriram…thanks
      sakshi mittal (air 50) and bhawani singh (air 57) had economics as their optionals…
      u can get in touch with sakshi on fb and orkut and with bhawani on orkut…
      but they might not b able to reply soon enough as the schedule here at lbsnaa is very hectic…so some patience and perseverance on ur part wud b required…
      all the best…

  17. deepak mahlawat says:

    hello Anay sir,
    Actually I want to know….r u know any candidate who
    qualify civil services with sanskrit literature as a optional,
    actually i want to prepare with sanskrit. if u know,plz provide
    details to me.and also want to know about any coaching institute for
    sanskrit in delhi.
    Deepak Mahlawat

    • anaydwivedi says:

      hi deepak…
      rajiv raushan (air 23) and sanjay kumar khatri (air 67) had sanskrit as an optional…but i m sorry, i dnt knw them personally…
      as for coaching instt…again, i m sorry i dont have much idea…

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