A. Congrats on your success in the UP Judiciary Exam! Please introduce yourself to our readers.
Thanks a lot for such wonderful wishes. I am Divyakant Singh Rathore from Jhansi (U.P.). I did my high school from Jawahar Navodaya Vidyalaya Tikamgarh (M.P.) and completed my B.A.LL.B. (Hons) from Institute of Law, Nirma University, Ahmedabad in 2015.
I have worked in the Cantonment Board under the Ministry of Defence as a full time Legal administrative assistant for 2 years. I have cleared UP PCS-J 2016 exam with 48th rank.
B. What made you choose judiciary as a career option?
I have chosen law as a scapegoat because I have performed very poor in physics, chemistry, and mathematics in my high school.
Belonging to the rural background, my only explanation for choosing law as a career was to become a judge. It somehow stuck with me in my graduation and become my serious choice.
C. What’s the pattern of the Uttar Pradesh Judicial Services Examination?
The syllabus remains the same as 2016 for both preliminary and main examination but pattern got changed a bit in this year.
Firstly there will be negative marking in preliminary examination where one-third (0.33) of the marks assigned to that question will be deducted as a penalty and secondly, minimum efficiency standard has been set where SC/ST candidates having below 30% and other candidates having below 40% of total assigned marks treated disqualified.
1. What was your overall strategy for UP Judiciary Prelims?
As prelims consist of two papers, I have set different strategy for each paper. I made my strategy by taking into account the marks allotted to each paper i.e. 150 for paper 1 and 300 for paper 2. The first paper is of general knowledge which is having a vast array of topics.
I have chosen select topics like Indian national movement, geography, last 6 months of current affairs, static GK of UP and solved previous year papers of not only PCS-J but also of PCS because the standard of questions is almost same in both exams. Being the student of law, polity covers automatically in Paper 1.
My main focus was on paper 2 as it carries 300 marks and has a limited syllabus that helped me to check my growth.
I have highlighted small and static things in bare acts which supposed to make prima facie prelims questions like days in various sections and written down often occurring doubts like in section 46 of CPC, I have written down that it is for two months and not for 60 days. This habit of mine helped me a lot in not making silly mistakes during prelims.
2. What was your overall strategy for the Uttar Pradesh Judiciary Mains exam?
The mains consist of 5 papers. Like prelims, I have also set different strategy for each paper. Firstly I went through previous year papers to get the idea of questions as every state has its own kind of method.
Paper 1 is of GK which has set method of questions like people who matters, few descriptive questions etc. so I targeted and prepared certain topics.
For paper 2, my habit of reading the newspaper helped me by providing the right context for the writing of the essay.
I did an exhaustive study of laws for paper 3 and paper 4. In UP, most of the questions neither technical nor based on problem-solving. Thus, I have tried to cover all the topics and made pointwise notes along with case laws. It helped me in my revision.
Paper 5 consist of local laws which I read once before prelims and gave the maximum of my time for them during the preparation of mains. I tried to prepare local laws like other general laws as it carried equal marks.
3. How did you prepare for the UP Judicial Services Examination’s Interview?
I prepared for interview mostly from online sources like watching videos for presentation, personality development etc.. I prepared thoroughly on one subject of interest in case the interview panel inquires about it.
I also started reading laws together and picked any topic at any time which made me comfortable in switching from one law to another. And then, I prepared contemporary topics especially related to the field of law.
4. Can you share your book list for all subjects/parts (prelims and mains) for the UP Judicial Exam?
Lucent for selected topics of GK which I mentioned earlier.
Ghatna Chakra (Hindi magazine) for current affairs.
Tata Mcgraw Hill for selected topics of GK.
Avtar Singh for Contract and specific relief act.
RK Bangia for Law of torts.
RK Sinha for Transfer of property act.
Aquil Ahmad for Mohammadan Law.
Paras Diwan for Hindu Law.
JN Pandey for Constitutional law.
CK Takwani for CPC.
KD Gaur for IPC.
Batuk Lal for Evidence act.
RV Kelkar for CrPC.
Bare acts of local laws
5. For how long did you prepare and how many hours did you put in?
I have started preparing during last year of my graduation. After graduation I got a job in defence ministry where I continued my preparation and set targets for which I try to give 6 to 7 hours on weekdays and 10-12 hours in weekend and holidays.
6. Did you take coaching from anywhere for your UP Judiciary Exam preparation?
I haven’t joined any coaching, but it was because I like self-study. Like everything else, it has its own pros and cons.
It takes a little bit of extra time to identify the important things for the exam but self-study made my concepts very clear.
7. How was your UP Judiciary interview and what sort of questions were asked?
My interview went on for around 40 minutes. Apart from personal questions, the Panel asked about drafting of writ petitions, condonation of delay for suits, application u/s 156(3) of CrPC and options available for magistrate like convert it into a complaint case u/s 200 of CrPC, legal viewpoint on contemporary issues like the Doklam standoff between India and China etc.
There were questions to get my perspective like how I am going to deal with the pendency of cases and use technology as a Judge.
8. Anything else you’d like to tell our readers who are preparing for the Uttar Pradesh Judicial Services Examination.
Whatever I discussed earlier is purely based on my experience which may differ person to person.
I have not joined coaching, prepared while in service or choose certain topics of GK for prelims and mains are choices made by me because I was quite comfortable with them.
The aim should be to clear the exam and make your strategy according to your comfort and suitability and not by just blindly follow any trend or advice.