INTERVIEW: UP Judiciary Exam Topper Kisa Zaheer [Rank 74 in 2016] Tells Us About Her Journey

A. Congrats on your success! Please introduce yourself to our readers. 

Hi. I am Kisa Zaheer and I secured 74th rank in the UP judiciary exam 2016.

B. What made you choose judiciary as a career option?

My inclination towards law and jurisprudence.

C. What’s the pattern of the UPJS exam?

It takes place in three stages. Prelims, mains and then interview. The preliminary examination comprises two papers. One based on law and the other on G.S . It’s a multiple choice objective oriented stage.

Mains examination tests your legal concepts. It comprises 5 papers namely G.S, Language, Substantive law, Procedural law, I.P.C +local laws. This stage relates to subjective answer waiting.

The last stage is the interview.

Interview UP Judiciary Topper Kisa Zaheer

1. What was your overall strategy for UPJS prelims?

One must know the Bare Acts really well. And factual plus conceptual knowledge is tested at this stage.

For G.S I read Rahul’s IAS magazine for I had joined this institute.

I read the newspaper as well and Ghatna Chakra to brush up my G.S and Hindi both.

2. What was your overall strategy for UPJS mains?

For mains, one must know the basic ingredients of every important topic.

And one comes to know important topics by analysing past years’ papers. This is really crucial and indispensable.

One must understand the concepts and plus practice answer writing. One must be quick in framing answers.

There is a great probability of not being able to complete the paper, so try to get into the practice of thinking fast and reproducing it in a properly framed answers.

3. How did you prepare for the interview?

I didn’t prepare much for the interview. You should be properly dressed and not be under confident. Just brushing up concepts should do.

4. Can you share your book list for all subjects/parts (prelims and mains)?

I did my preparation from Raul’s IAS so I had their notes. But Takwani for C.P.C , Sarthi for Evidence, Cr.P.C – Takwani, J.N Pandey for Constitutional law are really good books at least I swear by them.

4.B. Are there any special elements in UPJS which are not there in other judiciary exams?

Local laws is that special element and I consulted Tauseef Raza (a local laws book) for this subject. Questions jurisprudence and international organisations were also asked in prelims.

I had consulted Rahul Sir’s notes on jurisprudence and I read United Nation Charter thoroughly for International organisation plus a little research from the internet helped.

5. What were your ‘secret sauce’ recipes, if any? 🙂

Consistency and hard work is the sauce.

But I think I read those above-mentioned books really well and I wrote structured answers.

I love reading so maybe that helped me.

6. For how long did you prepare and how many hours did you put in?

I studied for 8 hours on an average besides coaching. I prepared for a year.

7. What were some challenges you faced/mistakes you made, and how did you overcome them?

Getting the Bare Acts on your fingertips for the prelims was the hardest task plus preparing for G.S was also the hard task.

I did fail in completing the substantive law paper which took a toll on my rank. So one must practice answer writing.

8. What were the most important ‘right things/strategies’ you implemented?

For prelims, I prepared really well for the law paper and did average preparation for G.S because it was too difficult to master it.

My performance in law paper compensated for the average performance in G.S.

9. Did you take coaching from anywhere? If yes, how did it help? What are some good coaching institutes which candidates can go for?

I took coaching from Raul’s IAS in Delhi and I found the experience really enriching and helpful. The concepts become crystal clear there( at least for me it did).

They make you aware of how an ideal answer should look like.

And the frequent tests help you be in sync with the pulse of the preparation process.

10. How was your interview and what sort of questions were asked?

My interview was good. The panel was really happy with me, and they asked me around 30 questions. All related to different subjects. It continued for 35 minutes.

They asked me to give a brief introduction without revealing your name.

Do prepare a subject for the interview because they do ask which subject you like the most and then they ask you questions on that, but if you name a subject, be sure to know it pretty well.

11. Anything else you’d like to tell our readers.

Work hard and smartly because you cannot learn or know everything.

Do not underestimate the value of past years’ papers they are a treasure trove of assistance.


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