The Upsc roller coaster – A glimpse into my journey by Aranyak Saikia

The Upsc roller coaster : Hello everyone! For those of you who don’t know me, I am Aranyak Saikia and I secured All India Rank 59 in UPSC Civil Services Examination 2019. Prior to this, I had secured AIR 148 and 287 respectively in CSE 2017 and 2018. By virtue of my rank in CSE 2017, I was allocated the Indian Police Service (IPS). I am currently serving as an IPS Probationer in the rank of ASP (under training) in Karnataka cadre.

Introduction :

I am originally from Guwahati, Assam, where I did my schooling till Class 12. I graduated in Economics (Honours) from St. Stephen’s College, Delhi in 2015. I completed my Masters and MPhil respectively in 2017 and 2019 from Delhi School of Economics. This is essentially my brief introduction.

Having secured a rank in the CSE exams, there have been a few learning points and experiences that I have acquired over the years. As with all aspirants, when I first jumped into the CSE bandwagon back in 2016, I was at a loss as to what to do. There was just too much to study! At the same time, there was too much information on how to go about it. This information overload only added to the confusion, as it was humanely not possible to cover everything in such short span of time. It was then when I began to read the blogs and preparation strategies of a few successful candidates that I finally got an idea as to how to go about the exam prep. It was a long process but I think by being able to filter out the unnecessary things from the prep, I was able to focus on the limited sources with more clarity and depth, which helped me to secure a relatively good rank in CSE 2019.

As suggested and requested by many of you, in this post, I am sharing my experiences related to my CSE preparation strategy. Although this will appear more of a strategy advice to future aspirants, I have tried my best to make it clear that this is just my experience. Your strategy can be completely different from mine. I would be happy if you read my preparation style and decided to chart out your own route for the same.


Prelims, I feel, is the most risky component of the exam. For any question, you either know the answer or you don’t. There is no middle ground. I have seen many brilliant candidates getting thrown out at this stage of the exam itself. Then all the preparation for mains and interview go for a toss. So, focussing on the prelims is key to getting a good chance to secure a rank in the exam.


The Civil Services (Main) Examination consists of two parts- Written and Interview (also called the Personality Test). For the complete Mains preparation guide Read this article ” “


Please do not be bogged down by the fact that you were not able to prepare in Delhi. It is true that Delhi provides an environment for CSE prep, especially in its centres like Old Rajinder Nagar, Mukherjee Nagar and Munirka. However, with the advent of the internet and social media, a large number of the coaching centres, study materials and discussion groups are available online.

A large number of websites are now providing very good quality content on a daily basis and that too for free. Some of them offer video tutorials at a nominal cost. Others provide discussion forums for the aspirants to discuss and jot down the answers. The previous year answer scripts of the successful candidates who appeared in the test series of the centres are also available online. I shall discuss these websites and portals as I go along in the subsequent posts.

I am mentioning a few here:

Test seriesinsight on india test series | Vision ias test series
Previous year answer scriptsLink1 | Link2
Toppers’ Strategy blogsInsight on india blogs |
Video TutorialsLink1 | Link2
Initiative by previous |

Finally, there are shops in ORN and Mukherjee Nagar that can courier the study material to your doorstep after you pay the required amount through any online payment gateway.

As and when the results have been declared in the last three years, I have had the opportunity to give some interviews about my preparation strategy and other related areas. I am mentioning them below in the hope that it helps some of you in getting a clearer picture about my preparation style. Again I reiterate- this is just one style of preparation. It need not be the best for you. I am sure this will help you in charting out your own strategy.


Aranyak Saikia, UPSC toper interview video preview

Desclaimer : This article is originally written by Mr Aranyak saikia himself on his blog. We are not the actual owner of this content. This article is written for educational purposes only links and websites mentioned here are not endorsed by us.

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