The UPSC civil services interview is conducted for those candidates who clear the UPSC prelims followed by the mains. Only after clearing the UPSC interview, also known as the personality test, can a candidate enter into the Indian civil services. The personality test is, as you can guess, a test of your personality. You have cleared the UPSC mains and have demonstrated your knowledge and intelligence. Now, the UPSC wants to assess whether you have what it takes to be a civil servant or not. It takes more than knowledge and talent to be a successful IAS/IPS officer. You must have a good presence of mind, common sense, ability to think out of the box, and a calm and composed nature when faced with uncertainty and provocation.
The Kothari Committee in 1976 came out with a list of qualities that a candidate is rated on. They are clarity of expression, grasp of narrative or argument, reasoning ability, appreciation of different viewpoints, awareness and concern for socio-economic problems, range and depth of interests; and a candidate’s ability to interact with people. Also rated are a candidate’s intelligence, presence of mind, honesty, general awareness, and leadership skills.
This article lists a few witty and downright funny questions that UPSC aspirants have had to face at the interview.
(Note: some of them are probably tougher than subject-related questions!)
Q. How can you drop a raw egg onto a concrete floor without cracking it?
A. Concrete floors are very hard to crack! (UPSC Topper)
Q. If you had three apples and four oranges in one hand and four apples and three oranges in the other hand, what would you have?
A. Very large hands. (UPSC Rank 11)
Q. If it took eight men ten hours to build a wall, how long would it take four men to build it?
A. No time at all, it is already built. (UPSC Rank 23)
Q. How can you lift an elephant with one hand?
A. You will never find an elephant with one hand. (UPSC Rank 14)
Q. If you throw a red stone into the blue sea what it will become?
A. It will get wet or sink – as simple as that. (UPSC Rank 2)
Q. How can a man go eight days without sleep?
A. He sleeps at night. (UPSC Rank 98)
Q.What looks like half an apple?
A: The other half. (UPSC Topper)
Q. Bay of Bengal is in which state?
A: Liquid (UPSC Rank 33)
Hope you had fun reading the above question and answers. As you can see, it helps to go into the UPSC interview hall relaxed and calm. Practice thinking unconventionally.
All the best!