Sarthak Agarwal (AIR 17) - IAS Topper 2020

CBSE 2014 class XII topper, Sarthak Agarwal, bagged AIR 17 in the coveted Civil Services Examination 2020. The IAS Topper was working in the World Bank at the time of selection and cracked the exam in his very first attempt with barely 5-6 months of preparation

Discussed below is Sarthak Agarwal’s biography, educational and professional background, and the UPSC preparation strategy followed by him to achieve his goal of entering the Indian Administrative Services. 

Aspirants preparing for the upcoming IAS Exam must also refer to the success stories of other CSE toppers 2020 at the links given below:

UPSC Result 2020 – Sathak Agarwal’s Background

Sarthak was born in Old Delhi and after spending a few years, moved to Gurugram, Haryana. He completed his schooling at Delhi Public School, Vasant Kunj, and had scored 99.6% marks in class XII, and emerged as the CBSE topper for that year. 

Higher Education – 

  • He did BA (Hons) Economics from Sri Ram College of College (SRCC)
  • Sarthak completed his masters and did M Phil in Economics from Oxford University

Work Experience –

  • At the time of his selection for UPSC, he was working at the World Bank as a Researcher in the Poverty and Equity Global Unit. He was originally located at Washinton D.C. but due to the pandemic was working from home, where he decided to start his preparation for the civil services exam
  • He has also written many articles in The Indian Express newspaper
  • Sarthak had pursued research work in London before joining the World Bank

Aspirants can refer to Sarthak’s Mock Interview that he had taken at BYJU’S Interview coaching with our eminent panellists. This shall guide the candidates for their UPSC Interview preparation:

Sarthak Agarwal – UPSC Preparation Strategy

  • Sarthak decided to apply for the civil services exam with the intention of serving the country by applying his researches and studies into the practical world
  • He used this opportunity of work from home to prepare for the exam and got barely 5-6 months of time for preparation. This made his strategy slightly different from the other candidates. 
  • He did not enrol into any coaching classes but referred to the study material that was available online on various reliable portals. 
  • His strategy did not comprise making too many notes as that could have been a time taking procedure for him. He rather relied on reading things again and again to get a better understanding of them. 
  • For prelims, he focussed on reading newspapers more than reading any particular book. As for mains, he worked on his answer writing skills. 
  • Sarthak took many mock interviews to get a better understanding of how to present oneself and answer questions in front of the esteemed panellists. 

His ultimate aim was to join the Administrative Services only and work for the welfare of the people of the country. He believes that the tougher and more important part is yet to come when he would join the services and work on the tasks that he is expected and desires to fulfil. 

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