UPSC Interview By Transcript Rajesh Kankipati Board Purushotam Aggarwal

Interview Board: Purushottam Aggarwal
Name: Rajesh Kankipati
Interview Date/Year: 18.04.2011


Me: Rajesh Kankipati

I was the last candidate for the day Bell ring and attendant opened the door Me: May I come in sir?


CM: Yes Rajesh come in Went near the table and said “namaste Sir” (Confusion whether to say Good Afternoon or Good evening)


CM: Rajesh Take your seat Me: Thank You sir


CM: Your hobbies is story telling (in an angry tone with large voice) Me: Yes sir


CM: Do you write or imagine stories?

Me: I don’t write or imagine stories. I have a hobbies of reading books. So, whenever I read something that is worth sharing, I narrate it.


CM: Why do you do it?

Me: It would help in inculcating and imbibing good values


CM: Whom do you narrate to?

Me: No reservation against any age group. School going children, room mates, parents, professors, rickshaw puller, any one sir for that matter


CM: Can you say a story?

Me: A man came from America to deliver a lecture at Hyderabad. After the lecture was over he went to a nearby lake to enjoy the scenic beauty. On the other bank of the lake he saw a woman washing clothes. While she was washing, some of her body parts were exposed. Seeing this, he was tempted towards her. But being ethical and honest he tried to control his temptation. After washing clothes the woman went into the lake to have bath.


When she removed her clothes he was not able to control his temptations. So he jumped into the lake. Went near her, hugged and embraced her. Started mindlessly kissing her. She began to shout for help but no one came to her rescue. This man still goes on kissing her mindlessly. After some time of 2 min, he begins to feel some roughness over the surface of her body. To see what this roughness is he opens his eyes. He saw to his amazement that this lady was a blind and leper. And sir at that moment he said a word that really touched my heart, and he said “I never knew how leper my heart was till I touched this leper”. Sir the moral of the story is that everybody in life suffers from a leprosy of heart, if addressed I believe, the world would be a better place to live


CM: (with a very satisfied look asked me) whose story is this? Me: Malcomm Mug ridge


CM: Who is he?

Me: I don’t know about him sir. I read about him in a book’ Chairman passes it to the first member


M1: Rajesh do you know what is a apocryphal story? Me: Sir, I never heard about this term.


CM: What story you said now is a apocryphal story. Then all the panel members laughed loud. I just gave a smile

M1: Rajesh when a story is of a doubtful authenticity but also carrying a prophetic message that is narrated with good dramatics is a apocryphal story.

Me: Thank you sir.


M1: Do you know India has a rich repository of ancient traditions of story telling. Can you name some of them?

Me: Sir Amarchitrakatha


CM: Don’t talk about all this. What you are saying is a recent phenomenon. We are asking you about ancient traditions (in a very angry tone).

Me: Sir, I am extremely sorry. I am not aware about the literary aspects of story telling. But I know that in Andhra we have a tradition of “Harikatha, Burrakatha and Tholubomma” and in north we have stories of Panchatantra.(CM was looking for the same answer.He concurred with me when I said this and to my amazement he knew abot Andhra stories.So I gave command to my brain that I should not bluff to him.come what ever may).


M1: Ok, You are from Rajahmundry, why did you go to Pond cherry to study?

Me:Sir I appeared for the AIEEE and I got seat at Pondicherry engineering college. And it is a central university. So I believed that my career prospects would be brighter.So I was attarcted.


M1: What is your opinion about grading system in schools?

Me: Sir It is a good move. That would help in de-stressing of the student because we see many child suicides for marks in schools.


M1: I don’t think it would make any difference. I was about to defend but he didnt allow me to reply.He wanted to de-motivate me.

M1: So you are an engineer, why I A S?

Me: Sir, I was inspired by many surrendered naxalaites to become an Indian Administrative Service officer. At a very early age of 12-3 years I came to know what an Indian Administrative Service officer can do. And sir apart from that I also understand that the career progression, prestige and esteem offered by these services are unparalleled.


CM: Rajesh What is this naxalism?

Me: Sir, naxalism is an extremist thought who believe in the doctrine of maoism


CM: what is this Maoism?

Me: Sir, they want to overpower and overthrow the state through an armed rebellion to establish a socialist state. They believe that power flows from the barrel of a gun and not the ballot


CM: So, do you think what they are doing is right?

Me: Sir, I have gone through the Planning commission document on Development challenges in extremist affected areas. And the report rightly acknowledges the good work done by the maosits.


CM: Do you feel they are also perpetuating injustice??

Me: Sir when their core interests get affected, they also join the corrupt political-bureaucratic- contractor nexus.


CM: You know one collector was abducted? Me: Yes sir, Mr. Vineel Krishna


CM: Do you think the government was right in releasing the Naxalites for the release of collector Me: Sir, Definitely the government was right. If he was not released it would be de-motivating for honest and sincere officers that government would not come to my rescue when I am in need


CM: But Rajesh, dreaded criminals were released

Me: Sir we need to have a anti-hostage policy and train the national disaster response force to deal with these issues


CM: Do you know we have a anti-hijacking policy that says no negotiations. Do you support?

Me: Sir Policies serve as a deterrent. But any decision should be taken based on the gravity of the situation.


M2: So, You are from Rajahmundry?

Me: Sir, I was born at Rajahmundry, but I am from Ramagundam.


M2: So what is this Telangana movement?

Me: Sir it is a sub-regional movement that should be seen in the context of demand for equity, development, empowerment and representation?


M2: Do you think Telangana is needed?

Me: Sir I strongly and sincerely feel that Telangana state is needed?


M2: Why?

Me: Sir right from 1956 every provision and guarantee was violated.4 cr people of Telangana want it. And more importantly there is lack of representation of Telangana leaders.


M2: Do you know 117 legislators go to state assembly from telangana? Me: But thier representation in cabinet is very less.


M2: why?

Me: Sir while legislators are elected by people, cabinet is the prerogative of the CM. And, CM is never from Telangana Region. Coastal Andhra and Rayalseema MLAs combined will have more number than Telangana. So representation is limited.


M2: Why no CM from Telangana?

Me: Sir a CM has to command the respect of the majority of people in the state and the support of the legislators, which a Telangana leader may fail to get because of his regional aspiration. And as Weber says there is a need of charismatic authority which a Telangana leader might fail to get because of the regional aspirations


M2: wanted to ask further, But CM intervened and stopped him and passed it on to the third member who was a lady. I felt M2 was from coastal Andhra region. He was not agreeing with me. But it is the opinion and demeanor when we say our opinion matters more than our answer.


M3: Rajesh we had the fortune of listening a story from you. Now i will say a story and you should say the moral of the story. A young blind boy is begging on the road with a slate in his neck. The slate reads. “I am Blind, Please help me”. A man passes by the lane every day and finds that no one drops any money in his plate ever. SO he rubs the text on the slate and writes, “The day is beautiful, But Sorry, I am not able to see. Please help me”. Then everyone starts to give him money. What is the moral of the story?

Me: Madam may i use an analogy to explain the moral of the story?


M3: Oh Yes!

Me: Looked at CM and said, sir may i be allowed to use the pencil and paper.


CM: Go Ahead

Me: I wrote on the paper “GOD IS NO WHERE”, and i said sir any number of times we see, we read it GOD IS NO WHERE. But the same sentence can also be read as “GOD IS NOW HERE” if we attach the “W” in Where beside the word “NO” and it becomes “NOW”. So in life we need to acknowledge postiveness to grow high .So, the moral of the story is there is a power of positiveness if harnassed man can be successful like the blind boy.


CM: I am not convinced with you.It is the power of expression that said “The day is beautiful ” but not the power of positiveness.

Me: Sir I agree with you. But i feel it is the power of the positiveness of the expression.Expressions are there everywhere. But when positive energy gets augmented, the face of the expression changes.


M3: What is social marketing?

Me: Sorry madam, i never heard about this.


M3: Do you know Amitabh bachchan comes on the TV to advertise for polio. Me: Madam, No TV, Old Rajindernagar is very costly.


CM: No Rajesh, even in print media we see Sehwag and Bollywood stars promoting social causes?

Me: Sir i understand it is corporate social responsibility. But i am not aware if CSR and social marketing are similar in concept.


M4: Rajesh you are from Rajahmundry?

Me: Sir I was born there, but i am from Ramagundam.


M4: Do you know in Rajahmundry tobacco grows? Me: Yes sir.


M4: What is the kind of tobacco grown? Me: Sir it is called Virginia tobacco.


M4: So in India the area under tobacco is decreasing. What is the reason?

Me: Sir in 2008 India signed the Convention on banning of tobacco substances. There is a mandate under the convention to decrease area cultivated under tobacco.


M4: Do you think it is justified?

Me: Sir while tobacco is causing many health hazards, it is also supporting livelihoods. So government has to provide alternative skills for livelihood. And the area should be decreased in a phased manner.


M4: ooh you know what ITC is doing? Me: I don’t know sir


M4: It is doing what you have just said. Me: Thank you sir. I am humbled.


M4: Ramagundam has a power plant; do you think thermal energy should be encouraged?

Me: Sir thermal energy should be encouraged keeping in view our growth rates, infrastructure needs and keeping in mind the technology and efficiency aspects.


M4: Do you know the unit cost of a thermal and hydro power plant? Me: Sir thermal is Rs2-Rs3/KWHr while hydro energy is Rs 1/KWHr


M4: So why can’t we encourage hydropower?

Me: Sir, while there is every need to diversify our energy basket, thermal energy is an imperative to us keeping in view the needs. Apart from that hydropower plants involve lot of tribal displacement, submergence and huge gestation period.


CM: Ok, Rajesh, Your interview is over.

Me: Sir Can I remove the paper i used and throw in the dustbin


CM: NO. NO. It is not your job.

Me: Thank you sir I walked without showing my back till the door. I bowed again in humility to the board at the door and came out. The lady member smiled. And I came out.


My Observations: Interview is not a question and answer session. It is about discussion. Always the question is from biodata and newspapers. Interview is not about what you say but about how you say. It is about demeanor. Mark is not for knowledge. Mark is for confidence, honesty, intellectual integrity, knowing ground realities and variety and depth of your understanding.


Trust the board.

Don’t have prejudices.


Finally assessment is from what you have answered not from the question that you have not answered. Board can’t test your personality from a question you have not answered. So forget the question that you have not answered and answer the question to the best of your ability in a question you know.


The easiest question in an interview is the question that you don’t know. So feel happy about it. Finally it’s all about the attitude one displays that pulls or pushes you on the ladder of marks.

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