Interview Experience: Ajay Katesaria (AIR 28, CSE 2011)

For many candidates, Interview is something which keeps them anxious. Candidates are surrounded by many questions and look for advice from seniors, successful candidates. The following interview experience of Ajay Katesaria will help many such candidates and would act as a source of inspiration.

Chairman Dr. K.K. Paul, 2 Male and 2 Female members.

Optional Subjects: LAW and Political Science & International Relations.

Hobbies: Calendar reform, Dispute Resolution and Street Food

Extracurricular Activities: Organizing Artificial Limbs camps, Blood Donation camps, Cultural Programs. Member- School Cricket Team.

Home State: Jharkhand

Interview dress: Charcoal Black Formal Lounge Suit, Pinkish White Shirt and Violet Tie. Usual other things like shoes, belt, socks etc.

(Afternoon Session, 3rd to be called in)

Buzzer; the Orderly opens the door for me. I asked “May I come in Sir”.

Somebody said “come in”. I enter; went near my chair and wished the board; the members were not interested in wishes. I was asked to sit down by Chairman.

Chairman: Dr. K.K. Paul. A very smart and good-looking gentleman.

CM: What is your Name?
Me: Sir…..Name

CM: And Date of Birth
Me: Sir…..DOB

CM: And Roll number
Me: Sir…..Roll no.

CM: So you are from Law; tell me the difference between Due Process of Law and Procedure established by Law?
Me: Sir, Procedure Established by Law is any procedure which may be established by a duly enacted legislation or made by the administration while Due process of Law involves the principles of natural justice. Here the Law itself has to be just and can be questioned in the Courts.

CM: When this Due Process did enter our constitution?
Me: Sir, In Menaka Gandhi’s case in 1978.

CM: Tell me what happened in the Menaka Gandhi case?
Me: Sir, the passport of Menaka Gandhi was impounded by the airport authorities and proper hearing was not given to her. The Supreme Court held that the principles of natural justice have not been followed and struck down the decision of the authorities.

CM: In How many ways the constitution of India can be amended?
Me: In 3 ways sir; First is by simple majority in the Parliament whereby boundaries of States can be changed under Article 3,4 and few other provisions too; the second is by a special majority of two third of members voting along with an absolute majority of the total number of members and third is by special majority plus absolute majority plus ratification by half of the States.

CM: What was held in Golaknath case?
Me: It was held that Fundamental Rights comprising Chapter-3 of the Constitution are transcendental and cannot be amended further a new doctrine of prospective overruling was laid down.

CM: That is fine but something more was there?
Me: Sir, it was held that Article 368 only prescribes the Procedure to amend the Constitution and not the powers.

CM: Yes this was the most important thing. Ok, what was the ratio of Judges of Golaknath case?
Me: Sir, 6:5 judges. (Chairman tried to recall)

CM: What happened after Golaknath?
Me: Sir, the Parliament brought the 24th and 25th amendment. The 24th amendment inserted that Art. 368 include the power to amend the constitution and a clause was also added which I do not exactly remember.

CM: Then what happened?
Me: These amendments were challenged in the Keshwanand Bharti case where it was held that the Parliament can amend the constitution but it cannot alter the basic structure of the constitution.

CM: And Minerva Mills case?
Me: In this case the basic structure doctrine was confirmed sir.

CM: Tell me what was the matter?
Me: Sir, the 42nd amendment gave primacy to all Directive principles that is Chapter-4 over Chapter-3 that is Fundamental Rights. This was held to be violative of basic structure of the constitution.

CM: You have a hobby Calendar reform, what is it?
Me: Sir, actually we use 2 calendars; the first is the Gregorian calendar which starts from 1st January and the second is our religious calendar. Our religious Calendar is faulty sir; the Calendar reform committee presided by Dr. Meghnada Saha in 1955 suggested reforms which have not been carried out till date and the result is that….(Chairman interrupted)

CM: How do we correct Gregorian calendar? There is leap year also?
Me: Yes sir; every 4th year is a leap year but every 100th year is not but every 1000th year is again a leap year…..(again interrupted)

CM: Indian Calendar also has; one extra month. That corrects the Calendar?
Me: Yes sir intercalary month is there. (Decided to leave the matter here and not to be argumentative)

CM: What have you done for this hobby of yours?
Me: Sir I am a member of a Calendar Reform Committee with like-minded people and I have also made representations to various Government departments.

CM: There is election of President. How is President elected?
Me: (Mistook it to be US presidential elections). Sir I don’t know the exact procedure sir; but primarily elections are there on State to State basis and the candidate win states and get votes of all delegates from…(Interrupted)

CM: No, no. We have our Presidential elections in June or July?
Me: I am sorry for my mistake, sir. In our Presidential elections a collegiums of all MP’s of both houses and all MLA’s of State Assembly is formed. The total number of votes of an MLA is calculated by a formula….

CM: What is the formula for counting electoral votes?
Me: Sorry sir, I don’t remember the formula, exactly.

CM: Then?
Me: Sir equal number of votes is given to MP’s. Then final election is carried out by Proportional Voting system by a system of single transferable…(interrupted)

CM: What is this Proportional Voting system?
Me: Sir, here the candidates can give vote in priority. Firstly the first priority votes are counted and if a candidate doesn’t get 51%, Sir, more than 50% then second and then third priority votes are counted.

CM: There was an election where the second and third priority votes were actually counted. Do you know that?
Me: Sir, I think it was the election in which Chief Justice Subba Rao participated.

CM: No, Subba Rao lost out rightly to Dr. Zakir Hussain?
Me: Sorry sir; I am not sure then.

CM: You have been associated with a business firm. What is it?
Me: Sir it’s a food processing unit engaged in Pulse Milling and producing Soya Nuggets.

CM: After doing business for so many years; why do you want to come for civil services?
Me: Sir I had Civil Services in mind from my school time sir; but due to illness of my father who has a stroke and after that vascular dementia, epilepsy etc. I had to join business in 12th standard sir; I even had to leave studies at that time sir; but now, when my younger brother is in charge of business and I don’t have family responsibilities and I have come here sir.

Transferred to M1 (Male Member).

M1:  What is domain name?
Me: Sir it’s a name given to a website sir for identification. We surf a website by its name which is the domain name itself.

M1: Why do lawyers wear Black Coat?
Me: Sir it’s a British tradition sir. I don’t know more than that.

M1: It is said that Lawyers must wear white coat. Why it is said so and do you agree?
Me: I don’t have any idea in this regard sir.

M1: What is the difference between Rule of Law and Rule by Law?
Me: Sir rule by law is a situation were we try to govern as per the rule laid down by the legislature or administration but rule of law is a British Dicean concept which implies equality before law and equal access to law. The difference is like procedure established by Law and due process of law only.

M1: Have you heard about Justice Krishna Iyer?
Me: Yes sir, he was a great Judge and people friendly too sir.

M1: In which Court he was there?
Me: Sir, Supreme Court and earlier Kerela High Court.

M1: What are the methods of dispute resolution (Again my Hobby)?
Me: Sir there is formal adjudication and alternate dispute resolution system which comprises Arbitration, Conciliation, Mediation…..(interrupted)

M1: Explain the difference between Arbitration and Adjudication?
Me: Sir Arbitration is done under the Arbitration and Conciliation Act 1996; it’s an informal process sir where the parties themselves can decide on arbitrators, procedure etc. while formal adjudication is done by the formal courts using Civil and Criminal procedural laws.

M1: In Arbitration can you wear white coat?
Me: Sure sir and I will say coats of all colours for the purpose sir. (Smile)

M1: (Smile) Do you know IP?
Me: Sir it stands for Intellectual Property.

M1: What are different types of Intellectual Property?
Me: Sir we have Patents, Copyright, Trademark, Geographical Indicator and one for Integrated chips too sir, which I don’t remember.

M1: Pick up the Pencil. (Probably to have a view of rings I was wearing).
Me: Picked.

M1: Tell me the number of IP associated with the Pencil?
Me: Sir Trademark is surely there; and if the pencil is manufactured by a special process than patent may also be there.
Me: Sir may I keep this Pencil Down.

M1: Ya, Ya.
M1: I am having a Pen. Tell me the number of IP associated with this Pen? (It was uniball pen)
Me: Sir the same two; Trademark and Patent.

M1: (explaining) See this tip of the pen is patented.

CM: (adding) Process Patent and Product Patent.
Me: Yes sir.

Transferred to M2. (Female member with extremely charming personality)

M2: What is Street Food (my hobby)?
Me: Mam, its food sold by street vendors and small restaurants.

M2: How can this hobby help you in Service?
Me: Mam, in recent times we are seeing processed food as vital for food security of the people; in my home state Jharkhand we have a Mukhyamantri Daal Bhaat Yojana which I will be able to implement with this hobby, Mam.
Further, Mam the knowledge of food-processing will be helpful to me at various stages and schemes.

M2: You can also organize street food fairs and handle Tourism sector enterprises.
Me: Yes. That will help surely mam.

M2: You have been in Business for so many years. How will your Business experience help you in service?
Me: Mam I have completed projects on time and that I can do in future also for the Government, in fact we completed our Cold storage in 7-8 months (I had been a director in Cold Storage a Pvt. Ltd. Company)….

M2: That is very good; delayed projects are the biggest problem
Me: (cont)…further Mam I have knowledge of food processing sector which is vital for the country; I also have interest in food technology Mam which will be helpful…(was running out of words here because Mam was too motherly)

M2: Your experience of Management will also help. You have spent so many years in management.
Me: (Relieved) Surely Mam.

M2: You must be knowing about PPP?
Me: Yes Mam, its Public Private Partnership

M2: What is it?
Me: It’s a partnership Mam, where private sector is called upon to co-opt with the private sector in the development of the Country Mam.

M2: Has it been useful?
Me: Yes Mam, it has been very useful and especially in the infrastructure sector it has been of special significance. It has been useful in development of Roads, Airports and had further potential.

M3: Have you been to Rajasthan?
Me: Yes Mam.

M3: What had been done in PPP there?
Me: Mam in Rajasthan we have built up extensive network of beautiful roads throughout the State in this mode.

CH: (in between) In which sectors apart from Infrastructure, PPP can be useful?
Me: Sir in energy sector and the 12th plan calls upon PPP in virtually in every sector.

M2: (again taking back) What is 12th plan?
Me: Mam, we are starting with 12th five year plan from 1st April this year. I have read the approach paper to 12th plan man and the headline of the plan is “towards faster, sustainable and more inclusive growth”

M2: So how does 12th plan calls for PPP?
Me: It focuses on sector specific schemes Mam, but I am sorry; the details I don’t remember.

M2: Do you like Gol-Gappa?
Me: Yes Mam.

Transferred to M3. Male Member. (A bit strict, decided to be hard as the lady earlier was soft).

M3: You have international relations as one of your subjects. There is dispute between Turkey and Greece…?
Me: (In between) Yes sir, Cyprus.

M3: Yes Cyprus is there and many more; and the dispute is one reason that Turkey is not being admitted to EU? Can you tell?
Me: Sir I am aware that Cyprus is a dispute; I also know that Turkey has problems with EU entry but sir I am not aware about the history and details of dispute between Turkey and Greece.

M3: Don’t you think Hygiene issues involved with street food?
Me: Sir there are hygiene issues involved with street food but sir the food is cooked in oil sir; above 100 degrees so there is very less chance of bacteria being present further they mostly prepare fresh food everyday while in restraints……(interrupted)

M3: Then why do you take street food
Me: Sir, the body allows and I enjoy sir. That’s the reason sir.

M3: You take street food anywhere or you have some choices?
Me: Sir I make choices.

M3: How do make the choice?
Me: Sir, whenever I go somewhere I enquire about that place that where I will get best street food. When I first came to Delhi I enquired and was told about Chandani Chowk……(was not allowed to complete)

M3: You have Dispute Resolution as your hobby. What kind of disputes you resolve?

(M2, lady from behind; “It is a very good hobby; it will help you as a DM; a DM has to resolve various disputes”)

Me: Sir I have a realization that most of the people we dislike or have dispute with are in fact our closest people sir. If we make a list of people we hate or dislike we will find that most of the people in the list will be our close people. This realization helps in dispute resolution sir.

M3: Have you ever been in external disputes, outside your circle of influence?
Me: Yes sir, in 3-4 disputes I have helped exploited people to have access to justice.

M3: Your extracurricular activities are Artificial Limbs, Blood Donation camps etc. How do you do them?
Me: Sir I am a member in few organizations sir; and we collectively undertake these activities.

M3: Have you ever donated blood your-self?
Me: No, sir. We organize blood donation camps sir but I personally haven’t donated blood.
(Don’t know whether this answer was right; few friends suggested that I must have said a lie that is Yes).

Transferred to M4. (Female Member. A bit serious.)

M4: What is Jaipur Foot?
Me: Mam, it is an organization based in Jaipur which is known for its work in the field of artificial limbs.

M4: Explain the technology of Artificial Limbs?
Me: Mam, we use HDPE pipes as the body of the leg; Plaster of Paris foot is prepared and fitted in the pipe and the base which we use that is the toe part is the Jaipur Foot itself.

M4: What is special in Jaipur Foot technology?
Me: Mam, it is cheap. An artificial limb costs only 1000-1500 rupees.

M4: There is something special with Jaipur Foot?
Me: (A bit nervous realizing that Mam is trying to grill me). Sorry Mam, we use Jaipur Foot base but I am not aware mam.

M4: How they tie the limbs?
Me: Mam leather or polyutherene belts are used but I am not very sure of the exact technology. (Mam wanted to know about sockets and joints which I did not know).

M4: Heard about Kalam?
Me: Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam mam..(to confirm).. Yes.

M4: What were his achievements?
Me: He was President of India Mam. He is known as the missile man.

M4: What special did he do?
Me: Mam, he was the head of the Integrated Missile Guided Program and for his scientific achievements he was awarded Bharat Ratna in 1997.

M4: Why was he popular?
Me: Mam, he is fond of Children and a very simple person famous for these things.

M4: He has written some books?
Me: Yes Mam, Wings of Fire and Vision 2020.

M4: Have you read them?
Me: No Mam, I purchased Vision 2020 but I have not read it.

M4: There has been a new-book by Dr, Kalam? Are you aware?
Me: No, Mam.

M4: It is '3 Billion'
Me: Thank you Mam.

M4: What is the difference between invention and innovation?
Me: Mam, Invention is making something completely new, out-of-box idea but innovation is improving upon an existing thing; modifying it.

M4: What innovations have you done in your industry?
Me: In our Pulse Milling industry there is need to sprinkle oil on whole Pulses and keep it in Tank for 48 hours so that the husk loosens. We are using a technology where we don’t mix oil and do without it.

M4: Then how many hours you keep pulses in tank?
Me: Mam, we process pulses directly; we give only 6-8 hours as time is required to cool; the pulses go through an emery roll and are heated up…..(interrupted), (I also fumbled a bit in this answer)

M4: What have you done for Quality Control and betterment?
Me: Mam, after the Mains exam I have installed a Colour Sortex Machine. Colour Sortex is a revolution in grain milling which separates grains as per colour. We should have a Government program for its promotion Mam.

Finally transferred back to the Chairman. The Mighty Paul sir.

CM: In Bihar/Jharkhand there is a disease called Kala-Azar? (Home State- Jharkhand)
Me:  Yes sir,  Kala-Azar

CM: Tell in details about the disease?
Me: Sir it’s a disease in rural area sir, but I don’t know the details about it sir.

CM: Difference between Epidemic and Pandemic?
Me: (Thinking for 3-4 seconds) sorry sir, I am not sure.

CM: There is problem of flood in Bihar. Even without rain there will be flood. (Sarcastically). What is the reason?
Me: Sir we had the problem of flood in Bengal and Jharkhand too…(interrupted)

CM: In Jharkhand I am not sure but in Bengal Surely.
Me: Yes sir, we have controlled the flood there with multi-purpose projects and specially DVC sir. In the case of Bihar there is uncontrolled water coming from Nepal sir and we have not been able to build projects in Nepal. We have a Kosi project sir but work is moving very slowly on that sir.

CM: What is the solution?
Me: Sir we have to take Nepal in confidence and sir only after that…..(Interrupted)

CM: You talked of Nepal; why we have difficulty dealing with them?
Me: Sir there is trust deficit in Nepal sir; between the parties themselves and between India and few parties of Nepal; sir, with Sri Lanka and Maldives we have the privilege of having good relations with all parties but we don’t have the same privilege in Nepal and Bangladesh sir; so if we move with some parties immediately there will be anti-India rhetoric by some others; but the present PM, Baburam Bhattrai seems to be India friendly sir.

CM: What is the problem there?
Me: Sir, in 2005 all the parties united against the King but they have not been able to agree after that. There are deep divisions in Nepal and they have not been able to complete the constitution sir.

CM: What is the biggest dispute?
Me: Sir it is about induction of Maoist cadres in the Nepalese Army sir.

CM:  What should we do with Nepal?
Me: Sir we should try to open with all parties and seek a reconciliation to complete the Constitution. Then we should facilitate the transition of Nepal to a functioning democracy. Once Nepal becomes a functioning democracy; it will help sir.

CM: OK. Thank you.

I get up. Wish “Thank You to you all”. The Board is again not interested in wishes. I exit.

(The Chairman was staring; throughout my way to the exit).

Last Update Tuesday 4th December 2012     

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