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1st in Pakistan, CSS Exam-2011

Dr. Fahad Mumtaz

THE FALL AND FALL OF PAKISTAN ECONOMY
Sunday, July 01, 2012

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“One who works diligently and performs well in the exam will ultimately outshine others”

Jahangir's World Times (JWT): Kindly tell us about your educational background and achievements in detail?

Dr. Fahad Mumtaz: My early education is from Faisalabad. I got second position in Matriculation exam from Faisalabad Board and second position in F.Sc examination from Government College. I did my MBBS from King Edward Medical College. Though medicine was my profession but to join Civil Service was my passion that was the reason for appearing in Competitive exam just after completion of my medical studies.

JWT: In your second attempt of CSS exam you got Foreign Service of Pakistan (FSP) which is a prestigious group, then why did you appear third time in the CSS exam, now which group would you like to opt?

DFM:  No doubt, Foreign Service is a prestigious and highly esteemed group and I personally like this service. But some domestic issues compelled me to reappear in the exam to join some other group in which I could stay in my country. 

JWT: What is so special in DMG and how it is better than the FSP?

DFM: Every group has its own merits and demerits; it is not the matter of comparison but of choice. But regarding promotion and mobility, DMG is still considered to be the best available group. Besides, in DMG you have more opportunities to serve the people at grass root level.
JWT is providing a commendable service to the young aspirants. It especially helps the readers in consolidating their command on compulsory subjects.
JWT: You are the first position holder in CSS exam 2011, what type of strategy did you follow for the preparation of exams? Please highlight some steps as the key to success for the CSS aspirants.

DFM: CSS is an exam which demands smart study rather than extensive study. Choose your optional subjects very intelligently depending on your aptitude and keeping in view their scoring potential. Do not read too many books for a single subject but select one or two quality books. Instead of cramming, just try to develop the general understanding of the issues.  Compartmentalise your study plan and do not focus too much on one subject at the cost of others.
 
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JWT: How do you see the role of academies in CSS preparation?


DFM: I personally think that good academy can guide a candidate and offers some good reading material, but of course it cannot instil the knowledge in the mind of a candidate. If you think you can gain something from academy, join it but not for more than three months. But ultimately you will have to put your personal efforts for acquiring the knowledge and material provided by the academies.

JWT: Consult books or notes. What should be prepared and how?

DFM: Do not waste your time in making very comprehensive and detailed notes; otherwise you will be left with little time to read them. Just note down the things that are not available in books or you consider them very important from examination point of view.
The reason of failure of talented and scholarly students in CSS is that they become overconfident and ultimately become victim of their misperception about their abilities.
JWT: What strategy one should adopt to create difference from others?

DFM: In order to score good marks you need to make your written expression different from others. Use data sheet, maps, graphs and relevant quotations. Do not hesitate to express your critical analysis about issues.

JWT: Majority of candidates fail in English Essay or English Composition paper. So, what precautions or steps would you suggest for these two crucial papers?

DFM: Reason is quite obvious, as there is no set syllabus and book that could cover these two subjects, so candidates put the preparation of this subject on the back burner. As you can't learn to play cricket just by watching it on TV, similar is the case with English, you can't master this subject just by reading books. Unless you don't improve the English written expression by practising it, you will not be able to master it. At least dedicate two days a week exclusively for the English preparation. Don't cram five or six essays but try to be at home in writing essays on any topic.

JWT: What are the ways to get higher marks in written as well as in interview and also tell us about your written and interview scores in detail?  

DFM: My total score is 996, marks in written are 825 and in viva 171. Score in viva is relatively lower than that of in my previous attempts. But this time I was expecting something like this as my viva was not more than ten minutes duration, containing lot of rebukes and advices by the panel. For better marks in written, try to make your paper different from other candidates. Also develop your own opinion and present your critical analysis about issues. In interview be natural, confident and logical while interacting with the panel. It is not necessary to agree with the panel's opinion, but be respectful while negating them.

JWT: Seeking guidance prior to exam was an essential prerequisite of CSS. So, what sort of guidance is required for the fresh aspirants of the CSS and how do you see the Jahangir's World Times (JWT) as far as guidance for CSS exam is concerned?

DFM: First of all go through the syllabus of CSS published by the FPSC. These days internet provides a ready opportunity to get command over the current issues. Also seek help from the blogs available on the internet. JWT is providing a commendable service to the young aspirants. It especially helps the readers in consolidating their command on compulsory subjects.   

JWT: Do you believe in luck factor in CSS? As we always notice many average students gets allocations while talented and scholarly students are unable to pass this exam.  

DFM: Like any other exam hard work is a key to success also in CSS. Tide might not be in your favour in one attempt, but it is not possible that you will be the victim of bad luck in three consecutive attempts. Rather than blaming the destiny and system, focus of the candidates should be on rectification of their shortcomings.  The reason of failure of talented and scholarly students in CSS is that they become overconfident and ultimately become victim of their misperception about their abilities. It does not matter whether aspirant is a doctor, engineer, a PhD or simple graduate; one who works diligently and performs well in the exam will ultimately outshine others.

Any Message
Start preparation of CSS with good intention of joining Civil Service to serve the masses. Be humble about your capabilities and achievements. Even if you become PSP or DMG officer there is no point of being arrogant, as Almighty who gives respect and privileged position is verily in a capacity to take it back.
 
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