TOPPER’S STRATEGY: Darshan H V (Rank 48) CSE-2015

  • IASbaba
  • May 25, 2016
  • 14
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Dear Friends,

We are happy to share the strategy of Darshan H V, IAS topper from the state of karnataka.

Preliminary Examination



  • It is a must for every civil services aspirant to go through these books which are also easily available online.
  • Try and make short notes of the important concepts and terms—will be easier to revise them at later stages of the preparation.

Previous Year Question Papers:

  • Get your hands on the solved question papers from Vishal Publications from 1990s. This is essential as many questions in prelims are repeated and if not the questions—some of the concepts definitely are. For example 2015 prelims question on Neora Valley was a repeated question.
  • This will not only help you focus more on the most important concepts but will also boost up your confidence level.

Current Affairs:

Reading ‘The Hindu’ should be a strict ritual to be followed without fail. Link the topics with different subjects and keep adding the current developments to it.


Personally, I made it a point to solve 12 mock papers in the last 2 months and within the stipulated time of 2 hours only. This will not only help your mind get trained with the ‘timing’ but also, make you examination-ready.

Mains Preparation



Culture, history and freedom movement:  Spectrum and NCERTs

Post-independence: NCERT

World History: NCERT

Indian Society: Thankfully, I could comfortably answer questions on Indian Society with the help of NCERTs. Also, refer Google for current topics that are covered in the news on a regular basis. IASbaba also has a ‘Daily News Analysis’ for a comprehensive coverage of important analytical topics. Click here

Geography: NCERTs (X-XI-XII)



Laxmikant— Read this book again and again

Representation of People Act: Google and PRS India website (Salient features presented in a concise manner)

Govt. Policies and Welfare Schemes: Refer Yojana and Kurukshetra magazine. They not only help you in building up your knowledge base but also help you supplement your answer with important developments and different perspective. If a physical copy is not available, you can always refer to the Yojana & Kurukshetra Gist prepared by IASbaba

Click here

Role of Civil Services, Citizens Charter, Transparency, Governance and other topics: Refer 2nd ARC recommendations

International affairs: World Focus magazine as well as Analysis done by IASbaba

Chabahar Port: Crucial gateway for India’s Objectives- Click here

Also IR strategy given on IASbaba will be of great helpClick here

International institutions like World Bank, WTO and IMF: Official websites of the respective organization



Economics: Ramesh Singh Book and NCERT (XII—Macroeconomics)

Cropping pattern, Land Reforms, etc.: NCERT and Google


Best Sources:

  • Most of the questions in 2015 GS-III Mains paper were covered from Yojana and Kurukshetra
  • Utilize Google in the best possible manner


  • Take a syllabus copy and break/jot down the important points of the syllabus
  • Note down the definitions of all the important concepts (ethics, values, integrity, probity, objectivity, emotional intelligence etc.)
  • For each written topic, correlate that topic with an issue in news or stories from your own life—Let Mahabharata, Ramayana, Panchatantra, inspirational stories of great personalities like Gandhi, Visweswaraiah, Vivekananda, Nelson Mandela, Mother Teresa etc. inspire you and make way to your answers. 😀
  • Case studies:
    • Solve previous years UPSC questions.
    • For every choice made in the case study, make sure to write both merits and demerits.
  • Do refer to Ethics strategy given by IASbaba. It is of great help- Click here



  • Always carry your confidence along with you. Knowledge would follow on its own.
  • Whatever you study will be of nil usage to you unless you make an effort to revise and re-revise.
  • Writing Practice for Mains is an important part of one’s preparation. We used to frame questions on our own and write answers within 8 mins. It is important to note that we will get 9 mins to complete one answer in mains. So try to write more in less time.
  • Also, presentation matters a great deal. Instead of paragraph, I chose to write my answers in points. This will make your answer precise and you can cover more points in less time.


A strategy of a successful candidate should not be made a yardstick; rather it should be enhanced according to your strengths and weaknesses as per your personal strategy.


As I had time constraints with my IB training where even net availability was an issue, I could not refer much IASbaba and benefit from the initiatives, but most of my friends have utilized the website and the free initiatives run by them. Some notable one’s which can be helpful in your preparation are—

For analysing important issues: Click here

Prelims Prep: Click here

Answer writing Practice: Click here

Yojana & Kurukshetra: Click here

PIB Compilation: Click here

AIR-Discussion: Click here

The Big Picture-RSTV: Click here


Am very happy this website involves a lot of contribution from people in services including Yeshwanth Sir(ranked 107 in 2010) and Srinivas Sir and lot more people from top institutions of India and in services being cofounders of IASbaba.

This adds to the genuineness of the website in comparison to the market.

Unlike the market which floods information to students, the website is smart minimalistic, time bound and maximum impact in its approach.

Kudos and All the very best!




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