Interview With Ms. Mona Pruthi, IAS Topper 2006

Ms. Mona Pruthi was secured 1st Position among the successful candidates of the Civil Services Examination, 2005-06. An. M. Phil. in English Literature from Delhi University and a graduate (B.A. English Honours_ from Lady Shri Ram College, Ms. Pruthi achieved the topmost position in this prestigious examination in her third attempt.

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Ms. Pruthi was selected as an Indian Revenue Service Officer in 2005. A topper throughout her school and college, she was always clear about her goal to become an IAS officer. She said, “From the very beginning, I wanted to be a civil servant but topping it never crossed my mind. It was too high an expectation.” her optional in the Mains were English Literature and Sociology, as she believes that both the subjects deal with various aspects of society and thus, blend well. She dedicates her stupendous success to the bless of her parents and family members and the good wishes of friends.



Q. Do you remember any remarkable incident of your life that motivated or promoted you to go for a career in the Civil Services?

A. My father late Sh. N.L. Pruthi, who was a Additional Sessions Judge in Faridabad, motivated me right from my childhood to become an IAS Officer. He was my source of inspiration. Experiences of life also motivated me. I want to work well, perform my duties to the fullest and leave a name behind me.

Q. How did your parents, family and friends contribute to your success?

A. They acted as a wall of support. Especially, family and friends are important in this journey because this examination is a test of patience.


Q. How much time do you think one requires for serious preparations for this examination?

A. I think about a year of average amount of study is sufficient for serious preparation of this examination.

Q. Which journals and newspapers have you been reading for the General Studies and other papers?

A. Newspapers : The Hindu, The Economic Times, etc., Magazines : Competition Success Review, General Knowledge Today, Frontline and CSR Books.


Q. Had you not been selected in the Civil Services Examination, what would have been your reaction? Which other service/ career would you have gone in/ opted for?

A. I would have appeared for one more time as I had one more attempt.

Q. How do you visualize your success?

A. It is unexpected but great. It is a morale booster for other women in the country to go for their dreams and make a mark of their own. As it is the most prestigious examination of the country, coming on top feels great.

Q. What were your strong points which enabled you to achieve success in the Civil Services Examination?

A. Good writing skills, balanced thinking and analytical approach.

Q. What were your optional at the Civil Services Examination?

A. Prelims : Sociology. Mains : (i) English Literature (ii) Sociology.

Q. How many attempts had you made earlier before you got selected?

A. This was my third attempt.

Q. What was your criterion for the selection of the optional subjects?

A. English Literature was my academic subject. Sociology is a general subject and I feel that both the subjects mixed well, as both of them deal with society and are contextual in nature.

Q. How did you prepare for your compulsory papers?

A. For General Studies, wide ranging and in-depth study is required. I went through various newspapers and magazines, like Competition Success Review, General Knowledge Today, Frontline, etc. for preparing General Studies.

Q. What is your impression about the Interview Board?

A. They are extremely supportive. Most importantly, they judge the capability of the candidate correctly.

Q. Competition Success Review is the largest read youth magazine in English. How do you visualize the role of this magazine in moulding the careers of the youth?

A. Competition Success Review is a good magazine. It gives facts in a simple and lucid manner. It has a good coverage of current affairs and other topics.

Q. How did Competition Success Review help you in your preparation for the interview?

A. It has got good coverage of current affairs and other burring topics.

Q. How do you look upon the publication of CSR magazine in Hindi? Do you think that the mindset and basic approach of English medium students are fundamentally different from those of the Hindi medium students.

A. It is of great help to the Hindi medium students. It is a very good idea to publish CSR in Hindi.

Q. What do you think is a better way of preparation between selective intensive study and wide extensive study?

A. For Prelims, wide extensive study is required and for Mains, selective intensive and in-depth study is required.

Q. Is this pattern of the examination appropriate for selection? Would you recommend any other improvement?

A. Thought the pattern of selection is appropriate, I think weightage on General Studies should be increased.

Q. Do you feel that there should be no restriction on the number of attempts.

A. I think restriction on the number of attempts should be there. Four attempts are sufficient for a serious candidate.

Q. To what extent, you think Model Test Papers can be useful for the aspirants of Civil Services?

A. Model Test Papers should be practiced thoroughly as they help in testing a candidate’s preparation.

Q. What is your advice to the future aspirants?

A. Civil Service Examination is a test of patience. It requires lot of scarifies and you are required to brave all adversities. You should trust yourself and God. Nothing is impossible in this would. With a lots of hard work and determination, you can achieve what you aim for.

Bio Data

Name : Ms. Mona Pruthi

Education Qualifications : M. Phil (English Literature)

School : Apeejay Public School, Faridabad, Haryna

College/ University : Lady Shri Ram College, University of Delhi.

Awards / Prizes Won : 1st Position in College (B.A. English Hons.)

Earlier Selection : Civil Services Examination 2005 – IRS (Customer & Excise)

Experience : Worked as a lecture of English Literature in Delhi University for three years.


Source : Competition Refresher

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