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CAT Topper Bihar boy Avinash Singh 99.5%iler who belonged to a place with No School Cracks CAT.

Here’s the interview of Avinash Singh who cleared the CAT exam with 99.5 percentile.

Q: PRANEET JAIN: Today we have with us an aspirant who hails from Imamganj. A town that does not have proper schooling in 40 km radius. But that did not deter him in his pursuit of his dream to crack the cat. We have with us Avinash who went on to score 99.48. Avinash, please tell us something about yourself.

AVINASH SINGH: Hello sir, I am from Imamganj. Imamganj is 70-80 km away from our district headquarters. There is no CBSE school around my village, 40-50 km away. CBSE affiliated school. There are schools that teach kids with 50-100 rupees. My fifth class, which is in Hindi medium, I used to study in primary school initially, but since I used to run away from school again and again, my father put me in a private school. I performed very well there. In Bihar, everyone is focused on Maths. If you are good at Maths, you are brilliant. If you are not, then you are nothing. I was doing well in Maths, so my teacher suggested that I should put him in Hostel. So I went to a hostel, my father admitted me there. I studied there for 3-4 years. I was doing well, I used to top in that school. But I had a brother, a big brother who used to study with me. He was not performing well all the time. So my father also withdrew him from that school.I was left alone. And then I had some bad company. So we ran away from school. My father beat me up and sent me back. I ran away again. My father thought that my son is his only son. He asked me what I wanted to do and I told him. Then I told him that I want to stay at home. After eating hostel food, I said that I am tired and I cannot study anymore in hostels. There was an English medium school called MS Morial Academy. From there I did my 6th class. But it was English medium school. I was from Hindi medium. I couldn’t understand their book. Hence, since, I didn’t know these words. It was really difficult for me. I gave my exam for signing school. My teacher was Bival Sir. He took me in command. He got me prepared. I had to study for signing school. There are many repeated exams in Bihar. Out of the 6-7000 students, 50-60 people are selected. I got selected by God’s grace. Then I went to the Science School. There, again, English was my medium. But there, discipline is very strict and you have to communicate only in English. So, due to that discipline, I studied the newspaper daily. From there, I picked up my English language and did a good cop-up. But the main focus there is NDA. My father never wanted me to do NDA because of some family reasons. So, I withdrew from the 10th standard. And IITs were a big thing even today and at that time.

My father wanted me to do engineering, and I wanted to do something good. I wanted to crack that. I went to Bansal, in Bansal I was in P2 batch. In the second best batch, there are 25-30 batches in Bansal. I was doing really good and I was quite confident that I would get 1000-8000 ranks. It won’t be bad. But whatever happened, I was left with some marks in advance. And in the mains, I was ranked 18000. I am the first in my family who is doing engineering and all that. From a well-to-do family, it’s not like we are very poor or something. We have money, but no one is very educated. We have property. So, when I filled the form, I didn’t even have a guide to take. And I am a little introverted in that matter that I don’t go to anyone much to tell me what to do or not to do. I did not do it. So, I filled the form with only 4-5 top CS NITs. At that time, it was only CS, meaning money. I filled the CS. I didn’t get a call from anywhere. I filled the form for the last day of the Dehradun petroleum. I got a call. I was with my family on a trip to Shimla. I didn’t decide what to do until then. When I got a call for their counselling, I told my father that I had to pay the DD. The DD was worth Rs 1.5 lakh. It was Friday, I guess. On Saturday or Sunday, there were odd-wanking hours. My father called someone in Delhi. The DD got jammed somewhere. My family… We all went by car.

When my family came back, I stayed in Delhi for counselling. We discussed about taking a branch. I checked which branch was filled. Upstream was filled, gas was filled. Chemical was remaining in the waiting room. I thought it would be a good branch, so I filled it. So I decided to take Chemical. I took Chemical Engineering. I was not interested in it. Although, in Chemical Engineering, you don’t have to study it. Then I went to Dehradun petroleum for a day.

And the best company that comes to us from there is Reliance, which takes 6-7 kids. I always wanted to go in Reliance. But when Reliance came for the first time, they had a tough interview. A head of Cracker came to Reliance and asked such typical questions that nobody could answer and nobody was selected. I was very disheartened because I did not know what to do. Then I gave the cat. Because I thought that if not, then let’s do MBA because there is a general trend nowadays.

I just wanted to check my acumen and I thought I could do it without any problem. I got a good percentile but not very good. When I got 92, I thought I could do it. There was another offer from PCVL, a company called Flipscore and Black Limited. It was a manufacturing job but they offered PPO but I didn’t like it much. So I did not join it. Then I returned to Reliance for the role of sales and marketing. Then I joined Reliance and I thought of giving up cat because it made sense since I was in sales and marketing job.

Q: What was the motivation for you? To do the whole journey of cat and to score 99.48.

AVINASH SINGH:The sole motivation in my entire journey was my father. He has struggled a lot and he has still stood for the family. I am here today because of him. I thought of getting a cat, but I did not know what the forward path was. Plus, my job was quite hectic. It was difficult to get time. I could not join any institute. So one of my friends, our senior, was studying in Iquanta.So I was talking to him and he told me to join Iquanta. Then fortunately, after two days, I was watching a video of Jatin Singla Ji, he was our senior too. I saw his IQUANTA interview. Then I realised, okay, it makes sense. So I joined IQUANTA.

Q: what did you do during your entire preparation time in terms of each section and in terms of mock and analysis as well?

AVINASH SINGH:my sole strategy was consistency. I used to give two hours every day, no matter what the situation was, however bad the day was. I used to ensure that I at least attend the iQuanta classes. There are classes of 10-12 days. So my sole strategy was that no matter what, I should not miss the class.And if I missed it, let’s say Friday I missed the class. There was a party. On Saturday morning, I used to ensure that I do the class. I never missed a class. Although, there was a setback. I went off-road for a month and a half. I could not prepare. But then again, I came back and revised the classes. Cleared the basics. I gave about 20 mocks. . Then I used to make sure that I had to give sectionals to analyse what I was doing. Mock and analysis are very important for a cat. But I had so little time that I could not do both. So I used to appear in a lot of mocks and then analyse 4-5 mocks at a time.

Q:that you had a setback of one and a half months during your preparation. So how did you capture that lost time?

AVINASH SINGH:See, time once gone is gone. But I quanta lectures remain. They still remain live on your Facebook page. They are in the event form. So I really had given up the hope that now it’s not going to happen. But then I took a lot of courage and gave one more chance. got decent marks, I got around 120 marks or something. I felt that I have not gone that far back. The rest of the friends who were in IQUANTA, who I knew, they were also doing somewhat above me in a month and a half. They had studied more than me. So I thought there is still time, 2-3 months are left, I can do it. Then I cleared all the classes, all the basics. Then after clearing all the basics.And in the last one and a half month, I studied like hell. 5-6 hours a day, 2 hours a day, Saturday and Sunday. I studied a lot in the last one and a half month. I took a day off for the job for the cat. That was the last day of the cat. I thought, let’s play the last race. And from that day, I got 3 questions. I read them and got 2-3 direct questions.

Q: What was the biggest challenge, biggest hurdle that you had to overcome?

AVINASH SINGH: The biggest hurdle was… Look, in every family there is someone you look up to. That I have to do something like this. In my family, my father is there. I look up to him that I have to do something like it. But he is a very successful businessman in his own terms. But educationally, there was no such motivation.When my result came out, I had to tell my father that this is how much marks I got. He said, these are not marks, they are percentiles. Then I had to explain to him what percentiles are. The marks I am telling you are good or bad. So my family, they do not know much about it. They are well off on their own terms. But coming to this higher education, I am the only one who is going to pursue masters now in my entire family. My family is very big, it is my solo family.

So, it was a challenge to see my own path ahead. I used to be down for a long time. I used to message Indrajit sir, Sir, what should I do? Sometimes I get 30, sometimes 65. What should I do? He used to say, you keep practicing. Whatever happens, it will happen in the end. Now keep practicing. Don’t give up. And I literally messaged him twice and thrice. I thought, won’t he get irritated? Once he said, I have 35, 35 again. I said, sir, what should I do? He said, everything will be fine. Everything is fine. Then I got down again. Then I messaged him, sir, what should I do? English is not working. Now the DILR is not working. But he was always by my side, he always supported me.

Q: Finally, give us some words of wisdom for the C.A.T aspirants.

AVINASH SINGH: See, I’ll tell just three things. First, you need to dream big. Second, you have to be consistent, no matter what. By consistent, I mean you can drink alcohol. But, study. If you have to cover the syllabus in 7 days, do it. If you have any loss, make it up for it. Third thing, many people… When my scores were posted in groups, many guys came to me asking how I did it, which books I read. I didn’t read any books, I just did classes. You have to be consistent and go with the pace. Do as much as you feel comfortable. Don’t take too much pressure. And what your accad’s are doesn’t really matter. First score in the cat and then think about it.

Indrajeet Singh
Indrajeet Singh
The mastermind behind IQuanta, Indrajeet Singh is an expert in Quant and has devised some ingenious formulae and shortcuts to significantly cut down on the time taken to solve a problem

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