I am Dr. S Bhaskara RamaRaju Sagi working as Veterinary Assistant Surgeon in Government of Andhra Pradesh. I was recommended from 34 SSB, Allahabad in my second attempt for Remount and Veterinary corps (RVC) entry. Gentlemen, today I am going to share my journey from getting conferenced out in my first attempt to get recommendation in the second attempt. As a person from non-military background, when I had seen the officers in olive green uniform during my first conference on 6’th January, 2016 at 14 SSB Board, though I didn’t get recommended, I firmly decided within myself that I want to be in the armed forces too. So my preparation for next attempt started as soon as I got back home and I wrote down where I have felt I did wrong in all the 3 stages. For Veterinarians, the notification comes once in a year, usually in the August every year.
I have attended this year (2017) SSB from April 15 – 20. For Screening in, I made reasonably good story, explained confidently and as I was in repeaters batch, I had given good points in the discussion, never shouted in between. I was among 12 candidates who got screened in out of 80. On the next day, I wrote good TAT stories and attempted all WAT, SRT. My interview was held on the same day afternoon by the Chairman of the Board. During my 45 minutes interview, I was asked about my family, education, my hobbies and sports. As I wrote in my PIQ form that I am interested in football, cricket; Chairman Sir asked about dimensions of the football and cricket grounds, favourite players (mine were Messi and Zaheer Khan) and various international football clubs. As I am continually watching both games, I was able to answer them, but when sir asked who’s the currently playing international fast bowler I like, I said Dale Steyn. Then immediate question was “Why Dale Steyn, Why not our Indian Umesh Yadav”. I confidently said, “Sir, Dale Steyn has good pace, aggression, better statistics and he is able to get reverse swing in the final overs. Umesh Yadav has also aggression, I believe, he is in developing stages and with more games, he might improve to Steyn’s level, sir”. I had been asked about international current affairs, states & capitals of North-eastern states. When Chairman Sir asked about Zaheer Khan’s bowling exact statistics, I said, “sir, I don’t know exact figures and I will find out”.
For the GTO tasks, I have participated well in group discussion, gave time-scale dependent solutions for GPE and our repeaters batch got first in snake race. In the Race, I have made sure everyone’s carrying the snake and 3 of us holding it at the obstacles, supported others crossing obstacles. For PGT, HGT, FGT; I have made good suggestions and I spoke for 3 minutes full time in lecturette. For the Command task, I have briefed my subordinates before executing the task and GTO sir made it difficult twice by changing colour pattern twice. Even then, I have finished the task by thinking clearly. On my conference day, I was asked about where I went to in the previous evening, the details of the movie (Fast & Furious 8) I went to and asked about the stay. When I said everything’s fine, Vice Chairman Sir suddenly made serious face and asked why no issues regarding facilities. I calmly said, “sir, actually there’s improvements with regard to facilities as we were provided with coolers etc, I have no issues”. Sir said fine and asked me to leave. I was among two recommended candidates when final results were announced.
Dear friends, the journey from last rejection till now is filled with thorough preparation. I have followed SSB INTERVIEW book: THE COMPLETE GUIDE BY Dr NATARAJAN Sir. For this time preparation, I have underlined important points & instructions at various stages to be followed which were detailed in the book and revised them 5-6 times. And those repeated readings gave me better ideas at various stages of the SSB procedure. Natarajan sir’s Video lectures also helped me with my performance as the lectures gave clear idea about OLQs tested in 3 stages. Months before my SSB, I practiced a WAT set a day in 15 minutes; a SRT set a day in 30 minutes and corrected the wrong responses later. I have read the HINDU newspaper for current affairs and made paper clippings from important editorials and revised them. Having a fair knowledge about national and international affairs surely helps. Because in GD, when rest of the group shouts, we can make factual points, statistics and it definitely creates good impression. As I was poor in English communication skills, over the last few months, I have started reading newspaper out loud in front of mirror which really helped me in facing the interview. And at various points, assessors tried to pressurize me. For example before command task, GTO sir asked me why I didn’t shave properly (I have said sorry to GTO sir for that) and shouted for clearing it very fast. But I didn’t lose my focus and finished the task even though rules changed in between. I have listened to GTO sir instructions clearly and made sure I didn’t break any ground rules. I have practiced blank slide story and Self description in advance.
Dear fellow aspirants, especially repeaters, don’t lose your heart after initial rejection. There will be many deviations, myths from others like one centre is rejection centre, only fresher’s get recommended etc,. Every single part of the 5 day procedure is very important. As I firmly wanted to be in the forces, I motivated myself daily, repeatedly practiced and for physical fitness wise, I have made significant improvements as I lost around 16 kgs over a year (it really helped in Individual obstacles, Group Race). Even the way I manage and organize my daily activities has improved a lot as I read a lot of inspiring stories. Believe me friends; universe definitely rewards passionate and organized hard work. I am 30 years old (RVC entry age limit is 32), married and already working in government hospital for the last 6 years. And I did sustain my dream for almost one & a half year since my first attempt. I have been continually reading SSBcrack success stories and nuances published in their page regarding SSB. When we really want something from all our heart, we will definitely find resources needed to achieve that goal. Inspiration and study material are everywhere. But they only work when we make our best efforts. After getting recommended, JCO (Junior commissioned officer ) while checking documents, congratulated me heart fully saying that though I am son of a farmer from small village, I was recommended (his exact words were “waah, doctor saab, bahut badhiya); that’s when I know I made my family proud by becoming first armed forces officer in my village. An officer in the Indian Defence Forces commands highest respect in the Nation, so our efforts need to be stronger to achieve the goal. Associate with positive aspirants and always stay motivated. Now I have finished all medicals, declared fit and I am awaiting my training call letter.
I would like to sincerely thank Dr N.K. NATARAJAN sir for this recommendation. And my heartfelt thanks to Ravi Saharan sir and my dearest friend Shashank Tiwari for all their continuous help with my preparation.
Thank you SSBCrack for providing me an opportunity to chronicle my SSB journey. Good luck dear defence forces’ aspirants.