Hello everyone, I am Abeer Mehta, from Pune and I’ve cleared NDA Exam in my first attempt with AIR-113. NDA(II) 2021 (for the NDA-148 Course) was my first attempt to get into one of the most prestigious institutions in the country. I had cleared the written on 14th November 2021 and had been recommended for the Indian Army from 17 SSB Bangalore on 15th March 2022.
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I am originally from Indore but have been living in Pune for the past 14-15 years. I come from a civilian background and will be a first-generation officer in the Indian Army from my family. The inclination to join the forces came cause of an Army camp (Veer Yatra) I joined in the summers after the completion of my 8th standard. I had joined Allen in 10th for my preparation for JEE, cause I had gotten 98% in 10th Boards (ICSE) and my parents saw it fit for me to prepare for JEE, but in 11th standard, after long nights of introspection (although I was doing well in my preparation for JEE and was in the top batch of Pune in Allen) I realised my dreams and where I would like to see myself in after a span of the next few crucial years of my life. I remember it was a lunch outing where I spoke to my parents very seriously to opt for giving the NDA exam as my main goal and JEE as my backup, and after a few minutes of discussion, my parents saw the fire and passion in my eyes and concurred with my decision.
I bought a book for the preparation of my written exam and started preparing from the same, but the cause of my tight schedule and my JEE classes, I could not arrange a lot of time for the preparation of the GK part of the written exam. I was in 12th at the time and the portion had not been covered completely, hence a night before the written exam, I told my father that this attempt would be a trial attempt to get the experience of the paper and my father also had similar thoughts. On 14th November, I appeared for my first attempt and found the written questions quite easy to solve owing to the JEE coaching I had joined and to my ICSE board background till 10th which eased my way through the English questions as well.
On 15th December the result came and to no one’s surprise in the family, I had cleared the written part, although we struggled to find the marks but were later told by my friends that the marks aren’t shared until one is recommended (that’s how new everything was to me). In January, I subscribed to SSBCrackExams to prepare for my SSB Interview preparation. In February I received communication regarding the dates for my SSB but unfortunately, all the options given to me collided with my second attempt for the NDA written [NDA(I) 2022]. The struggle to change my dates continued for a few weeks and finally, on 27th February 2022, I received communication that my SSB would be from 11th – 15th March 2022 in SSC Bangalore.
I joined the Academy to further my knowledge and preparation for the SSB interview. On 11th March, I was “screened in” wearing casuals (yes, you read that right). My interview was on the third day, before the GTO tasks, and unlike others, my interview lasted for 1:30 hrs where the interviewer asked questions regarding GK, my family, education, etc. I was very honest in my answers and maintained my demeanor and smile throughout. I performed pretty well in the GTO tasks according to me n provided workable solutions whenever the group faced a deadlock.
On 15th March, the results were declared after the conference, and out of the reporting of 84 candidates, 30 had been screened and only 8 had been recommended. Here I was, standing with a plus on my chest, beaming with pride and happiness. Since I was appearing on the 12th, I had to rush back to Pune, give my board practical, then rush back to Bangalore, appear for my medicals, and surprisingly, I was the only one out of the 8 recommended candidates to be deemed medically fit by the CHAF Bangalore.
In short, my whole journey was a roller coaster ride that my family rode with me and after a long and hard climb, we reached the result we had worked so hard for. The biggest takeaway from my experience was to crack SSB, YOU SHOULD BE YOURSELF and cherish it, you will only make it easier for the evaluators to understand you and hopefully, recommend you.