But his plans for the future are quite different. “My ultimate aim is to be a writer and professor,” he tells Shiksha.com.
Harshveer is currently writing a fantasy-fiction novel. “There are no protagonists or antagonists in my novel. My book is more about two different ideas than two different characters,” he says.
When it comes to preparing, Harshveer believes three hours in a day is enough to crack CAT. “Three hours a day without any breaks! There’s no point in studying for six-seven hours with one or two hour breaks,” he adds.
Here’s Harshveer Jain, speaking to exclusively to SHiksha.com:
Read other CAT 2014 topper accounts:
Q: Congratulations Harshveer!
A: Thank you.
Q: Tell us something about yourself.
A: I pursued BTech in Physics from IIT Bombay.
Q: How are you feeling right now?
A: To be honest, too many contrasting emotions in my mind right now. I knew I’ll get a good score. But this extraordinary! Even now I am not sure. I am still guessing that some CAT or TCS authorities will mail me stating, ‘We are very sorry. Wrong score. Take off all the Facebook posts. You’re not a 100 percentiler.’ That fear is still there.
Q: What was your CAT 2014 preparation strategy?
A: I don’t wanna sound obnoxious, but being from IIT and with a mathematics background, I am very comfortable with Maths and Quant. I am fairly decent in English too. My strategy was to optimize and improve my score while giving the exam.
So, I joined TIME – took up their online test series and attempted many mock tests. I kept on improving my performance and my accuracy. Towards the end, I studied for three hours a day (though not everyday) – gave a test or did as many questions as possible in three hours, because the exam is for three hours. I saw no point in studying six-seven hours a day with one or two hour breaks. But I gave just three hours in a day.
Q: Is it necessary to join a coaching centre?
A: If one is not confident in Quants and theories and wants to brush up their concepts, then it’s a good idea to join the class. CAT requires basic 10th standard mathematics. One just needs to learn to solve questions and prepare. If concepts are clear and it’s just a matter of time, efficiency and accuracy, one need not join coaching.
Q: Tell us about your family.
A: Father, mother, little brother and grandmother.
Q: Is your brother also an IIT aspirant?
A: Right now he’s in Class 12 and is yet to figure out what he wants to do. No one in my family pushes us for anything.
Q: Are you in final year at IIT-B?
A: No, I just graduated in 2014. I have been working for the last eight months with Housing.com.
Q: Which is your dream B-School?
A: IIM Ahmedabad or IIM Calcutta.
Q: Any specific reasons for it?
A: To be honest, it’s not a thought-out approach that I have applied. It’s based on institute ratings and general perception. However, while taking a final decision I’ll take an informed call after looking at all the stats and figures. But as of now, IIM A and C excite me, because I know people from these institutes and know how good the colleges are.
Q: Do you have a back-up plan?
A: I don’t have a Plan A or Plan B. I have given my CAT and will now prepare for the interviews. But I do have a well-paying, satisfactory job. And I am also writing….
Q: You are writing?
A: I am developing a fiction-fantasy novel.
Q: Tell us more about it.
A: It’s about a completely different world with different civilizations, different people, different language, different rules of the world, different science. It’s not a sci-fi but a normal fiction fantasy with swords and spears and horses and warriors. There are different creatures.
Q: Like Lord of the Rings?
A: Something like Lord of the Rings. But the major difference here is that – there’s no protagonist or antagonist. My book is more about two different ideas than two different characters. It’s my take on life and death.
Q: What’s your ultimate goal?
A: I want to be a professor at a brilliant college—either a management college or a brilliant school. And I also want to write a lot of books.
Q: Any tips for future CAT aspirants?
A: People study a lot but take breaks. The exam is for three hours. So study hard for three hours.
There’s a myth about Barcelona team that they practiced 180 minutes for a 90 minute game. So that’s the thing. Even you study for one day in a week, make sure, it’s a long stretch of study with zero breaks.
Q: Thank you for talking to Shiksha.com.
A: No problem. Thank you.
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