The unstoppable juggernaut: Debakanta Kar

The unstoppable juggernaut: Debakanta Kar

Mar 19, 2018 | Animesh

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The streak of success seems to continue its unbroken spell as we stumbled upon Debakanta Kar yet again after our first tryst with him earlier in the year. This time around, Team MM caught up with the passionate coder, after his recent feat of becoming the GATE topper of CSE, NITR. Overwhelming with modesty, he talked more about the assiduous study regimen that has helped him bag the coveted top rank in the examinations. In the aftermath of his recent achievement of securing an AIR 136 in the infamously hard and competitive exam, he shares his success story that will surely inspire students.

MM: When did you set your goals upon cracking GATE? How did you go about with the preparations?

DK: I actually started a little late. If you want a better score you should start preparing from November or earlier. I actually knew most of the concepts, and our college syllabus is highly oriented towards GATE itself, so that helped too. Our college syllabus is made keeping GATE in mind so I didn’t have to take any extra coaching or study arrangements.

MM: How much time did you devote towards academics and how much for GATE specifically? What was your key to success? What resources guided you through the process?

DK: I started around mid-December with focused preparations. My aim was mainly to qualify GATE to enable myself to receive the stipend for my final year. I focused mainly on practicing the questions. If and when I got stuck with a question during my preparations, I would refer to the theory from the Internet.

I studied mostly from the countless YouTube tutorials, like for instance the ones by Ravindrababu whom I commonly followed. I also used to look up GeeksforGeeks for any other reference. I did not take any formal coaching. There is a site called VirtualGATE from which I solved many mock papers. I relied on regular practice a lot and consulted theory whenever I had a problem in between.

What I saw with many of my friends was that they were unable to go through the whole paper. There were easier questions probably towards the end, but if you go about solving them serially, you might end up not having time to attempt them even though you knew their answer. These kinds of time management improve with practice only. You may think on seeing a question that you can solve it, but if you continue wasting a lot of time on it, you will run short of time to solve much simpler questions. So you need to learn to leave the difficult questions and go for the easier ones first.

MM: How has college life been for you for the last few months or so? How much time did you devote to academics?

DK: All my time were mostly devoted to academics, I practiced a lot from the perspective of preparing for GATE. As Dual Degree students, our placement season commences in the coming semester, so now I will be preparing almost exclusively for them.

MM: How has NITR aided in achieving your goals so far? How well-equipped do you think we stand in terms of academic facilities?

DK: Our college curriculum has been most helpful in preparing for GATE, as it is almost totally aligned with the GATE syllabi. Normally the questions come from the topics that are taught in a classroom, so at least there is a benefit here. I didn’t depend much on the library or books of any kind, I mostly relied on online study material and solving test papers

MM: What is your success mantra, especially for our readers who are aspiring to follow your footsteps in the coming years?

DK: If you are talking about GATE, your fundamentals need to be very clear. Some topics might be hard; like in our semester, several theory-based long questions come in exams, but GATE only has an MCQ format. In MCQs, they only ask fundamental questions, so maybe the overall topic is hard, but the fundamentals are easier. The main thing is that you need to know the kind of questions that come. There is no need to study the whole topic, they only ask MCQs and Single Digit Numerical type questions. That especially helped me considering I prepared in such a short time.  And importantly, don’t attempt so many questions, that might attract negative markings as well.

A voracious learner, coder and diligent student, Team MM wholeheartedly congratulates the protégé that has made our Institute proud and wishes him all the best in his future endeavors. For learning more about the stellar achievements and intriguing stories from Debakanta’s college life refer to “WIELDING A LANCE OF CODING: DEBAKANTA KAR


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