My Motto in Life is: Attitude is Everything
Jahangir’s World Times (JWT): Please tell us about yourself, educational background and achievements in detail.
Habib Munir (HM): I belong to District Panjgur, Mekran division of Balochistan. I am a self-motivated person who believes in hard work irrespective of reason being ‘Attitude is everything’. I completed my primary education from St. Mary’s Y.M.C.A high school Quetta. Then, I went to Cadet College Mastung and continued my educational journey till Intermediate. Later, I did my Bachelors as well as MBA in Marketing from the Institute of Management Sciences, University of Balochistan Quetta.
However, I am deeply attached with the philosophical ideologies because I believe that it enhances one’s horizon in terms of assessing one’s living.
Well as far as my achievements are concerned, I won’t hesitate to say I remained an average student throughout my academic career, therefore; I never achieved any distinction in the academics except passing the CSS examination. On the contrary, I participated a lot in extra-curricular activities wholeheartedly and managed to achieve some awards in sports, debates and declamation contests.
JWT: What types of guidance one should seek?
HM: Well, I am of the opinion that we all are actually guided one. However, one must seek the relevant guidance from seniors in order to evolve some sort of strategy in terms of attempting the papers which can lead towards the ultimate success.
JWT: Did you prefer books or notes; what should be prepared and how?
HM: Obviously, there is no alternative of good books and there is positive co-relationship between books and concepts. But here, I would like to emphasise that only reading books will not pay any dividend unless you understand that what you are reading. It generates a concept about the subject under study Therefore, well written books and reading techniques i.e. to analyze the authors argument and sources from where (author) has collected data to justify his point of view is really important. Moreover, reading of the books written by some other authors on the same subject are the fundamental building blocks of not only for the essay but also for attempting critical questions asked in the examination. I never made notes for the CSS examination in context but I did keep the records of the arguments provided by any author to justify his thesis.
JWT: What are the prerequisites for the CSS examination? For instance a new student appearing for CSS, what type of ability and talent should he possess?
HM: The prerequisites for the CSS examination in my opinion are commitment, determination, hard work and discipline. Furthermore, development of argumentative approach and logical skills are also essential to present one’s own ideas clearly and logically. Thus if one has courage to meet this challenge (CSS Exam) along with logical ideas; he can go through the CSS, successfully.
JWT: What are the key steps for the preparation of especially English Essay and Composition paper?
HM: For the part of Essay, I will recommend reading, reading and reading of good books on various subjects as well as adoption of author’s style of writing, i.e. syntax, sentence structure, diction and punctuation in order to develop one’s own writing style.
Now, for the composition paper, I would like to suggest that basics of English grammar really matter a lot. Therefore, reading good grammar books and solving the given exercises is extremely necessary to accelerate one’s fundamental understanding of the English language. In addition, extensive practice of Precis writing along with the reading of the editorial page of the Daily DAWN would be very helpful.
JWT: What sort of combination students should opt for the optional subjects?
HM: It totally depends upon one’s own preferences and interests. My advice to the new aspirants is that always go for those subjects in which they have at least some interest or liking. On the contrary, opting for subjects with an objective of scoring good marks is totally a wrong approach and the fact, is that there is no such subject which can be called a scoring one. Therefore, please, do not limit your understanding and horizon by opting the so-called marks scoring subject at the expense of the subject for which you are already not only motivated but also have some interest.
JWT: What are the ways to get higher marks in written part of CSS exam?
HM: Well, First of all for higher marks it is necessary that one must do a lot of general reading along with continuous practice of focused writing in order to present one’s point of view; giving relevant data especially when it comes to attempt critical questions. Secondly, question should be attempted logically, to the point and in a precise way, no need to write unnecessary details just to make the answer lengthy. Lastly, candidates must learn how to develop a thesis statement and how to structure the contents of the body followed by the conclusion. Otherwise, attempting a question abruptly will never fetch high scores.
JWT: How many months and daily hours are required for CSS preparation?
HM: Quality not the quantity matters. So, if something is to be done then just do it. So instead of wasting time in terms of its division into months and hours just focus on its beneficial utilization, I mean develop a schedule for study, set your priorities and then follow your plan with firm determination that’s it.
JWT: What are the general problems of CSS candidates in Balochistan?
HM: There are a lot of problems being faced by the candidates of Balochistan. They can be broadly categorized in this way: lack of quality institutions, unavailability of libraries and lack of proper guidance. In spite of the fact, now from last three years, candidates of Balochistan are doing well in the CSS exam. Remember! ‘It is not the gun but the man behind the gun that matters’.
JWT: Do you believe in ‘Luck Factor’ in CSS?
HM: Yes, I do believe in luck factor but I also believe in hard work and determination to achieve something in life.
JWT: What is so special in FSP that you opted for this group?
HM: In general all the occupational groups are good; and every group has its merits and demerits. As I said earlier that ‘Attitude is everything’, I think I have the best attitude to serve in Foreign Service that is why I opted for the Foreign Services of Pakistan. Moreover, it is a very challenging job as well as it provides a lot of opportunities for learning and I am still a learner who wants to learn more and more.
Here, I simply advice to new aspirants that please make up your mind for the CSS exam and take it seriously. When decided then arrange the required materials, seek the guidance of your seniors and develop a study plan on daily basis and stick to it firmly. Best of luck for all the aspirants!