IIT Gandhinagar Hostellers Study Together to Crack CAT With Identical Marks, Now Aiming at IIM Ahmedabad

Dhanesh Bhutada, Viraj Shah, and Harshit Kumar, all BTech students from IIT Gandhinagar have cracked the IIM entrance exam — CAT 2021 securing 99.99 percentile, each. The secret behind topping one on the toughest management exam? Group study, they say.

The trio had formed a group and jointly prepared for the MBA entrance for about six months. While Dhanesh is from Pune, Viraj and Harshit both are from Ahmedabad. The trio now wants to opt for IIM Ahmedabad as it is the “best institute” when it comes to MBA followed by IIM Bangalore, claim the friends.

While Dhanesh and Harshit are pursuing chemical engineering at IIT Gandhinagar, Viraj is a student of mechanical engineering. They will be graduating in May 2022. The bright students stay in the same hostel and call themselves “neighbours”.

IIT Gandhinagar which has been closed since March 2020 due to the pandemic, had opened its doors for the hostellers in 2021 and thereafter the trio began their preparations for CAT 2021 together. They had opted for coaching for CAT as well and used to share notes. They used to give tests on a regular basis as well and solve questions consistently.

“We used to take mock tests together and later discuss where we discussed the same and what all needs to be done to get ahead with the CAT preparations,” says Harshit Kumar. “We used to figure which questions we have attempted and what we have avoided, etc,” he adds.

All `three claim that for CAT, time management is of utmost importance unlike JEE Main and Advanced where the students need to have their concepts clear and is a syllabus-driven exam. “You need to have a good grasp of the syllabus to crack JEE, whereas in CAT there are sections like verbal and logical reasoning which doesn’t require much studying. It is more about selecting the easier questions in CAT, questions that can be solved faster and time management is important,” says Harshit.

Harshit Kumar

“Speed is of utmost essence is CAT. We get less than two minutes to solve questions and hence time management is the most important thing. I used to study for 2-3 hours per day and solved around 90 to 100 questions every day. Due to online classes at my coaching, I was given the study material and had to prepare on my own. Studying for BTech along with preparing for CAT made me learn a lot about time management. I also gave some time to extracurricular activities. Unlike CAT, JEE portion is quite vast, however, the math section in JEE Advanced is quite similar to CAT. So it was more like a revision with that subject,” says Dhanesh.

Dhanesh Bhutada

“We formed a group of 4-5 students in college itself to study for CAT. That along with mock tests really helped me crack CAT 2021. In October and November, I gave 20-25 mock tests whose difficulty level is almost the same as CAT which also helped a lot. In the group study, we discussed time management and how fast to solve the papers. I had to increase my reading speed for CAT,” explains Viraj.

Viraj Shah

Harshit scored 4700 ranks in JEE Main and 1400 in JEE Advanced. His father is a CA and his mother is a housewife. While Viraj wants to join his father’s business in the future. He scored 199 in JEE Main and a rank of 3824 in JEE Advanced.

Dhanesh who aims to be an entrepreneur, says BTech with MBA would be beneficial when it comes to business. He scored around 6200 in JEE Advanced and 17000 in JEE Mains. While his father is an ayurvedic doctor, his mother is a lawyer.

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