UPDATE: Insights Test Series – 2016: Plan for covering Previous Year Papers

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Insights Prelims Test Series – 2016

Plan for past year UPSC papers 

This is an update on doubts expressed by you regarding inclusion of previous papers in Mission 2016 Timetable (Test Series – 2016)


The syllabus mentions: Questions based on UPSC past year papers – CS (P) and topics from CS(M), CDS, CAPF. All these examinations are conducted by UPSC every year. Questions from their past year papers are repeated directly-indirectly very often in Civil Services Prelims: hence, the plan.

  • CS (P) means Civil Services (Prelims), referred to as CSP
  • CS (M) means Civil Services (Mains) referred to as CSM
  • CDS means Combined Defence Services Examination.
  • CAPF means Central Armed Police Forces (Assistant Commandants) Examination.

We have mentioned the specific year papers that you need to cover, with the download links at the end of the document.


  1. Consider this question from CAPF 2015.
  2. In order to create awareness among the people regarding endangered species of tortoise, in the month of February 2015, the tortoise festival was held at
  3. a) Hajong Lake, Assam
  4. b) Chilka Lake, Orrissa
  5. c) Loktak lake, Manipur
  6. d) Umiam Lake, Meghalaya

Solution: a)

In first look, you may discard this question as irrelevant for UPSC Civil Services Prelims.

But, when the UPSC examiners set papers, they do not rely on only the questions, but also their options.

If you research even a little bit about the four lakes – Hajong, Chilka, Loktak, Umiam, you will find that they have been UPSC’s favourites. Questions are repeated in one form or the other based on these lakes.

For e.g. if we search Loktak lake, the following is the first search result.

Wikipedia: “Loktak Lake is the largest freshwater lake in North -East India is famous for the phumdis (heterogeneous mass of vegetation, soil, and organic matters at various stages of decomposition) floating over it. Keibul Lamjao the only floating national park in the world floats over it. It is located near Moirang in Manipur state, India…………The Keibul Lamjao National Park, which is the last natural refuge of the endangered sangai or Manipur brow-antlered deer (Cervus eldi eldi), one of three subspecies of Eld’s deer”

The following question on Keibul Lamjao appeared in UPSC CSE Prelims 2015.

Which of the following National Parks is unique in being a swamp with floating vegetation that supports a rich biodiversity?

(a) Bhitarkanika National Park

(b) Keibul Lamjao National Park

(c) Keoladeo Ghana National park

(d) Sultanpur National park

Questions on Loktak lake have appeared in UPSC prelims 2013 also. So, when you see a question, spend some time with its options too. In the above question, Bhitarkanika, Keoladeo and Sultanpur national park are also UPSC’s favourites. Questions have been asked on them directly/indirectly in Prelims 2013-15.

  1. Consider another question from UPSC Civil Services Prelims 2015

What can be the impact of excessive/inappropriate use of nitrogenous fertilizers in agriculture?

1.Proliferation of nitrogen-fixing microorganisms in soil can occur.

2.Increase in the acidity of soil can take place

3.Leaching of nitrate to the ground-water can occur.

Select the correct answer using the code given below.

(a) 1 and 3 only

(b) 2 only

(c) 2 and 3 only

(d) 1,2 and 3

Solution: c)

When you encounter such questions, research about the topics: here Nitrogenous fertilizers; leaching of nitrate to groundwater; and soil acidity. You need not study thoroughly. Open Wikipedia and get an overview of the topics alongwith its impact, causes, related effects etc.

Questions on nitrogenous fertilizers, leaching, acidity of soil keep coming in UPSC.

  1. Consider another question from UPSC Civil Services Mains 2013.
  2. What is the meaning of the term “tax expenditure”? Taking housing sector as an example, discuss how it influences the budgetary policy of the government.

Now, you should do a bit of research about the term tax expenditure. Understand its definition; know organizations associated with it (for e.g. Ministry of Finance); understand its rationale; and its implications.

So, we will be picking up such important questions/options/topics and frame questions.


We have divided the papers Test-wise (wherever past year papers are mentioned in the schedule).

Test NumberPapers
Test – 2CSP 2014-15, CAPF 2015, CDS 2015
Test – 6CSP 2012-13, CAPF 2014, CDS 2014
Test – 8CSP 2010-11, CSM 2015, CAPF 2013
Test – 10CSP 2008-09, CAPF 2012, CDS 2013
Test – 12CSP 2006-07, CAPF 2011, CDS 2012
Test – 13CSP 2004-06, CDS 2011, CSM 2014
Test – 14CSP 2000-03, CSM 2013
Test – 23CSP 1996-99, CSM 2012
Test – 24 (Full Length)CSP 1992-95, CSM 2011
Test – 25 (Full Length)CSP 1991-94, CSM 2010
Test – 26 (Full Length)Questions can be asked from any paper
Test – 27 (Full Length)Questions can be asked from any paper
Test – 28 (Full Length)Questions can be asked from any paper
Test – 29 (Full Length)Questions can be asked from any paper
Test – 30 (Full Length)Questions can be asked from any paper
Test – 31 (Full Length)Questions can be asked from any paper
Test – 32 (Full Length)Questions can be asked from any paper



Please download:

  • CDS & CAPF papers from 2011 to 2015. You need not solve CDS/CAPF papers before that of 2011.
  • UPSC Civil Services (Prelims) papers from 2009 to 2015.
  • UPSC Civil Services (Mains) papers of only 2009
  • For UPSC Prelims papers before that of 2009, you may buy any compilation (book) by Arihant, Disha, New Vishal, TMH etc. It will be better if papers are divided subject-wise in the book that you are purchasing. Some website too offer old CSP paper downloads.

Source to download question UPSC previous year Question papers

2009: http://upsc.gov.in/questionpaper/2009.htm

2010: http://upsc.gov.in/questionpaper/2010.htm

2011: http://upsc.gov.in/questionpaper/2011.htm

2012: http://upsc.gov.in/questionpaper/2012.htm

2013: http://upsc.gov.in/questionpaper/2013.htm

2014: http://upsc.gov.in/questionpaper/2014.htm

2015: http://upsc.gov.in/questionpaper/2015.htm


Thank you.

  • magnus

    thank you

  • RT

    Thank you

  • Albus BhojRaj

    Yes. Insights Caught the Point 🙂

  • Vinay Bhalekar

    thanks sir for u r great efforts

  • emotional/hardwork

    Thank you Insight Team

  • sindhu

    Thank you very much for the great effort. .

  • Vijay Sharma

    For results…The ranking tab shows only our own rank not the whole list. It should show full list with their marks. It should also post what could have been the minimum cut off marks for that test. Thanks insights, please consider this

    • Abhisek Dash

      Yes, Please consider adding this feature.

    • Atif Hussain

      Yes that’s exactly what I thought

    • Uljhan

      Even I was thinking of this. At least total no of students appearing should be given so that we can assess ourselves better.
      Thank you

    • Yashaswi

      I remember reading somewhere that they would post the entire rank list for each test, before the next one is held. If they haven’t, I’m sure they will. Give them some time : )


    thanks a lot for clarification

  • Ashish Agrawal

    CDS questions are really good!!

  • Rimi cse

    U r great …

  • vali

    Guys,,do we need only Gk paper in CDS Exam ?right ,plz clarify about this.thanks.

    • Insights Prelims Test Series

      Yes. 🙂

      • vali

        Thanks insights

  • Jullie Agrawal

    Thank You, Sir.. Great work

  • Ghanshyam Singh

    Csp 2014-15 means 2015 exam question paper or 2014 exam question paper

    • srs

      2014 as well as 2015 papers

  • nitin yadav

    can anybody share answer key of 2015 upsc exams

  • yashwant k

    Please confirm this. http://www.amazon.in/General-Studies-Prelims-Topic-wise-1995-2015/dp/9385846000/ref=dp_ob_title_bk would this suffice the need to cover past 2009 prelims. Thank you.

    • Amar

      Yes, buy this book.
      and cover subject wise solved CS(P) Question from 1995-2015.

  • priya

    insight , are these previous tests going to include in TEST series according to schedule given…..??

    • Insights Prelims Test Series

      Yes, questions based on the topics and options. 🙂

  • Justeena

    Thank you sir..Good job..

  • Chinna Prashanth Hari

    for cds we need gk paper of both cds 1 and cds 2

  • Chinna Prashanth Hari

    and also answer key for capf …..please share the link

    • Insights Prelims Test Series

      Only GK paper. The link has all papers together. Thank you.

  • Manish Chandran

    @[email protected]:disqus Thank you very much insights for this schedule and explanations…Very insightful.

  • neha

    Thanks a lot sir. Although my performance in the 1st test was not good but m sure after following this post i will improve. Thanks a lot once again.

  • Abhinav Kushwaha

    Dear Insights Team, please provide link or website for CSP 1991-2008 papers to download.


    Thanks for the post i find it today although will prepare for next tests 🙂

  • Nimish Chandel

    Thanks Insight. Grt strategy to cover all the previous year questions. This approach will enrich our preparation. ☺

  • prachi

    Hey frnz i found the link of cds solved papers. but plz sum1 clarify are there two gs papers every yr. coz there are 2 papers on right link. plz check & rply

    • deep sinha

      yes..there are 2 papers

  • prachi

    UPSC Civil Services (Mains) papers of only 2009–
    only 2009, doesn’t makes any sense. is this 2009 onwards? or typing mistake like 2009-2014 instead of 2009- ?

    • Insights Prelims Test Series

      Yes, 2009-14. 🙂

  • Avi Kr

    Dear Insights,

    W.r.t. past year papers of CDS and other exams, the explanations provided by you will be more useful than the questions asked, as the latter is going to be limited in nature. So, please try to be exhaustive and cover all the important topics (while providing explanation) from the past year papers in the solution-sheet which you provide after the test. That will be more helpful than the limited number of questions which can be asked in a test.

    Please consider.

    Thank you.

    • Insights Prelims Test Series

      We have been doing it. 🙂 Thank you.

  • anshul

    Dear Insights,

    In one of your earlier posts, you mentioned that you will open a dedicated page for discussion of doubts for each test on this website. Certainly that did not happen for the first test. But I also dont think that it will be feasible here on this site as discussion can not start until every one has attempted the test. I suggest that such page should be included in the test series site itself so that those who give test can also get their doubts cleared through a constructive discussion.

  • pink

    can any one explain me difference of gravitational force from electric and magnetic force

  • pink

    why gujarat is producer of salt can anyone know what is reason

  • deep sinha

    What an initiative to include previous years question papers from various exams and that too with download links provided..not to mention about Tips for even studying these question papers!!..Hats off people. There is utter sincerity and direction in the way guidance is being provided..Thanks a lott!!

  • Harshit Saxena

    Dear Insights pls provide total number of candidates attempted every time after the prelims tests.

  • Chinna Prashanth Hari

    plese provide me link to yojana September 2015

  • Aspirant

    @insightsprelimstestseries:disqus Hi Insight ,from where can we get the answer key of these exams papers?
    is it available on the upsc website?

  • Vaishnav

    @insightsprelimstestseries:disqus @InsightsOnIndia:disqus Hii.. I have posted this query multiple times on various pages and also mailed you thrice but got no response. I understand your busy schedule may be restricting you to do that, but it will be very kind if you could extract some time and answer it. My query ” I have enrolled for Offline Test Series Program. I will be only able to attend starting 4 tests offline. For rest tests, can you please give me online access to tests. ” Thanks in advance.

  • Balaji Bhutkar

    i can’t log in pt exam

  • Anitha

    Hi Insights Team,

    I need to join on Prelims and Mains Test Series now. Is it possible.? Please clarify me how i can join the series.

    • Pooja

      hey..dnt worry. even now you can join..by clicking on ‘subscribe’ written below Online Prelims Test series 2016 Paper 1 and payment of fees.

  • targetaim2019


  • ankita

    hey these links are not working

  • Subhash

    sir which chapters of dd basu read