Karishma Khurana - AIR 40 CA Final May 2016, Chandigarh, Punjab
Karishma Khurana

My name is Karishma Khurana and I am from the beautiful city-Chandigarh. I did my schooling from Golden Bells Public School and SD Public School, Chandigarh. I am a Commerce graduate from GGDSD college, Chandigarh and have been a University Topper apart from being a Gold Medalist in Commerce from Punjab University. I have just completed my CA in May 2016 and have even secured an AIR 40.

My family consists of my father, mother and a younger brother. Both my parents are in Government service and my Brother is pursuing Law from GNLU. While I was doing my graduation degree, I took the decision of taking up this wonderful yet challenging profession of Chartered Accountancy. I believe myself to be an achiever, someone who isn’t afraid of taking up challenges and this is why I decided to dive into this profession.

My first reaction


To be honest, I was petrified few days before the result was announced and even lost my appetite and sleep due to the hovering fear of something terrible. My dad was the first person who saw my result and informed me over telephone that I had passed the exam and all I remember is that I was jumping with joy and ecstasy. It was the most thrilling and memorable moment of my life and I had tears of happiness in my eyes. There are a few people I’d like to give credit to for my success. I’d like to give the credit of my success to my parents and brother for their patience, cooperation, pampering and all the love that they showered on me during my preparation time. My teachers for their wonderful knowledge and guidance, my principal for always motivating me and last but not the least, my friends who constantly motivated me throughout my journey of becoming a CA.

Articleship


I did my internship from Sanjay Yashpal Kapoor & Associates, Panchkula. Though a mid-sized firm, I got the opportunity to learn diversified work that ranged from indirect taxation to finance and from direct taxation to corporate affairs. Being a part of such diversified work environment surely helped me master a few subjects that we have in finals.

Preparation


Friends, preparing for CA final examination requires a lot of precision, analysis and time management. There has to be a perfect plan that you need to follow during that 4-5 month period of preparation in order to succeed in this exam. I started preparing for my May 2016 exams from November 2014 itself and took up SFM and Law tuitions. After that it was ISCA, followed by Direct and indirect taxes. I did self study for Financial Reporting, Advanced management accounting and Audit.

In my opinion, there are a few subjects in our syllabus that require guidance and expertise and this was the reason I chose to take coaching for a few subjects. In case, you have a time dearth, subjects like law, audit and FR can be easily prepared by self study.

Strategies


A. Study schedule
During my coaching days, I made it a habit to revise whatever was done in the class at least once at home. As soon as I got my off from office, slowly and steadily I started increasing the study hours, that ranged from 5-6 hours initially and went up to 14-15 hours a day. I paired up a practical and theory subject during my revision in order to keep up the interest and pace.

B. Strong and Weak subjects (How did I prepare them?)
From the very beginning, I was pretty sure that my strength lied in theory subjects like law, audit and ISCA. Apart from these, taxation- both direct and indirect interested me the most. So, my strategy was clear, strengthen your strengths and then take up the weak ones. Though FR and Costing were fairly ok to deal with, it was SFM that really gave me sleepless nights. For preparing SFM, I actually allocated myself 15-20 exclusive days in which I did my coaching notes and the practice manual once. Solving practice manual really gave me the confidence to do SFM comfortably.

Books and e-sources


  • Financial Reporting- Parveen Sharma Sir’s modules
  • SFM- Sanjay Saraf notes + Practice manual of institute
  • Audit- Pankaj Garg book
  • Law- Swami Sir Notes (Teacher in Chandigarh) + Practice Manual
  • Direct Tax- Vinod Gupta modules
  • Indirect tax- Dippak Gupta modules
  • ISCA- Swapnil Sir modules
  • Cost- Sanjay Aggarwal notes + Practice manual
  • ESources- ICAI’s knowledge portal for mocks and rtp’s

Mock tests


Though I didn’t attended any mock test conducts but I certainly solved all the mock test papers available on ICAI’s website. I had allocated special time for such papers and did mocks of past 2 years apart from the current ones. And solving these mocks definitely gave me the confidence to face my final exams with perfection and precision.

Rank and preparation


Oh yes, I surely was aiming for a CA Final rank and in order to keep the momentum going, I tend to reschedule my study time table. According to me, 4-5 months of continuous studies make everything so monotonous and boring, that sometimes you don’t even feel like looking towards the books. Under such circumstances I made it a point to have a cheat day or two from my studies and relax and rejuvenate, go out with friends or maybe for a movie for rechanneling my energy.

Future Plans


From the very beginning, I was quite sure that I would be entering the corporate world after I complete my CA and tend to take up that task now.

ICAI Campus


I’ve made it a point to read newspaper daily apart from the latest amendments in the tax and law provisions. I am brushing up my communication skills and working on my soft skills in order to grab the best opportunity that I could get during the campus.

Advice to fellow students


Friends, the most challenging aspect of clearing out finals is to defeat the kind of pressure that we tend to build up in our minds regarding this examination. CA final exams work like any other exam; they just require more focus and hard work. You’ll find tens of people that would advise you to leave friends, stop using cell phones, going out or even using internet but you need to understand that you are the best judge of your situation. I was perfectly ok using Facebook and whatsapp even during my exam days because that helped me get off the steam. You just need to draw a line for yourself, focus and move forward with determination and believe me, there’s no stopping then. Have patience and perseverance, put your heart and soul in whatever you take up in life and you are bound to clear your CA finals with flying colors.