About the Author: Lekhaj Patha, a student of IIT(ISM), Dhanbad, talks about his interview at L&T and how he got a real-time exposure of transmission towers.
While most of my friends were looking for industrial trainings at PSUs like BHEL, NTPC, PGCIL, etc., I was looking for an internship in electrical engineering since I believed internships expose us to a plethora of practical knowledge. When I heard the news of Larsen & Toubro visiting our campus, I couldn’t contain my excitement. I knew it was going to be tough owing to all the competition in the department, so I started preparing for the written test and the interview. 10 students were shortlisted for the test on the basis of our CGPAs. Since the company selected most interns from the civil engineering department, I had to surpass all my competitors. The written exam was particularly tough and comprised of questions from control systems, power systems, power electronics, etc. along with aptitude and verbal ability. Four of us cleared the test and were to appear for an interview after 2 hours or so. This gave us time to chill and refresh our minds which somehow helped me stay calm during the interview.
The interview consisted of a technical and an HR round which lasted about 20 minutes. The interview panel had two members. Looking into my CGPA, they asked me if I was the department topper, and I shook my head no. However, I had the highest marks out of the four shortlists which I believed could increase my chances of being selected. They asked me about my favourite subject which was electrical machines. I was asked about the types of relays and switchgear equipment used for protection of transformer and if I knew any other methods of transformer protection. Then, they put forth a question related to circle diagrams of a transformer. I told them that my knowledge was limited to circle diagrams of induction motors, so I was asked to explain the same. They asked me to name another subject of my choice, and I replied with digital electronics. There was a chain of simpler questions related to counters and logic gates followed by questions about my project on wind turbine. I was asked about the type of generator used in wind turbine and the reason for the same, the power that could be generated from a wind turbine, and the working of a wind turbine. Next up were questions related to my interest of solving Rubik’s cubes of various types like mirror, pyraminx, megaminx, axis, skew cubes, etc. They asked me who the current world recorder for solving 3*3*3 cube was, what his best time was, what my average time was, and if it was just a hobby or I had participated in any competition. I was also asked to share the techniques I used to solve the cube. Finally, they asked me about my family and my future plans. Owing to my performance in the technical round, I wasn’t sure of my selection as all my friends boasted of their exemplary performance. However, the results stated an entirely different story; I was the only one to be hired.
I was allotted to Kadapa, Andhra Pradesh, while rest of the interns selected from other departments were allotted to Delhi. I was a bit disappointed then but it proved to be an enriching experience altogether. The organisation provided accommodation to the interns, but we had to arrange for food ourselves. At L&T, I worked in the PT & D department and my project dealt with the construction of transmission towers of 765kV. There is a transmission line from Kurnool to Thiruvallam which is tapped near Kadapa. I was the only intern on-site and was entrusted with the task of monitoring the rate of work and informing my senior in case of any problem. I submitted weekly reports comprising details about the site, the progress in work, etc. and finally a monthly report on the project. I was assigned a task and could complete only 70% of it; to my surprise, this was the highest achieved till now, and I got lauded by the whole team. I also read rulebooks containing guidelines devised by PGCIL that were to be maintained while constructing the towers. I was quizzed on those guidelines from time to time. During my last week, a lot of work was imposed on me along with the task of preparing a report; I think this was done to assess whether I was fit for a PPO. I improved a lot with constant feedback from my manager, who helped me learn the intricacies of the project and clarified all my doubts. On my last day, I threw a party to all my friends there.
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