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CLAT: A retrospective trip down memory lane

Studying for CLAT retrospective
Studying for CLAT retrospective

The Common Law Admission Test (CLAT) is by most accounts a tortuous affair. Legally India has chronicled the journeys of a few CLAT takers to success or other opportunities. Share your memories here, even if you would rather forget.

Nidhi Modani: (Rank 1 CLAT-2009). Bas naam hi kaafi hai!

Her friends have a fan page dedicated to her on Facebook which describes Nidhi as an athlete. So what does the athlete have for dinner?

Maggi! Cooked by her sister.

Nidhi recollects: "I worked late into the nights and my sister gave me great company all night. She had not much do so she used to paint. How I miss her awesome creations now."

Family support played a huge part in Nidhi's success. "I started serious preparations in April and thanks to mum had no disturbances or interruption whatsoever."

"Without the support of my mum, dad and sister, I could not have made it."

Aruj Garg (Rank 19-CLAT 2008) could be an Arjuna reincarnate of the twenty first century; his eyes fixed upon his goal, ready to hit the fish's eye.

In class eleven he joined a crash course by a popular coaching institution and sat the entrance exams for NLS Bangalore, NALSAR Hyderabad and NLUJ Jodhpur just "to get the feel" of the exams.

He then did a year's coaching in class twelve. In January he joined another popular course in Delhi, skipping his pre-boards for which he took special permission from his school.

And if that was not enough he took mock tests of yet another coaching institution which was run by a bunch NLS guys. Phew!

Nida Doon (Rank 149- CLAT 2009) took a leaf out of Aruj's book and did two years of coaching. "What I have realised is that for CLAT the only things required are presence of mind, coherent thoughts and time management."

Prateek Rath adopted an intellectually invigorating  path reading books written by eminent jurists like Blackstone, Palkhivala, Mansfield and Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr. (ahem). "This used to keep me motivated," he says.

For Harshit Bansal (Rank 337- CLAT 2009)
daily travelling from Panipat to New Delhi to attend his coaching classes became tiring. "If you have to travel like this take some GK supplements or magazines with you," he advises.

Shikhar Garg (Rank 396- CLAT 2009)
had a dream of studying in NALSAR since the time he decided to pursue law. Though he did not get his coveted place, he followed an interesting approach. "The CLAT brochure had snapshot of the NALSAR entrance gate. I ripped the page and pasted the picture on the notice board of my study table."

But Vaisakh Shaji's case (Rank 153- CLAT 2009) of how he continued dreaming until he realised it is awe inspiring. After spending a year at GLC Mumbai he decided that is not where he wanted to spend five years of his life.

He gave CLAT 2008 a go but didn't make it.

"Ultimately what is the best is worth the wait," he claims.

He then tried for CLAT 2009. "A lot of people discouraged me and told me that I was mad to sacrifice two years but I was convinced that I won't settle for anything less."

He got NUJS in this second attempt and another five marks would have put him in NLSIU. "It all proved to be very costly, mentally and monetarily. I crammed up the whole Oxford dictionary. Beat that."

"I had concentration problems and used to lose my focus sometimes. Somebody told me this chant to recite everyday," he adds smiling. "It's tricky, but it did help to a certain extent."

Paroma Mitra's (Rank 5- CLAT 2009) party plans went into a tailspin courtesy the postponement of CLAT 2009. "I remember how we were supposed to have this post CLAT party and had a pub booked for the 18 May."

"But thanks to CLAT getting postponed we actually ended up having the post-CLAT party two weeks before we actually wrote CLAT."

On a more serious note she adds: "My preparations suffered a setback due to the postponement. The momentum got slackened."

Luckily she was jolted back to normalcy (read urgency) with the NLSD entrance exam results where she stood "nowhere near the top".

"So, effectively it was the last ten days when I put in the maximum I could."

"I had fun preparing for CLAT. It's fun now to remember the weird bits of GK [general knowledge] we had memorised for CLAT."

Sneha Deka didn't make it through the CLAT system and is presently at ILS Pune. "I guess I was more focussed on my boards," she remembers. "But ILS is not bad at all. I am enjoying myself here."

We wish CLAT 2010 takers all the best for their exam! We hope some of these examples will goad you on to success. And remember, if it does not work the way you intend it to, it is not the end of the world and even what initially appears as failure can be an opportunity in the end.

Picture by Eflon

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