Nishant Prasad is a high level contributor of CLATGyan and a II semester student of NALSAR University of Law by virtue of his CLAT 92 Rank. Moreover, he is the one who takes care of our basic needs in the hostels. From broken windows to disturbed supply of water, we go to him for fixation. Oh.. he also plays a lot of Taylor Swift while we dress up for classes!… Here’s Nishant Prasad telling you his story….
Well this story begins in about class 8 when I decided that Science is not a way for me to go. With dismal scores and absolute disinterest in the subject, it would be suicide. I decided to take up humanities after 10th. I was well-supported by my parents who are humanities students themselves. With an engineer in the picture(my elder brother), Science wasn’t much required I guess.
After the 10th board results were out, applications to junior colleges in Mumbai began. I heard of classes by LST from a senior who had taken them (currently in NUJS). I went to their office and they told me we have a 2 year classroom programme as well as a one year programme. Being the lazy ass I was I decided I shall enjoy my 11th as it was pretty much the only year which would not matter in the future and I could enjoy. So I decided to join LST in 12th. It was during this visit to LST that I became absolutely clear on CLAT as an All India entrance exam and its procedures.
11th std went on peacefully. I had the greatest time of my life. I would like to say something here – I never regretted wasting my 1 year in the 11th std. doing nothing. I was proud of that decision. The year came to an end and at this point of time I was absolutely nowhere in terms of preparations. And believe me I hate reading. I had not read anything but the sports sections of newspapers up until this point.
12th std began and so did LST classes. I used to enjoy coming for classes as I had made some great friends there who also now happen to be some of my closest friends. We had an amazing time studying law and dreaming about those top 3 NLU’s. Well our dreams were dashed after the first test at LST where our ranks were so dismal that we would not be getting any Law school, let alone the 11 NLU’s. It was at this point where all of us who were the ‘wasted’ students(according to our teachers), still remained a pain to them but started working. It was an eye-opener. And herein I don’t even mean working hard like a few others in our class who used to scare us. They were always the ones answering, knew all the answers of weird GK questions about people, events and countries I had never heard of. They knew the Law of torts as if they had finished the semester at law school.
I still had not learnt my lesson. My preparation after the “eye-opener” was that I FORCED myself to read the entire paper along with the editorials.
Section wise my preparations were as follows and this started in December.(don’t follow it, believe me its too late.)
1. English: I enthusiastically started a book called Norman Lewis as my vocabulary was pathetic and with the LST people giving such words in their mock tests I had never known it became a must. It started off pretty well. I learnt a few good words. As time passed I stopped doing it. Its not completed even till now. I would personally recommend you do manage to complete it though.
2. Logical Reasoning: This was one section where I was not that worried. In Analytical reasoning my only problem was time, and in time with practice from the mock tests and from certain books, that was overcome. Critical reasoning was something which many of my friends had a problem, but it was something which came naturally to me and I scored pretty well in it. Logic was my strength and actually my only strength hence I hoped that I would not screw up this section in CLAT!
3. Legal Aptitude and GK: Since we were pretty sure that legal reasoning was not going to play a big part, I didn’t quite practice it that much. But I was good at it and enjoyed it. So it wasn’t a worry for me. Legal knowledge was a HUGE problem. For Current GK and legal knowledge the next six months all I did was read through newspapers and I maintained a book where I wrote down all important questions with answers. This book helped a lot because writing things down tends to help me remember. My current Gk was hence becoming stronger as well as legal knowledge. However I had left Static GK all on what I had learnt in school history and geography.( A good thing I was always good in History and geography otherwise with the CLAT paper we had I would not be where I am today.) With the LST mocks throwing ridiculous GK and legal knowledge questions which we knew weren’t going to come, still the pressure was building as there was a fear of IF these questions come, then what? Our legal knowledge scores were terrible in the mocks.
4. Maths: This was my worst section. With a highest score of 8/20 among all mocks of LST, this section had been the reason for my horrid ranks in the mocks. I was very worried that this section would be the reason for my downfall in CLAT, because it was a subject I was struggling with since the time I first did it and even with all efforts it somehow always amazed my brain by turning out to be something else. I could not improve myself in this as I had been trying to do so for the past 8 years and it had not happened. This section was left to God. Thankfully the CLAT’10 maths was of a very low level. It disappointed others but it was a blessing in disguise for me.
With respect to books that I used, they were minimal. Very enthusiastically I had bought Pearsons GK manual etc. Never used it. The few books I did use were:
- Verbal and Non-Verbal reasoning by R.S Agarwal- I loved logic, solved it religiously.
- Universals legal GK- I don’t remember the exact name but it was a thin Green book with Legal knowledge.
That’s pretty much it. I had lexis Nexis and other books loaded, but I never got to using them. Also one mistake I did but it did not cost me, was I did not solve any past year papers. Not even one. For the upcoming CLAT although I would advise you to solve the NUJS papers.
LST mocks: These mocks content wise, most of it was a waste as it was too tough and such questions can never come for CLAT. But what these mocks helped me in was practicing on OMR sheets and time management. My speed in circling the options became much faster than when I first did it. And these small things matter. Your speed in CLAT will be important. Also I did use all the mock tests and wrote down the important GK questions which I thought might come in current. I actually copied almost all GK questions from the mocks as we thought current affairs will be important. We all know how that went in the end.
At this point it was around March-April and the only thing I was doing was brushing up my Current affairs and Legal knowledge. I had forgotten all other sections and Maths well, I did not even try. At the end of each year, the Hindu releases an event diary online for important events of the previous year. I went through the entire diary and again wrote down what was relevant.
That was pretty much it for preparation. One thing which really helped me was discussing and sharing materials with friends. In our group we shared everything we had made. Don’t be selfish, it hurts you in the end. Discuss with your friends in class. It helps.
One other thing I had done which helped me for my CLAT was the Sriram classes Mocks. I was able to answer static GK only because in all their mocks they had given only static GK and minimal current affairs.
Soon it was May and 2nd December was NLU-D and Symbiosis exams. Amongst the running between centers for both exams were not that great for me. 9th May came pretty quickly and frankly in the last week I had not done anything. The exam time went pretty quickly as we were too engrossed in giving the paper. When the paper ended, the feeling cannot be described in words.
P.S. Never discuss the CLAT paper. It might disappoint you and keep you anxious till the results. Did not happen to me but I saw it happen to others. But this is your personal choice.
The story does not end here. NLU Delhi results came within 2 weeks and with a dismal rank of 424 I wondered whether I was going to make it to any NLU in CLAT which had a much greater number of takers. The day of CLAT results came pretty soon. 29th May. Just two days before my birthday. I was wondering whether it would be a sad one or a good one. The day went impatiently as the results came out at 8 in the night.
The results were to my liking and well the 4 months of not-that-much-effort had not gone to waste. It was a Huge surprise and shock to even my parents who checked the name twice at that rank. Yes, I was coming to NALSAR.
You might be able to identify with some of the problems I had If not all of them. Hope you enjoyed reading my experience. I thought it would be a good read for you people.
I really hope CG is helping you and we see our users here with us next year!
The ClatGyan Team