By Jasoon Chelat

Ok listen you guys. I never knew what to do in life. Ever. Mujhe poet banna tha. That is not a viable profession. (Have you seen Pyaasa? And his nazms were actually good. Mine aren’t.)

I knew that at least till I write one of those books like “I too had a love story” that everybody reads in the metro I wasn’t ever going to make any money out of that.

So after school was over, I could have been anything. I could have been a sailor, could have been a cook .

So I just wrote all the exams. All the exams. I mean it, ladies. I didn’t study for any of them, and as expected, I got approximately the 239874387583th place in all of them.

Except CLAT. I got into NUJS, which is pretty neat. One of the three top law colleges in India (Approximately. Don’t start a fight. Make love not war. Or better still make some tea. World peace).

The point of this is not to tell you what a genius I am. The point is that CLAT is not like other exams. It’s a bit different; it is designed in a different way. It requires a different strategy, and is not about too much hard work, but a particular kind of hard work.

Although I presume that now it must be at least five times as competitive now as it was back in my day, (you snotty little kids) but the fact still remains that it’s not about knowing everything there is to know.

Which is very reassuring, I must tell you. It’s not about how much ground you cover, and more about which way you are going. It’s more of a Zen thing, you know.

Also, now that I’ve been to law school, I know that the people there are also a bit different. The kind of people that get through the exam, and I guess the kind of people that want to do law in the first place are a bit different.

Apart from the fact that they tend to talk a lot, they also have this general tendency to cut to the chase. (Although they might do this in significantly different ways.

Some people may be talking about what is the specific provision of this particular law that actually matters. Some people cut to the very heart of the chase, like, what is the point of it all. What is life. Why are we here. Why is everything made in China. )

What I’m trying to say is; it’s a lot about knowing where to look. Not looking at a lot of different things. Which may a rewarding experience in itself, but I am guessing you are reading this because you want to get into law school, and want to do something about it.

So it follows that the kind of preparation you have to do for CLAT is also different. Most coaching classes (Not this one. This is the best one.) are not geared especially towards this kind of preparation, the kind that you need for CLAT.

They are more of a one size fits all, general purpose places. Which is not by itself bad, but they are not the hero Gotham needs right now. The thing with one size fits all is that it does not fit all.

If what you want to do is have a crack at all the exams, an amalgam of MAT, XAT, CAT and every other kind of MBA entrance and god knows what else, then these places may provide you material for ALL THE THINGS. CLAT is just one of the things they do.

But if you are a CLAT aspirant, and you know that law is what you want to do, then they may not be right for you. Because CLAT doesn’t work like the rest of the exams do. It’s not about ALL THE THINGS.

It’s about the important, specific things, like what logical reasoning questions you can get stuck on for hours, what principles really matter in legal reasoning, and what is the kind of general knowledge questions that you are likely to get asked.

You need to separate what matters from what is not important. In short, like people who’ve made it before, you need a certain proficiency to cut to the chase.

Which is why logically, people who have already taken the exam, aced it, and have graduated from the top law schools are the best people to tell you what to do. They know what it is like. They are the kind of people that like to tell you things, the kind of people that get to the point.

The kind of people who know how CLAT works, and ultimately how law school works.

So if you know what you want to do is law, and CLAT is what you want to crack, then CLATAPULT is where you want to go. Also, kids, apropos of nothing, if you don’t know if you want to do law, then don’t do it.

You’re going to do law for half a decade of your life, and most probably something related to it for the rest. Bukowski said:

unless it comes unasked out of your
heart and your mind and your mouth
and your gut,
don’t do it.

He didn’t say that about doing law, and he was always a bit drunk, apparently, but it applies.

If it does, then do it. But remember that for cracking this particular exam, it’s not about how much you learn. Sometimes you have to unlearn what you have learned, and it is not about how much you try. There is no try.

What I’m trying to say is, if what you want to do is law, then CLATAPULT is the Yoda you are looking for.

Jasoon Chelat is the bestestestest writer of the NUJS batch of 2013. The IP address for any machine belonging to Raveena Paul has been blocked.


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