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The CLAThacker Interview Series XVI - AIR 6 in CLAT 2014, we have our very own budding lawyer and poet Himanshu Gupta from NLSIU share his tips for success!

  •          Tell us a bit about yourself.


I’m Himanshu Gupta. I was CLAT rank 6 last year. I hail from Sehore a beautiful district in M.P. My entire school life was spent in Kendriya Vidyalaya, Sehore. I took an active part in different extra-curriculars during my schooldays, such as quizzing, acting, debating, sports, scouts and guides, drawing and learnt a lot from them. I have a keen interest in hindi-urdushayaris and poems.



  •         Do you have lawyers among your family and relatives? Who or what inspired you to pursue law as a career option?


No, there is no lawyer in the family. I think the ways in which law could be used for the benefit of society has inspired me a lot.



  •          What did your friends, teachers and other people around you react when they came to know about your decision to become a lawyer?

All my school friends have either chosen to study engineering or medicine. My decision was entirely different. No one around me knew much about law as a career. My parents were fine with my choice, but my friends were surprised as I was the only person in the group who was doing something different; perhaps they were expecting me to pursue my interest in astronomy


·         What were the entrance exams you took?

I took CLAT and AILET only.


·         When did you start preparing for CLAT & AILET?

I had not heard much about the CLAT before my 12th standard. I had vaguely classified it as a back up option in my mind. However, during 12th I realised that I wanted to pursue this option. After boards, I joined a crash course and then I took a year off and started preparing for it keeping NLS as the aim.

  •          How do you advise aspirants to prepare for GK.What materials did you use?


With respect to static GK, I can claim that my interest in trivia since my early school life did contribute heavily to my knowledge base. However, for current GK, I read ‘The Hindu’ whole year, and apart from it, I used Competition In Focus and Pratiyogitadarpan for current affairs. I used and gktoday for regular gk notes. Towards the end, I relied over my own GK notes more.

I think G.K. comes from your daily observations. Therefore, be aware about what is going on in country and world. A strategy I would recommend while one is preparing GK is to solve questions on whatever topic one reads. It helps in retention as well as increasing your knowledge.


  • English and being from a small town were impediments on your path. How would you advise others like you so that they too can excel?

I belong to a pure Hindi family and environment. My school did not have an “English” culture, and my inclinations being towards Hindi and Urdu poetry, I was not exposed to an atmosphere centred around English. So, for me, when I started preparing for CLAT, English was the biggest obstacle in the path of success. Initially I scored very less but then regular practice and self-analysis helped me to score well enough in CLAT.

I think logic and grasping power are two key factors which contribute to improving your English. So I would suggest that aspirants should practice more and more questions on English, and to make a habit of reading either novels or newspapers. Solving one or two English passages daily can even help in improving your critical reasoning and legal reasoning scores.


  • What are the books and materials you used for CLAT& AILET?

As it was a long year so I had a lot of time. Since you are asking about the books I would go subject wise. For English Tata McGraw Hills objective English and R.S. Agrawal objective English. For logical reasoning m.k.pandey, r.s.agrawal and arihant publications logical reasoning.For legal reasoning LexisNexis and Universal Publication and any question that I can get.For maths r.s.agrawal. I have already told you about GK.


  •          Did you go to any coaching centre? What is your opinion on coaching centres?


Yes, I joined Success Ahead Coaching Classes in Bhopal. That was their first year and the team worked a lot with me and all the students. I think the biggest advantage of Coaching Classes is that it makes you regular and you can analyse yourself by comparsion with the preparation of other students.


  • Tell us about the mock tests you took. From where did you source them? How often did you take a mock test? Did you subscribe to any specific mock test series?


I took mocks of probably every coaching institute in Bhopal. I would borrow mock papers from my friends or friend’s friends, photocopy them and then use them. I joined a mock test series of Mentors United coaching classes. So overall I gave around 60 mocks this way. I think it helps you for self-analysis as your coaching mocks aren’t sufficient enough to provide you with proper feedback.

·         In your opinion what are the top five skills required to ace these entrance tests?

I think passion,regularity, smart work, self-confidence and logical way of thinking are the skills which helped me to crack CLAT. But, I think passion is the most important. There is a word in Urdu ‘Junoon’ for passion. Anyone can do anything with ‘junoon’ in his heart.

I used the word ‘smart work’ but not hard work. I believe that everyone does hard work but not everyone cracks CLAT. The reason is simple- your hard work should be in a proper way Read only what is important, and not everything under the sun. Smart work is what is really necessary.

·         How did you manage to cope with the stress during preparation?


I don’t think I was in so much stress for CLAT during preparation because it was always fun to solve CLAT mocks. I had good friends in coaching and we did enjoy our preparation a lot. I was regular in my studies and I scored quite fine whole year therefore I think I never had any stress on me.



  • Where do you see yourself after 5 years from now? How has your experience inNLSIUbeen so far?


That’s a different question to answer looking into the opportunities in the college as my priorities will change much in these five years. There is a lot to learn and there is lot to do so I think whatever will be my interest that time I will follow my heart.


My experience in NLS is really very good. The whole year is like a period of transition for me. In the beginning I was a little terrified of this place when I was faced with its workaholic culture. By and by, I found that you need to find time for your own little pieces of joy from the hectic workschedule. Moreover, the seniors are very good and supportive, and you can follow your interest by being a part of their work. Sports, debates, theatres, quad parties, NYP, conferences, poem reciting meetings and everything has left on me a nice impression.

Gradually, I started loving NLS which is a world in itself.


  •         What is your message to our readers?


I believe that CLAT is a simple test. Anyone can crack it , anyone can achieve a very high rank but it all requires passion, self-confidence and smart work. I want to say that don’t take stress because it is not going help, and you never give up. Life doesn’t end here; it starts from here. For all those who are taking CLAT this year, I wish you all the best. Acquire seat in the college where you want to with your favourite rank. And if someone needs any help you can contact me. Thanks.

"Aasmanki koi seemanahi h, na h panchi k pankhome thakhan

Toofano se jhoona h use badhte hue aage, kyunki ye h hoslonkiudaan."

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Comment by Aashi Sharma on July 30, 2015 at 9:34pm actually nw m little worried...i hav already wasted my 2 mnths...what shld i do...9 mnths r enough fr d prep..plz hlp

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If you have doubts on logical reasoning or critical reasoning, ask here.

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