The 9th Common Law Admission Test (CLAT) was conducted today in 66 cities across India in online format for the second time. The exam was conducted by Rajiv Gandhi National University of Law, Punjab, which will be declaring the cut-offs and results on May 23rd.

CLAT is the doorway to 17 National Law Universities (NLUs) in the country for their five-year integrated law programmes (Ll.B.) as well as masters programs in law (Ll.M.). This year as many as 2342 seats are being offered by the 17 NLUs. 45,040 students have registered for CLAT 2016 as against 39,686 applicants who had registered for Online CLAT 2015.

The 17 participating NLUs in the order of their establishment are:

1. National Law School of India University, Bangalore (NLSIU)

2. National Academy of Legal Study & Research (NALSAR) University of Law, Hyderabad

3. National Law Institute University, Bhopal (NLIU)

4. The West Bengal National University of Juridical Sciences, Kolkata (WBNUJS)

5. National Law University, Jodhpur (NLUJ)

6. Hidayatullah National Law University, Raipur (HNLU)

7. Gujarat National Law University, Gandhinagar (GNLU)

8. Dr. Ram Manohar Lohiya National Law University, Lucknow (RMLNLU)

9. Rajiv Gandhi National University of Law, Patiala (RGNUL)

10. Chanakya National Law University, Patna (CNLU)

11. National University of Advanced Legal Studies, Kochi (NUALS)

12. National Law University Odisha, Cuttack (NLUO)

13. National University of Study & Research in Law, Ranchi (NUSRL)

14. National Law University & Judicial Academy, Assam, Guwahati (NLUJAA)

15. Damodaram Sanjivayya National Law University, Visakhapatnam (DSNLU)

16. The TamilNadu National Law School, Tiruchirappalli (TNNLS)

17. Maharashtra National Law University, Mumbai (MNLU)

CLAT 2016 was organized & conducted by Rajiv Gandhi National University of Law, Punjab (RGNUL).

The CLAT is a 200 mark, 200 questions, 2 hour paper which tests students on 5 areas, namely, English, Mathematics, Logical Reasoning and General Knowledge/Current Affairs, and Legal Aptitude. Correct answers carry one mark while wrong answers attract 0.25 negative marks.

The CLAT 2016 paper was surprisingly easy and students, who had seen CLAT 2015 paper, were in for a pleasant surprise.

Section-wise analysis English including Comprehension:
The paper has gone back to traditional English with 10 RC questions based on a fact based passage, foreign words, idioms sand phrases, spellings and fill in the blanks (preposition, verb, adjective,, adverb). There we 20-25 questions on prepositions which students would have found very easy to solve. Time consuming and error prone para jumbles and spotting errors questions were missing this year.

Most of the well prepared students would have attempted 38-40 questions in this section.


This was the toughest of all the sections, comparatively. Most of the questions in tested knowledge of formulas, were calculation intensive and hence time consuming. The topics were on arithmetic, algebra, geometry and higher maths. The topics were percentage, ratio & proportion, probability and other higher math question topics. There was a good mix of moderate to difficult questions and any good student would find it difficult to attempt 12-15 questions unless he spends too much time on this section.

General Knowledge:

Similar to last year, almost 35 questions were from Current Affairs, that too as recent as March/April 2016 with one question on a last week’s event. The remaining 15 questions were few Static GK questions and they were relatively easy. The current affairs questions were from areas like national and international politics, social and legal affairs, government policies, etc. A student who is very much involved in reading newspapers on a regular basis would have benefited immensely.

A good student could have attempted upwards of 38-42 questions in this section.

Logical Reasoning:

This section had 17 questions of critical reasoning and 23 analytical reasoning questions. The standard questions on blood relations, coding–decoding, arrangement, puzzles, etc were all there in analytical reasoning while critical reasoning had statement/assumption/conclusion, cause and effect, deductions, logical consistency, truth table, etc type of questions.

Though there were 40 questions, a good student would have been able to attempt 32-36 questions.

Legal Aptitude:

This section had 15 questions on legal aptitude and constitution. The remaining 35 questions were principle-fact based which were easy to moderate with many of them repeated verbatim from previous year papers. To crack the principle-fact questions, no prior legal knowledge was required and it was very easy to eliminate two answer choices in lot of questions. The questions had a uniform mix of torts, contracts, criminal and other areas of law questions.

It was possible to attempt about 40-45 questions in this section.

The overall paper was easier than anticipated and hence the cutoffs for the top Schools is going to increase as compared to last year.

On a concluding note, a snapshot of section-wise analysis of the 2016 CLAT paper:

Subject No. of Questions/Marks Difficulty Level Expected Attempts Expected Marks Time to be given (mts)






General Knowledge












Logical Reasoning






Legal Aptitude












Expected cut-off

(General Category- first list):

Tier I: NLSIU Bangalore, NALSAR Hyderabad, WBNUJS Kolkata – 140 to 150 marks

Tier II: NLU Jodhpur, NLIU Bhopal, GNLU Gandhinagar, HNLU Raipur – 135 to 140 marks

Tier III: Remaining NLUs – 128 to 135 marks