Mohit Prasad from Class of 2015 cleared Uttar Pradesh Judiciary Examination 2016. He also cleared the National Eligibility Test (NET) while pursuing masters from NUJS.
Q.1 When did you plan to appear for judicial examination?
Opting for judiciary was not an overnight decision for me. In order to make a well informed decision, it was important for me to have first-hand experience at different platforms which law had to offer. In keeping with this, the diversity of my internships ranged from Uttar Pradesh Human Rights Commission, High Court and Supreme Court (Litigation) to law firms such as Dua Associates (Corporate Law) and ALMT legal (Intellectual Property Law). It was only after I gained exposure at different avenues that I finally decided. In my penultimate year, I came to the conclusion that reading and analyzing law from an equidistant position was where my passion lay. Hence, it became clear to me that to fulfill my personal ambition, the judiciary would be the optimum platform me, and through it, I had an outlet to lifelong learning and serving the society as well..
Q.2 What was your motivation behind appearing for this examination?
My mother is a school teacher and my father served in the Indian Army, so the former’s lessons in moral uprightness, an inclination to serve the society, and my passion for reading and analysing law became the primary motivation for me to appear for Judicial Service Examination.
Q.3 When did you start your preparation for the examination?
As mentioned above, in my penultimate year the career path I wanted to choose was clear for me. However, in order to clear CLAT-2016 for my LLM course I couldn't wholeheartedly prepare for judiciary and it was only after completing my masters in April 2016 that I started the major portion of my preparation for UP Judicial Service Exam..
Q.4 Did you opt to sit for campus placement programme?
No, I did not.
Q.5 How did NUJS as an alma mater help you in cracking the examination?
At the vertical level, the lectures and teachings of faculty ranging from the Honourable Vice Chancellors, Professor M.P. Singh (June 2007- November 2011) and Prof. (Dr.) P. Ishwara Bhat (December 2011-incumbent) to the Assistant Professors played a crucial role in enhancing my learning by providing a conducive and encouraging environment. At the horizontal level, the support and intellectual discourse offered by the student body furthered the process immensely. Finally, the timely guidance offered by the alumni helped equally in having the right mindset and approach for clearing this exam.
Q.6 Did you target only one state's examination or multiple states'? In case of multiple states, how did you chang your strategies for each state?
I primarily targeted Delhi Judicial Service Exam (DJS, 2015) and the UP Judicial Service Examination (2016). I cleared the preliminary exam in the former. The strategy for DJS exam entails practical and applied questions, whereas UP Judicial Service Exam constitutes a major chunk of theoretical questions. However, the UP Exam does include certain practical questions such as charge framing and writing judgments which aim to test the acumen of a judicial officer. One’s preparation should be in consonance with the relevant state’s syllabus as in DJS the local law is restricted only to the Delhi Rent Control Act whereas the number of local laws in UP are more. Knowledge pertaining to the scope of questions by analysing previous year’s papers provides an edge for the aspirant as the exams are drafted for the purpose of checking the basic knowledge of an aspiring judicial officer. Thus, with minor modifications the basic scope of questions remains immutable.
Q.7 Which books did you refer during your preparation? Did you start your preparation directly with text books or the bare acts? Are bare acts reading with landmark case laws enough for preparation or text books are quintessential?
Firstly, one’s preparation has to start from the thorough reading of the bare act as they constitute the skeleton of the body of law. Only after the aspirant is thorough with the bare act, only in order to gain the jurisprudence behind the text of the bare act should one start with the basic textbooks. I preferred J.N Pandey for constitution, S.N. Mishra for Indian Penal Code, C. Kk Takwani for Civil Procedure Code, Avtar Singh for Contract Law, Batuk Lal on Evidence Law, and so on. Also, considering the gargantuan syllabus, one should ensure that the note making is brief and to the point. Considering landmark case laws for the respective subjects is crucial, for they cover a large chunk of the testing, and help not just at the preliminary stage but also in mains and interview level.
Q.8 How much time do you think is required for a fool-proof preparation ?
A year’s preparation is minimum time required for a fool proof preparation.
Q.9 Would you like to give any tips or advice to the NUJS students aspiring to appear for judicial examinations?
Before embarking upon the journey to take up judiciary as a desired service, self-confidence, patience and hardwork are the prerequisites for clearing this exam and I believe the aspiring students should have these attributes. Also, during the stay in college, one can make judicious use of the library resources (Textbooks, Manupatra, SCC Online etc) which surely would provide an edge for the aspiring students.