CLAT 2017: A Case of a Failed Question Paper
Far from calming the students, the answer key has opened a pandora’s box of complaints against the umpteen errors in both the question paper and the answer key. (Photo: <b>The Quint</b>)
Far from calming the students, the answer key has opened a pandora’s box of complaints against the umpteen errors in both the question paper and the answer key. (Photo: The Quint)

CLAT 2017: A Case of a Failed Question Paper

The answer key and the basic scores of the Common Law Aptitude Test 2017 have been released by Chankya National Law University, this year’s organiser. Around 51,000 students appeared in the law entrance for prestigious national law universities on 14 May.

(Photo Courtesy: Akshat Tyagi)
(Photo Courtesy: Akshat Tyagi)

But far from calming the students, the answer key has opened a pandora’s box of complaints against the umpteen errors in both the question paper and the answer key.

While the CLAT committee has provided a window till 19 May to raise objections, students are highly skeptical that the committee will barely acknowledge the errors to save its shame, as has been the trend.

Interestingly, the English section of the exam – which contained 40 questions – was riddled with grammatical errors. The erroneous questions have been marked with ambiguous solutions.

For instance, in the question with the code 4611392727, students had to identify the incorrect part of the sentence. The correct answer D marks the error ‘read almost,’ but another part A is also grammatically wrong.

(Photo Courtesy: Akshat Tyagi)
(Photo Courtesy: Akshat Tyagi)

Students have reported Question 4611392726 of the same kind may also be arguable.

(Photo Courtesy: Akshat Tyagi)
(Photo Courtesy: Akshat Tyagi)

Similarly, another question with the code 4611392701 involving phrase replacements has all wrong options. The CLAT-supplied solution, when plugged into the sentence, results in two consecutive ‘the,’ thus becoming invalid.

(Photo Courtesy: Akshat Tyagi)
(Photo Courtesy: Akshat Tyagi)

The GK section of the tests wasn’t free of errors either.

The committee expected students to know the precise number of UNESCO World Heritage Sites in India, and the exact decimal increment in India’s voting rights at the IMF. However, it appears to have not done its own research.

Question 4611392741 asks students about the sport in which the phrase ‘Scorpion kick’ is used. The answer key says the correct option is Kabaddi, whereas the term is also used in Kung Fu (the other option).

(Photo Courtesy: Akshat Tyagi)
(Photo Courtesy: Akshat Tyagi)

A typing error in the Maths section left students confused. Question 4611392782 “……If ¾ of the women are married and 2/3 of the 2/3 of the married women have….?” had a repetition of 2/3. Any of the provided options could not be marked right.

(Photo Courtesy: Akshat Tyagi)
(Photo Courtesy: Akshat Tyagi)

Students said another question (4611392784) had no correct answer. The closest available option was "4 3/4 days,” when "7 3/4 days," is the actual solution.

The Logical Reasoning section, with 50 questions, was also plagued with numerous errors. A question with three subparts did not contain sufficient information, and the given answers did not match with the estimate of students.

Several questions about family relations (4611392870, 4611392869, 4611392876), directions (4611392872) were inaccurately evaluated by the CLAT Committee.

In the Question 4611392898, CLAT Committee seems to accept that earth revolves around the sun in 366 days. Lastly, Question 4611392874 is claimed to have two potentially right answers.

(Photo Courtesy: Akshat Tyagi)
(Photo Courtesy: Akshat Tyagi)

There have been reports that the reading comprehension was also recycled from CAT 1999.  While the questions and given options are identical to the CAT test, the CLAT answer key shows different answers to the same questions.  This has raised serious doubts about the credibility of the exam.

The CLAT committee has visibly made little efforts in proof-reading the question, let alone ensuring correct solutions. It can be argued that fallacies of the committee may, in fact, have resulted in the loss of time in a test of 200 questions and a two-hour time limit.

The objection form on the application portal requires a mandatory attachment to certify the source of the suggested solution. The students would have been set free of this burden, had the organisers checked their own sources before inserting questions.

Students have little hope that the committee will make any useful amends. It will cosmetically change a few questions and provide a unilateral explanation for most of the other discrepancies. It remains to be seen if the committee will display ordinary courtesy and apologise to children.

(Akshat Tyagi is the author of 'Naked Emperor of Education', India's first young voice against the dehumanising schooling model. He regularly writes on education, society, and politics. He can be reached at akshattyagi.com.This is an opinion piece and the views expressed above are the author’s own. The Quint neither endorses nor is responsible for the same.)

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