This is the first time an entry level test is being held to assess candidates' capabilities as lawyer

The All India Bar Examination (AIBE), intended to test an advocate's ability to practise legal profession, will be held across the country on Sunday.

This is the first time such an entry level examination is being conducted to assess a candidate's capabilities as a lawyer.

It will set a minimum standard for admission to the practice of law.

Over 22,000 candidates are expected to take this examination, which will assess analytical abilities and basic knowledge of law.

In 11 languages

According to the Bar Council of India (BCI), the AIBE is mandatory for all law students who have graduated from 2009-2010. The examination will be conducted in 11 languages — Assamese, Hindi, Punjabi, Telugu, Tamil, Kannada, Marathi, Bengali, Gujarati, Oriya and English — and the preparatory material will be in the language in which the candidates write the test.

The AIBE will have 100 multiple-choice questions spread across 20 subjects, taken from the syllabi prescribed by the BCI for the three-year and five-year LL.B. programmes.

These subjects are divided into two categories. The first comprises subjects that may be considered ‘foundational,' those that form the basis for large areas of law.

The second consists of other subjects, of which a new entrant to the legal profession must have a basic understanding.

The emphasis is on assessing the candidate's understanding of an area of law, rather than on the ability to memorise large texts or rules.

Open-book exam

The AIBE will be ‘open book.' This means advocates may bring reading material or study aids such as the preparatory material provided for the test, textbooks and treatises, and even handwritten notes.

But laptops and mobile phones are not allowed.

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