Do I need to apply for the course before giving CAT?
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It's necessary as your CAT marks will be directly send to the respective IIMs for the respective courses you have applied. Then on the basis of your marks for different courses only you will be called for interview process.
Along with this you also need to be in touch with reputated private colleges. They might be either conducting their own exams or accepting CAT or XAT marks. In both the case you need to apply separately for different colleges.
Apart from this which course requirement are you asking for?
You can even check the rest CAT eligibility criteria here .
All the best!