The vision of legal education must include development of law faculty competent to impart professional education to meet distinct needs under the Advocates Act of competitive global standards.
The present policy of having a uniform curriculum for the courts, tribunals and adjudicating bodies, whether in metro cities or remote districts, lacks sensitivity to meet diverse challenges of urban and rural areas. Hence, law colleges located in small districts and rural settings would play more meaningful role by teaching laws concerning land, irrigation, cooperatives, crops, agriculture, tribal rights, forests, environment, fisheries, dairy and livestock, land acquisition, nyay panchayats and minimum wages, etc.
On the other hand, inclusion of IPR, tele communication, Private International Law, Real Estate Law, Aerospace, Maritime Law, International humanitarian and International Trade Laws, Advertising and Media Laws etc for them make little sense.
Preparation of standard text books and commentaries in regional languages will greatly serve the interest of the Bar Council. This need has so far remained neglected. Innovative and regular attention is to be directed in this direction.
Use of IT and other new methods of teaching pedagogy must be encouraged in law colleges to make complex and technical terms easy to comprehend. Use of slide shares, presentations and videos would serve a useful purpose by making substantive laws and procedures simple to comprehend.
The existing legal education rules are heavily tilted towards class room attendance. There have been many cases of suicide by students who could not write exams due to shortage of attendance. The participation by students to attend external moots, mock trials, legal aid clinics, court visits and internships etc must also be counted towards attendance.
Bar Council must properly check and ensure the availability of infra structure, language labs, library books and law reports, adequacy of faculty and staff and their correct and timely remunerations. Presently this is not the case. Resultantly its own image and credibility, at times appear corroded.
Performance of law graduates in AIBE must be carefully assessed and suitable corrective steps taken, where needed. Low results by students from a particular State or College, should be examined for remedial measures.
Five or three years professional law degrees are beyond reach/impractical for a sizeable portion of our youth due abject poverty or family circumstances. A case appears justified to design and introduce shorter duration legal education for them as court managers, par a legals, and legal assistants etc.
Operationalisation of the Advocates Act and court litigation would substantially improve by introduction of Para legal education for award of diplomas and certificates at law colleges to impart training at post matric or SSC stage for
a) Lawyer Clerks (Munshies) b) Court Clerks c) Law Translators d) Petition/deed writers e) Law librarians f) Advisors for domestic violence, consumer complaints, RTI and MACT case To actively participate and to march in steps towards improvement in dispensation of justice and assist in adoption of a robust legal regime, the Bar Council must actively establish, organise and fund faculty development measures at regional and where needed at State levels.
Bar Council of India may consider creation of a Legal Education Fund by allocation of some of its corpus for the purpose.
All lawyers applying for designation as ‘Senior Advocates’ must render a certificate to donate one percent of their annual taxable income to a law college of their choice. Actual payment of such donation must thereafter be monitored and ensured by the BCI. This amount should be used for clinical legal education and library.
With a view to encourage and stimulate quality teaching in law, the State Bar Council may introduce a system of felicitating a certain number of law teachers from each state every year for their scholarships and contribution to law teaching. Norms in this regard may be duly finalized after suitable consultation.
Requisite transparency and legal academic participation must be instituted by the Bar Council towards utilization of income it generates every year from the law colleges. Legal education prepares for diverse careers like teaching, law authorship, media, law reports, judiciary, diplomacy, legislative drafting, politics and social service etc. Regulation of law curriculum for such diverse needs is beyond the competence and scope of the Bar Council. Hence, UGC must introduce degrees of BA and MA in Law.
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