Top
Top Stories

[Breaking] "Attempt To Make NLSIU From Island Of Excellence To Island of Exclusion": Former NLSIU VC Venkata Rao Moves SC Challenging NLAT 2020

LIVELAW NEWS NETWORK
8 Sep 2020 7:34 AM GMT
[Breaking] Attempt To Make NLSIU From Island Of Excellence To Island of Exclusion: Former NLSIU VC Venkata Rao Moves  SC Challenging NLAT 2020
x

Former Vice Chancellor of NLSIU, Prof. (Dr.) R. Venkata Rao and an aggrieved parent of a CLAT aspirant have moved the Supreme Court challenging the sudden withdrawal of NLSIU Bangalore from CLAT 2020, to hold a separate entrance test namely NLAT 2020.

The plea filed though Advocates Sughosh Subramyam and Vipin Nair states that such "unilateral decision" of NLSIU to hold a separate examination has thrown the aspirants of CLAT 2020 into a frenzy and is a serious violation of their fundamental rights, including the right against arbitrary actions of the State secured under Article 14 and the right to education and other concomitant rights under Article 21.

It is contended that the move is solely directed at creating an "elitist institution" which caters to those who are able to afford to take the test and have the luxury fulfil other "absurd conditions" imposed by the University.

Notably, NLSIU has released the technical requirements for taking NLAT 2020. The same mandates a computer system/ laptop with at least 1 Mbps bandwidth.

The plea contends that such a condition is onerous and an unreasonable obligation upon aspiring students. The decision seems to have been taken without any application of mind and while completely ignoring the aspirations of poor, marginalized, and less privileged candidates.

"Ostensibly it appears that the sole aim of the Respondent No. 2 [NLSIU VC Prof. [Dr.] Sudhir Krishnaswamy] is to turn the Respondent No. 1 [NLSIU] from an island of excellence to an island of exclusion," the plea states.

They have contended that the decision has created a a state of fear and confusion among students and it has also severely jeopardized the position of NLSIU in the NLU Consortium.

It is thus prayed that the NLSIU Admission Notice dated September 3 be quashed and the University be directed to admit students only through CLAT 2020 scores.

Other grounds taken by the Petitioners include:

  • Remaining a part of the Consortium, NLSIU could not have opted to conduct a separate examination and the impugned decision is ex-facie contrary to the Memorandum of Understanding entered into between the Universities and the Bye-laws of the Consortium.
  • It is highly arbitrary for NLSIU to proceed for a home-proctored admission test, when there is sufficient evidence to show that such admission tests are a vehicle for students to cheat.
  • Impugned Admission Notice is contrary to decision of the SC in T.M.A. Pai Foundation & Ors v. State of Karnataka & Ors, (2002) 8 SCC 481, which highlighted the need of "common and uniform admission test" in order to save the students from hardship of appearing in multiple admission test.
  • Impugned Admission Notice was released on September 9 and the examination is scheduled to be conducted on September 12, leaving very little time for students to be mentally prepared for the examination and further burdening them with an additional examination during a pandemic.
  • NLSIU has set a "bad precedent" wherein any NLU may sever its ties from the Consortium at any point and embark on its own course of action in terms of conducting its admission tests.
  • All the NLUs forming part of the consortium are dealing with similar issues and have decided to take appropriate steps, in consultation with each other. NLSIU does not merit any special consideration and the NLSIU VC is not entitled to unilaterally make decisions which jeopardize the University's future and its standing amongst the consortium.
  • Conduction of tests in fear of 'Zero year' is disproportional and arbitrary, as NLSIU could have reduced its subject syllabus by 30% to make up for the loss of time due to Covid-19 this Year. Alternatively there could have been reduction in subjects, instead of such drastic disproportional measures.
  • Deadline for filling up of forms is September 10 and the examination is to be conducted on September 12. A prospective candidate will have only one day in between to give a mock test and familiarize himself with the pattern and mode of the NLAT.

On September 3 that the National Law School of India University, Bangalore, announced its decision to hold a separate test for admission to five year B.A LL.B(Hons) course for the academic year 2020-21. The new test called the 'National Law Aptitude Test' (NLAT) is proposed to be held online on September 12.

5 CLAT aspirants have challenged this decision before the Jharkhand High Court.

All You Want To Know About NLAT For Admission To NLSIU

Frequently Asked Questions On National Law Aptitude Test (NLAT) 2020


Next Story