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Message of Dean Academic Affairs

Dr RK Singh

Dean, Academic Affairs

Welcome to Gujarat National Law University!

Legal education serves the society by creating good law abiding citizens; by imparting value and cultural education; and by instilling into them the significance and relevance of democratic culture. It lays the foundation of a nation, whose citizens abide by law, love justice, and believe in just and lawful co-existence of all members of society. By mere enactment of laws, real social justice cannot be ensured, unless they (laws) are put into action by professionals well versed and well instructed in law. This righteous object is accomplished through legal education. Being a professional education, legal education equips students for filling up different roles and stations in society, the range and scope of which have always been expanding in the modern democratic set-up, for instance, as policy makers, academics, judges, lawyers, administrators, entrepreneurs, etc.

In India, the advent of the concept of National Law University (NLU), as a matter of fact, marked the beginning of a new experiment in the field of legal education. With the establishment of NLUs, 'law' has become highly specialised field of education. Five-year law programme is also called as 'integrated programme' because various other subjects, such as, History, Sociology, Political Science, Economics, Science, Management, etc are clubbed and integrated together with the main course, i.e. Law. Law has to be understood and learnt from a broad perspective and from different angles. Alongside Law (which is the focus of a law student), a law student studies other subjects so as to have a holistic understanding enabling him to become a better legal professional, academic, etc. The mammoth success of this bold experiment in legal education inspired different State Governments to establish National Law Universities (NLUs). As of today, there are as many as 20 NLUs in India.

Gujarat National Law University (GNLU) was established in the year 2003. We are the only NLU in India which offers the following five Double Degree Integrated Law Programmes at the undergraduate level: (i) BA, LLB; (ii) BCom, LLB; (iii) BSc, LLB; (iv) BBA, LLB; and (v) BSW, LLB. Besides undergraduate law programmes, we offer one-year LLM programme in six specialisations [(i) Corporate & Business Law, (ii) International Law, (iii) Intellectual Property Laws, (iv) Constitutional & Administrative Law, (v) Criminal & Security Law and (vi) Public Policy, Law and Governance] and PhD programmes. These programmes challenge the students to think critically, from an all-inclusive perspective, about the law and its place in all walks of life. From the year 2016, we also started offering 2-year MBA in 'Financial Management and Business Laws'. It is a unique interdisciplinary programme which congregates Law and Management — with the object of preparing professionals with managerial and legal acumen, who would successfully meet the human capital requirements of Indian and multinational corporations, investment and banking houses, public sector undertakings, regulatory authorities and international organisations, etc.

Understanding the real and holistic functions of a university in terms of teaching and research, under the gifted leadership of our Director Prof (Dr) Bimal N Patel, we have conceived an ambitious concept of Research based Teaching University (RbTU), and are striving hard to become a true Research based Teaching University. The research based teaching methodology of the University keeps us updated and inculcates the ability to think legally and logically.

Legal education should encourage original and path breaking legal research to create new legal knowledge and ideas that will help meet novel challenges in a manner responsive to the needs of the country and the ideals and goals of the Constitution. While teaching remains the primary function of our university, we lay equivalent emphasis on high quality research leading to policy papers and other functional publications steering the society at large. And for this, we provide adequate incentives to faculty members and students. In addition to teaching and research, training and extension activities are the other two imperative components of higher education which find distinct place in our core mandate.

We understand that the curriculum of any academic programme is very important to ensure the quality and to meet the growing needs, challenges and demands. We, therefore, take utmost care in designing our curriculum in accordance with the UGC and the BCI mandates, and do take into account the curricula and syllabi of other prominent NLUs in India and major foreign universities for further up-gradation of our curriculum.

Since inception, we have been committed to providing a solid foundation in legal education. At GNLU, the faculty members, staff and students work towards making it a world class university. For enhancement of various skills and practical knowledge, GNLU provides boosting internship opportunities to its students. These characteristics of the University cater to the requirement of creating and shaping enlightened and responsible citizens of a democratic nation, besides equipping an aspirant with highly desired legal skills to enter one of the highly noble, respected and lucrative professions in the world.

At GNLU, our object is not just to impart legal knowledge to the students, but also to create legal awareness among the people of our society. By various tangible attempts (activities of Legal Services Committee, Pro Bono — to name a few), we candidly endeavour to bring all the sections of the society closer to the justice delivery system. We understand that law students' participation in socio-economic changes is a matter of vital significance which will benefit the legal profession as such, and will also be a great service to the people and the Government. Today, our alumni are performing extremely well as lawyers, judges, corporate professionals, public servants, and also academics.

We take pride in our steadfast emphasis on the quality of our faculty body. We sturdily believe that our erudite faculty body is the key to taking our University to newer heights with every year passing by, and also to equipping our students with essential knowledge and requisite skills which would make them better human beings and professionals.

I invite you to explore the GNLU website to get additional information on our faculty, programmes, curricula, achievements and other academic activities.