Sunday, September 18, 2011

Only 15% are joining the legal profession - Justice Sharma

New Delhi: Have the National Law Schools, the counterparts of IITs and IIMs in the legal field, faltered in inculcating social responsibility in the bright young lawyers passing out from the prestigious institutions?
Justice M K Sharma, a Supreme Court judge, feels so and has expressed strongly against the trend of “bright young law students” flocking to become corporate lawyers rather than opting for training in litigation.
“Unfortunately, the statistics available indicate that 85% fresh law graduates of these law schools and other reputed institutions are joining the corporate world and only 15% are joining the legal profession,” said Justice Sharma, who retires on Sunday as an SC judge. He had joined the judiciary as a judge of the Gauhati high court in 1994.
“If the newcomers give preference to profession than corporate sector, it would definitely and undoubtedly improve the standard of the Bar. A strong Bar is essential for an independent and strong judiciary, which plays an important role in the democratic set up,” he said. Justice Sharma said the National Law Schools were set up to inculcate values and social responsibility intrinsic to the legal profession in bright young persons who compete through a tough admission test to bag a seat. “The National Law Schools were set up for better education in legal studies, developing skills in advocacy, legal services, legislations, law reforms and the like to make law and the legal process an efficient instrument of social development,” he said.
Interestingly, Justice Sharma was instrumental in setting up of the latest National Law School in Delhi. The first National Law School came up in Bangalore by an Act of 1986 and within a decade was regarded as an institution of excellence in India and abroad.
Other National Law Schools are at Hyderabad, Bhopal, Kolkata, Jodhpur, Raipur, Gandhinagar, Lucknow, Patiala, Patna, Cuttack and Kochi.

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