By: Kosha Doshi
The National Law University Odisha is an independent university located in Cuttack, Odisha. The university was established in 2008 under the National Law University Odisha Act, with its first batch joining in 2009. The institutional activities commenced from 2009 in the university with about 300 seats for BA LLB & BBA LLB under-graduation courses and about 50 seats for post-graduation.
Earlier the Chief Minister of Odisha, Mr. Naveen Patnaik had sent a letter to the Centre seeking domicile quota. This issue was raised in the Odisha assembly and then followed its views in the Rajya Sabha. Saswat Mishra, secretary of the Higher Education department had written a letter to the Vice-Chancellor of NLUO, Professor Shrikishna Deva Rao, which helped claim the admission based on the reservation through state domicile quota.
Current Issue(reservation in UG & PG seats)–
A special meeting took place on the 4th of January 2020 with the General Council of National Law University, Odisha. This meeting upheld the 25 percent domicile reservation to be provided. They approved providing 25 percent horizontal reservation for domicile students while giving them admission for under-graduation and post-graduation courses.
This issue for reservation came about when Higher Education department secretary, Saswat Mishra urged the university to provide a reservation of 25 percent. Further, a press release issue took place whereby this reservation policy and its applicability at NLUO was announced. NLUO Vice-Chancellor, Professor Shrikishna Deva Rao stated that the domicile reservation shall come into effect from the academic year 2020-2021.
With the changed reservation policy, the Karnataka Government also plans to introduce a bill providing 25 percent reservation of State domicile at NLSIU (National Law School of India University), Bangalore. The stated bill is planned to be moved during the next assembly session. Karnataka law minister, JC Madhuswamy put forth The National Law School of India (Amendment) Bill, 2019 which would provide reservation to students studying in Karnataka for at least 10 years.
Question of Law-
The criteria for the reservation for under-graduation and post-graduation course was set forth. A student who had passed the 12th standard class or an equivalent examination with at least 60 percent marks or a proportionate grade would be eligible for the reservation in the admission of under- graduation program. The following marks and education for the 12th must be from a recognized college or university from the State of Odisha itself.
Similarly, for reservation in admission for post-graduation courses, the student needs to pass in the undergraduate law course with a degree of BA LLB, BBA LLB, LLB or a proportionate examination. The marks scored for the same need to be at least 50 percent or an equivalent grade for being eligible for the reservation. In addition to this, the passing out or marks need to be obtained from a recognized university or a college from Odisha.
In spite of all these criteria, the reservation would be subject to the score the candidate attains in the CLAT examination. CLAT examination is the entrance exam for the NLUs and major colleges in India for perusing an undergraduate course in the field of law.
Conclusion(reservation in UG & PG seats)–
The concept of providing benefits to certain students since they belong to a particular place brought about to concept of reservation in UG & PG seats through a domicile quota. The National Law Schools now provide a domicile quota for reservation in admissions for undergraduate and postgraduate courses. This has lowered the 12th and under-graduate cut-offs but the major criteria of his attainment of marks in the CLAT examination persists. This prevents mere abuse of providing reservations and determines it in a fair value overall. Following these steps, the National Law School of India University (NLSIU), Bangalore also plans to provide reservation in admission through domicile quota. Overall the NLUO provided about 25 percent domicile reservation in UG & PG seats.