Stillborn law college at birthplace of legal treatise author

Stillborn law college at birthplace of legal treatise author

Poor infrastructure

The proposal to set up the first government law college in the North Karnataka region - at Martur in Chittapur taluk - has run into rough weather. 

Classes were supposed to start in the 2010-11 academic year, when the government accorded permission to set up the college at a cost of Rs 30 lakh. But administrative problems hampered plans to open the college last year. 

Martur as the location is significant from the point of view of legal history in India. It is the native place of Vijnaneshwara, whose magnum opus in Sanskrit - ‘Mitakshara’ - formed the basis for the development of modern Indian jurisprudence. 

‘Mitakshara’ was the sole system of justice in India, excluding parts of Bengal. It remained in effect from the 12th century to India’s independence in 1947. 

An edict discovered at Martur reveals that Vijnaneshwara - a scholar in the court of Chalukyan emperor Vikramaditya VI of Kalyan (now Basavakalyan in Bidar district) - was the author of the legal treatise.

The college at Martur, 15 km from the city, will cater to 13 districts of the region when classes begin. 

There are currently five government law colleges in South Karnataka, three of them in Hassan district. 

No students

The colleges at Holenarasipura and Paduvalahippi in Hassan district have stopped functioning, as there are no enough students.

The Commissioner of Collegiate Education issued an order for the inauguration of the college in 2012-13. Accordingly, Dr Shivanand Lengti, Assistant Professor of the Government Law College in Ramanagara, was appointed the principal. 

Lengti reported for duty on April 19. But the problems of the college yet to be inaugurated are far from over. 

Lack of facilities

There is hardly any facility in place at the college, of which transportation needs immediate attention. 

A single instructional building is all that the proposed campus in Martur has - the Vijnaneshwara Smarak Bhavan, built by the Vijnaneshwara Sahakara Souharda headed by former governor of Bihar and Jharkhand and former chief justice of Punjab and Haryana High Court, M Rama Jois. 

He was responsible for the government initiative to plan a law college at Martur. Academics believe that classes should be started at ad hoc locations in Gulbarga city, till the Martur campus is up and running. Dr Lengti has urged the higher authorities to take urgent steps to redress the problems. 

However, his appeals to the deputy commissioner, the regional commissioner and the regional director of collegiate education in this regard, have gone unheeded.

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