Project to increase access to premier law schools

The pan-India project has students from law schools across the country including Karnataka volunteering for it. Target groups for the project are vernacular medium students, English medium students in government-run educational institutions and students with disability.

"The high fee structure and complex entrance test makes top law schools not accessible to students. The Common Law Admission Test (CLAT) also tests the English language skills of students.  Students from vernacular language schools often don't crack it.
Training for the CLAT exam also does not come cheap," said Shamnad Basheer, who conceptualised IDIA. Legal Services Clinic of NLSIU Bangalore is managing the Karnataka Chapter of IDIA.

Student composition

The IDIA team has conducted surveys on the student composition in law schools.
The sample survey by the Bangalore team showed that majority of the students belong to English speaking urban class of society.

There were very few students from vernacular medium schools in a specific batch. The numbers of students from rural areas were deplorably low.

The plan of action includes visiting schools, increasing awareness about law as a career, conducting aptitude test similar to CLAT and then conducting coaching classes for the students. Bangalore team has already visited numerous schools and colleges in and around the City.

"We have visited schools like Shanti Bhavan, a school in Baliganapalli and Siddaganga PU College for Women and Vidyavahini PU College. The response from students was really good. Out of 700 students, nearly 22 students have been selected for the project," Adithya Banavar, head of Karnataka chapter of IDIA, told Deccan Herald.

He said efforts were on to prepare study materials for these students and members of the Karnataka Chapter will also be involved in teaching. A mentor system has also been setup where every student will be personally assisted through the year by a member of the IDIA team in their preparation, he added.

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