Govt eyes bigger pie of NLSIU seats for local students

Karnataka govt eyes bigger pie of NLSIU seats for local students

With the new demand, the government, effectively, is aiming to get Karnataka students 47.5% of the seats at the top law school. 

 Karnataka wants the National Law School of India University (NLSIU) in Bengaluru to give locals 22.5% seats under the SC/ST quota apart from reserving 25% seats for Karnataka students in the premier institute.

With the new demand, the government, effectively, is aiming to get Karnataka students 47.5% of the seats at the top law school. 

Law Minister JC Madhuswamy on Monday said the Bill to amend the National Law School of India University Act, 1986 — which will seek to reserve 25% seats for students who have studied for 10 years in the state — will be tabled in the legislature session starting February 17.

“Apart from the 25% reservation, we were under the impression that the law school was providing seats to local Karnataka students under the mandatory SC/ST quota. But it turns out that it is not our students, but those from other states who have been given seats under the SC/ST quota,” Madhuswamy said.

The law minister said the government will not "tell them this explicitly, or include this in the Bill, but it is their constitutional duty to provide seats under the SC/ST quota to students from Karnataka".

"So, we will take it up with them,” he said.  

The NLSIU has 80 undergraduate and 50 postgraduate seats and another 50 in the masters course on public policy. Students are admitted based on a national-level Common Law Admission Test (CLAT). Currently, the school admits 18 SC/ST students at the undergraduate level and 10 in postgraduate. 

When it was pointed out that the NLSIU administration had flagged the move to reserve seats, Madhuswamy justified the government’s stand. “They will oppose it, naturally. We have shared our infrastructure, facilities and funds. Can’t they give 25% seats to our students,” he asked. 

In June 2017, when the Congress was in power, the state legislature passed an amendment seeking to reserve 50% seats for local students at the law school. Subsequently, Governor Vajubhai R Vala returned the Bill, saying it was not in line with the Constitution, Madhuswamy pointed out.