An advocate has moved the Supreme Court against a specialised entry-level course in Intellectual Property Rights (IPR), being offered by the Indian Institute of Technology, Kharagpur to engineering students.
The petitioner, M. Chandrashekhar, contended that it would change the nature of legal education in the country, as only engineering graduates would be able to pursue the course.
He said the LLB course, open to graduates from all disciplines, was an entry-level course where students were taught the general principles of law with only one or two optional papers in the final year.
A bench headed by Chief Justice of India K.G. Balakrishnan has issued notices to IIT, Kharagpur, the Central government and the Bar Council of India — the apex body responsible for regulating legal education in the country — seeking their response to the petition.
Chandrashekhar pointed out that in the medical education, the MBBS course was an entry-level general course, and there was nothing like MBBS in cardiology or orthopaedics.
He said since LLB was similarly a general entry-level course, allowing specialisation at the entry level would dilute the standards of legal education.
“The admission to a three-year LL.B course is open to graduates of all disciplines, without any exception, in various law colleges throughout the country,” he said in the petition.
The petitioner, who approached the Supreme Court after failing to get a response from the Bar Council to his letter raising the issue, urged the court to direct the council not to permit any specialised courses in LLB.