Report No. 184
9.13 New Examination System will eliminate absenteeism and malpractices: The Ahmadi Committee Report suggested a system where the theory part of the examinatio.- where it is not difficult to get pass mark.- is restricted to 25% or 20% marks while 75% or 80% marks should be allocated for legal problems. There must be a separate minimum for the theoretical part and the problems part. The importance of the legal problems part is that the candidate will have to apply his mind independently in the examination hall.
He cannot resort to copying nor will he be able to seek any help from the supervisor for unless one is thorough, one cannot follow even if some obliging supervisor in the examination hall is prepared to help him. We may make it clear that we are not here referring to the good and reputed colleges where there are no 95 malpractices. We are only referring to those colleges where malpractices do persist or are encouraged by some managements. Apart from prevention of malpractices, the problem-method will make the student to think and come forward with a practical solution. This is not possible unless the student is thorough with the subject. The problem method will be able to eliminate malpractices.
9.14 In our view, so far as this part of the paper containing the problems is concerned, the students can even be allowed to have the bare Acts to enable them to read the sections clearly and think of an answer. Of course, this may not apply to some subjects like the Law of Torts where several legal principles are based on case law and not statutes.
9.15 The second advantage of the problem method is that students will have to necessarily attend all classes and cannot hope to remain absent, if they have to face such a system of examination.
The third advantage is that students have to apply their mind independently.
Thus the problem method has several advantage.- (i) it precludes malpractices; (ii) it makes the students think and study the statutes closely and (iii) absenteeism in classes will get automatically controlled.
The introduction of 'problem method' requires generation of a huge data Bank of problems in various subjects.
In the matter of prescribing topics for the law course, the Commission considers that clinical legal education may be made mandatory subject. This course features as part of the law curriculum in all 96 universities in South Africa and is an excellent supplement to the legal aid system. Even here in India, the Delhi university has for many years now been running a successful legal clinical education programme where students are able to provide minimal legal assistance in the form of drawing of the petitions/applications and offering legal advice, to undertrial prisoners and inmates of custodial institutions. This could be made mandatory in all law colleges.
9.16 Training centres for Law teachers Yet another important aspect is about the need to revamp the teaching system by establishing a number of special institutions to enable law teachers to update their knowledge. While we agree that there are several good teachers in law schools who are highly qualified and very competent, there is always need to keep abreast of latest needs of the practitioners, and of the latest Judgments of our Courts and our statutes as well as Judgments of the House of Lords, American and Canadian Supreme Courts, Judgments of the Australian High Court and New Zealand Courts and of the European Human Rights Court at Strausborg.
It is also necessary to keep in touch with new principles of law emanating abroad and to several developments in important subjects like trademark, copyright, patents, the Trips Agreement, Cyber law, Environmental law, Human Rights and other new subjects.
9.17 Further, when it is necessary to teach several subjects dealing with procedural laws at the college level, there is need that law teachers must 97 get acquainted with several practical aspects of the procedural laws. Training for the teachers is, therefore, necessary. Apart from the existing refresher courses conducted by the University Grants Commission, it is necessary to impart professional training to the law teachers.
9.18 To start with, at least four colleges must be started by the Central Government in consultation with the Bar Council of India and UGC, in the four corners of India. The law teachers must have exposure to centres by experts in various branches of law and for this purpose guest lecturers from other States or even from other countries have to be invited.
9.19 It will be for the UGC and the Government of India to make the necessary funds available for the above purpose.
9.20 We recommend addition of clauses (ie) and (if) after proposed clause (id) in section 7 (1) as follows:
"(ie) to take such measures to facilitate the establishment of institutions by the Central Government for continuing legal education for law teachers;
(if) to take measures for raising the standards of teaching in law in consultation with the Central Government, the State Governments and the University Grants Commission."
9.21 We also recommend that the 'problem method' be introduced in the examination system to an extent of above 75% in each paper, apart from 98 25% for theory. The students should obtain a separate minimum number of marks for the theory and a separate minimum in the problem part of the examination. This will enable the student to apply their mind seriously to every subject. This will also eliminate malpractices. Attendance to classes is also bound to improve.