While law students are familiar with competitions such as moot court, client counselling, commercial arbitration, etc., the competition for law reform in its genre is relatively unknown. Law reform competition is an exciting and informative exercise not only for law students to learn the law analytically as it exists in the books, but also to identify why the law does not deliver what it promises through community field research. They also have the opportunity to gather the perspective of the community on what changes to the law they consider appropriate and then articulate it as a legislative proposal for consideration by the authorities. Of course, such a massive and innovative method of learning can only take place in groups over a long period. In the early 1990s, the National Law School of India University, Bangalore conducted a round of law reform competition involving several law schools in the SAARC region but discontinued it, probably due to organizational challenges. Two decades later, in association with MILAT, Mar Gregorios College of Law, Trivandrum, reinvigorated the competition to promote intellectually challenging and socially relevant ways of learning law and to contribute to legal development for the benefit of society.
Mar Gregorios College of Law, which has received the Institutional Excellence Award in 2017 from the Society of Indian Law Firms and the Menon Institute of Legal Advocacy Training, seeks to institutionalise the competition because of its proven merit in improving the quality of legal education in the country. The first such competition held between 2016-’17 involved participation of over 200 students from a dozen law colleges and institutions spread across India on the subject of ‘Draft Uniform Civil Code for India’. The Draft, duly edited and compiled, was received by the Chairman of the Law Commission of India from the former Governor of Kerala, Mr. Justice P. Sathasivam in a grand function held at the College Campus under the Chairmanship of His Beatitude Moran Mor Baselios Cardinal Cleemis Catholicos, the Patron of College. The students who prepared the Draft were honoured with cash awards and certificates.
As a token of appreciation for the significant contribution made by late Dr. (Prof.) N. R Madhava Menon to the advancement of legal education in India, the management of Mar Gregorios College of Law has instituted a Chair on Legal Education in his name in 2018. In this regard, Prof. N.R Madhava Menon Chair on Legal Education @ Mar Gregorios College of Law, Trivandrum, is immensely happy to inform that the Second Law Reforms Competition on the subject ‘Draft National Health Code’ is scheduled to take place from January, 2020.
Mar Gregorios College of Law (MGCL), Trivandrum
Mar Gregorios College of Law is established by the Malankara Syrian Catholic Church in the year 2012 at the initiative and with the blessings of His Beatitude Moran Mor Baselios Cardinal Cleemis, Major Archbishop- Catholicos of Trivandrum who is the patron of the college. The college is dedicated to the venerable memory of late Archbishop Benedict Mar Gregorios, the great spiritual leader and an erudite educationist par excellence. Located on a sprawling verdant campus, ‘Mar Ivanios Vidya Nagar’, at Nalanchira in Trivandrum, MGCL provides for both postgraduate and undergraduate programmes in law. As a centre of excellence in legal education, the college aims to integrate legal knowledge, skills and ethics through its rigorous academic activities and innovative teaching methods. The college having been conferred with institutional excellence award 2017 by Society of Indian Law Firms (SILF) and Menon Institute of Legal and Advocacy Training (MILAT), is the first ever law school to organize a law reforms competition in association with MILAT, and with the endorsement of Law Commission of India. The college is indebted to MILAT and its Chairman late Dr. (Prof.) N. R. Madhava Menon, for his inspiring guidance and support for all meaningful activities of the college. We appreciate the continued patronage extended to this institution by MILAT under the present chairman, Dr. (Prof.) Sivakumar.
Menon Institute of Legal Advocacy Training (MILAT
Menon Institute of Legal Advocacy Training is a charity educational institution registered in Trivandrum (Kerala) as a society to impart skill training among legal aspirants. MILAT also undertakes research for law reform and development of the legal profession. Late Prof. (Dr.) N. R. Madhava Menon who pioneered legal education reforms through the Five-Year Integrated LL.B. programme and by establishing the first National Law School in Bangalore was the founding Chairman of MILAT.