October 26, 2016
The Madras High Court today stayed the Tamil Nadu Government law against establishing private law colleges in the State.
The division bench comprising Chief Justice S.K. Kaul and Justice R. Mahadevan slapped a fine of Rs. 20,000 on the Tamil Nadu Government for the eight-year delay in granting permission to the Vanniyar Trust to start a law college in Chennai.
Currently, there is huge demand for law colleges in the State because aspiring candidates who are unable to get a seat in the 10 Government law colleges in Tamil Nadu are forced to study in colleges at Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka.
According to a petition by Social Justice Forum leader K. Balu, there are 65,000 lawyers practising in Tamil Nadu and every year, 3,500 lawyers register themselves with the Bar Council. But, according to the recommendations of the Indian Law Commission, there must be at least 50 advocates for every 10 lakh population. At present, we have only 10 advocates, said the petition. All these points were made to justify the setting up of private law colleges.
Many associations have come forward to start law colleges here but the Tamil Nadu Government passed a law on July 30, 2014 in the Assembly which did not allow the establishment of private law colleges. This Act was approved by the Governor on September 30, 2014.
Subsequently the Vanniyar Trust’s move to establish Saraswathi Law College was put paid on hold and hence, Vanniyar leader G.K. Mani filed a case against the government. The High Court today stayed the Act and allowed private bodies with proper certification to set up law colleges in Tamil Nadu.