Emphasizing the ‘Human Rights Education’ in the Indian Legal Education Context: An Analysis

Published date01 July 2014
Date01 July 2014
Subject MatterEssays
Military-Madrasa-Mullah Complex 135
India Quarterly, 66, 2 (2010): 133–149
A Global Threat 135
Emphasizing the ‘Human Rights
Education’ in the Indian Legal
Education Context: An Analysis
Deva Prasad M.
Shuvro Prosun Sarker
Legal Education in India is becoming more concerned about serving the demands of the market and
the private corporate sector. Law students and budding lawyers are therefore being trained in such a
mechanical manner that they are not being sensitized towards the field of human rights. This article
seeks to emphasize on the importance of human rights training in a lawyer’s career. It discusses human
right provisions in light of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the guidelines provided
by UNESCO in the context of Human Rights in India. The authors will further explore the present
scenario of legal education in India and elaborate on the importance of clinical education in Indian
context. The article will further focus on the need for legal education to be contemporary and in tune
with the changing society. It will conclude by stating that human rights education should be made a
compulsory part of legal training.
Professor N.R. Madhava Menon, eminent legal luminary and expert on legal education, has observed
that the legal education in India is becoming more and more focused to serve the market demands and
interests of private corporate section.1 This focus on the market demands has clear reflection on the
curriculum of law schools in India. This leads to situation where the lawyers who are supposed to be the
main change agents for the purpose of social engineering and social transformation are not being
sensitized and trained on areas such as human rights.
Human rights education is important for sensitization and awareness building amongst the future
lawyers as it is important for country like India to ensure ‘that access to justice is enlarged and the quality
of justice for the common man is improved and strengthened’.2 The National Knowledge Commission’s
‘Report of the Working Group on Legal Education’ has emphasized the purpose of legal education to
1 N.R. Madhava Menon, The Transformation of Indian Legal Education: A Blue Paper, Harvard Law School Program on the Legal
Profession, available at www.law.harvard.edu/programs/plp/pdf/Menon_Blue_Paper.pdf (last visited on September 30, 2013).
2 Id.
Deva Prasad M., Assistant Professor of Law, Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Mumbai, India.
Shuvro Prosun Sarker, Researcher, Calcutta Research Group, Kolkata, India.
Asian Journal of Legal Education
1(2) 135–145
© 2014 The West Bengal National
University of Juridical Sciences
SAGE Publications
Los Angeles, London,
New Delhi, Singapore,
Washington DC
DOI: 10.1177/2322005814530331

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