Sikkim National Law University: Futuristic Perspectives

AuthorT. S. N. Sastry
Published date01 January 2022
Date01 January 2022
Subject MatterNote
Sikkim National Law University:
Futuristic Perspectives
T. S. N. Sastry1
Sikkim is located in Eastern part of the Himalayas. It is one of the seven north-eastern states of India.
Sikkim is bordered by the Tibet Autonomous Region of China to the north and the north-east, by Bhutan
to the south-east, by the Indian state of West Bengal to the south and by Nepal to the west. Gangtok is
the capital city of Sikkim. It is situated in the southern part of the state.2 Sikkim was a British Protectorate
and continued with the same status in independent India through the Indo-Sikkim Treaty of 1950. The
Government of Sikkim Act, 1974, paved the way for the setting up of the rst ever responsible government
of Sikkim and sought Sikkim’s representation in the political institutions of India. In 1974, it became an
associate state of India (through the Thirty-Fifth Amendment Act) by insertion of Clause (A) to Article
2 of the Constitution. On 26 April 1975, through the Thirty-Sixth Amendment Act, Sikkim became an
integral part of India as the 22nd state of the country, repealing Clause A to Article 2 of the Constitution,
with a unicameral legislative assembly.3 Since its merger, the Government of Sikkim has taken several
steps to establish judicial and legal educational institutions in the state. The Sikkim National Law
University (SNLU) Act was passed in 2018 by a legislative enactment to augment premiere legal
education in the state on par with rest of the country.
Brief Legal and Judicial History of Sikkim
The institutions of law and judiciary have a chequered history in the state of Sikkim. Before its merger
with the Union of India, the monarch, popularly referred to as ‘the Chogyal’, was regarded as the fountain
of justice. The judicial and legal procedures were simple, and the courts had no say, except for dispensing
justice based on the principles of justice, equity and good conscience. The administration of justice was
carried out by feudal landlords (Adda courts), jongpons (district ofcers), pipons (headmen) and mandals
1 Founder Vice Chancellor, Sikkim National Law University, Gangtok and formerly Vice Chancellor, TNDALU Chennai and Senior
Professor of Law, Savitribai Phule Pune University. Note: The views are personal.
2 Sukhdev Singh Chib, Sikkim, britannica (20 October 2021, 11:43 am),
3 T. S. N. Sastry, State Succession in Indian Context, Sikkim Legislative Assembly, 2004, dominant Publishers new delhi,
legislative bodies in india (10 November 2021, 11:46 am), pp 103–104,
Asian Journal of Legal Education
9(1) 124–127, 2022
© 2021 The West Bengal National
University of Juridical Sciences
Reprints and permissions:
DOI: 10.1177/23220058211068420
Corresponding author:
Prof. T.S.N. Sastry, Vice Chancellor, Sikkim National Law University, Sikkim 737101, India.

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