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NLS’ state gov’t follows NUJS’, signs off on 25% local reservations for Karnataka students of 10+ years

The Karnataka state government cabinet has signed off on the long-pending bill to set aside 25% of seats at NLSIU Bangalore for students from the state, according to a number of reports, following recent similar moves in West Bengal.

Law minister JC Madhuswamy said in a press conference that prospective NLS students who’ve studied in Karnataka for at least 10 years would be eligible for the reservation.

The amendment bill to NLS’ governing statute originally made an appearance in June 2017 with the then Congress in government and BJP in opposition jointly passing a 50% local reservation, including a 10-year requirement for parents to have been resident in the state in addition to students having to have studied in the state for five years previously.

That bill was reportedly sent back by the state governor on “technical grounds”, according to the Deccan Herald.

Madhuswamy has now said about the new draft: “At present, there are no benefits for Karnataka students at NLSIU. The earlier Bill was rejected on the grounds that you can’t have a regional reservation. Instead, you can have an institutional reservation. So, any student who has compulsorily studied for ten years in Karnataka can apply for admission under the 25% reservation.”

The bill will need to be passed in the next session of the legislature before it takes effect.

NLSIU vice chancellor Prof Sudhir Krishnaswamy told the Deccan Herald that he would have to study the bill first before being able to comment.

We have also reached out to him for comment.

The NLSIU student bar association (SBA) had in 2017 vowed to fight the 50% reservation tooth and nail.

NUJS Kolkata is facing a 30% local domicile reservation in its LLB and LLM programmes, the state law ministry announced earlier this month, following passage of the bill by the assembly in 2018.

The West Bengal bill provides reservation eligibility for residents of 10 years or more in the state, or children whose parents have a permanent address in the state.

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