Gujarat National Law University (GNLU) is the statutory university established by the Government of Gujarat under the Gujarat National University Act, 2003. GNLU is the seventh National Law School to be set up in India. The University is located in the city of Gandhinagar which is the capital of Gujarat and is 30 kilometers north to the metropolitan city of Ahmedabad. GNLU started its official functioning in the year 2004 and has five batches of 160 students each, who are pursuing their five year law graduation course.
GNLU was formed in the year 2003 by the efforts of Late Mr. Kiritbhai N Rawal.<ref>"Founder Chairman"</ref> The University is based on the structure that was established two decades ago by the National Law School of India University, Bangalore. The University offers an integrated graduation course of Law and a stream paper. The Stream paper options are Arts, Science and Commerce. The five year course is divided into ten semesters.
GNLU also offers a LL.M degree (Masters) which is devised with a view to producing competent teachers and researchers. The syllabus is based on the UGC’s Model Syllabus on Law 2001. The Course is of two year duration with four semesters.
Professor Dr. Bimal N. Patel is the Director (Vice Chancellor) of the University. Mr. Patel is a scholar and academician of international law and diplomacy. He has prepared administrative, procedural and substantive jurisprudence of the International Court of Justice (ICJ), International Criminal Tribunal for former Yugoslavia (ICTY) and International Labour Organization Administrative Tribunal (Geneva).He has delivered numerous lectures, including one in Cambridge University, UK and has received several honors. <ref>"Profile of the (Director) Vice Chancellor"</ref>
Initially, the University had its own Entrance Examination for admission to the five years integrated Law Courses. From 2008, GNLU became a part of the Organizing Committee of the Common Law Admission Test (CLAT), a national level entrance test for admissions to the most of the National Law Schools in India. Students seeking admission have to write the CLAT and the admissions are based on the rankings of the CLAT. The Test applies to both LLB and LLM admissions.
The GNLU Campus is under construction in Koba, Gandhinagar.<ref>"Recent Progress: GNLU new campus, Raisan, Koba, Gandhinagar"</ref> The students will be shifted to the new campus by around 2013.
The University Building is 2.5 kms from the Hostels. It consists of air conditioned Class Rooms, Library, Reading Room, Computer Lab and Faculty Chambers.The Students commute between the College and the Hostels by Buses arranged by the University.
The University currently houses its students in its temporary quarters which were government quarters earlier. The quarters consists of 34 blocks, along with two dining halls (Mess). Each Block consists of twelve rooms accommodating two people. The Rooms are well spacious and have an attached bathroom, toilet and kitchen space.
Library and Reading Room
The University houses a modest Library containing a wide range of books and journals. The Library is housed on the second floor of the University Building. The Library Timings are 9:30 am to 9:00 pm.
The Reading Room, though not air conditioned, provides space for peaceful reading.
The University facilitates the use of an air conditioned Computer Lab which is located on the second floor of the University Building. Wireless Internet Connectivity is provided in the Hostel Blocks.
The University currently subscribes to the following research databases: JSTOR, Manupatra and West Law.
Centres of Excellence
Gujarat National Law University aims to create Centres of Excellence in particular fields of law over the years. They are:
- School of Law, Science and Technology
- School of Public Law and Policy Sciences
- School of Criminal Law and Criminology
- School of Law and Economics
- School of Personal Laws
- School of Social Sciences
- School of Physical and Life Sciences
- School of Studies in ADR Mechanism
- School of Disaster Management
Besides these, a Museum of Indian Legal History is also envisaged by the University.
Extra Curricular Activities
Mooting is the most popular extra-curricular activity that is pursued with great zeal by the students. Right from its inception, GNLU Students have performed very well in Moot Court Competitions around the world. The Moot Court Committee conducts Intra University Mooting Competitions every Semester. <ref>"Moot Court Committee"</ref>
The University also annually hosts the GNLU International Moot Court Competition(GIMC) which held usually in January/February. The theme of GIMC is International Trade Law. The Problem usually consists of Public International Law intertwined with the various aspects of Trade Laws. The third edition of the Competition is to be held in February, 2011 and the problem deals with Space Law and Trade Law. <ref>"GNLU International Moot Court Competition (GIMC)"</ref>
The Student Activities Committee (SAC) promotes and caters to the diverse student interests varying from cultural pursuits like Music and Dance to literary activities like Quizzing and Parliamentary Debating. Specific student involvements in Films, Books, etc are also nurtured by the SAC. The activities are varied and divided into nine different clubs.<ref>"Student Activities Committee"</ref> The SAC also hosts an Intra University Literary and Cultural Fest Pentagram during the month of March every year.
The Legal Service Committee (LSC) works towards making legal services accessible to all citizens of the society. The LSC manages a Legal Services Cell which provides free legal assistance and consultancy for the needy. The cell is run completely by students. The Legal Service Committee is planning on adopting a village and making it litigation free in a year. The LSC also conducts Legal awareness programmes around the year. <ref>"Legal Service Committee"</ref>
Seminars and Conferences
Gujarat National Law University organizes seminars, conferences and talks on a regular basis. Noted dignitaries have delivered guest lectures at the University. Some of them include Justice Y.K Sabharwal, the former Chief Justice of India, Justice C.K. Thakker, Judge, Supreme Court of India, Mr. Soli J Sorabjee, noted jurist and Former Attorney General of India, Mr. Shardul Shroff, etc.