Flaws In The Legal Education System Of Pakistan
Efforts are consistently being made to improve the standards of the legal education system in Pakistan. An attempt in this regard has been made through the Legal Education Rules 2015, imposing a ban on 3 years LL.B program and introducing the 5 years LL.B program. The initiative is appreciated yet it would not really be enough to improve the legal education system as a whole for the reason that the subjects which were already included in 3 years LL.B program have just been divided for 5 years and the main flaws are still unaddressed. Being a law student myself, the purpose of writing this article is not to challenge the system with my half-formed wisdom but to suggest reforms which should be made in the legal education system of Pakistan.
One of the main flaws in the legal education system is that there is a gap between theory and practice. Law students, after obtaining their LL.B degree, do know the law but do not know how to use it. For example, they know what is a suit, a plaint, a written statement, etc. but they do not know how and where to file the suit, how they should address the court, how they should argue before a judge, where the plaintiff’s council should stand and where the defendant’s council should stand, etc. Even though the moot court and ten to twelve weeks of internship during the last year of LL.B have been made compulsory in the revised curriculum of the 5 years LL.B program, they would still not be enough for a law student to gain insight into the real world of the legal profession. For this reason, the career progression of a fresh law graduate is hindered and if unluckily his or her senior is also not so kind, the future of a fresh graduate is at stake. Therefore, I would like to invite the attention of the readers towards the need of bridging the gap between theory and practice, and in order to bridge this gap the 5th year of LL.B should have been left for mandatory practical training including ethical grooming as an integral part of the course.
Implementation of the existing rules is also an issue. There exist some good provisions in the Legal Education Rules 2015, but their implementation is lacking. As for example, Section 5 of the Legal Education Rules 2015 provides that a batch of students in a faculty of law/ law department/ law college shall not be comprised of more than 35 students, in reality there are around 90 to 100 students in each class in various law colleges. So the implementation of existing rules of legal education in letter and spirit is also necessary.
Another problem faced by a law student is the absence of law libraries. There are numerous public libraries but there is not a single library where a law student can find PLD, ALD, MLD or SCMR. If a law student wants to search anything that is not available in the college library then where should he or she go to slake the thirst of knowledge except to rely on what is available? So, law libraries for law students should also be established and directions to the existing public libraries should also be provided to ensure the availability of law books and law journals.
The views expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of CourtingTheLaw.com or any organisation with which he might be associated.