MNLU gets Rs 85.41 cr from State

Source: The Hitavada      Date: 03 Apr 2018 10:09:46


Staff Reporter,

From next financial year all Law Varsities to get Rs 5 cr each

Maharashtra Government on Monday informed the Nagpur bench of Bombay High Court that so far a sum of Rs 85.41 crore has been earmarked for Maharashtra National Law University (MNLU), Nagpur including Rs 81.40 crore for building construction. From next financial year, all the three National Law Universities within State will get Rs 5 crore as per decision taken in meetings held on June 15 and September 27, 2017, informed Principal Secretary Sitaram Kunte. The Government also denied any discrimination in differential budgetary allotments to three National Law Universities while reiterating complete support to these institutions of higher learning.

A division bench consisting of Justice Bhushan Gavai and Justice Murlidhar Giratkar while hearing a petition filed by High Court Bar Association (HCBA) had sought to know from the State Government details of amount allotted in the last financial year, for the three National Law Universities in Maharashtra and the distribution of the amount among the three universities.

In earlier affidavit Principal Secretary Sitaram Kunte had informed that National Law University at Mumbai got a lion’s share. In 2016-17 it got Rs 9.59 crore while Maharashtra National Law University, Nagpur got Rs 4.56 crore. In Financial year 2017-18, Mumbai got Rs 18.29 crore while MNLU received Rs 4.04 crore while Aurangabad Law University got Rs 2.71 crore.

“When the State Government has started National Law University, it cannot run away from responsibility of providing necessary funds for its proper functioning,” the High Court had observed during last hearing.

The HCBA in its civil application informed that due to paucity of funds, functioning of MNLU has been badly affected and at least a sum of Rs 3 crore is required by MNLU in near future. In response, the State Government informed that an amount of Rs 1.50 crore is already released and proposal for remaining amount is pending with the Finance department. The High Court had then directed Principal Secretary of Higher and Technical Education Department to file affidavit explaining financial help extended to three national law universities while reminding the government about its responsibility to provide enough financial aid to these institutions of national repute during their initial stage. Kunte’s affidavit revealed that for construction a large sum of Rs 81.40 crore has been allocated to MNLU. Adv Sudhir Puranik appeared for HCBA. GP Sumant Deopujari (State) and Adv Praful Khubalkar (MNLU) represented respondents.