Top 10 Law Universities in India 2023 NIRF Rankings and Details
The Top 10 Law Universities in India 2023 : NIRF released the list of top 10 Law universities in India for the year 2023. These rankings reflect the institutions’ commitment to providing quality legal education and fostering excellence in the field of law. Let’s explore each university in detail and understand their respective scores and locations.
1.National Law School of India University, Bengaluru
NIRF Score: 80.52
National Law School of India University (NLSIU), commonly referred to as National Law School (NLS), is a renowned public law school and National Law University located in Bangalore. Recognized as the top law school in India, it consistently ranks at the forefront in all aspects of legal education.
Established by the then Chief Justice Y. V. Chandrachud, the National Law School was the first National Law University (NLU) in India and one of the pioneers in offering the integrated undergraduate law degree program. The foundation of the school was laid through the National Law School of India Act of 1986, passed by the Karnataka Legislative Assembly. As per the statute, the Chief Justice of India serves as the Visitor of the school, effectively holding the position of Chancellor. The day-to-day administration is handled by the Vice-Chancellor. The visionary behind the establishment of NLSIU was N. R. Madhava Menon, who also played a pivotal role in setting up other NLUs in the country as part of legal education reforms.
NLSIU is spread over a sprawling 23-acre campus and houses the largest law library in the country. The university hosts several prominent competitions and events, including the NLS Debate and Strawberry Fields. Admissions to NLSIU are highly competitive and are based on the Common Law Admission Test (CLAT) and the National Law School Admission Test (NLSAT). The annual intake for its programs is 568 students.
National Law School of India University holds the distinction of being the only Indian institute to have won the prestigious Philip C. Jessup International Law Moot Court Competition, achieving this feat in 1999 and 2013. Additionally, 25 of its alumni have been awarded Rhodes scholarships. The National Law School of India Review, one of its flagship student-run publications, has been cited thrice by the Supreme Court of India.
Sudhir Krishnaswamy, an alumnus, currently serves as the sixth Vice-Chancellor of the university.
The establishment of the National Law School was the culmination of efforts spanning over two decades by a legal team including former Chief Justice Mohammad Hidayatullah, Ram Jethmalani, and Upendra Baxi. The Bar Council of India, through its Legal Education Committee, had been actively working towards establishing a university based on the lines of Harvard Law School. Eventually, the Bar Council of India Trust and the Government of Karnataka reached an agreement to establish the first National Law University in Bangalore. In 1986, under the leadership of its founder Vice-Chancellor N. R. Madhava Menon, the National Law University of India was established.
Menon was determined to depart from the traditional lecture format prevalent in Indian law colleges. He introduced the case method, inspired by Harvard Law School, and implemented group teaching, where multiple professors would conduct classes, presenting contrasting viewpoints and engaging in legal arguments.
The first batch of law students joined the undergraduate program at the school on July 1, 1988. Initially, classes were held at the premises of the Central College of Bangalore University until the school moved to its present-day location in the Nagarbhavi suburb in November 1991.
The National Law School of India Act, 1986 designates the Chief Justice of India as the Visitor of the school, functioning as the de facto Chancellor. The Vice-Chancellor, currently Sudhir Krishnaswamy, serves as the chief executive officer of the university, overseeing its day-to-day operations. The school also has various councils, including the General Council, Executive Council, Academic Council, and Finance Council, which facilitate the administration of the university.
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2. National Law University, New Delhi (Delhi)
NIRF Score: 73.91
National Law University, Delhi (NLUD) is a prestigious National Law University in India that offers undergraduate and postgraduate courses. It is located in Sector-14, Dwarka, New Delhi, India, and is among the top national law schools in the country. NLUD follows the five-year law degree model proposed by the Bar Council of India. The university operates under the National Law University Act of 2007, with the Chief Justice of India serving as the university’s visitor and the Chief Justice of the High Court of Delhi as the chancellor, while the vice-chancellor is responsible for the administration.History: Established in 2008 by the NCT Delhi Act No. 1 of 2008, National Law University, Delhi was initiated by the High Court of Delhi under the leadership of Ranbir Singh, the founder-director and vice-chancellor of Nalsar University of Law, Hyderabad. The university was inaugurated by the then President of India, Pratibha Patil, and initially started functioning from temporary buildings. Construction was completed by 2010, providing a permanent campus for the university.
Academics: NLUD offers a five-year undergraduate program, B.A., LL.B. (Hons.), with an intake of 110 seats, along with ten additional seats for foreign nationals/OCI/PIO. The program follows a credit system and includes seminar courses for additional learning based on students’ interests. The curriculum consists of approximately fifty subjects spread across ten semesters, with five subjects per semester. Students are required to submit fifty research projects before graduation. The university also offers a one-year LL.M. program, and postgraduate diploma programs in Urban Environmental Management, Judging and Court Management, IPR and Patent Law, and a Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) program.
Admissions: NLUD conducts its own entrance examination for admissions to the undergraduate program (B.A., LL.B. (Hons.)). The All India Law Entrance Test (AILET) is administered by the university. For the LL.M. program, admission is based on a written test conducted by the university followed by an interview. Admissions to NLUD are not conducted through the Common Law Admission Test (CLAT) like other National Law Universities.
Rankings: NLUD has been consistently recognized as one of the top law schools in India. In the National Institutional Ranking Framework (NIRF) rankings for 2022, NLUD secured the second position among law colleges in India.
Justice T. P. S. Chawla Library: The library at NLUD is named after Justice T. P. S. Chawla, a former judge of the High Court of Delhi. The library is fully automated and utilizes a barcode system for book circulation. It houses a collection of over 41,000 documents, including monographs, commentaries, textbooks, and reference books on various legal subjects. The library is organized across three storeys and covers areas such as Jurisprudence, Constitutional Law, Intellectual Property, Criminal Law, and more.
Research: NLUD has established thirteen research centers, including the Centre for Banking and Financial Laws, Centre for Child Rights & Juvenile Justice, Centre for Communication Governance, Centre for Comparative Law, Centre for Corporate Law and Governance, and more. Additionally, the university has endowed chairs such as the K.L. Arora Chair in Criminal Law and Justice B.R. Sawhny Chair in Professional Ethics, fostering research and academic excellence.
3. Nalsar University of Law, Hyderabad
NIRF Score: 73.76
The National Academy of Legal Studies and Research (NALSAR) is a prestigious public law school and National Law University located in Shamirpet, Hyderabad, Telangana, India. Renowned for its exceptional academic programs, NALSAR offers integrated undergraduate, postgraduate, and doctorate law degrees. It has been at the forefront of legal education, being among the first universities in India to introduce the five-year integrated law degree program.Spanning over a sprawling 55-acre campus divided into five precincts, NALSAR provides state-of-the-art facilities for its students. The Administrative Block, adjacent to the Academic Block, houses classrooms, conference halls, a library, an internet center, a moot court hall, and research centers. The campus also includes separate hostels for boys and girls, ensuring a comfortable and secure living environment. Moreover, the entire campus is equipped with WiFi connectivity, promoting a digitally enabled learning environment.
NALSAR’s academic programs are highly sought after and rigorous. The university offers a five-year integrated B.A. LL.B. (Hons.) program, as well as an Integrated Program of Management (BBA+MBA). Admissions to the undergraduate program are based on the Common Law Admission Test (CLAT), attracting a vast pool of over 80,000 students annually. With only 132 seats available, NALSAR’s undergraduate program is known for its highly selective admissions process. The curriculum follows a credit-based elective system, encompassing mandatory courses that require students to accumulate 200 credits over the five-year period to earn their degrees.
For postgraduate students, NALSAR offers a one-year LL.M. program. Admissions to this program are also based on the CLAT, with 50 seats reserved for Indian nationals and an additional ten seats for foreign nationals. The LL.M. program provides specialization in various areas, and students are required to complete a dissertation. Additionally, NALSAR offers a two-year self-financed master’s degree in Business Laws and Administration (MBLA), a one-year Master of Philosophy (M.Phil.), and a Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.). Notably, NALSAR became the first National Law University in India to introduce a two-year M.B.A. program, starting from the academic year 2013-14.
The Center for Air and Space Law (CASL) at NALSAR offers innovative courses in Aviation, Space, Telecommunications, GIS, and Remote Sensing. These courses cater to the growing and commercialized sectors of aviation, space, and telecommunications. CASL provides master’s degrees in Aviation Law and Air Transport Management (MALATM) and Space and Telecommunication Laws (MSTL), fostering an academy-industry partnership in these domains.
The NALSAR library, known as the Law Resource Center, houses an extensive collection of over 27,000 items, including law reports, periodicals, manuals, textbooks, and other legal resources. The library is equipped with a VPN-configured Online Public Access Catalogue (OPAC), accessible both on and off-campus, facilitating online information retrieval, book requests, and account management. Furthermore, NALSAR’s library holds a depository of UN collections and offers online access to supplement its print collection.
NALSAR takes pride in its publishing endeavors, with various law journals such as the Indian Journal of Air and Space Law (IJASL), M. K. Nambyar SAARC Law Journal, NALSAR Law Review, NALSAR Student Law Review, Journal of Corporate Affairs and Corporate Crimes, Indian Journal of Constitutional Law, Media Law Review, Environmental Law & Practice Review, The Indian Journal Law & Economics, Nalsar ADR Journal, and Indian Journal of Intellectual Property Law.
4.The West Bengal National University of Juridical Sciences, Kolkata (West Bengal)
NIRF Score: 69.34
The West Bengal National University of Juridical Sciences (WBNUJS or NUJS) is a prestigious National Law University situated in Bidhannagar, Kolkata, West Bengal, India. Recognized for its excellence in legal education, NUJS has consistently secured high rankings among law colleges in India. In 2021, it was ranked fourth by the National Institutional Ranking Framework and second by India Today. The university operates under the esteemed chancellorship of the Chief Justice of India.Established in 1999 by the Bar Council of India (BCI) in collaboration with the West Bengal government, NUJS pioneered the concept of “national law schools” in India. It was one of the first law universities to introduce the five-year integrated B.A. LLB (Hons.) degree program and the LLM program. Admission to the B.A. LLB program is highly competitive and based on the Common Law Admission Test, a nationwide entrance examination conducted jointly by the national law schools. NUJS also offers MPhil, Ph.D., and diploma programs in various legal disciplines, along with a range of online courses to cater to diverse academic interests.
Over the years, NUJS has been guided by eminent vice-chancellors who have played a crucial role in shaping its educational framework. Professor N.R. Madhava Menon, a renowned legal scholar and the founder-director of the National Law School of India University, Bangalore, served as the first Vice-Chancellor. His vision and expertise revolutionized legal education in India. Currently, the university is led by Professor (Dr) NK Chakrabarti, who continues to uphold NUJS’s commitment to academic excellence.
NUJS boasts a modern and well-equipped campus. Initially, classes were held at Aranya Bhavan, and the university’s permanent campus was inaugurated on 28 October 2002 by the then Chief Justice of India, B. N. Kirpal. The university is situated on a sprawling 50-acre plot in Rajarhat, an upscale township developed by the West Bengal government.
The academic programs at NUJS are designed to provide comprehensive legal education and cater to the evolving needs of the legal profession. Alongside traditional programs, the university offers an online Masters in Business Laws degree, which enables students to specialize in business law over a period of two years. NUJS also collaborates with iPleaders to provide a diploma in Entrepreneurship Administration and Business Laws, a highly successful distance education program with students from diverse backgrounds and countries.
NUJS emphasizes research and scholarship, attracting faculty members who possess extensive experience and knowledge in their respective fields. The faculty includes distinguished legal experts such as former governor of Mizoram and CBI director, Dr. A.P. Mukherjee, former Supreme Court Justice Ruma Pal, and renowned intellectual property expert Shamnad Basheer, among others. The faculty’s educational background spans prestigious institutions worldwide, including Columbia University, University of Oxford, London School of Economics and Political Science, and NLSIU, among others.
NUJS has consistently secured favorable rankings, reflecting its commitment to academic excellence and quality legal education. In India Today’s “India’s Best Colleges 2022: Law” ranking, NUJS secured the second position. The National Institutional Ranking Framework (NIRF) ranked NUJS fifth in India in the law category in 2022. With Kavan Patel as the current president of the college, NUJS anticipates further improvement in rankings in the upcoming years.
The West Bengal National University of Juridical Sciences (NUJS) continues to excel as a premier institution for legal education in India. With its distinguished faculty, comprehensive academic programs, and commitment to research and scholarship, NUJS prepares its students to become highly skilled legal professionals capable of meeting the demands of the dynamic legal landscape.
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5.Jamia Millia Islamia, New Delhi (Delhi)
NIRF Score: 68.30
Jamia Millia Islamia: A Leading Central University Promoting Education and Cultural Renaissance
Jamia Millia Islamia, which translates to “National Islamic University,” is a prestigious central university situated in New Delhi, India. Originally established in Aligarh, United Provinces (now Uttar Pradesh, India) during the British Raj in 1920, the university relocated to its present location in Okhla in 1935. It was granted deemed status by the University Grants Commission in 1962, and later, on 26 December 1988, it attained the esteemed status of a central university.
The foundation committee of the university consisted of notable personalities such as Abdul Bari Firangi Mahali, Hussain Ahmad Madani, Muhammad Iqbal, Sanaullah Amritsari, Syed Mehmood, and others. The foundation stone was laid by Mahmud Hasan Deobandi, the leader of the Silk Letter Movement and the first student of Darul Uloom Deoband. Muhammad Ali Jauhar served as its first vice-chancellor from 1920 to 1923, while Hakim Ajmal Khan assumed the role of the first chancellor from 1920 to 1927. Najma Heptulla became the 11th Chancellor on 26 May 2017, and in April 2019, Najma Akhtar took on the role of the 15th Vice-Chancellor. Notably, on 13th March 2023, Mufaddal Saifuddin was elected as the 12th Chancellor, succeeding Najma Heptulla.
In 2020, Jamia Millia Islamia achieved the top rank among all central universities in the country, according to the rankings released by the Ministry of Education of India. Furthermore, in December 2021, the university received an ‘A++’ ranking from the National Assessment and Accreditation Council.
Historically, Jamia Millia Islamia was established in Aligarh on 29 October 1920 by Mohammad Ali Jauhar, Hakim Ajmal Khan, Mukhtar Ahmed Ansari, Abdul Majeed Khwaja, and Zakir Hussain under the presidency of Mahmud Hasan Deobandi. It emerged as a response to the demand of some students from Aligarh Muslim University who sought a new national Muslim university that would be free from government influence, perceiving the administration of Aligarh Muslim University to have a pro-British stance.
The vision of Jamia Millia Islamia was to create a national institution offering progressive education and emphasizing Indian nationalism to students from all communities, particularly Muslims. Zakir Hussain described it as a movement for education and cultural renaissance, aiming to develop a blueprint for Indian Muslims that would combine Islam with a national culture, fostering patriotism, and national integration. The objective was to prepare Indian Muslim children to become future leaders, contributing to India’s progress and playing a role in global peace and development. Mahatma Gandhi, recognizing the potential of Jamia Millia Islamia to shape the lives of thousands of students based on shared culture and worldview, supported its establishment.
6.Symbiosis Law School, Pune (Maharashtra)
NIRF Score: 66.67
Symbiosis Law School (SLS) is a renowned institution dedicated to legal education, with campuses located in Pune, Noida, Hyderabad, and Nagpur in India. Established in 1977 under the auspices of the Symbiosis Society, with the patronage of S. B. Mujumdar, the President and Founder Director, Symbiosis Law School has made significant contributions to legal academia. It is registered under the Societies Registration Act, 1860, and the Bombay Public Trust Act, 1950. As a constituent college of the esteemed Symbiosis International University, it upholds a strong reputation for excellence.
Faculty Excellence Symbiosis Law School boasts a talented and dedicated faculty team. The faculty comprises 25 full-time members, including two professors, three associate professors, 19 assistant professors, one teaching associate, and one adjunct faculty member. Their expertise covers a wide range of legal disciplines, ensuring a comprehensive and enriching learning experience for students.
Centers of Specialization SLS has established six Centers of Specialization to promote research and innovation in various areas of law. These centers focus on Public Law & Governance, Private Laws, Transnational & Global Legal Studies, Corporate Laws, Justice Education and Technology & Innovation Laws. Through these centers, the law school actively engages in research projects that contribute to the development of legal knowledge and practice. Some noteworthy initiatives include Community Legal Care, Legal Aid Activities, Microsoft IPR Chair, Prisoner’s Rights, Law Reform Projects on Common Property in collaboration with NLSIU, Bangalore, Compensation for Rape Victims in partnership with the National Commission for Women, and research support for the Law Commission of India. The law school also undertakes research on diverse subjects such as IPC Handbook, Feminist Jurisprudence, Legal Regulation of Biotechnology, and Educational Laws.
Academic Programs Symbiosis Law School offers a wide range of programs to cater to the diverse interests and aspirations of students. These include undergraduate, postgraduate, and Ph.D. programs in law. Additionally, the school provides diploma and certificate courses, allowing students to specialize in specific areas of legal practice and scholarship. The comprehensive academic offerings ensure that students receive a well-rounded legal education, preparing them for successful careers in the legal profession.
Admissions Process Admission to the undergraduate programs at Symbiosis Law School is through the Symbiosis Law Admission Test (SLAT), a common written test conducted for the admission processes of Undergraduate Institutes of Symbiosis International University (SIU). SLS has pioneered a multi-step admission process that includes the SLAT, followed by a Writing Ability Test and Personal Interview. This innovative approach ensures that candidates are assessed holistically, considering their aptitude, writing skills, and personal attributes. Symbiosis Law School takes pride in being the first law school to adopt this comprehensive admission process. The SLAT has replaced the previously conducted SET (Symbiosis Entrance Test) for Law, aligning with evolving admission practices.
Symbiosis Law School continues to be a trailblazer in legal education, nurturing the next generation of legal professionals and contributing to the advancement of the legal field. With its dedicated faculty, specialized research centers, and comprehensive academic programs, Symbiosis Law School stands as a symbol of excellence in legal education in India.
7. Gujarat National Law University, Gandhinagar (Gujarat)
NIRF Score: 65.69
Gujarat National Law University (GNLU) is a prestigious public law school and one of the National Law Universities established under the Gujarat National Law University Act of 2003 in the state of Gujarat. Situated in Gandhinagar, the capital city of Gujarat, GNLU is located 23 kilometers north of Ahmedabad. As per the university’s statute, the Chief Justice of India or a Senior Supreme Court Judge serves as the Visitor of the university.
Established as the seventh National Law University in India, GNLU owes its inception to the collaborative efforts of Kirit Raval, the then Solicitor General of India, Narendra Modi, the then Chief Minister of Gujarat, and the Bar Council of India. The university’s structure is modeled after the National Law School of India University (NLSIU) in Bangalore. The establishment of GNLU received substantial support from the Government of India, the Government of Gujarat, and the judicial fraternity. The first Director of the university was Prof. (Dr.) V.S. Mani, succeeded by Prof. (Dr.) Bimal N. Patel. In 2012, GNLU shifted to its new 50-acre campus in the Knowledge Corridor of Gandhinagar.
Academics at GNLU revolve around a two-semester per year system, with the curriculum devised by the respective professors. The courses offered encompass project work, report writing, research, and analysis. As a Research-based Training University (RbTU), GNLU places a strong emphasis on research, with each faculty member preparing course outlines and syllabi based on their in-house research and consultations with subject experts from across the country and the world. Mooting is a mandatory activity in the first semester, and first-year undergraduate students have the opportunity to choose from various language courses, including Arabic, Chinese, French, Russian, Spanish, German, Japanese, Swahili, and Sanskrit.
Admissions to GNLU are based on the performance in the Common Law Admission Test (CLAT), a unified entrance examination for law programs in India. Initially, GNLU conducted its separate entrance exam, but after a Supreme Court ruling, CLAT became the standard admission procedure for all law entrance examinations in 2008. The first CLAT was conducted by NLSIU in 2008, and GNLU took on the responsibility of conducting CLAT in 2014. In 2019, approximately 60,000 students appeared for CLAT.
GNLU has garnered recognition for its academic excellence. India Today’s “India’s Best Colleges 2022: Law” ranked GNLU fourth among law colleges in the country. Furthermore, in the National Institutional Ranking Framework (NIRF) 2022, GNLU secured the eighth position in the law ranking in India.
Gujarat National Law University stands as a prominent institution for legal education, nurturing aspiring legal professionals and contributing to the advancement of the legal field. With its dedicated faculty, well-structured curriculum, and esteemed rankings, GNLU continues to make a significant impact in the realm of legal education in India.
8. Siksha ‘O’ Anusandhan, Bhubaneswar (Odisha)
NIRF Score: 64.04
Shiksha ‘O’ Anusandhan (SOA), previously known as Siksha ‘O’ Anusandhan University, is a distinguished private deemed university located in Bhubaneswar, Odisha, India. The university comprises nine degree-granting schools and colleges, attracting a student body of approximately 15,000. Many of SOA’s programs hold national accreditation, including disciplines such as engineering, medicine, pharmacy, business, nursing, biotechnology, science, humanities, environment, nano-technology, materials science, agriculture, and law.
SOA’s journey began in 1996 with the establishment of the Institute of Technical Education and Research (ITER) in Bhubaneswar. Initially affiliated with Utkal University, ITER later became affiliated with Biju Patnaik University of Technology (BPUT) between 2002 and 2007. Recognizing the institution’s contribution to technical and professional education, the University Grants Commission (UGC) declared Siksha ‘O’ Anusandhan as a Deemed University under Section 3 of the UGC Act, 1956 in 2007. Consequently, the Institute of Technical Education and Research (ITER), Bhubaneswar became a constituent institute of Siksha ‘O’ Anusandhan University. The institutes, schools, and departments of SOA University are spread across sprawling 200-acre campuses in Bhubaneswar.
In 2022, SOA attained Category-I Graded Autonomy Status, granted by the University Grants Commission, further validating its commitment to academic excellence and autonomy.
Academically, Siksha ‘O’ Anusandhan offers ten degree-granting schools and institutes, providing undergraduate programs in engineering, medicine, pharmacy, business, nursing, biotechnology, agriculture, and law. The university also offers graduate and doctoral programs in various disciplines, including engineering, medicine, pharmacy, business, nursing, biotechnology, science, humanities, environment, nano-technology, materials science, agriculture, and law.
Admissions to SOA are facilitated through the Siksha ‘O’ Anusandhan Admission Test (SAAT), a national-level entrance exam conducted annually by the university. SAAT serves as the basis for admission to undergraduate and postgraduate programs offered by SOA’s constituent institutes and schools. The university also provides scholarships to meritorious and deserving students, ensuring accessibility to quality education.
SOA’s commitment to excellence is reflected in its rankings. In 2022, the National Institutional Ranking Framework (NIRF) ranked Siksha ‘O’ Anusandhan 30th overall among Indian universities. Additionally, it secured the 16th position in the NIRF ranking for universities and the 18th position in the medical category. The university’s achievements in engineering, law, and dental education were also recognized by NIRF.
At Siksha ‘O’ Anusandhan, research holds paramount importance. The university boasts a dedicated dean overseeing research activities, with over 1,000 research scholars currently pursuing their Ph.D. degrees. To facilitate research endeavors, SOA has established sixteen research centers dedicated to fundamental and applied research.
The constituent units of SOA include the Institute of Agricultural Sciences (IAS), Institute of Business and Computer Studies (IBCS), Institute of Dental Sciences (IDS), Institute of Medical Sciences and Sum Hospital (IMS & SUM Hospital), Institute of Technical Education and Research (ITER), Institute of Veterinary Science and Animal Husbandry (IVSAH), School of Hotel Management (SHM), SOA National Institute of Law (SNIL), School of Pharmaceutical Sciences (SPS), and Sum Nursing College (SNC).
Notably, the Institute of Technical Education and Research (ITER) serves as the Faculty of Engineering and Technology at Siksha ‘O’ Anusandhan. Established in 1996, ITER initially affiliated with Utkal University before becoming a constituent institute of Siksha ‘O’ Anusandhan in 2007. ITER offers a wide range of engineering departments, including Civil Engineering, Computer Science and Engineering, Computer Science and Information Technology, Electrical Engineering, Electrical and Electronics Engineering, Electronics and Communication Engineering, Mechanical Engineering, and Computer Application. Supporting departments in the fields of Chemistry, Applied Mathematics and Computing, Mathematics, Physics, and Humanities and Social Sciences further enhance the academic environment at ITER.
Shiksha ‘O’ Anusandhan stands as a symbol of transformative education, empowering students in Bhubaneswar and beyond. With its diverse range of programs, commitment to research, and notable rankings, SOA continues to foster excellence and make significant contributions to the educational landscape in India.
9. Indian Institute of Technology Kharagpur, Kharagpur (West Bengal)
NIRF Score: 62.20
Indian Institute of Technology Kharagpur (IIT Kharagpur) is a prestigious public institute of technology situated in Kharagpur, West Bengal, India. Established in 1951, it holds the distinction of being the first among the Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs) and is recognized as an Institute of National Importance. In 2019, it was accorded the status of Institute of Eminence by the Government of India.
Originally founded with the objective of training engineers following India’s independence in 1947, IIT Kharagpur has expanded its academic capabilities over the years to encompass a wide range of disciplines, including management, law, architecture, humanities, and more. The institute’s sprawling campus spans 8.7 square kilometers (2,100 acres) and is home to approximately 22,000 residents.
The foundation of IIT Kharagpur can be traced back to the efforts of a committee led by Sir Jogendra Singh, a member of the Viceroy’s executive council, which was tasked with considering the establishment of higher technical institutions to fuel India’s industrial development in the post-World War II era. The committee, headed by Nalini Ranjan Sarkar, recommended the creation of such institutions modeled after the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, with support and consultation from the University of Illinois at Urbana–Champaign.
The vision of establishing the first IIT in West Bengal gained momentum when Bidhan Chandra Roy, the Chief Minister of West Bengal, successfully convinced Jawaharlal Nehru, India’s first prime minister, to set up the institute in the state. Thus, in May 1950, the Eastern Higher Technical Institute, the precursor to IIT Kharagpur, was established in Calcutta (now Kolkata) and later relocated to its permanent campus in Hijli, Kharagpur in September 1950. The campus, spread across the site of the former Hijli Detention Camp, which once held Indian independence activists during the British colonial rule, symbolizes India’s progress and aspirations.
IIT Kharagpur is the fourth oldest technical institute in West Bengal, following the Indian Institute of Engineering Science and Technology Shibpur (established in 1856), Jadavpur University (established as Bengal Technical Institute in 1906), and Rajabazar Science College (established as Calcutta University campus for Science and Technology in 1914). The institute commenced its first academic session in August 1951 with 224 students and 42 teachers across ten departments. The historic building of the Hijli Detention Camp, now known as Shaheed Bhawan, served as the initial classrooms, laboratories, and administrative office for the institute.
The formal inauguration of IIT Kharagpur took place on 18 August 1951, with Maulana Abul Kalam Azad adopting the name “Indian Institute of Technology.” Subsequently, in 1956, the Indian Institute of Technology (Kharagpur) Act received parliamentary assent, declaring the institute an institution of national importance. The institute’s motto, “योगः कर्मसु कौशलम्” (Yoga is skill in works), derived from the Bhagavad Gita, Chapter 2, Verse 50 and translated by Sri Aurobindo, encapsulates its guiding principles.
IIT Kharagpur’s governance structure differentiates it from other IITs, while it shares a common Visitor and the IIT Council with them. The Board of Governors, consisting of 13 members, oversees the institute under the IIT Council. The director, supported by the deputy director, serves as the chief academic and executive officer. The academic policies are determined.
Organizational Structure of Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs)
The Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs) are renowned institutions of higher education and research in India. Each IIT operates with its own organizational structure, including IIT Kharagpur. While IIT Kharagpur shares certain common elements with other IITs, it also has some distinct features in its organizational setup.
At IIT Kharagpur, the overall governance of the institute is overseen by the Board of Governors, which functions under the IIT Council. The Board of Governors consists of 13 members, including representatives from the states of West Bengal, Bihar, Jharkhand, and Odisha, in addition to members appointed by the IIT Council and the institute’s senate. This board plays a crucial role in shaping the policies and direction of IIT Kharagpur.
The institute director serves as the chief academic and executive officer of IIT Kharagpur. Assisted by the deputy director, the director leads the academic and administrative functions of the institute. Under their guidance, the deans, heads of departments, registrar, president of the students’ council, and chairman of the Hall Management Committee carry out their respective responsibilities.
The registrar holds the position of the chief administrative officer and is responsible for the day-to-day operations of the institute. They oversee important aspects such as records, funds, and other properties of the institute. The heads of departments (HODs) are entrusted with the charge of their respective departments, under which the faculty members, including full-time professors, associate professors, and assistant professors, operate. The chairman of the Hall Management Committee supervises the wardens of the hostels.
IIT Kharagpur receives comparatively higher funding compared to other engineering colleges in India. While most other engineering colleges receive government funding of around ₹100–200 million ($2–4.5 million) annually, IIT Kharagpur receives nearly ₹1,300 million (US$16 million) per year. In addition to government funding, the institute also receives funds from student fees and research projects sponsored by industries. Scholarships are provided to MTech students and research scholars to encourage them to pursue higher studies. The institute also offers financial support to undergraduate students based on personal need and economic background.
The academic policies of IIT Kharagpur are formulated by its senate, which consists of all professors of the institute, along with administrative and student representatives. The senate plays a pivotal role in determining the curriculum, courses, examinations, results, and appointing committees for specific academic matters. It periodically reviews the teaching, training, and research activities to ensure the maintenance of educational standards. The director of IIT Kharagpur serves as the ex-officio chairman of the Institute Senate, further strengthening the connection between the administration and the academic body.
Academic Programs at IIT Kharagpur
IIT Kharagpur offers a wide range of undergraduate and postgraduate programs, as well as doctoral education. Admission to most undergraduate and postgraduate courses at IIT Kharagpur is granted through written entrance examinations. For M.S. (by Research) and PhD programs, candidates undergo written tests followed by personal interviews.
Undergraduate programs at IIT Kharagpur include Bachelor of Technology (BTech Hons), Bachelor of Architecture (BArch), and the 5-year integrated Master of Science. The BTech program is the most common undergraduate degree at IIT Kharagpur and spans four years. The curriculum consists of common courses in the first year, after which students have the option to change departments based on their performance. From the second year onwards, students take department-specific courses (depth courses) and interdisciplinary courses (breadth courses). They also undertake industrial training during their course of study. The final year is dedicated to placements, where students are offered jobs by various organizations.
Postgraduate programs at IIT Kharagpur include Master of Technology (MTech), Master of Business Administration (MBA), Master of Sciences (MSc), and other specialized programs such as Master of Human Resource Management (MHRM) and Postgraduate Diploma in Information Technology (PGDIT). The institute also offers a Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) degree, allowing scholars to conduct advanced research in their respective fields. Teaching assistantships (TA) and research assistantships (RA) are provided to scholars based on their academic profile.
IIT Kharagpur also offers dual degree programs that integrate undergraduate and postgraduate studies in selected branches and specializations. These programs span five years and offer students the opportunity to earn both a BTech and an MTech or an MBA degree.
In addition to its academic programs, IIT Kharagpur houses various schools, including the Vinod Gupta School of Management, the Rajendra Mishra School of Engineering Entrepreneurship, and the Rajiv Gandhi School of Intellectual Property Law. These schools cater to specific disciplines and provide specialized education in their respective fields.
IIT Kharagpur has also collaborated with other prestigious institutions, both in India and abroad, to offer unique programs. One such example is the Post Graduate Diploma in Business Analytics (PGDBA) offered in collaboration with IIM Calcutta and ISI Kolkata, which is globally recognized and ranked 14th by the QS World University Ranking 2019.
Recently, IIT Kharagpur entered into a strategic partnership with The University of Manchester, launching a dual award PhD program that allows students to earn a doctoral degree from both institutions.
IIT Kharagpur continues to strive for academic excellence, periodically updating its curriculum and maintaining a conducive environment for learning, research, and innovation.
10. Babasheb Bhimrao Ambedkar University, Lucknow (Uttar Pradesh)
NIRF Score: 61.05
Babasaheb Bhimrao Ambedkar University (BBAU) is a distinguished Central University located in Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh. The university, established on 10th January 1996, is named after Babasaheb Ambedkar, a revered social reformer, polymath, and the chief architect of the Indian Constitution. With a commitment to academic excellence and social empowerment, BBAU strives to provide quality education and contribute to the holistic development of its students.
Situated on Vidya Vihar, Raebareli Road, Lucknow, the sprawling campus of BBAU spans over 250 acres. The campus offers an eco-friendly environment that fosters focused study and intellectual growth. In addition to the main campus in Lucknow, BBAU also operates a satellite campus in Amethi, which was established in 2016. The Amethi campus primarily offers undergraduate courses, further expanding the university’s reach and accessibility.
BBAU comprises several schools dedicated to various fields of study. These schools provide specialized education and foster research and innovation. The schools at BBAU include:
- School of Engineering Technology (UIET)
- School of Information Science Technology
- School of Ambedkar Studies for Social Sciences
- School of Life Sciences
- School of Environmental Science
- School of Education
- School of Home Sciences
- School of Legal Studies
- School of Management Studies
- School of Physical & Decision Sciences
- School of Languages and Literature
- School of Media and Communication
- School of Economics and Commerce
- School of Agriculture Sciences & Technology
- School of Biomedical & Pharmaceutical Sciences
BBAU takes pride in its Gautam Buddha central library, which was established in January 1998. The library serves as a hub of knowledge and information, promoting learning and research. In honor of Gautam Buddha, the library was named the Gautam Buddha central library. The library operates under the guidance of the Library Advisory Committee (LAC) and plays a vital role in the effective dissemination of knowledge and information throughout the university community.
BBAU has achieved notable recognition in the realm of higher education. The National Institutional Ranking Framework (NIRF) has consistently acknowledged the university’s academic prowess and overall performance. In the NIRF rankings for 2021 and 2022, BBAU secured a position among the top 150 institutions in the general category. It also attained a commendable ranking among universities, placing 65th in 2021 and 55th in 2022. In the field of business and management, BBAU secured a position in the range of 76-100 in 2021 and 87th in 2022.
Babasaheb Bhimrao Ambedkar University (BBAU) stands as a beacon of higher education, carrying forward the vision of Babasaheb Ambedkar. With its diverse schools, state-of-the-art infrastructure, and commitment to knowledge dissemination, BBAU continues to make significant contributions to the academic landscape of India.
The NIRF 2023 rankings provide valuable insights into the top law universities in India. These institutions, including the National Law School of India University, Nalsar University of Law, and National Law University, New Delhi and others, continue to raise the bar in legal education and research. Students aspiring to pursue a career in law can consider these universities for their academic excellence, innovative programs, and holistic development opportunities.