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COURSE OUTLINE 2016-17 BATCH (I Semester) Total 60 Hours

Name of the Faculty: Ms. Soma Battacharjya, Assistant Professor of Law, DSNLU

Objective of the Course

The term ‘law’ in broad sense denotes the whole process of government bodies and personnel
(legislatures, courts, administrative tribunals, law-enforcement agencies and officers, penal and
corrective institutions etc.) through which society is organized and regulated for peace and
tranquility. In this endeavors Law Schools are engaged primarily in training future lawyers, judges,
academicians or working as legal advisors or in corporate firms, who will not only study the legal
rules but understand the entire legal system for better operation. This assumes importance especially
when law has gone beyond the stage of memorizing flock of rules and decisions, which is of no use
without application. To this regard, Legal Methods is a subject which lays the foundation of students with the
nurturing of application of legal skills.

Unit No. Topic Teaching

13 Hours
1.1 What is Law - Kinds of Law (Based on Justice or Control) 02
1.2 Purpose, Functions and Objects of Law - Advantage and disadvantages of 01
1.3 Law – Morality – Ethics 03
1.4 Concept of Law & Justice – Social, Economic and political Justice 01
1.5 Law and Legitimacy 01
1.6 Sources of Law – 01
Municipal - Constitution, Legislations, Precedents and Custom as a source
of law
1.7 International Law - Treaties, Charters, and Conventions as source of law 01
1.8 Social issues and its relation with law 01
Economic issues and its relation with law
Political issues and its relation with law
1.9 Law as an instrument of social change and control 01
1.10 Development of technology - Its impact on the society 01
07 Hours
2.1 Legal Systems – Common Law and Civil Law System 01
2.2 Administration of Justice - Public and Private Law and Justice 04
Administration - Criminal Justice system – Civil Justice Administration
2.3 Adversarial and Inquisitorial Justice system 01
Substantive - Procedural and Adjective Law
Hierarchy of Courts
2.4 Legal institutions and processes - Role of Judges, Prosecutors (Criminal 01
Justice System) and Lawyers & Impact on the society
5 Hours
3.1 Constitutional Law as a Grund Norm - Framing of Indian Constitution and 01
its significance in enshrining the principle of welfare State
3.2 Significance of the Preamble of the Constitution, Fundamental Rights & 01
Duties - Concept of Equality, Liberty, Justice and Fraternity
3.3 Constitutionality of the Statutes 01
3.4 Concept of Constitution - Legislature, Executive and Judiciary – Its Role 01
and Importance
3.5 Rule of law – Fundamental of democracy 01
3.6 Independence of Judiciary – Judicial activism and restraint – Growth of 01
Social Action Litigation/ Public Interest Litigation
6 Hours
4.1 Interpretation of Statutes – Literal, Golden, Purposive, Liberal and Strict 02
Interpretation – Mischief Rule – Primary and Secondary Sources of
4.2 Doctrine & Scope of Stare Decisis - Doctrine of Precedent and Prospective 02
Overruling – per incurim
4.3 Finding a Ratio decendi and Obiter Dictum in a case - Goodhart and 02
Wambaugh’s Method
4 Hours
5.1 Writ Remedies 01
5.2 Damages – Nominal – Exemplary – liquidated and unliquidated damages 01
– Compensatory damages – consequential damages - Specific Performance
5.3 Injunctions – Temporary – Permanent and Mandatory - Interim Reliefs 01
(e.g. Stay orders - Temporary injunctions, etc.)
5.4 Sentencing in Criminal Justice administration – Plea Bargaining – Victim 01
3 Hours
6.1 Identification and Deciding the Jurisdiction 01
6.2 Significance of the Facts - Identification of material and immaterial facts –
Mastering the Facts
6.3 Identifying Issues and analysis (both Criminal and Civil Matters)
6.4 Importance and formulation of Legal Rules – Application of Law to Facts 01
6.5 Developing an argument on both sides
6.6 Importance and identification of available remedies
6.7 Identification and application of primary and secondary authority – 01
Reasoning as to applicability and non-applicability
6.8 Decision & Concluding the case - The Art of Writing Judgment
3 Hours + 2 Practical Hours
7.1 Using Law Library 01
7.2 Identifying the Primary source of law – Constitution / Statutes / Judicial
7.3 Studying Law Reports, Digest and Journals – Importance of head notes in
a judgment and its validity
7.4 Commentaries and its contribution to law learning
7.5 E-sources – Use of Westlaw; Hein online; LexisNexis; Taxmann; Indlaw 02
and Manupatra – Google & Wikipedia as a source of authority – Articles
and Case on electronic mode.
7.6 Identifying the secondary source of law (utilizing Foreign Law, Judgments
and Articles and its relevance, significance and applicability to Indian
Law. (e.g. Vishaka v State of Rajasthan – developed by international law)
UNIT – 8
9 Hours
8.1 Meaning of Legal Research 01
Objectives of legal research
8.2 Doctrinal and Non Doctrinal/Empirical Research 01
8.3 Types of Legal Research – Descriptive and Exploratory Studies – 01
Explanatory – Analytical and Critical – Historical and comparative studies
8.4 Selection of a research topic – consideration or factor for selection 01
8.5 Research Design – Components of the research design: 02
Title of the research - Introduction and nature of the research problem -
Hypothesis or research questions - Literature review - Objectives of the
study - Methodology - Scope and limitation of the research - Significance
and contribution – Contents/Chapters – Tables and Bibliography
8.6 Non Doctrinal Research - Data collection – Interview and Questionnaire 02
method – Sampling techniques – advantages and disadvantages
8.7 Techniques and methods of project & report writing – Analysis 01
UNIT – 9
5 Hours
9.1 Meaning of Moot Court, Mock Trials and Client Counseling and Mock 01
Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) process
9.2 Writing a Memorial – Art of persuasion – communication skills – clarity 01
and understanding - attire – court room decorum
9.3 Mock trials – understanding the civil and criminal proceedings 01
9.4 ADR process and its relevance and importance – Negotiation – Mediation 01
– Conciliation and Arbitration
9.5 Client Counseling techniques 01

Books for Reference:

Sl. No. Author of the Book Title of the Book and Publisher
1. Mark Van Hoecke ed. Methodologies of Legal Research Which Kind of Method for What
Kind of Discipline?, Published by Hart Publishing Ltd (2011)
2. Fitzgerald P.J Salmond on Jurisprudence, (English) 12th Edition’ Universal law Pub
Co. P. Ltd.-Delhi
3. G.W Paton A Textbook of Jurisprudence, Oxford, Clarendon Press (1972)
4. Samraditya Pal & M.P. Jain Indian Constitutional Law (Set of 2 Volumes) Lexis
Ruma Pal Nexis India; Sixth edition (2010)
5. G.P. Singh Principles of Statutory Interpretation, LexisNexis
6. A.T.H Smith Glanville Williams: Learning the Law’ Sweet & Maxwell, 15th edition
(10 September 2013)
7. Gary Watt and John How to Moot: A Student Guide to Mooting’ (Oxford University Press,
Snape 2005)


Sl . No. Author Title of the Article and publisher

1. Christopher Enright ‘Summary of Legal Method’ published in http://www.legalskills.co.au/last
visited 01.07.16
2. Roscoe Pound ‘What is Law?’ published in West Virginia Law Quarterly and the Bar
3. Edward W. Younkins The Purpose of Law and Constitutions’ published in the Summer 1994
issue of Formulations by the Free Nation Foundation
4. Arthur Scheller Jr. Law and Morality’ published in Marquette Law Review, Volume 36, Issue
3 Winter 1952-1953
5. H.L.A Hart Positivism and Separation of Law and Morals’ Volume 71 Harvard Law
Review (1958).
6. Lon L. Fuller Positivism and Fidelity to Law- A Reply to Prof Hart’ Harvard Law
7. Arthur L. Goodhart ‘Determiinig the Ratio Decidendi of a Case’ VOL XL. The Yale Law
Journal (1930)
8. Obiter Dictam, 12 Fordham L. Rev. 89 (1943).
9. Lücke, H.K. “Ratio Decidendi: Adjudicative Rational and Source of Law,” Bond Law
Review: Vol. 1: Iss. 1, Article 2 (1989)

Judicial Pronouncements

Sl. No. Judicial Authority - Case Title Citation

1. Carlill v. Carbolic Smoke Ball Co. [1893] Q.B. 256 (C.A.)
2. Donoghue v Stevenson [1932] UKHL 100
3. D K Basu v State of WB AIR 1997 SC 610
4. Maneka Gandhi v Union of India 1978 SCR (2) 621
5. P V Narasimha Rao v JMM 65 (1997) DLT 159
6. Sawarn Singh v State of Punjab AIR 1978 SC 1525
7. Manmohanlal v Seth Hiralal A.I.R.1962 SC 527
8. State of Gujarat v Natwar Harchandji Thakor (2005) Cr.L.J. 2957 (Guj)