Over 140 years of excellence
Achievements

The Glorious Path


It was in 1874 that the foundation for legal education was laid in the former State of Travancore. One Mr. Patchappa Naicker, from Madras was appointed by the State Government to teach Law to the students. Subsequently a vernacular Law Class also was started to train applicants for posts in the Police Department. In the next year (1875 A. D.) on the representation of a number of graduates desiring for a Law Class that would afford instruction for the B. L. Degree Examination of the Madras University, a Law School was started attached to H. H. the Maharaja’s College, Trivandrum, with 46 students on the rolls. Dr. Ormsby, Bar-at-law, Judge of the Travancore Sadar Court was appointed Professor of Law for the above class. Subsequently it was affiliated to the University of Madras in the Faculty of Law. The attendance of the students though promising at first, gradually grew thin and the High Court taking note of the situation ruled that students who had attended the class for two years and passed the class examination were eligible for Munsiff’s Court Pleadership. It worked and the number on the rolls began to swell necessitating the appointment of an additional lecturer to assist Dr. Ormsby.


In 1892 when Dr. Ormsby retired from service, Mr. W. T. A. Cosby, Bar-at-law, a Judge of the Travancore High Court was appointed Professor of Law in his place. There was no change in the set up till 1894 when the Madras University made certain changes in the bye-laws relating to the  B. L. Degree Examination. Because of this it became necessary to separate the Law Class from the Maharaja’s College and run the Law Course as an independent institution. It was thereafter known as the Maharaja’s Law College, Trivandrum. Mr. Cosby himself was appointed the Principal of this new Institution. One Senior Professor and two Junior Professors were also appointed on the staff. A College Council also was constituted to give advice to the Principal in the management of the Institution. In 1897 a Chair of Medical Jurisprudence was established for imparting instructions to the Pleadership classes. Mr. E. Ponnen, B. A.  M.D. M. Ch, was appointed the Lecturer in Medical Jurisprudence. In the year 1900 A. D. Mr. F. J. R. V. Hunt, Bar-at-law and Judge of the Travancore High Court succeeded Mr. Cosby as the Principal of the College. The B. L. Course which was of three years duration was reorganized in 1902 A. D to comprise instruction in law only for two years. The pattern of staff was also changed. In addition to the Principal they consisted of two permanent Professors, two Elective Lecturers and a Lecturer in Medical Jurisprudence. In consequence of this change the classes which were till then held in the Maharaja’s College were shifted to the present School of Arts building.


At the end of the year 1914, Mr. Hunt retired from service and  Mr. H. S. Chatfield, Bar-at-law, a Judge of the Travancore High Court was appointed the Principal, from January of the next year. The accommodation in the School of Arts building was found to be quite insufficient by 1912 and therefore, the Government ordered the construction of a new building for the Law College. That new building, which at present houses the Office of the Accountant General, Kerala, was occupied in 1916. In 1919, a vegetarian hostel capable of accommodating fifty students was opened for the Law College students. In 1923 A. D. the Pleadership class was separated from the Degree Classes. On the retirement of Mr. Chatefield,  Mr. E. J. John, B. A., B. L. was appointed Principal in 1926 A. D. The credit of being the first Indian principal goes to him.


With effect from the academic year 1932, the College which had been ‘only a part-time institution working in morning and evening was converted into, a full time institution working from 10-00 A. M. to 4-00 P.M. Mr. John retired in 1931 when Mr. Malloor .K. Govinda Piliai, B. A., B. L., the doyen of the Kerala Bar was appointed Principal in his place. When Mr. Govinda Pillai retired, Mr. B. Subramoma Iyer, M. A., M. L., was appointed Principal in 1933. Barrister K. P Padmanabha Pillai, B. A. LL.B., was appointed Principal in 1937. The Pleadership course had been abolished by this time. 

When Mr. Padmanabha Pillai retired, Mr. K. Narayanan, B. A., B. L. was appointed Principal in his place. In1933 the College was affiliated to the Travancore University canceling the affiliation to the Madras University. 


In August, 1949 the College was shifted to Ernakulam, following the formation of the United State of Travancore and Cochin and the consequent shifting of the High Court from Trivandrum to Ernakulam. The College was on a sojourn and it returned to Trivandrum in 1954 leaving a sister Institution at Ernakulam. 


When the College was taken back to Trivandrum, it was housed in the present premises, ie, the Highland Bungalow in Barton Hill. New buildings were put up later. A new hostel building was put up. In 1957 after the formation of the Kerala University, the college was affiliated to that University in the Faculty of Law. The College functions directly under the Government of Kerala in the Higher Education Department.


In 1958 Mr. Narayanan retired and Mr. V. N. Subramonia Iyer M,A., M. L. was appointed the Principal, Mr. Subramonia Iyer was subsequently transferred to the Ernakulam Law College. Mr. M. George became the Principal in 1960. With effect from 1-04-1961, the college was made permanent. A full time post-graduate course for M. L. Degree was started from the academic year 1962-63 and instruction is imparted in Constitutional Law and International Law. In the same year, posts of full-time Lecturers were created for the first time in Law Colleges. The two year course in law was reorganized in 1967 and its duration is at present for three years as had been at the beginning of the Institution. The evening class for B. L. was conducted since 1974-75 onwards for the benefit of the employees in the various government offices and, other offices, in and around Trivandrum. However the course was discontinued since 2005. Efforts are now underway to restart the course. The old M. L. Course has been reorganized and LL.M. Course leading to the Degree of Master of Laws has been started in its place. 


In 1967 Prof. R. Sankaradasan Thampi succeeded Mr.M.George and served the institution for the longest tenure as Principal till date. The college has the fortune of getting the services of a galaxy of veteran academicians as principals including Prof. M. Krishnan Nair, (1979-1981), Prof. Sreekantan (1981-1985),Prof.Vijayabalan,(1985-1990),Prof.K.SubramoniaPillay(1990-1993),Prof.R.Vijayakrishnan(1993-1998),Prof.M.M.MadhavanPotty(1998-2005)and Prof. K.S.Ajayakumar(2005-2008). In 2011, Prof. S.Usha became the first woman principal of this glorious institution. At present the college is marching ahead under the benevolent leadership of Dr.A. Prasanna


The students of this almamater have made her proud by imprinting their names in all fields of excellence. Sri.Thiruvanchoor Radhakrishnan (Hon. Home Minister, Government of Kerala),Sri. Kodikunnel Suresh,(Union Minister of State for Labour),Dr.A Sampath (MP, Lok Sabha), Smt. K..R Gowriamma (Former Kerala Minister), Sri.T.M Jacob (Former Kerala Minister),Sri. Ramesh Chennithala (Former Minister and President, Kerala Pradesh Congress Committee), Sri.G Sudhakaran (Former Kerala Minister),Sri.N.K Premachandran (Former Kerala Minister),and Sri.P.C Vishnunath (MLA, Kerala) are some of her contribution to legislature and executive. In the bureaucracy her progeny include Sri. M.K.K Nair IAS, Sri. Malayatoor Ramakrishnan IAS,  K.C Sanal Kumar IAS,  Sayeed Rashid IPoS and Prasanth Nair IAS. Her greatest contribution is to the judiciary includes Justice K.K Mathew and Justice Cyriac Joseph, Hon,ble Judges of Supreme Court of India and  Justice Chidamabaresh, Justice Shafeeque, Justice A.V Ramakrishna Pillai,  Justice Harun ul Rashid, Justice Siri Jagan and Justice Kamal Pasha ,Hon,ble Judges of High Court of Kerala. Her contribution to mass media and entertainment include Oscar Leurette Mr. Resul Pookutty  Sri.K.M Mathew (Former Chief Editor, Malayala Manorama), Anoop Menon(Actor) and Shankar Ramakrishnan(Actor). Finally the chisels that changed many a bare rocks to precious diamonds, the law teachers, Prof. P.S Achuthen Pillai , Dr. N.R Madahava Menon  and  Dr. V.K Unni (IIM- Calcutta) are also her sons.

  In   2013 December The  University of Kerala has recognised the Govt.  Law College , Tvpm as  an approved Research Centre  of the University, vide order No. Ac.EI. A3/059961/2012 Dated 9/12/2013.   Vide Notification  No, Ac. AIII/4325/2013 the University   of Kerala  has nominated  Dr. A. Prasanna,  Principal, Govt. Law College , Tvpm  as the Dean,  Faculty of Law Kerala University.                        

 



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