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Guest Lectures

Guest Lectures

Dr. Bipin Adhikari has been a frequent guest lecturer at Tribhuvan University Faculty of Law. His favourite subjects are Constitutional Law and Comparative Jurispudence. This part of the website enlists his lecture notes for the benefit of the LL.M students at the Faculty. The links of all lectures delivered will be given here in due course. Students who have use for them can click on the concerned topic below and reach to the materials attached to it.

Tribhuvan University Law Faculty, Master of Laws (LL.M) Course of Study

Constitutional Law Part I Comparative Jurispudence Part I
Constitutional Law Part II Comparative Jurispudence Part II

Available lecture notes:

Amendment of the Constitution: Lecture Note of Dr Bipin Adhikari, National Law College, LL.M First Year, May 17, 2013.

The provision on amendment of the Constitution allows every constitution to keep with the requirements of change. This change may be necessary to adapting the constitution from time to time to new circumstances. A Constitution is amended by informal as well as formal means. While the formal means is explained by the constitution itself, the informal amendment of the constitution occurs because of the power of the constitutional interpretation exercised by the judiciary, especially the Supreme Court. It is a slow and gradual process. It is haphazard also – because courts do not take initiatives themselves. Its contours are not pre-determined. Similarly, even where no judiciary is involved, it is possible for any provision of the constitution to be modified by the growth of conventions, practices and observances. It is also a slow process. The change comes about gradually affecting the written provisions of the constitution without visible modification on the face...More

Important Cases and judgments of the UK Supreme Court (August 2011): The United Kingdom Supreme Court Annual Report and Accounts 2009–2010 published last year has enlisted the summary of numerous high profile cases decided since its establishment on 1 October 2009. The report was presented to Parliament pursuant to section 54(1) of the Constitutional Reform Act 2005. The report covers establishment of the Court; mission and strategy objectives; jurisdiction and casework; appointment of justices; transparency and openness; a court on an international stage; corporate services; management commentary; and the accounts. The President of the Supreme Court Lord Phillips has noted in the report that "the creation of the Supreme Court marked the end of hundreds of years of judicial work conducted by the House of Lords. We are proud of that heritage and, in approaching the way we work in the Supreme Court, have sought to maintain elements of continuity with practice in the House of Lords."
Her Majesty's Treasury v Mohammed Jabar Ahmed and others [2010] UKSC 2: In response to incidents of international terrorism, including the 9/11 attacks in New York, the United Nations Security Council passed various resolutions requiring member states to take steps to freeze the assets of Usama Bin-Laden, the Taliban, their associates and those involved in international terrorism.

In the first substantive case to be heard by the Supreme Court, its Justices heard challenges to the legality of the Terrorism (United Nations Measures) Order 2006 and the Al-Qaida and Taliban (United Nations Measures) Order 2006. ...More

Nevada Commission on Ethics v. Carrigan 564 U. S - 2011: This is one of the leading US Supreme Court decisions this year. The question in this case was - does the First Amendment subject state restrictions on voting by elected officials to strict scrutiny?

The answer was 'no'.

Nevada's Ethics in Government Law requires public officials to recuse themselves from voting on, or advocating the passage or failure of, "a matter with respect to which the independence of judgment of a reasonable person in his situation would be materially affected by," inter alia , "[h]is commitment in a private capacity to the interests of others," Nev. Rev. Stat. §281A.420(2) (2007), which includes a "commitment to a [specified] person," e.g., a member of the officer's household or the officer's relative, §281A.420(8)(a)–(d), and "[a]ny other commitment or relationship that is substantially similar" to one enumerated in paragraphs (a)–(d), §281A.420(8)(e).

Petitioner (Commission) administers and enforces Nevada's law. The Commission investigated respondent Carrigan, an elected local official who voted to approve a hotel/casino project proposed by a company that used Carrigan's long-time friend and campaign manager as a paid consultant. The Commission concluded that Carrigan had a disqualifying conflict of interest under §281A.420(8)(e)'s catchall provision, and censured him for failing to abstain from voting on the project. Carrigan sought judicial review, arguing that the Nevada law violated the First Amendment . The State District Court denied the petition, but the Nevada Supreme Court reversed, holding that voting is protected speech and that §281A.420(8)(e)'s catchall definition is unconstitutionally overbroad. ...More

Boumediene v. Bush, 553 U.S. 723 (2008): This case decided by the American Supreme Court is famous for two outstanding rulings:

1. MCA §7 denies the federal courts jurisdiction to hear habeas ac¬tions, like the instant cases, that were pending at the time of its en¬actment. Section §7(b)'s effective date provision undoubtedly appliesto habeas actions, which, by definition, "relate to . . . detention" within that section's meaning. Petitioners argue to no avail that§7(b) does not apply to a §2241(e)(1) habeas action, but only to "anyother action" under §2241(e)(2), because it largely repeats that sec¬tion's language. The phrase "other action" in §2241(e)(2) cannot beunderstood without referring back to §2241(e)(1), which explicitly mentions the "writ of habeas corpus." Because the two paragraphs'structure implies that habeas is a type of action "relating to any as¬categoryof cases subject to the statute's jurisdictional bar. This is confirmed by the MCA's legislative history. Thus, if MCA §7 is valid, petition¬ers' cases must be dismissed. Pp. 5–8.

2. Petitioners have the constitutional privilege of habeas corpus. They are not barred from seeking the writ or invoking the Suspen-sion Clause's protections because they have been designated as en¬emy combatants or because of their presence at Guantanamo. ...More

Grounding Participatory Law making Process in Jurisprudence (LL.M I year): The Unit 4 of Comparative Jurisprudence course aims at exploring social dimensions of law on the basis of the theory of social engineering and balancing of interests; explaining law as an Instrument of social change and control, the participatory law making process; and the themes of public interest litigation and alternative dispute resolution (ADR).

The broader context of the issue before hand is provided by the 1968 book of Julius Stone on human law and human justice. The 1979 book of Joseph Raj deals with the issues involving authority of law. R Cotterrell's thesis on the sociological concept of law of 1983 has also been prescribed. There are two additional reading materials of the 1990s. They are David M. Trubek's "Back to the Future: The Short and Happy Life of the Law and Society Movement", 18 Florida State University, L. REV, 1 at 1, (1990) and Ellen S. Cohn & Susan O. White's "Legal Socialization Effects on Democratization", published by International Social Science Journal of UNESCO in 1997. They emphasize that the rule of law ideal in the West has meant at least the following: the primacy of law over arbitrary uses of political power, the primacy of the individual through the protection of individual rights claims, and the primacy of universalism over particularism through the abstraction of the individual 'before the law' from social characteristics. W Friedmann's Law in Changing Society (2nd ed), Maxwell, Universal Book Traders (1997) is another prescription. ...More

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