The Fifth Annual Convocation of the students of National Law University, Odisha (NLU Odisha) was held on 29th July, 2018 at the Amphitheatre of National Law University Odisha, Cuttack. Justice Dipak Misra, the Chief Justice of India and Visitor NLU Odisha presided over the occasion and delivered the Presidential Address. Justice Michael Kirby, Former Judge, High Court of Australia was the Chief Guest for the occasion and delivered the Convocation Address. Justice Kirby was also conferred with the Degree of Doctor of Laws (LLD) (Honoris Causa) by the university. Justice Vineet Saran, Chief Justice of Orissa High Court and Chancellor, NLU Odisha awarded the degrees and also address the gathering. Sitting Judges of High Court of Orissa, Senior Advocates, Judicial Officers were among the other dignitaries present.
A total of 167 graduands were awarded degrees, including 49 LLM candidates, and 118 from undergraduate courses – 57 and 59 candidates respectively from the BA LLB and BBA LLB streams. Additionally, Justice Kirby was awarded the degree of Doctor of Laws (LL.D.) honoris causa. A total number of 18 gold medals were given to students in the convocation this year.
The Convocation Address was delivered by Justice Michael Kirby, Chief Guest for the occasion. He began his speech by expressing his gratitude towards Justice Dipak Misra, the Chief Justice of India and the Vice-Chancellor of the University, Prof. Sri Krishna Deva Rao and council members of the National Law University, Odisha.
He congratulated the University for its stellar performance in various national and international mooting and debating competitions. He then congratulated the outgoing batch and their respective families for their support through this long journey.
Justice Misra in his presidential address acknowledged the remarkable achievements of National Law University Odisha, Cuttack appreciating the efforts and diligence of the faculty as well as the students succeeding in every field such as mooting, placements, research publications, academic achievements etc. He underlined the importance of the role played by law schools in changing the quality of legal profession and providing a generation of competent lawyers who contribute to the legal profession at all levels. He then reminded the new graduates of their new role as connecting force between justice delivery mechanism and the people at large. He reiterated that by virtue of the profession they have chosen to be a part of they become the “messengers of justice” and “torchbearers” of the legal profession. He concluded by encouraging them to be true to their own convictions and conscience and not be guided by majoritarian views. He finally congratulated the graduates and wished them luck for their future endeavours.
Justice Saran heartily welcomed the Chief Justice of India, Justice Dipak Misra and Justice Micheal Kirby. He then congratulated all the graduating students for their hard work and perseverance and their parents for their support. He also highlighted that the University was amongst the 60 leading universities of the country.
The Vice-Chancellor began his address by congratulating the graduates for their accomplishments in their journey with the University and to their proud families as well. He emphasised on the importance of learning and stated that the teachers are indeed knowledge workers and universities are the portals of bestowing knowledge, values, shaping minds and intellects. The achievements of students of the University were then brought to light by the Vice Chancellor.
Out of the 18 gold medals, NLU Odisha has instituted six, while various dignitaries of the legal fraternity have donated the remaining twelve. Ms. Meghmala Mukherjee received the highest number of gold medals – seven. She was awarded the M.L. Mitra Memorial Gold Medal for first rank in B.B.A L.L.B (Hons.), SKS Juris Legal Group Gold Medal, Gagan Bihari Das Memorial Gold Medal, Ras Behari Ray Gold Medal, Nisamoni Devi and Bhagabat Charan Mohanty Memorial Gold Medal, Satyakamal Memorial Gold Medal and the Smt. Pavani Easwara Lakshmi Memorial Gold Medal.
Ms. Diya Dasgupta was awarded three gold medals – University Gold Medal for third rank in BA LLB, State Bank of India Gold Medal and the Ananta Misra & Annapurna Misra Gold Medal for Best All-Round Female Student.
The Dinabandhu Sahu Memorial Trust for first rank in BA LLB was awarded to Shobhit Ahuja. The University Gold Medal for second rank in BA LLB was awarded to Swastika Chakravarti. University Gold Medals for second and third rank in BBA LLB were awarded to Vinti Agarwal and Ankita Sen. The Shri Bichitrananda Mahanty Memorial Gold Medal for All-Round Male Student was awarded to Vishesh Mehrotra, the Madhusudan Mohanty Memorial Gold Medal to S. Vivek, and the University Gold Medal for Highest Score in Intellectual Property Laws in the B.B.A.,LL.B. (Hons.) /B.A.,LL.B. (Hons.) Degree was awarded to Shreya Singhal. The University Gold Medal for the first rank in L.L.M for batch 2017-18 was awarded to Bhallamudi Venkata Mallela Rakshith.
The Registrar of NLU Odisha Dr. Dolly Jabbal, a host of dignitaries from the legal fraternity, parents of students, staff of NLUO were also present on the occasion. Three journals – NLUO Law Journal, Human Rights Law Journal and NLUO Students Journal were released.