Thursday, August 21, 2014

My Teacher and Mentor Professor Faizan Mustafa got SAARC’s Best Law Teacher Award 2014

Professor Faizan Mustafa who is presently the Vice Chancellor of Nalsar Law University Hyderabad got this year’s prestigious SAARC’s Best Law Teacher Award. In a unanimous decision, the high-powered jury consisting of Professor NR Madhav Menon, eminent jurist and Founder Vice Chancellor of NLSIU, Bangalore and Mr Lalit Bhasin, President of Indian Law Firms, announced the conferment of the award on Professor Mustafa.

The award, which carries Rs 1 Lakh cash, citation and a plaque, would be given on 6th September at Delhi by the Union Law Minister in the presence of eminent professors of law, judges and eminent lawyers like Ram Jethmalani and Fali Nariman. Earlier awardees include leading jurists such as Padamshree NR Madava Menon, Professor Ranbir Singh, Professor GV Ajjappa, Professor VS Mani, Professor Laxminath and Professor Mizanur Rehman of Dhaka University, Bangladesh. This is a known fact that the Professor Mustafa is a widely acclaimed scholar and commands great respect among his students like me. He introduced several courses such as Intellectual Property Rights, International Human Rights Law and Tourism Laws at AMU. I was the first person to opt the newly introduced course on Intellectual Property at AMU in 1997. He taught so well that created immense interest in the subject and ultimately IPR became my career option.

At NALSAR he designed and taught new courses like Diversity Management Law, Comparative Strict Liability Law, Multiculturalism and Minority Rights etc. He is the only academic who has been nominated as member of National Legal Services Authority, which is headed by the Chief Justice of India. He is a member at Executive Councils, Academic Councils and General Councils of various universities and has been on various committees responsible for searching new Vice Chancellors.

Prof. Faizan Mustafa started his career at Aligarh Muslim University in early 1990. As a LLM gold medallist, he served the university in various capacities like, Professor of Law, Dean Faculty of Law and Registrar. He was also engaged in various International activities like the drafting of Eritrean Constitution Professor of Law in Ethiopia and advisor in UAE. In Ethiopia, he was exposed to the civil law tradition, was required to teach High Court Judges and work under the direct supervision of the Prime Minister. The country had got a new constitution and he was the only Professor of constitutional law in the entire country. In UAE, he had the opportunity to found a business school and introduce the BBA-LL.B course.

I also have a privilege to work in close association with him in the foundation stages of KIIT Law School and National Law University, Orissa. At both places I worked with him in designing the curricula to promote integration of knowledge as he firmly believes that knowledge is at the intersections of disciplines.

Currently he is serving as the Vice-Chancellor of NALSAR University of Law and very active in writing newspaper articles and books.  He has already written eight books and around 120 scholarly articles some of which have been relied upon by the apex court. He believe that institution building activity is a cooperative venture and try to do his share as the Chief Justice of India’s and Chancellor's nominee to the Academic, Executive and General Councils of several institutions along with serving on various Search Committees for the appointment of Vice-Chancellors.

Law for him is an instrument of social change thus as the Senior Vice-Chairperson of Rural Litigation & Entitlement Kendra, Dehra Dun. He supported the filing of the country’ first environmental and ecology related PIL in the lime stone mining matter. RLEK also got voting rights for the indigenous people of Shivalik Hills i.e. Van Gujjars. He also got 19000 laborers accepted as bonded laborers by the Government and secured their release.

Nothing interests him more than cooking. I am also privileged to eat the famous dish the Akhni Pulao prepared by him. He enjoys teaching and has great passion for debating. He also represented India in various debates during his student life at AMU Aligarh.

His achievements are great motivation and a matter of proud for all of us and hope if we can inculcate some of his excellent skills in our personality.

May Allah provide good health and shower the choicest blessings on him so he can contribute more for the growth and further development of the legal world.