LLM – Legal Theory


The LL.M. in Legal Theory is a unique programme that offers an array of select theoretical courses on Law. We approach legal theory to include critical reflection on issues in domestic as well as international law that integrates methodologies and perspectives from several disciplines such as legal history, political philosophy, cultural anthropology, political economy, social and political psychology, public policy, feminist legal theory, critical legal theory, Indic knowledge systems and Indology etc. to gain a multidimensional understanding of legal problems.  The programme builds on collaborative efforts of the different departments of the Chinmaya Vishwavidyapeeth and creates an excellent opportunity for interdisciplinary engagement with leading scholars from India and abroad in a lively intellectual community. The programme is a highly distinctive course centred on lectures and seminars delivered by some of the most leading theorists designed for highly motivated students who wish to seek a career in academia.


Aspirants with LL.B. Degree from Bar Council of India recognised institutions in India or other equivalent degrees from foreign nations are eligible to apply for the LL.M. Legal Theory programme. There is no age limit to apply for this programme.

Applicants must be willing to undergo any eligibility tests or screening procedures, which the concerned department chooses to conduct, during the time of admission. The strength of students for the programme shall be per the University rules. For this academic year, the maximum intake shall be twenty. The University reserves the right to keep the seats vacant if the applicants don’t satisfy the criteria fixed by the concerned  Department.

Programme Structure
Core Courses:
  • Fundamentals of Legal Theory
  • Comparative Law: Theory and Praxis
  • Advanced Jurisprudence
  • Advanced Course on Indian Constitutional Law and History
  • Law and Justice in globalizing word
Elective Courses
Group I
  • Law and Public Policy
  • Law and Political Sociology
  • Introduction to Philosophy
  • Fundamentals of Nyaya and Mimansa
Group II
  • Arthasastra and Rajaniti
  • Buddhist Legal Traditions
  • Jaina Conceptions of Law
  • Bharhaspatyam and Aushanasam
  • Contributions of Islamic Jurisprudence in Indian Administration
Group III
  • Sixty years of Indian Supreme Court
  • Works of International Law Commission
  • Modern Political Thinkers and Legal Scholars of India
  • Principles of Global Legal Order
Foundation Courses
  • Introduction of Indic Knowledge Systems
  • Indian Conceptions of Dharma and Niti
  • IKT - Text Reading (A focused study on either of IKT Texts)
Exit Criteria

Students should complete all the core and foundational courses, along with three elective courses chosen separately from each group. Further, they need to submit a dissertation and defend their thesis in an open viva-voce. Internships or research assignments may also be prescribed by the School from time to time.

Faculty Information
Dr. Vanisree Ramanathan

Associate Professor, School of Ethics, Governance, Culture and Social Systems School (EGCS)

Course Offerings:         
  1. Law and Political Sociology
Adv. Arun Krishnan

Distinguished Fellow for Legal Theory Research and Studies, School of Ethics, Governance, Culture and Social Systems, CVV

Course Offerings:
  1. Fundamentals of Legal Theory
  2. Advanced Course on Jurisprudence

Known for his teaching of Legal Theory at the National University of Juridical Sciences, Kolkata, he has been instrumental in launching the LL.M. Legal Theory Programme in Chinmaya Vishwavidyapeeth, the only post-graduate programme in Legal Theory in India. His recent publications include “The possibility of Theorizing a Realistic Idea of Global Justice”, NLUO Law Journal (2018), “Preserving Citizen’s Liberty in Democratic Governance: A Case for Nudging the Citizens to Vote”, Elenchus Law Review (2017), “A Thin Theory of Global Justice”, AALCO Journal of International Law (2016), & “Patenting Nanotechnology: A Comparative Study”, Rostrums Law Review, Vol.1 (2016). He along with Nithin Ramakrishnan, Assistant Professor of International Law, Chinmaya Vishwavidyapeeth, recently wrote an article on “Justice as an inter-generational idea: foundational perspectives from Indian Philosophy”. The Article will be soon published by a leading Law Journal in India. He has more than 6 years of teaching experience and a few years of litigation experience.

Nithin V Kumar

Assistant Professor of Law & Programme Co-ordinator (LL.M. Legal Theory), School of EGCS, CVV

Course Offering:   
  1. Law and Justice in a Globalising World
Nithin Ramakrishnan

Assistant Professor, School of EGCS, CVV

Course Offerings:
  1. Research Methods in Law and Theory
  2.  History and Theory of International Law
  3.  Indian Constitutional Law and History
Sreenath Namboodiri

Assistant Professor of Law, School of EGCS, CVV

Course Offering:
  1. Comparative Law: Theory and Praxis
  2. Law and Public Policy
  3. Introduction of Indic Knowledge Systems
Prof. Nagaraj Neerchal

Vice Chancellor, Chinmaya Vishwavidyapeeth

Course Offering: 
  1. Statistics for Lawyers

Prof. Nagaraj Neerchal has been the Graduate Program Director for Statistics and the Director of Center for Interdisciplinary Consulting and Research in the Department of Mathematics and Statistics at the University of Maryland. With a Ph.D. in Statistics from the Iowa State University, Prof. Neerchal's research and publications span a broad range of disciplines including transportation, environment and ecology, pharmacology, high-performance computing and many others. He has guided several Ph.D. and master’s students and has innumerable publications to his credit including three books. He has won numerous awards including the University of Maryland Board of Regents Award for Innovation Excellence, the Kauffman Entrepreneurship Fellowship, and the Distinguished Achievement Award from the American Statistical Association.

Bastian Steuwer

Visiting Faculty, Chinmaya Vishwavidyapeeth, & Research Scholar, Department of Philosophy, London School of Economics

Course Offering:    
  1.  Discrimination, Morality and Law                  

Bastian Steuwer is a Ph.D. student at the London School of Economics. His doctoral research revolves around the separateness of persons. He is mostly interested in moral and political philosophy but also works on personal identity and philosophy of law. He did his LL.M. from University College London, 2015–2016. He has been recently awarded the Watkins Prize for his paper “What we owe… to whom?”

Board of Studies
  • Manoj Kumar Sinha, Director of Indian Law Institute, New Delhi
  • Sreenivasa Varakhedi, Vice Chancellor, Kavikulaguru Kalidas Sanskrit University, Nagpur
  • Sai Baba, National Institute of Advanced Studies, Bangalore
  • Valson, National University of Advanced Legal Studies, Cochin
  • Nagraj Paturi, Director, Indic Academy and Former Professor of Cultural Studies, FLAMES School of Communication, Pune Maharashtra
  • B Kannan, Retired Professor of Sanskrit, Jain University Bangalore and Academic Director, Swadeshi Indology
  • K M Gopakumar, Legal Advisor, Third World Network, New Delhi
  • DhanuRaj, Director, Centre for Public Policy Research, Kochi
  • Arun Krishnan, Adhoc Faculty, School of EGCS, CVV, & Consultant LL.M. Legal Theory programme
  • Vanisree Ramanathan, Associate Professor, School of EGCS, CVV
  • Sushree Sasmita Pati, Assistant Professor of Dharmasastra, School of EGCS, CVV
  • Mr Nithin Ramakrishnan, Assistant Professor of International Law, School of EGCS, CVV