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Prof. (Dr.) Mrinal Satish


Professor of Law

Mrinal Satish’s area of interest and specialization is criminal law. At NLUD, he teaches criminal law, including advanced courses to students of the undergraduate and postgraduate programmes. Mrinal’s research interests include sentencing, gender and the law, medical jurisprudence, empirical analysis of law, reproductive justice, excessive undertrial and pre-trial detention, and studying the impact of the criminal justice system in its interface with vulnerable and disempowered groups. Mrinal was the Executive Director of the Centre for Constitutional Law, Policy and Governance at NLUD from 2014 to 2018. He was appointed as Chairperson of the Delhi Judicial Academy, by the High Court of Delhi in 2018, and continued in that position till December 2019.


Mrinal is a graduate of Yale Law School and the National Law School of India University, Bangalore (NLSIU). He holds masters and doctoral degrees in law from Yale Law School. His doctoral dissertation examined sentencing policy and practice with a special focus on rape sentencing in India. Mrinal was awarded the Inlaks scholarship for pursuing his LL.M degree at Yale Law School. He obtained a B.A., LL.B (Hons.) degree from NLSIU, and was awarded the Madhu Bhasin Noble Student Award (for excellence in academics, coupled with legal aid work at the University) . Mrinal was awarded the Mahatma Gandhi National Law Teaching Fellowship at NLSIU and was appointed to the NLSIU faculty,


At NLSIU, Mrinal taught courses on substantive criminal law, criminal procedure, and sentencing. He was a consultant to NLSIU’s Centre for Child and the Law (CCL), Centre for the Study of Casteism, Communalism and the Law, and the Institute of Law and Ethics in Medicine. Thereafter, Mrinal was an Assistant Professor at the National Judicial Academy, Bhopal (NJA), where he worked on issues of adjudication and judicial method especially in relation to criminal law, sentencing, and domestic violence. He also had a leadership role in developing the Academy’s research agenda. 


Mrinal has been involved in various law reform initiatives and has submitted reports to the Government of India on legislations relating to criminal law and procedure. He was part of the research team that assisted the Justice Verma Committee (2013) on amendments to rape laws. He assisted the Twentieth Law Commission of India on multiple projects involving criminal law. He was part of the sub-committee appointed by the Law Commission to draft the 262nd Report of the Commission on the "Death Penalty." He was invited in July 2017 to make a presentation to the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Health & Family Welfare on the Surrogacy (Regulation) Bill, 2016.


Mrinal has been appointed as an amicus curiae by the Delhi High Court  in a number of cases. In one of the cases, which was a death sentence matter, he was asked to assist the court on the issue of sentence. The Court, in its judgment, acknowledged the assistance provided by Mrinal in the matter (  He is also providing assistance to the High Court in a matter involving conditions in the Women's Prison in the Tihar Prisons Complex, New Delhi. The High Court in this case - High Court on its Own Motion v. State of Delhi - has issued orders based on the recommendations made by Mrinal. In November 2017, Mrinal was appointed as Member of a three-member fact-finding enquiry committee appointed by the Delhi High Court to enquire into an incident of custodial violence in Tihar Jail.


Mrinal is a member of the Supreme Court of India Gender Sensitization and Internal Complaints Committee as a nominee of the Chief Justice of India. He is a nominated member of the Delhi High Court Legal Services Committee, and a member of the Academic Council of the National University of Study and Research in Law, Ranchi as a nominee of the Chief Justice of the Jharkhand High Court. 


Mrinal has published articles in peer-reviewed journals, and presented papers at national and international conferences, on various issues of criminal law. His book titled "Discretion, Discrimination and the Rule of Law: Reforming Rape Sentencing in India," which is a modified and updated version of his doctoral dissertation was published by Cambridge University Press in 2016.


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Area of Interest.
    • Criminal Law (Substantive Criminal Law and Criminal Procedure)
    • Sentencing Law
    • Medical Jurisprudence
    • Gender and the Law
    • Empirical analysis of law
    • Reproductive Justice