BCI International Lawyer’s Conference: AG R Venkataramani calls for debate on impact of social media on justice delivery
BCI International Lawyer’s Conference: AG R Venkataramani calls for debate on impact of social media on justice delivery

PM Narendra Modi, CJI DY Chandrachud, Union Minister of State Arjun Ram Meghwal, SG Tushar Mehta and BCI Chairman Manan Kumar Mishra spoke at the inaugural event.

Attorney General for India R Venkataramani on Saturday said that though social media is a borderless world of communication and connects the globe, it also distorts and disregards ethical and moral demands.

“It is an ever-hungry field and seeks partisan ends,” the AG said as he called for a dialogue on the impact of social media on the justice delivery system.

R Venkataramani

On regulation of social media, the AG stressed on the need for debate on the issue “in order that undue persuasions do not enter or deflect our objectivity”.

AG Venkataramani was speaking at the Bar Council of India’s International Lawyers' Conference, 2023. The two-day conference includes ten technical sessions on various subjects of law.

The event began in the presence of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Chief Justice of India DY Chandrachud, Union Minister of State (Independent Charge) for Law Arjun Ram Meghwal, Solicitor General Tushar Mehta and Lord Chancellor and Secretary of State for Justice of the United Kingdom, Alex Chalk.

In his speech, Venkataramani also spoke on the need for global law and on incentivizing the new creations of intellectual property so that all humanity "derives its benefit on equal measure".

“It is proper that you begin to talk about several battles and concerns arising out of the thought machines that you call artificial intelligence. These battles include the battle for power in the new world,” he added.

In his speech, SG Tushar Mehta spoke about the progress made by India in the last decade and said that the country has taken several statutory steps and made new laws and policies.

Solicitor General Tushar Mehta

“Justice is delivered literally at the doorstep because of digitisation. Digitisation has not only helped the Indian judiciary and Indian administration of justice system but it has helped humanity …”

Mehta said that court documents are mostly available in digital form and any common man can access what is lying in the courtrooms.

“It has become a matter of the past that the litigant was not knowing what had happened to his matter. Now anyone can know anything, that is the level of transparency our digitised judicial system has achieved,” he said.

Mehta also spoke about translation of judgments and documents of the Supreme Court in vernacular languages. He called it a “miracle” in itself.

“Bharat is the present and the future of the world…” the SG said as he called upon the legal fraternity to be ready to meet challenges that India's “global leadership” will bring.

Minister Meghwal said that the government has taken several steps to strengthen the alternative dispute resolution mechanism as well as contract enforcement and commercial dispute resolution for ease of doing business.

He also highlighted the amendments made to Commercial Courts Act and Arbitration and Conciliation Act.

Union minister Arjun Ram Meghwal

On access to justice, Meghwal spoke about the Law Ministry’s Tele-Law initiative and the ecourts platform. He said that during the COVID-19 period, it was India’s Supreme Court that heard most cases.

“It is a very big landmark achievement,” he said.

Meghwal also stated that the Central government is providing financial assistance for improving basic infrastructure in lower courts.

Introducing the event Bar Council of India Chairman Manan Kumar Mishra said that the country has a very robust and independent judiciary. He called for more judges to be appointed to deal with the pendency of cases.

“Backlog of cases is a very serious issue because citizens have an immense trust in the judiciary. Our judges work tirelessly but the sheer size of the population shows the necessity for some more judges,” Mishra said.

BCI Chairman Manan Mishra

Mishra further said that the Indian legal fraternity is very strong with about 23 lakh lawyers. He said every village has one or two lawyers.

“Lawyers have been strongly supporting our global hero Narendra Modi,” the BCI Chairman said.

Initiatives like healthcare insurance for the lawyers and their families is the demand of the hour, Mishra said as he called for a central law for their protection.

“A central law for protection of lawyers and their families is much needed to uphold the justice and fairness in our society and to avoid frequent compulsion of strikes or boycotts by lawyers,” he said.

Mishra also revealed that efforts to promote legal education in regional languages are underway.

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