‘India @ 75’ lecture by Justice D.Y. Chandrachud at London School of Economics

The Constitution is a transformative document’ in which the judiciary and legislature recognize various conceptions of these rights, and that is the language in which political and social issues are generally framed…reports Asian Lite News

The National Indian Students and Alumni Union (UK) and LSE South Asia Centre have found a very timely and appropriate collaboration, to host the inaugural ‘India @ 75’ lecture held at the Hong Kong Lecture Theatre on 22 June 2022. With the aim of discussing and deliberating the role of courts in adjudication matters and upholding the democratic ethos in a constitutional system, the Summit hosted Hon’ble Dr Justice D.Y. Chandrachud, Judge of the Supreme Court of India and incoming Chief Justice of India who spoke on ‘Experiences with Adjudication: Reconciling Rights, Identities and Prejudices’. Justice Chandrachud began his lecture by highlighting how the rights in the Constitution are abstract rights.

‘The Constitution is a transformative document’ in which the judiciary and legislature recognize various conceptions of these rights, and that is the language in which political and social issues are generally framed. People with different socio-political views use this language to advocate their rights. In the Indian context, affirmative action is debated on facets of the right to equality. ‘Law is an aspiration for change’, and the answers one gets are based on how you frame the discourse. Justice Chandrachud did not discuss the fallacy of framing social issues in the context of rights, but instead explored the possibility for conflicting rights to exist within one constitutional framework.

He explained how the judiciary interprets rights based on its vision of the common good with respect to the Constitution; national identities are identifiable by a nation’s past, but a constitutional identity draws a balance: ‘Our survival depends on our ability to stay awake.’ Engaging with a range of questions from an enthusiastic audience, Justice Chandrachud spoke on judicial impartiality in the context of social media and media trials, inclusive representation, role of artificial intelligence in adjudication, digitization and data privacy, amongst other topics.

The Chairperson of NISAU Sanam Arora remarked, “We are honoured that our activities to celebrate the 75th anniversary of India’s independence and the NISAU’s tenth anniversary have been inaugurated by the foremost expert of the Indian constitution, Dr Chandrachud at the London School of Economics. The LSE, which incidentally is also celebrating the centenary of Dr BR Ambedkar’s PhD this year, is where the NISAU was born, and for us to mark this triple occasion in the presence of Dr Chandrachud has been a great honour.” Vignesh Karthik, Head of Thought Leadership observed “Justice Dr. Chandrachud meticulously invoked India’s constitutional ethos that upholds sacrifice and commitment of the founding fathers of our republic towards steadily achieving social, economic and political justice for all.”

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