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Law including legal institutions and legal practice, the world over has not reflected the changes in society and lags behind in terms of inclusion and diversity. While there have been calls for more representation of women in the Indian judiciary, conversations around other aspects of inclusion and methods to implement them are few and far between. Disability, language barriers and caste are some other measures where law and legal institutions do not have enough representations. This then impacts who we are as a society and what kind of jurisprudence that evolves in India , what language is used to shape law. The conversation will take stock of where lawyers, law firms, the Indian judiciary and legal academia are and what more can be done.
Illustration credit: Maanasa Ganesh
Ms. Pallavi Shroff is the Managing Partner of Shardul Amarchand Mangaldas with over 40 years of extensive experience. Her broad and varied representation of public and private corporations and other entities before various national courts, tribunals and legal institutions has earned her national and international acclaim. Ms. Shroff is the Head of the Dispute Resolution practice at the Firm, with an extensive knowledge in matters of litigation and arbitration. She also mentors the Competition Law practice at the Firm. Ms. Shroff is a member of the Competition Law Review Committee, constituted by the Government of India to ensure that the legislation is in tune with the changing business environment. Ms. Shroff is also recently appointed as a member of the BRICS Women’s Business Alliance – India Chapter (one of 5 women in India selected), constituted by the Government of India.
Ms. Shroff has been closely involved with some of the largest and most challenging litigation and arbitration matters in India with regard to energy, infrastructure, natural resources, mergers & acquisitions, legislative and policy related matters. She appears regularly in the Supreme Court and High Courts of India, and in arbitrations, mediations and international legal disputes. She is an Alternate Member (India) at the ICC (International Chamber of Commerce) Court of Arbitration. She has also been appointed as a member of the CII Arbitration Law Committee.
Ms. Carnegie, an employed barrister with over 23 years’ experience working within the criminal justice system, she has spent the majority of her career working with the public sector in collaboration with government, the senior judiciary and law enforcement on a range of justice issues. Her current role with the IBA involves leading a team of lawyers on a range of projects with the international legal community. This work includes projects on Bullying and Harassment, Gender, Mental Wellbeing in the Profession, Whistleblowing and Anti-corruption.
Prof Tarunabh Khaitan is the Professor of Public Law & Legal Theory and the Vice Dean at the Faculty of Law, Oxford. His work on discrimination law has been cited by the Canadian Supreme Court, the Indian Supreme Court and the European Court of Human Rights. He won the 2018 Letten Prize for his monograph ‘A Theory of Discrimination Law’.
Madhavi Goradia Divan
Madhavi Divan is an Additional Solicitor General in the Supreme Court of India. She was educated at Cambridge University where she was a Cambridge Commonwealth Scholar. She has appeared in wide range of cases on constitutional law, human rights law, media law and environment law. She appeared on behalf of the Government of India in the landmark Triple Talaq case concerning the rights of Muslim women. She has argued for the Government of India in landmark cases such as National Judicial Appointment Commission case on judges’ appointments and on the rights of homebuyers under the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code. She is the author of Facets of Media Law, a recommended text book in several law schools across India.
Poornima Hatti leads the dispute resolution team at Samvad Partners and is part of the founding team. She has been consistently recognised as a leading disputes lawyer in India and across the Asia Pacific. Ms Hatti is focussed on diversity and inclusion across workplaces, writing regularly and working on work place inclusion and has been recognised by Chambers and Partners as trail blazing champion in the area.