NEW DELHI: The India centre of New York's Cornell Law School has launched operations with a public lecture by jurist and Member of Parliament Abhishek Singhvi outlining a series of urgent reforms needed in the Indian justice system.
Former Supreme Court Judge, Justice A.K. Sikri, presided over the event which was hosted here in collaboration with the Jindal Global Law School of O.P. Jindal Global University, Sonipat, on Friday.
The Cornell India Law Centre was founded last September to promote engagement in the US legal academy with Indian law and legal institutions and foster international collaborations among legal scholars.
The Cornell India Law Centre is the only programme based in a US law school that focuses exclusively on the comparative study of Indian law across a range of different subject areas.
"India has a rich constitutional tradition and jurisprudence that lends itself to comparative legal studies. India and United States are both pluralistic, democratic, and common law systems. Yet, historically only disciplines in the humanities and social sciences have engaged in the study of India," said Sital Kalantry, Faculty Director of the centre and Clinical Professor of Law.
"The comparative study of Indian law and legal institutions in the United States is more important today than it has ever been before and we are proud to have Cornell Law School to be a focal point for it," Dean of Cornell Law School Eduardo Penalver added.
Cornell Law School is the law school of Cornell University, a private Ivy League university in New York.
In addition to a speaker series and conferences bringing together legal scholars and lawyers from India and the US, the programme features a visiting scholar programme for legal scholars from India interested in visiting Cornell Law School to conduct research and participate in faculty events.
Cornell Law School will also offer a fully-funded summer internship for Cornell Law students to work at a public interest organisation in New Delhi, starting in the summer of 2020.
The centre is guided by a distinguished advisory board and affiliated faculty from law schools in the US and India.
The centre builds on the strengths of the existing India-related programmes at the Cornell Law School.
Cornell Law School has partnered with Jindal Global Law University in India on a fast-track dual degree programme, allowing students to earn Indian and American law degrees in just six years, two years less than what it would otherwise take.
Students enrolled in the International Human Rights Clinic regularly travel to India to conduct research on human rights issues.
"The Jindal Global Law School has been collaborating with the Cornell Law School and has implemented many forms of collaboration over the past one decade," C. Raj Kumar, VC, O.P. Jindal Global University, said.
"Students and faculty members from both sides immensely benefited from this mutually beneficial academic collaboration. The establishment of Cornell India Law Centre and proposed comparative study of Indian Law will prove very useful," he added.