Need safeguards to prevent online bullying and misuse of AI, says CJI DY Chandrachud

During 60th convocation of IIT-M, Chandrachud asks students to use tech for positive change
CJI Justice DY Chandrachud hands over degree to a student during the convocation ceremony at IIT Madras in Chennai on Saturday | Ashwin Prasath
CJI Justice DY Chandrachud hands over degree to a student during the convocation ceremony at IIT Madras in Chennai on Saturday | Ashwin Prasath

CHENNAI: Technology should not create fear in the minds of users about online abuse or harassment as the same directly impacts the ability to express thoughts, said Chief Justice of India DY Chandrachud at the 60th convocation ceremony of IIT Madras here on Saturday. He cautioned against the misuse of social media and artificial intelligence (AI) and said safeguards must be put in place to prevent their misuse.

“Social media has allowed us to connect with people, removing barriers of age and nationality. But this new communication tool has led to new behaviour like online abuse and trolling. Likewise, AI contains the potential for misuse to mislead, threaten or even bully individuals. Curbing its misuse for harmful purposes will be among the key challenges for you,” said the CJI, urging students to devise solutions to the problem. He advised students that technological use has to fulfill and represent some human values.

Elaborating how technology can be used for positive things, the CJI cited the  example of virtual hearing in courts during the pandemic. Necessitated by Covid-19 pandemic, virtual hearings in court helped the judiciary realise difficulties female lawyers earlier faced in appearing physically due to gendered demands of care giving. With video-conferencing, they could argue from their homes and it also ensured access to justice and inclusivity during the pandemic.

IIT Madras director V Kamakoti awarded degrees to 2,573 graduates including 675 B.Tech (36 with honours), 407 dual degree B.Tech and M.Tech, 442 M.Tech, 147 M.Sc, 46  M.A, 49 executive MBA, 67 MBA, 200 M.S, 453 PhD and 70 web-enabled M.Tech for executives. Among the PhDs, 19 are joint degrees with foreign universities.

Speaking at the event, Pawan Goenka, Chairman, Board of  Governors, IIT Madras, said, “The total R&D funding in the institute has gone up from about Rs 250 to Rs 2,000 crore in 10 years and what is even more encouraging is that 40% of it comes from the industry.”

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