Online Dispute Resolution is a great example of social engineering: Nandan Nilekani

 He was addressing students at the convocation of the National Law School of India University

Updated - September 19, 2022 10:38 am IST

Published - September 18, 2022 07:35 pm IST - Bengaluru

File picture of Infosys Co-founder & Non-Executive Chairman Nandan Nilekani

File picture of Infosys Co-founder & Non-Executive Chairman Nandan Nilekani | Photo Credit: PTI

More than 16 million disputes have been onboarded in Online Dispute Resolution (ODR) systems in the country two years after NITI Ayog’s initiative to advance ODRs said Nandan Nilekani, Chairman and Co-founder Infosys on Sunday.

He was addressing the graduating students at the 30th annual convocation ceremony of National Law School of India University (NLSIU) and spoke about the importance of social engineering and better informal systems where many legal issues in the country can be resolved.

Mr. Nilekani recalled how two years ago, many stakeholders including the businesses, ODR providers, government and legal service authorities made a pledge and as a result of which, the advancement can be seen today.

Use of ODR

ODR refers to the resolution of disputes through technology and Alternate Dispute Resolution (ADR) processes. He added that more than 100 companies and 40 government departments now use ODR. He also cited a recent incident where a non-profit organisation called Ajeevika Bureau employed ODR to resolve over 3,000 wage disputes from during the pandemic times between migrant labourers and their contractors.

It is necessary to reinvent structures and systems not just inside the government but also in industry and civil society, he said. He pointed out how lack of effective systems and structures affects the poor and marginalised while also widening the opportunity gap.  

“We need this form of social engineering — this new leadership with the agency at its heart – to advance our law and justice systems urgently”, Mr. Nilekani said while pointing out the need to design the new future systems of business, government and society to minimise friction, provide scope for diversity and prevent issues from arising. 

Medal presentation

After two virtual convocations in 2020 and 2021, NLSIU celebrated this year’s ceremony at Dr. Babu Rajendra Prasad International Convention Centre in GKVK campus. Chief Justice of India and Chancellor of NLSIU, Uday Umesh Lalit presented the degrees to the graduating students as well as gold medal awardees.

A total of 829 students, which included six from Ph.D programme, one from Master of Philosophy, 53 from Master of Public Policy, 40 from Master of Laws, 76 from Bachelor of Arts and Laws (Honours) and 653 students from Online and Hybrid Education programmes graduated this year.

Chief Justices of various High Courts, judges of Supreme Court and High Courts, Chairman, Bar Council of India, Vice Chancellor of NLSIU, Sudhir Krishnaswamy were present during the convocation.

Mr. Krishnaswamy who presented the annual report of NLSIU said the University was engaged in building university clusters according the National Education Policy - 2020.

“We are actively engaged in building such a university cluster with the Indian Institute of Science and the Indian Institute of Management in Bangalore. Individually, these institutions are already India’s best academic institutions in their respective fields. Together, we will be in a position to expand our academic programmes and research projects in new collaborative directions. We anticipate exponential rewards arising out of these collaborations, and early results should be visible this Academic Year,” he said.

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