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Professor to study India's legal system

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Over the next three years, a professor at an Indiana law school will be working on a study of India’s trial courts as part of a $261,000 grant from the Ford Foundation to a non-governmental association based in India.

Jayanth Krishnan of Indiana University Maurer School of Law – Bloomington, a professor and head of the India Initiative at the school’s Center on the Global Legal Profession, will be the project director for the study that will look at district courts in Maharashtra, Gujarat, and Himachal Pradesh, as well as forums for alternative dispute resolution in India.

In a press release the law school issued Thursday, Krishnan said that between 30,000 and 40,000 cases are pending before the Supreme Court of India and in the lower courts the number is likely in the tens of millions.

Krishnan has been traveling and was unable to answer questions in time for today’s deadline. However, during an interview for an article about the law school’s work with India for the Sept. 2-15, 2009, edition of Indiana Lawyer, Krishnan said it was considered typical for a case in India to last 10 years, and some cases last as long as 30 years.

He said there weren’t many options for the average Indian other than to wait it out, and that the backlog for cases has gotten so bad that it is just accepted that cases will take a long time to be resolved.

A year ago he also said there was little empirical research available about ADR in India, but the country’s government had been considering it as one solution to the backlog in the courts, and had been providing forums for ADR.

The National Centre for Advocacy Studies, which received the grant from the Ford Foundation for the 3-year study, is based in the state of Maharashtra, India. That organization is partnering with two other human rights organizations in India that focus on access to justice issues: the Centre for Social Justice, and Jagori Grameen.

Krishnan’s work with the study will contribute to the school’s Center on the Global Legal Profession, which includes internships and other partnerships with law schools and legal systems, such as China and South Korea.

A more in-depth article about Krishnan’s work with the study and the Center on the Global Legal Profession will appear in a future print edition of Indiana Lawyer.
 

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  2. Who gives a rats behind about all the fluffy ranking nonsense. What students having to pay off debt need to know is that all schools aren't created equal and students from many schools don't have a snowball's chance of getting a decent paying job straight out of law school. Their lowly ranked lawschool won't tell them that though. When schools start honestly (accurately) reporting *those numbers, things will get interesting real quick, and the looks on student's faces will be priceless!

  3. Whilst it may be true that Judges and Justices enjoy such freedom of time and effort, it certainly does not hold true for the average working person. To say that one must 1) take a day or a half day off work every 3 months, 2) gather a list of information including recent photographs, and 3) set up a time that is convenient for the local sheriff or other such office to complete the registry is more than a bit near-sighted. This may be procedural, and hence, in the near-sighted minds of the court, not 'punishment,' but it is in fact 'punishment.' The local sheriffs probably feel a little punished too by the overwork. Registries serve to punish the offender whilst simultaneously providing the public at large with a false sense of security. The false sense of security is dangerous to the public who may not exercise due diligence by thinking there are no offenders in their locale. In fact, the registry only informs them of those who have been convicted.

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  5. A common refrain in the comments on this website comes from people who cannot locate attorneys willing put justice over retainers. At the same time the judiciary threatens to make pro bono work mandatory, seemingly noting the same concern. But what happens to attorneys who have the chumptzah to threatened the legal status quo in Indiana? Ask Gary Welch, ask Paul Ogden, ask me. Speak truth to power, suffer horrendously accordingly. No wonder Hoosier attorneys who want to keep in good graces merely chase the dollars ... the powers that be have no concerns as to those who are ever for sale to the highest bidder ... for those even willing to compromise for $$$ never allow either justice or constitutionality to cause them to stand up to injustice or unconstitutionality. And the bad apples in the Hoosier barrel, like this one, just keep rotting.

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