Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Techno Legal Skill Development In India

Indian has tremendous workforce but the same required a good practical training as well as skill development exercises. Various studies and research in India have suggested that out of the educated masses only 15 to 25% are fit for being absorbed at job places. This ratio equally applies to legal professionals in India perhaps with a much lower percentage.

The present legal educational system of India is in dire need of reforms. In the name of legal education reform the Bar Council of India (BCI) and Law Minister Veerappa Moily have imposed bar examination upon law graduates that has neither a scientific rationale nor a fair and reasonable handling on the part of both.

Legal education in India has to be at par with international norms and standards. Presently legal education of India is lagging far behind than the required benchmark. This is because India is concentrating too much upon academic studies and almost nothing upon practical training and skill development of lawyers and judges.

India needs urgent educational and legal reforms that must be undertaken as soon as possible. One such area that requires urgent attention is the amalgamation of legal education with information and communication technology (ICT). Presently, there are very few organisations that are using ICT for legal education in India.

Both BCI and Moily have failed to appreciate that legal education has now become techno legal where a legal professional must be aware of both technical as well as legal fields. However, there is a dearth of techno legal institutions that provide legal lifelong learning. One such institution that provides techno legal lifelong learning (TLLL) is managed by Perry4Law Techno Legal Base (PTLB).

At the same time there is also a dire need to have institutions that can provide good continuing legal education in India (CLE in India). PTLB covers both traditional legal fields as well as contemporary techno legal fields.

In short, India is running short of institutions that can impart good techno-legal skill development education, training and coaching. The BCI and Law Minister Moily must address these issues as soon as possible.

Encryption Standards, Norms And Laws In India

Telecom security related decisions of India are primarily guided by hysteria and paranoid thoughts rather than genuine security concerns. Telecom security in India must be preceded by proper telecom policies and adequate cyber security initiatives in India. In India we have neither a telecom security policy nor cyber security capabilities.

Firstly, the ban on Chinese telecom equipment has shown the weaknesses of Indian laws and telecom security strategy. It showed that India lacks both a legal framework and regulatory body to manage security issue of telecom industry in India.

Realising the gravity of the situation the government of India announced for the formulation of Telecom Security Regulatory Authority of India (TSRAI) that would advice it on telecom security related issues. However, it is another issue that TSRAI remained a distant dream and mere loud words alone. It proved just a fa├žade to gain time and slip through the banning controversy of Chinese telecom equipments.

Now the government of India is once again locking horns with Research in Motion (RIM) that is managing Blackberry services in India and worldwide. It is forcing RIM and Blackberry to reduce the security and privacy features of its services. RIM and Blackberry have taken a middle path and while refusing to dilute the security and privacy features has shown its willingness to help Indian government and its agencies in matters of national security.

Presently, the cyber law of India i.e. information technology act 2000 (IT Act 2000), as amended by the information technology amendment act 2008 (IT Act 2008) governs the encryption related legal provision. Section 84 A of IT Act 2000 provides that the Central govt may, for secure use of electronic medium and for promotion of e-governance and e-commerce prescribe the modes or methods of encryption.

Further, Section 69 of IT Act 2000 empowers the, Central Government/State Government/ its authorised agency to intercept, monitor or decrypt any information generated, transmitted, received or stored in any computer resource if it is necessary or expedient so to do in the interest of the sovereignty or integrity of India, defence of India, security of the State, friendly relations with foreign States or public order or for preventing incitement to the commission of any cognizable offence or for investigation of any offence.

The security agencies of India are in favour of a weaker encryption standard whereas the present telecom requirements dictate otherwise. Since the Central Government has not taken any initiative in this regard, the Department of Telecommunications (DOT), India has suggested an absurd level of 40 bit encryption for ISPs and a written permission from DOT is required with mandatory deposit of decryption key with DOT. Surprisingly, Indian regulatory bodies like SEBI and RBI have mandated encryption standard greater than 40-bit.

It is high time for India to formulate proper law in this regard while establishing the proposed TSRAI. At the same time RIM/Blackberry should not dilute the security and privacy features of its services otherwise there is nothing distinct that remains in Blackberry that separates it from other ordinary services.

Best Arbitration Institutions In India

Alternative dispute resolution (ADR) in India has been in use since many decades. The present law that governs ADR in India is the Arbitration and Conciliation Act, 1996. The Act provides for ADR remedies through arbitration and mediation. However, the Act suffers from many legal, procedural and structural defects and is in the process of being amended.

There are many good arbitration institutions in India that provide world class arbitration services. However, they are not following the contemporary international practices and norms. For example, there are hardly one or two arbitration institutions that are providing online dispute resolution (ODR) services in India.

In fact there is just a single techno legal ODR centre in India that is providing techno legal ODR services in India and worldwide. Further, there is a single online platform that provides techno legal research, training and education regarding ODR in India.

The national litigation policy of India (NLPI) declared by Law Minister Veerappa Moily is proactive and promising. It has advocated active use of ADR mechanisms like arbitration in India. However, even NLPI failed to consider the contemporary issues like ODR and e-courts.

India has a single ODR institution and single e-courts research, training and consultancy centre. This explains why e-court project of India failed and why till the month of August 2010 we are still waiting for the establishment for first e-court in India.

The problem lies with lack of political and judicial will in India as well as lack of expertise to use information technology for legal and judicial reforms in India. It would be a good idea if concepts like ODR and e-courts are essentially made part of NLPI and the proposed amended arbitration law of India.

Online Cyber Law Education In India

Cyber law is a challenging field that requires expertise to handle. This is more so when the law and technology fields are merging together and presenting complex challenges before the police, lawyers, judges and corporate professionals.

Cyber law is also a good career provided the aspirant is committed to do good amount of hard labour and undergo practical training. Although there are numerous cyber law diploma providing courses in India yet they are theoretical and academic in nature. They are devoid of the practical utility that is in fact required in the field and court rooms.

For very serious candidates, the option seems to be limited. One such great option is the courses provided by Perry4Law Techno Legal Base (PTLB). A wide range of exclusive online techno legal training courses are provided by PTLB for cyber law, cyber security, cyber forensics, e-courts, ADR and DOR, etc.

For getting the complete details of the courses and career options, you can visit the online platform of PTLB.