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Justice Gautam Patel And Cyril Shroff On What is Waiting For Us in The ‘Amrit Kaal’

There are 10 major issues waiting to be resolved in the next 25 years, according to Shroff:

1. Antitrust: The increasing concentration of economic power and control of data among large corporations is going to create several antitrust concerns.

2. Corporate law and the emergence of jurisprudence on stakeholder governance: The Companies Act, 2013 is a pioneer in terms of imposing a duty toward maximisation of value not just for shareholders but also to other stakeholders. “Will other stakeholders be given class action rights like shareholders under the Act? We are one judicial innovation away from this,” Shroff said.

3. Privatisation: The coming wave of privatisation and asset monetisation will raise new tensions on the value maximisation front. Asset monetisation will raise new questions about where the value really exists.

4. Climate litigation: Once the courts are able to create a system of attribution and identify corporations behind climate change, questions regarding extraterritoriality and liability will arise. There are already cases in Latin America, Shroff said.

5. Expanding the boundaries of public law: Fundamental rights are only enforceable against the state and its instrumentalities. Large populations that are becoming quasi-sovereign may raise questions regarding the standards of public law and whether they should be made applicable to them.

6. The Metaverse: Will the laws of the physical world be expanded to the metaverse, and what would be the constitutional basis for such action? Will the Constitution apply to such a world? If yes, whose Constitution? This deserves some thought, according to Shroff.

7. Privacy: Privacy is a fundamental right that citizens have against the state. Although it’s a new dimension in relationships with corporations, a lot of responsibility has been put on the data fiduciary under the new Draft Personal Data Protection Bill.

8. Ethics: What would be the legal and ethical foundation of artificial intelligence? How will constitutional law provide a framework for creating a new social contract in the digital space? Shroff said these are some questions that need to be addressed.

9. Litigation financing : Will the Supreme Court clear the air around the issue and open a floodgate of class-action suits? “That needs to be seen“.

10. Balancing state and private entities: India’s promise of Amrit Kaal is not going to be achieved without private parties. How the state will create a balancing structure between the environment and entrepreneurship remains to be seen. How will the bossy state control its worst instincts? are some of Shroff’s concerns.

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