Symbiosis Law School, Pune (SLS-P), a constituent of Symbiosis International (Deemed University) organised the book launch of “The Global Indians and the Law”on   October 3, 2020. The book is authored by Senior Advocate Anil Malhotra and Advocate Ranjit Malhotra, leading experts in the field of Private International Law. The launch was followed by a panel discussion on the key topics covered in the book. The event was organised on the virtual platform of Zoom and commenced at 12 noon.

The event began with Prof. Lasya Vyakaranam introducing the esteemed members of the panel. The panel included luminaries such as Dr.Shashikala Gurpur, Fulbright Scholar, Director Symbiosis Law School, Pune, Dean, Faculty of Law, SIU;  Hon’ble Justice Dr. S. Muralidhar, Judge- Punjab and Haryana High Court; Advocate Anil Malhotra, Author, Legal Analyst, IAFL Fellow and Alumni of SOAS, London; Mr Narinder Singh, Consultant in International Law, Former Chairman of International Law Commission (UN), Additional Secretary (Legal and Treaties Division) of Ministry of External Affairs (Retired.) and Ms. ReshmaSambare, Attorney and Counselor at Law (State of Michigan and Illinois, USA) Law and Social Worker.

Dr. Shashikala Gurpur, Director, Symbiosis Law School Pune began her address by inviting all the members of the panel. She elucidated how such extension programmes are a part of experiential learning, which is the core of the holistic approach to education followed by Symbiosis Law School Pune. Dr. Gurpur mentioned how the book is a succinct representation of the “Global Desi Experience”. She elaborated on how the book transcends diaspora, borders and attempts at understanding personality transformation and creation of a new globalised identity.  Dr. Gurpur concluded her speech by claiming that the book is a success not just due to the author’s expansive knowledge of the letter of law but also because it attempts to organise the critical masses in India to encourage reforms in law.

Following Dr. Gurpur’s address, Hon’ble Justice Dr. S. Muralidhar, Judge Punjab and Haryana High Court began the panel discussion. He began his speech by exclaiming that the heart of this book lies in the vast experience of the authors as legal practitioners. According to Justice Dr. S. Muralidhar, the book is a true representation of the issues of a “Global Indian.” Justice Muralidhar also identified urgent issues related to Indian students in Detroit, Indian workers in Middle East, the poor embassy response and need for legal aid. He also elaborated on public funding in India, assistance in legal services, especially for NRIs abroad who find themselves helpless. He concluded his speech by commending the authors for the book, which has ignited a discussion and discourse on the grave and urgent issues on a global level.


Advocate Anil Malhotra, Author, IAFL Fellow was called upon to provide his insights to the audience. Advocate Malhotra began his speech by identifying the lack of definition of a “Global Indian” and the issue which is at stake. He highlights that while there is a massive Indian diaspora abroad who are becoming prominent in various fields, Indian legislation has not caught up in terms of their support. He therefore rightly identified a confused jurisprudence as well as the urgent need for legal recognition of a “Global Indian.” He highlighted the need for better infrastructure which aids people who wish to immigrate so due process is preserved, and dubious illegal institutions will be rendered redundant. He concluded his speech by explaining how there needs to be more discourse and better legislations that govern family disputes allowing for trans-border adoptions and surrogacies.

Following Advocate Anil Malhotra, Mr Narinder Singh, Consultant in International Law, and having held various positions in his speech, identified that with the growing Indian diaspora abroad, Indians are faced with an entirely new set of rules and regulations. This can lead to a conflict of laws in substantive understanding. He also illuminated that in the area of parent-child abductions, the issues of litigation in different countries and possible conflicting orders become important. Mr. Singh identified the lack of uniformity in legal judgments in terms of child rights which leads to inconsistency in terms of remedy and recourse of the public. He concluded his speech by commending the authors of the book in brilliantly identifying these issues and providing important and educating insights.

Subsequently, Ms. Reshma Sambare, Attorney and Counsellor, was called upon to address the audience. Ms. Sambare began her speech by mentioning that the book so comprehensively captures the issues of Indians who are abroad that it can be considered a treatise. She identifies that while the book analyses accurately these issues, the book only concentrates on documented, well-travelled Indian immigrants. She elucidated upon the Indians who may be undocumented, which creates a grey area in terms of their nationality and rights. She concluded her speech by discussing the intertwined issues of property rights, inheritance rights, abandonment, and more which necessarily require the issues of inter-country marriages to be determined.

The panel discussion concluded after a healthy debate and discourse. The discussion was followed by a Question and Answer session moderated by Prof. Semanti Choudhury, in which the student attendees asked pertinent questions on diverse topics such as surrogacy, inter-country adoption, Indian foster care infrastructure, domestic violence against children among others.

After an interactive discussion with the students, Dr. Shashikala Gurpur summarised the key takeaways from the scintillating discussion and delivered the concluding remarks. She highlighted that the book is a window to understand the problems of “Global Indians” and redefined our approach to such issues. She identified the creative judicial and legal innovation, which was brought out in various issues that the book discussed. She particularly mentions how the clear advocacy of virtual means of resolving disputes makes the book a modern and relevant publication for the current “normal” of the world. She ended her address by commenting that such a brilliant and balanced book was indeed a “scholar’s envy and an advocate’s pride.” 

The virtual book launch and panel discussion ended on a successful note as Prof. Lasya Vyakaranam delivered the vote of thanks.

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