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The Law and Liberty Conference, 2019 || NLSIU, Bangalore

Event Date: 23 Nov To 24 Nov 2019; Time: 10:00 AM onwards
Venue: Allen and Ovary Hall, National Law School of India University, Bangalore

About the Program

Each year, the Centre for Civil Society (CCS) organises the Law and Liberty Conference (LLC). The conference highlights emerging concerns in the domain of individual liberty, and the legal and regulatory frameworks which enable the flourishing of a liberal society.

The conferences aim to provide a platform for liberal perspectives on legal concerns, develop a liberal critique of the extant juridical discourse and to build a network of legal practitioners, scholars and students to promote the cause of liberty. Previous conferences have discussed issues of judicial activism, property rights, and perspectives on liberty in a digitized India. With the easing of regulatory policy, the Indian market is opening to larger multinational players. Regulatory authorities now face the task of ensuring fair competition in this changing playing field.

Venue: Allen and Ovary Hall, National Law School of India University, Bangalore

Theme: Legal Foundations of a Free Society

  • Selected participants will be notified within a week after the application deadline.
  • Selected top entries will be offered travel grants and given the opportunity to present their researched abstracts at the Conference.
  • The application fees is INR 1000/-
  • The fee will cover overheads, refreshments, folders, and the networking lunches. The fee does not cover accommodation and arrangements for the same have to be made for the participants themselves.
  • The fee is payable upon selection, and can be made online, details of which will be communicated to selected participants.

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Course Schedule

DAY 1 | 23 November 2019

  • 08:30 - 10:00 | Registration
  • 10:00 - 11:00 | Opening Address
  • 11:00 - 11:30 | Break
  • 11:30 - 12:00 | Student Presentations on Panel I
  • 12:00 - 14:00 | Panel I – Bankruptcy Law in India
  • 14:00 - 15:00 | Lunch
  • 15:00 - 16:30 | Session I – Rules of the Game: An Introduction to Institutions
  • 16:30 - 17:00 | Break
  • 17:00 - 17:30 | Student Presentation on Panel II
  • 17:30 - 19:30 | Panel II – Legal Hurdles for Cryptocurrency Exchanges

DAY 2 | 24 November 2019

  • 10:00 - 10:30 | Recap of Day 1
  • 10:30 - 12:00 | Session II – The Politics of Romance: Public Choice
  • 12:00 - 13:00 | Lunch
  • 13:00 - 13:30 | Student Presentations on Panel III
  • 13:30 - 15:30 | Panel III – Judicial Efficiency: Improving our Access to Justice
  • 15:30 - 16:00 | Break
  • 16:00 -18:00 | Keynote Address
  • 18:00 - 19:00 | Certificate Ceremony & Closing
  • Apply Now


Application Fees: 1,000/- (which shall cover food and course materials for the entire duration of the program.) [Limited merit-based scholarships are avaliable]
Application Deadline: 3rd November 2019
Conference Dates: 23rd-24th November, 2019

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For details contact: Sourya Banerjee (

Law and Liberty Conference, 2019

Event Date: 19 Aug To 20 Aug 2019; Time: 10:00 AM onwards
Venue: Gokhale Institute of Politics and Economics

About the Program

Each year, the Law and Liberty Conference highlights emerging concerns in the domain of individual liberty, and the legal and regulatory frameworks which enable the flourishing of a liberal society.

Centre for Civil Society hosted its first Law and Liberty Conference in partnership with the Federalist Society for Law and Public Policy Studies in 2015 and held its second edition in 2017. The conferences aim to provide a platform for liberal perspectives on legal concerns, develop a liberal critique of the extant juridical discourse and to build a network of legal practitioners, scholars and students to promote the cause of liberty.

This year, the LLC is based on the overarching theme of 'Legal Foundations of a Free Society'. The conference aims to explore the importance of government regulations in enabling societal growth and progress, and the importance of economic freedom in creating a free society.

Program Highlights:

  • Four panels covering spheres economic, civil, and personal liberties
  • Expert speakers providing a variety of perspectives, from academia, governance, and legal practice.
  • Join over 70 of the best law students in the country in a constructive legal discourse

Hosted by the Centre for Civil Society in association with Symbiosis Law School, Pune.

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Shruti Rajagopalan (Keynote Speaker)

Shruti Rajagopalan is an Assistant Professor of Economics at State University of New York, Purchase College and a Fellow at the Classical Liberal Institute at the New York University School of Law.

She earned her Ph.D. in economics in 2013 from George Mason University. She has a BA (Hons) Economics and LL.B. from University of Delhi; and an LL.M. from the European Masters in Law and Economics Program at University of Hamburg, Ghent University, and University of Bologna.

Shruti's broad area of interest is the economic analysis of comparative legal and political systems. Her research interests specifically include law and economics, public choice theory, and constitutional economics. Her research has been published in peer-reviewed journals, law reviews, and books. She also enjoys writing in the popular press and has a fortnightly column called The Impartial Spectator in the Indian financial paper Mint and has also published opinion editorials on Indian political economy in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The Wire, The Hindu: Business Line, and The Indian Express.

Panel 1 - Competition Law and IP: Welfare, but for Whom?

Dr. Geeta Gouri

Dr. Geeta Gouri, former Member of the Competition Commission of India (CCI), is an economist with 15 years of experience working as a Regulatory Economist. She served as Member (Economics) at the CCI for 5 years and prior to that as Director (Tariffs) at the Andhra Pradesh Electricity Regulatory Commission. This unique experience gives her the privilege of being perhaps the only economist in India to be associated with the premiering of the two commissions, which ushered competition and markets reforms in the economy. Dr. Gouri has published extensively and delivered lectures on a wide range of subjects; "Pricing for Welfare; Petroleum Products in India"; "Privatization and Public Enterprise: The Asia-Pacific Experience" (edited); "Towards Equity: New Economic Policy and Equity" (edited).

Dr. Rahul Singh

Rahul Singh is currently (senior) Associate Professor of Law & Director of the Institute of Competition Law and Economics at the National Law School of India University, Bangalore (NLSIU). Professor Singh teaches competition law-and-economics, regulation, WTO and jurisprudence. As a visiting professor, he has lectured at Harvard Law School (USA), University of California at Berkeley (USA), University of Florida Levin College of Law (USA), University of Oxford (UK), Deakin University (Australia) and the Indian Institute of Management Bangalore (India).

Professor Singh has been nominated by the Chief Justice of the Singapore Supreme Court to serve as a member of the governing board of the Asian Business Law Institute, Singapore Academy of Law. He is a member of the Competition Commission of India's Advisory Committee on Regulation. Professor Singh's law review articles on competition law are available on Westlaw and have been cited by the Chief Justice of the Australian apex court. He is also a consultant for several law firms, state owned entities and corporate houses.

Prof. Sajid Sheikh

Sajid Sheikh is an Assistant Professor (Law) and Assistant Registrar (Academic) at the Mumbai National Law University. He obtained his LL.M. (Hons.) specializing in Intellectual Property Rights from National Law University, Jodhpur and is pursuing his Ph.D. from NALSAR University of Law, Hyderabad. He has numerous contributions to various domestic and international law journals on various aspects of Intellectual Property Rights. He has also conducted workshops on Intellectual Property Rights at various institutions including but not limited to the Department of Science & Technology, Jammu & Kashmir Government, and NLSIU Bangalore.

Panel 2 - Society in the Internet age: Balancing Security vis-a-vis Privacy Rights

Nikhil Pahwa

Nikhil Pahwa is the Founder and Editor of MediaNama, a leading publication chronicling the growth of India's digital ecosystem. He is a TED Fellow, and co-founded the campaign for Net Neutrality in India, which was the largest grassroots campaign in the history of India, with over a million people participating. He was also the co-founder and Chairman of the Internet Freedom Foundation, which focuses on advocacy for an open Internet in India. Nikhil has been a part of initiatives which helped declare unconstitutional, Section 66A of India's IT Act, which had led to people being jailed for what comments on Facebook; and the watering down of Section 79A, which had led to censorship of speech online.

At present, Nikhil is a part of initiatives to fix Aadhaar, the world's largest biometric identity database, covering over 1.19 billion Indians, in a manner that protects privacy and agency for Indians. He is also working on initiatives that help simplify complex tech policy discussions for citizens, and believes that active citizen participation is necessary for driving meaningful and inclusive change.

Semanti Choudhury

Professor Choudhury had completed her graduation in B.A. LLB. (Hons.) from West Bengal National University of Juridical Sciences, Kolkata in 2009. Between 2009 and 2013, she had worked at two leading law firms at their Mumbai office, where she was involved in the regulatory practice team as well as project finance transactions during the brief stint at the firms.

In 2013, she shifted gears with an inclination to join academics. She had completed her LLM with specialization in Corporate and Commercial Laws from National Law University Odisha, Cuttack in 2014, and was the gold medalist of her batch. After clearing UGC- NET in 2014, Professor Choudhury joined as Assistant Professor at Symbiosis Law School, Pune from March, 2015. At Symbiosis, Professor Choudhury teaches various subjects including Jurisprudence, Contract Law, International Trade Law, Corporate Law, Investment Law to both undergraduate and postgraduate students. In addition, her areas of research include international trade, consumer protection, competition law, securities law and health law. Professor Choudhury was also instrumental in drafting the application for empanelment of SLS, Pune under the CCI Advocacy programme for which she had analyzed the effect of certain provisions of the Real Estate (Regulation and Development) Act, 2016 on competition in the relevant market.

Apar Gupta

Mr. Apar Gupta, is a lawyer and the executive director of the Internet Freedom Foundation (IFF). He completed his post-graduate studies from the Columbia University School of Law and has practised for more than a decade. From 2015, he has been working extensively on public interest issues which include strategic litigation and organisation of campaigns and collectives. In courts, his work as a lawyer includes key digital rights cases on privacy and censorship. Beyond court work he has worked extensively with activists and government institutions in public campaigns to advance net neutrality, reform defamation laws, fight against internet shutdowns and introduce a strong privacy statute.

Murali Neelakantan

Mr. Murali Neelakantan is a dual qualified (English solicitor and Indian advocate) with over 2 decades of experience in advising on international transactions in a wide variety of sectors. He was previously a senior equity partner at Ashurst in London and subsequently a senior partner at Khaitan & Co. He joined Cipla in 2013 as its first Global General Counsel and subsequently was Executive Director and Global General Counsel at Glenmark. He is currently Principal at Amicus where he provides legal and policy advice, and an independent director on the board of TTK Prestige, India's largest kitchen appliances company. He has recently written series of articles on the national health Stack, DNA Bill and healthcare policy for BloombergQuint.

Apply Now


Application Fees: 1,000/- (which shall cover food and course materials for the entire duration of the program.) [Limited merit-based scholarships are avaliable]
Application Deadline: 21st July 2019
Conference Dates: 19-20 August, 2019

Apply Now

For details contact: Utkarsh Khare ( or Sourya Banerjee ( | 91 8174901422/ 91 9848281402.

Baithak: Conversations in Policy

Event Date: 30 Jun 2019; Time: 04:00 PM - 06:00 PM
Venue: GP Brilla, Hyderabad


Last year at CCS Academy, we curated a platform for CCS alumni, young students and professionals to engage in themes and discussions around public policy; now popularly called Baithak: Conversations in Policy. Baithaks follow an open group discussion format where the speaker is also the moderator of the debate, the principal guide and the facilitator of free flow of information among all the participants.

About Ragini Bajaj

Ragini Bajaj Chaudhary, Director Caspian Impact Advisors is development finance professional with more than 20 years of experience in microfinance, impact investment and development. Prior to Caspian, Ragini served as a CEO of GMC India, where she led the development of its strategic road map for the Affordable private school sector, set up operations to lead an 8m early stage investment fund, an Accelerator – Calibrator for mobile ed-tech companies and eco-system development for education.

Prior to GMC, she led the financial inclusion agenda of Poorest State Inclusive Growth (PSIG) Programme as well as its impact investment and incubation portfolio as a Private Sector Development Advisor, UK Government's Department for International Development (DFID) India.

Prior to DFID, she has worked in Mi India (Dia Vikas Capital), EDA Rural Systems, Care India, Institute of Rural Management Anand, in various capacities specialising in, impact investment, training, rating, consulting and social performance management for microfinance, livelihoods and social enterprise space. Ragini is a management graduate from Institute of Rural Management Anand (IRMA) and has qualified as a Management Accountant from Chartered Institute of Management Accounting (CIMA),UK. Ragini strongly believes that her strong understanding of consumer context, social and economic challenges and rural realities has been on account of her grounding in IRMA. She counts this as one of her life-changing experiences.


The idea of Baithak is to give a platform to all CCS graduates and potential course participants to come together for a discussion on contemporary socio-cultural and economic issues in the presence of prominent voices from the liberal movement in India. Its objective is to create a knowledge ecosystem, impacting the policy space in India at large.

When and where?

Topic: Privatisation of Education in India: The Sin or the Saviour?
Date: June 30, 2019
Time: 04:00 PM - 06:00 PM
Venue: TBD

Register Now

For details contact: Sourya Banerjee (Sourya Banerjee)

Appeal for Repeal Laws Day 2018

Event Date: 26 Nov 2018; Time: 03:00 PM - 06:00 PM
Venue: Speaker Hall, Constitution Club of India, New Delhi
Apply for Researching Reality Internship 2018

Repeal of Laws:

India, one of the largest democracies in the world with an ever-rising population, has had, several statutes that with the advent of time have become obsolete, redundant or repetitive. In addition to this, there is the matter of inconsistent language and dissemination- making it difficult for an ordinary citizen to access and comprehend the plethora of legal information with ease. This increased transaction cost coupled with glaring redundancy further breeds fertile grounds for corruption, discouraging engagement of individuals and firms with the society/ economy at large.

Centre of Civil Society (CCS) initiated the 'Repeal of 100 Laws' Project in 2014 with the aim to identify laws that could be repealed on account of three reasons

  • Redundancy
  • Obsolescence in the face of new laws
  • Hindrance to development, governance and freedom.


For the 2018 edition of the Repeal of Laws initiative the following state compendiums have been prepared:



Centre for Civil Society, in an effort to institutionalize the repealing of laws as a constitutional practice for the Republic of India, would like to bring together like-minded organizations, scholars, academicians and lawyers to acknowledge 26 November as the Appeal for Repeal Law Day. Its objectives are:

  • To celebrate the diversity of our legal system and have a constructive dialogue around the process of repealing of laws
  • To launch the compendiums constituting the recommended laws for repeal in the aforementioned 6 States


The target is to bring together 70-80 dedicated individuals under one roof and to engage in constructive dialogue around the potential processes required for the institutionalization of the repeal of laws. The idea is to deliberate over the existing structures and processes for repealing laws in India, and envisaging practices which can be adopted moving forward.

ipolicy for Young Leaders | August - September 2018

Event Date: 24 Aug To 23 Sep 2018; Time: 9:00am - 6:00pm
Venue: New Delhi, Bangalore, Chennai, Mumbai

ipolicy for Young Leaders, Bengaluruìpolicy is our flagship 3 day introductory course in Public Policy. The course involves a variety of interactive learning methods including dynamic games, talks, dialogues, and documentaries, designed to provide participants with opportunities to explore and share ideas about policy-based solutions to social problems from a liberal perspective.

Why should you attend ìpolicy?

  • To gain exposure to a wide range of topics especially in the areas of livelihood, governance, education, poverty, law, corruption, politics and more
  • To network and interact with fellow participants coming from diverse backgrounds and disciplines representing leading colleges from all over India and abroad.
  • To enhance analytical, public speaking, and presentation skills through working groups, role play, discussions and debates
  • To join our vast alumni and academic network of over 7000 CCS graduates

You can apply to more than one program at a time.

ìpolicy Dates Venue, City Application Deadline  
24-26 August 2018 New Delhi 15 August 2018
31 August-2 September 2018 Bangalore 25 August 2018
21-23 Septmeber 2018 Chennai 07 September 2018
28-30 Septmeber 2018 Mumbai 12 September 2018
Shilanjini Bhattacharya, TISS Mumbai
"ìpolicy has enabled me to critically examine the present perspectives I inhabit regarding policy design and policy implication. It has inspired me to gain a holistic understanding of markets and their ways of working in the policy domain."

Shilanjini Bhattacharya, TISS Mumbai

Evita Rodriguez, FLAME Pune
"I am incredibly grateful for this opportunity, it has provided insight, fresh ideas and a liberal perspective. I learnt a lot both from interaction with facilitators and peers. I was encouraged to think more critically, ask more questions and discouraged from accepting things on face value. I think my approach to policy formulation has changed a great deal in terms of how I now perceive institutions, trade, incentives, public interest and govt intervention."

Evita Rodriguez, FLAME Pune

Shreya Rangarajan, TISS Hyderabad
"Textbooks provide a very one-dimensional and theoretical approach to issues. Ipolicy definitely showed the current trends interms of the practice approach and introduced me to new perspectives and ways of looking at issues. The most important thing is that in each session, we did not just stop with identifying the problem but also came together to formulate possible solutions to the same."

Shreya Rangarajan, TISS Hyderabad