The Inaugural Ceremony of the 8th International Annual Research Conference on Rule of Law in Context: Indian and Global Perspectives (SYMROLIC ’19) was held at Symbiosis Law School, Pune (a constituent of Symbiosis International Deemed University) on 13th September, 2019 in the Professional Development and Continuing Legal Education (PDCLE) Hall at 10:30 AM.
The ceremony commenced with the lighting of the auspicious lamp by the dignitaries present on the dais.
In her Welcome Address, Dr. Shashikala Gurpur, Fulbright Scholar, Dean, Faculty of Law, SIU, Director, Symbiosis Law School, Pune, highlighted the significance of the conference, emphasizing the fact that in order to broaden the scope of knowledge, such platforms are required. They also offer an opportunity to members of faculty and students to present their research ideas. She spoke at length about the pertinence of academic partnership of those in the field of law with those in related fields for a comprehensive insight into the theory and practice of ‘Rule of Law’. She reminded that a law school without a research base cannot be a lead law school. Dr. Gurpur regretted the sad demise of Sr. Advocate Ram Jethmalani, Professor Emeritus, SLS-P and referred to him as the spearhead of the IALS Transnational Contract Law Project. She concluded her address by remarking, “a research conference, for us, is like a festival and, we celebrate it like any other”.
The inaugural session of SYMROLIC ’19 witnessed the release of the bi-annual in-house journal ‘Lex Et’ and a compilation of abstracts received for the Conference by the dignitaries on the dais. The conference received an overwhelming response in the form of 200 abstracts from scholars all across the globe, of which 50 were shortlisted for presentation. The theme of the conference was subdivided into six tracks namely Law and Human Behaviour; Business, Trade, Commerce, Management and Law; International Law, Policy and Governance; Common Challenges & Converging Perspectives in Europe and Asia; Rule of Law in Europe and Asia;Innovation, Science, Technology and Law; and, Public Law, Society and Governance
The occasion also marked the release of the books titled ‘Transnational Sex-Trafficking: An Integrated Reparation Model’ by Dr. Sarfaraz Ahmed Khan, Director, Symbiosis Law School, Hyderabad, ‘Statutory Interpretation’ (2nd Ed.), by Dr. Sukhvinder Dari, Director, Symbiosis Law School, Nagpur and ‘Witness Protection in Criminal Trials in India’ by Dr. Gireesh Abhyankar, Professor, Symbiosis Law School, Pune.
The inaugural event also saw the launch of the Symbiosis Centre for Alternative Dispute Resolution (SCADR) by the faculty members of SLS-P, Prof. Shirish Kulkarni, Prof. Nitin Kumar and Prof. Sunistha Moghe in the presence of special invitee, Justice Shalini Phansalkar.
The Symbiosis Legal Skills Centre was inaugurated by Dr. Atmaram Shelke, Dr. Abhijit Kelkar & Dr. Santosh Aghav.
Another milestone was set with the launch of the EURASIA website at the hands of Dr. Aparajita Mohanty, Prof. Sujata Arya, Prof. Raj Varma along with Dr. Vihar Georgiev, Sofia University, Bulgaria.
In his address, the esteemed Guest of Honour, Dr. Clemens Arzt, Director, Research institute of Public and Private Security, Berlin School of Economics and Law, Germany remarked that research conferences present an interesting platform for dissemination and exchange of information. Dr. Arzt encouraged the continuous and future collaboration between research experts, faculty and students of India and Europe.
The Chief Guest, Prof. Dr. M. K. Ramesh, Vice-Chancellor, Chair Professor, Urban Poor and the Law, National Law School of India University, Bangalore, addressed the gathering and expressed admiration for the meteoric rise of SLS-P, a sign of which was the 8th Edition of SYMROLIC. He remarked that, “This Annual Conference is a real feast for an academician like me because of the impactful steps being taken in the field of learning.” Dr. Ramesh briefed the audience about the significance of the concept of rule of law. In his view, it is a system of governance above human prejudice that requires visualization and internalization in order to be viewed as a social construct. He also highlighted the application of the principle of rule of law in the international context, as it cannot be perceived merely at the local or national levels. Dr. Ramesh concluded by stating that research on an ethereal level is required to shed light on the fallacies in the ideals of law.
Lastly, Justice (Retd) Phansalkar spoke about her vision for mobilization of the departments launched to boost the culture and ecosystem of arbitration and other alternative dispute resolution methods for effective justice delivery.
The event ended on a positive note with a vote of thanks delivered by Dr. Bindu Ronald, Deputy Director, Symbiosis Law School, Pune.