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  • Author: Shibani Ghosh
  • Publication Date: 12-2015
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Centre for Policy Research, India
  • Abstract: The recent uproar about the toxic levels of pollution in the country’s national capital region has once again brought to fore the failure of the regulatory and legal mechanisms in India to control air pollution. Despite an early legislative acknowledgment of the issues relating to air pollution, and regulatory mechanisms set up consequently, India has not been able to restrict the sharp upward trajectory of air pollution. While several issues with regard to the legal and regulatory regime governing air quality in the country deserve serious and urgent consideration, this paper focuses on one issue in particular – the liability regime for violation of air quality standards. The paper is divided into three parts. The first part discusses the relevant provisions of the law pertaining to liability - civil and criminal - for causing air pollution. The second part identifies three critical issues that have emerged in the current liability regime: (1) the Pollution Control Boards do not have the power to levy penalties; (2) criminal prosecution is not an effective solution; and (3) the National Green Tribunal Act does not provide complete relief. The third and final part of the essay proposes a way forward. It is suggested that the Pollution Control Boards need to be granted additional enforcement powers, and administrative fines for violations should be introduced, albeit with certain conditions.
  • Topic: Environment, Health, Governance, Law Enforcement, Law, Reform, Pollution
  • Political Geography: South Asia, India, Asia
  • Author: Rajshree Chandra
  • Publication Date: 05-2015
  • Content Type: Working Paper
  • Institution: Centre for Policy Research, India
  • Abstract: With innovation in the genetic engineering now being rewarded in the form of intellectual property rights, there are new things that are beginning to count as property and as objects of human invention – plant varieties, seeds, germplasm, genetic sequences, DNA and so on. To bring the realm of “biology” within the ambit of intellectual property, to juridify aspects of the biological as products of human invention is to bring new epistemic objects into visibility. While these are revealed through practices of biotechnology, law translates it into a capacity for monopolistic appropriation for biotech innovators. The new correlatives of innovation and intellectual property re-engineer not just the biology of an organism, but the very categories that organized property and intellectual property. What instrumentalities of technology and law co-produce biotic property? I examine these instrumentalities in a two paper series: while the first paper seeks to lay out the work of technology in the creation of new biological artefacts, and consequently new economic spaces and property claims, the second paper would seek to examine the role of law in translating inventive claims as property claims.
  • Topic: Science and Technology, Intellectual Property/Copyright, Law
  • Political Geography: South Asia, India, Global Focus