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Special Lecture: The Legal Universe of Natural Resources Management in India

October 28, 2016

Professor M. K. Ramesh from National Law School of India University, Bangalore, delivered a lecture titled, “The Legal Universe of Natural Resources Management in India” in the Special Lecture Series on October 21, 2016 at Ajatashatru Residence Hall.

The objective of the lecture was to explore the legal regime for natural resource management in India which appears to run on parallel tracks – the statutory and the administrative track on the one hand and the constitutional command track on the other. Convergence of the two, especially of the former, in accommodating, internalising and working the grundnorms (basic or fundamental norms) laid down by the latter, has not moved from the stage of aspiration to actualisation. The statutory and the institutional frame, in both content and intent, seems to continue to suffer from a ‘colonial hangover’ of common law traditions and practices, predominating the legal regime. Under it, while private and individual rights get statutory insulation of protection, the resources in the common domain – land, water, forests, wildlife, biodiversity etc., without any exception, are governed by a legal system shackled to colonial rule.

Professor Ramesh explained that environmental conservation concerns that were once an integral part of our customs and traditions, hardly ever figure in the scheme of things today. There are also some issues with the existing statutory law of natural resource governance that require re-thinking. At a time when human-made natural disasters are on the increase and cataclysmic climate conditions have become common there is a need for an integrated approach of management of all natural resources.

Special lecture by Professor M. K. Ramesh

Professor M. K. Ramesh, National Law School of India University, Bangalore 
delivering a lecture in the SEES Special Lecture series

Bio-Sketch of Professor M. K. Ramesh

Professor Ramesh is a Professor of Law at National Law School of India University, Bangalore, India with over 30 years of teaching experience. He is also the Chair Professor of Urban Poor and the Law, instituted by the Ministry of Housing and Urban Poverty Alleviation, Government of India. He specializes in International Law, Human Rights Law, Environmental Law and Natural Resources Management Law. Professor Ramesh has published many book chapters, books and 50 research articles on Environment, Natural Resources, Water Resource Management, Human Rights, Consumer Interest, Health Care, Public Interest, Lawyering, Legal Education, International and Comparative Law etc.

Professor Ramesh held several distinguished positions in many organisations contributing to legal and policy making. He was a member of the Steering Committee on ‘Environment and Forests’ for the Planning Commission of India and a member of the Research Committee on Social Science Research, in the Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change Research, Professor Ramesh was a Senior Fulbright Post-Doctoral Fellow in the US. He was honoured as the ‘Environmental Law Fellow 2006’ by the Environmental Law Institute, Washington DC, USA.

He was a Visiting Faculty, Dalhousie Law School; 2007; Visiting Professor, Faculty of Law, University of Zurich, Switzerland; Visiting Professor, at KTH (Royal Institute of Technology), Stockholm, Sweden.

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