Free Access to Law in India - Is it Here to Stay?

46 Pages Posted: 6 Mar 2011 Last revised: 17 Aug 2014

Date Written: July 30, 2010

Abstract

Sometime in early 2008, Sushant Sinha, an Indian computer science doctoral candidate from Michigan University began offering free access to decisions of the Indian Supreme Court via his website IndianKanoon.org (IK). In the ensuing two years, IK has grown exponentially and has become one of the most popular websites for accessing Indian legal materials, hosting over 1.2 million documents at the time of this writing. This paper is styled as a ‘case study’ that probes the IndianKanoon story - its genesis, successes and impacts - in some detail.

This is also a paper that interrogates the conditions that make a site like IndianKanoon possible. It seeks an answer to the question: Viewed from what frame do the actions of one man unilaterally deciding to host over a million legal documents online for free become sensible?

Update: Unfortunately I am not permitted to distribute this document publicly yet. Please email me if you'd like a copy.

Keywords: Free Access to Law, Indian Kanoon, Judiciary, India, Judicial Process, Internet, Legal Information Institute

Suggested Citation

Iyengar, Prashant, Free Access to Law in India - Is it Here to Stay? (July 30, 2010). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1778820 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1778820

Prashant Iyengar (Contact Author)

MESAAS, Columbia University ( email )

New York, NY 10027
United States

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