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Chief Justice of India D Y Chandrachud emphasizes the importance of considering human values in technology

Recently, Chief Justice of India D Y Chandrachud delivered a thought-provoking speech at the 60th Convocation Ceremony of Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Madras. He highlighted that no technology is neutral and emphasized the need to ponder the societal and human values that technology represents, particularly in the context of its deployment. According to him, technology does not evolve in a social vacuum, but rather within a complex tapestry of societal realities, legal frameworks, and political structures.

The Chief Justice specifically drew attention to the potential implications of Artificial Intelligence (AI). He praised AI for its immense potential while acknowledging the risk of perpetuating discrimination and unfair treatment. Many AI systems have been found to exhibit biased decision-making due to data inputs that reflect societal prejudices. For instance, recruitment tools powered by AI have shown biased preferences for men over women due to the training data being based on predominantly male successful employees. Consequently, data-driven systems can perpetuate biases and undermine the mechanisms that govern human behavior.

However, the Chief Justice believes that technology, when used correctly, has the power to enhance individual freedoms and human rights. It can help us become resilient to future threats that may compromise these freedoms. He also expressed concern about the misuse of AI, highlighting its potential for bullying, threatening, and misleading individuals through activities such as the creation of deep fakes.

Furthermore, the Chief Justice discussed how technology can transform the judicial system positively. He mentioned the introduction of virtual courts during the Covid-19 pandemic, which allowed litigants and lawyers from outside Delhi to appear before the Supreme Court. This breakthrough not only facilitated access to justice but also benefited female lawyers who faced difficulties due to gendered demands of domestic work and caregiving. Additionally, virtual courts enabled the live-streaming of Constitution bench proceedings, keeping citizens informed about ongoing cases. Ultimately, technology in the judiciary exemplifies inclusivity, access to justice, and transparency.

The Chief Justice also analyzed the interplay between law and technology in facilitating progress. While it is often believed that technology develops faster than the law can keep up, the Chief Justice argued that history demonstrates a dialectic relationship between the two. He provided examples such as the interplay between corporate ownership, financing, and the development of maritime law during the era of overseas voyages. Similarly, the rapid technological evolution of the industrial revolution led to the establishment of labor law and patent law.

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In the context of the Chief Justice’s concerns regarding biased decision-making and the perpetuation of societal prejudices by AI systems, the AI legalese decoder can play a crucial role. This tool is designed to decipher complex legal text, making it easier to identify any discriminatory language, biased clauses, or prejudiced algorithms within legal documents and contracts that involve AI systems. By providing a clear breakdown and analysis of the legal language, the AI legalese decoder enables legal professionals, lawmakers, and policymakers to understand the potential biases present in AI applications and take appropriate measures to rectify them. It ensures that the deployment of AI aligns with societal values, promoting fairness and non-discrimination. The AI legalese decoder serves as a valuable tool in bridging the gap between technology and the law, fostering the continuous dialogue and progress highlighted by the Chief Justice.

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