U.S. – India Comparative Constitutional Law 2.0 : Workshop 1 at TNDALU, Chennai (Session III)

October 23, 2021

The Centre for Law and Policy Research (CLPR) in collaboration with its partnered Indian and American universities organised a series of workshops on U.S.- India Comparative Constitutional law in October, November 2021 and January 2022. The partnered Indian and American law universities were paired for an interactive session.

Between 23 and 24 October 2021, CLPR organised its first two-day workshop under the project with the Tamil Nadu Dr. Ambedkar Law University, Chennai (TNDALU). This video covers session III of the first workshop. The U.S. law school partner for this workshop was the University of California Los Angeles School of Law, Los Angeles (UCLA). Over 40 students from both universities participated. Faculty members from the two universities, invited speakers, and CLPR staff were also in attendance. The focus of this workshop was equality and affirmation in U.S.-India comparative constitutional law. A set of readings curated by CLPR were distributed to the students in advance to facilitate informed discussions.

The Agenda for session III is provided below:

9.00 pm – 11.00 pm – Session III: Interactive Session with UCLA School of Law Students on Affirmative Action in Education

Part I

In Session III, TNDALU law students were joined by law students from UCLA School of Law. The two groups of students collaboratively situated, compared, and presented their views on affirmative action in the U.S. and Indian constitutional frameworks.

Session readings:

Presentation slides: Session III Part I

Part II

CLPR introduced students to two important affirmative action cases from the U.S. and India related to university admissions. Students were split into groups and asked to design an affirmative action policy that took values like diversity into account and present them before the larger group. In the ensuing discussion, Indian and U.S. law students were able to use their learning from both countries’ constitutional experiences.

Session readings:

Presentation Slides: Session III Part II

Speaker Remarks

Professor Stephen Gardbaum, University of California Los Angeles School of Law, was the invited speaker for this session. He traced the trajectory of affirmative action in the U.S and compared contemporary debates around affirmative action in the U.S. and India.


9:00 am – 11:00 am – Session IV: Reflections, Feedback, Going Forward and Essay Competition

CLPR resource persons recapped the three preceding sessions. Students reflected on their learnings with the larger group. Based on a prompt given by CLPR, students proceeded to write on-the-spot essays for the essay competition. Ranjit Abraham, Professor, TNDALU, concluded the session with his remarks.

Presentation slides: Session IV