Jindal Global Law School (JGLS) of O.P. Jindal Global University (JGU) launched an exclusive and first of its kind interdisciplinary, Master of Business Laws Programme. The unique Master’s degree programme was launched on the side-lines of the seminar on ‘How to Fill the Legal and Regulatory Knowledge Gap in Business and Industry’ with distinguished panellists at the Jindal Global Educational & Professional Academy in New Delhi.
The programme is JGU’s initiative to address the needs arising from the unique dynamics of the current corporate environment, where business intersects with law, policy and dispute resolution. Today, corporate professionals - ranging from those involved with human resources, financial management, innovation strategy, intellectual property management or business compliance - have to synchronise their managerial and professional skills with legal and regulatory strategy to ensure effective compliance and reduce their company's risk profile, while growing their business. The Master or Business Laws degree provides an all-important bridge between the various disciplines and skills required by the modern business professional.
Professor (Dr.) C. Raj Kumar, Founding Vice Chancellor, JGU said “Our University is committed to playing a larger role in the development of society. We shoulder a leadership role of preparing future professionals for the radically changing socio-economic environment, which influences global businesses. The purpose of introducing the Master of Business Laws Programme is to empower, enable and educate the business side of corporations, to provide opportunities for business officials, leaders and working professionals who have not had formal training in law, to be able to study law, particularly the laws that are affecting the business in all its forms and manifestations. The programme is interdisciplinary in nature and draws upon the academic and professional experiences of experts from both within the faculty and outside”.
Elucidating the nuances of the course and the comprehensive curriculum of the Master of Business Laws Programme, Prof. Dr. Michael J. Barnes, Director of the Programme said “In the corporate world, there is no quicker way to destroy the value of a firm or a brand than transgressing the law. By launching this degree programme. JGLS has opened a new window of opportunity for adult learners in India. Business professionals who do not possess an LLB; experienced general managers and business entrepreneurs and practitioner scholars who want to embark on a rigorous and memorable journey of self-improvement are the categories that will be the core focus of programme outreach. The interactions between world-class faculty and our students inside our classrooms are the greatest medium of thought exchange and knowledge creation at our university. This programme requires and expects focus, determination and hard work from the student’s end. In return, during the course of learning, they will enjoy an unparalleled learning experience with an elite cohort of like-minded men and women."
Delivering the inaugural address, Mr. Dhanendra Kumar, former Chairperson of the Competition Commission of India said “I take great pleasure in launching the Master of Business Laws programme. With its academic brilliance and world-class faculty, JGLS will undoubtedly bring out the best in students by imparting the best of education in business laws and I really look forward to meeting some of the students in due course. Your students are bound to play a stellar role in meeting the needs of changing dynamics of India’s businesses. JGLS has a proven reputation is providing world class legal education and this programme will engage with the world of business underscoring the need for imparting the knowledge of law to the business professionals.”
One of the eminent panellists, Mr. Bharat Vasani, Former Chief Legal and Group General Counsel, Tata Group, stated the importance of laws in business. He said, “It has been very rightly pointed out that today, laws are not just made by the Parliament, but also by regulators. The interface between the government and business has become very complex and intense in today's age. This has made it essential for business professionals to understand the law and its implication on various aspects of business. “
Underlining the significance of communication in law, panellist Tejas Patil, General Counsel, GE South Asia, said, “There is a dearth of professionals with good communication skills in large companies and India in general. The legal drafting and communication module of the Master of Business Laws Programme curriculum immediately caught my attention in this context. While practicing law, communication becomes a critical parameter of highlighting a flaw or conveying the facts of the matter. It is essential to highlight that every working professional should have a basic understanding of the law, not necessarily to solve a legal problem, but to identify and flag the issue or to get the right people in the room to look at it. “
Dr. Vinod Kumar Verma, Vice President, Corporate Affairs & Development Cell, Aditya Birla Group, underlined that current business demands require ease of doing business in compliance with law. He also emphasized that knowledge of law transcends beyond legal matters and is relevant for all aspects in which a business functions.
Mr. Manoj Piplani, Managing Director and CEO, Bank of Baroda Financial Solutions Limited, said, “An organisation’s capability to comply with law and regulations can be strengthened in three predominant ways. Firstly, by imparting education and addressing the knowledge gap at the sub-functional level of an organisation. Secondly, building organisational systems and structures which comply with the legal and regulatory requirements of the law. Lastly, defining the work culture of an organisation is of critical importance. While we may think that culture is defined inside the organization, it is actually a function of the broader society and economy in which most of the organizations exist and operate.”
The confluence of like-minded law and policy practitioners from diverse backgrounds at the seminar stressed the urgent need to strike a balance between the legal and business approach of businesses. At times, organisations confront situations when its legal and business functions speak at cross-purposes. However, the panel unanimously agreed that every strong business or commercial structure should be strengthened by a strong legal foundation to ensure that a business runs smoothly.
The discussion also drew references to India’s ranking in the ‘Ease of Doing Business Index’ announced by The World Bank. According to the 2018 report of the index, India has moved up by 31 points and stands at 100th position on the global index. The panellists agreed that there is a long way to go when it comes to improving its business regulations in absolute terms.
The panel discussion was moderated by JGU faculty member, Ms. Shuchi Sinha, Associate Professor, JGLS & Associate Director, Master of Business Laws Programme. While moderating the discussion, Ms Shuchi Sinha drew attention to the fact that organisations often confront situations when its legal and business functions speak at cross-purposes and it is imperative for businesses or commercial structures to have a strong legal foundation. Mr. Avirup Bose, Assistant Professor, JGLS & Assistant Director, Masters of Business Laws Programme introduced the theme of the panel discussion and underlined the need to bridge the gap between legal and regulatory framework in Indian businesses. Professor (Dr) Y S R Murthy, Registrar JGU gave the concluding remarks and Mr. Anand Prakash Mishra, Assistant Professor & Assistant Dean (Admissions & Outreach) proposed the vote of thanks.
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