Jagteshwar Singh Sohi

Dissertation Title

Environmental justice struggles in India: extractive industries, marginalized communities, and the law

Dissertation Topic

Informed by the notion of ‘environmentalism of the poor,’ my project looks at two environmental justice movements of marginalized population groups against extractive industries in India. I study these by enquiring - What are the socio-political, economic, and legal histories of these movements? Who are the actors leading these resistances: what roles do they play, and what vocabularies, resources, and tactics do they employ? What forms of legal and bureaucratic responses does the state employ and what role does violence and repression play therein? In studying the interactions of marginalized population groups with the law in a postcolonial state, I intend to comment upon the constitutionally guaranteed idea of justice - Do some groups experience it in fleeting, tenuous, and precarious forms, and what does this tell us about the nature and constitution of a state-corporate complex in India.


2018: Master of Laws - Osgoode Hall Law School

2013: Master of Laws - National Academy for Legal Studies and Research, India

2009: Bachelor of Law - Army Institute of Law, India

Teaching Experience

Teaching Assistant, Ethical Lawyering in a Global Community - Osgoode Hall Law School, York University (2020-2022).

Visiting Professor, Environmental Justice: stories and struggles - Buchmann Faculty of Law, Tel Aviv University, Israel (2020).

Assistant Professor of Law, Public International Law (2013, 2014, 2016, 2019, 2020); Deliberative Democracy (2013, 2016); Constitutional Law (2014); Mooting Clinic (2014, 2015, 2016); Environmental Law (2015, 2016, 2017, 2020); Commons, State and the Forest laws of India (2017); Law and Poverty (2019, 2020); Environmental Justice: stories and struggles (2019, 2020) - National Academy for Legal Studies and Research, India (2013-2021).

Teaching Assistant, Constitutional Law - National Academy for Legal Studies and Research, India (2012).

Professional Experience

Instructor - Department of Higher Education, Ministry of Human Resource and Development (2019-2021).

Research Person - OHCHR Secretariat of the CRPD, working on Convention of Rights of People with Disability jurisprudence relating to Sustainable Development Goals, specifically Goals 6 Availability of Water & Sanitation and 7 Access to affordable, reliable, sustainable, and modern Energy (2017).

Co-investigator - Department of Justice, Ministry of Law and Justice, for an Evidence-based study on state of legal education in National Law Universities in India (2016-2017).

  • Joseph-Armand Bombardier CGS Doctoral Scholarship (2021-24)
  • Ontario Graduate Scholarship (2021) - declined
  • Harley D. Hallett Scholarship (2020-22)
  • York Graduate Fellowship (2020-24 and 2017-18)
  • ‘India has a constitution but Centre’s move on Kashmir poses questions about constitutionalism’ (with Faizan Mustafa), The Indian Express (14 Aug. 2019). Available at https://indianexpress.com/article/opinion/columns/jammu-and-kashmir-article-370-india-constitution-5902587/.
  • ‘Her own space to pray’ (with Faizan Mustafa), The Indian Express (17 July 2019). Available at https://indianexpress.com/article/opinion/columns/her-own-space-to-pray-muslim-women-mosque-entry-prayer-5832900/.
  • 'Suggestions for Reforms at the National Law Universities set up through State Legislations’ (with Faizan Mustafa, Sidharth Chauhan, Sudhanshu Kumar and Vaibhav Ganjiwale), available at https://doj.gov.in/sites/default/files/Final%20Report%20%20NALSAR%20.pdf (February 2018).
  • ‘Freedom of Religion in India: Current Issues and Judicial Response’ (with Faizan Mustafa), 2017:4 BYU L. Rev. 915 (2018) - peer reviewed.
  • ‘Justice Verma Committee: An Illustration of Deliberative Democracy in India’ (with Rajinder Kaur & Rashmi Aggarwal), 5:1 International Journal of Human Rights and Constitutional Studies 5 (2017) - peer reviewed.
  • ‘Yet another ban: Prisons out of bounds’ (with Faizan Mustafa), The Tribune (3 Nov. 2015). Available at https://www.tribuneindia.com/news/comment/yet-another-ban-prisons-out-of-bounds/154144.html.
  • ‘Time to reform prisons’ (with Faizan Mustafa), Deccan Herald (27 Sept. 2015). Available at https://www.deccanherald.com/content/503054/time-reform-prisons.html.
  • ‘Working of Power in Indian Society with Special Reference to Women’ (with Rajinder Kaur & Rashmi Aggarwal), Annual International Conference on Interdisciplinary Legal Studies: FLE Learning, AICILS 2015 (Oxford), 2-4 March 2015, Oxford, United Kingdom. Published in conference proceedings with ISBN: 978-0-9930368-3-5 (Online).
  • ‘Precautionary Principle – A Defined Concept’ (with Rajinder Kaur), 4:2 RGNUL Law Review 110 (June-December 2013) - peer reviewed.
  • Delivered a three-part seminar series titled ‘Regulating the Environment: people, state, and the law’ at Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Hyderabad (24-26 October 2020).
  • Delivered a lecture titled ‘The power of public discourse in judicial decision-making’ at Government Mohindra College, Patiala (25 June 2020).
  • Moderated a panel on ‘Environment and the Indian Constitution’ at NALSAR University of Law, Hyderabad organized as part of the NALSAR Lecture Series on Constitutionalism (4 March 2020).
  • Presented a paper at the 16th Asian Law Institute Conference on ‘The Rule of Law and the Role of Law in Asia’ at the National University of Singapore, Singapore (June 2019).
  • Moderated a panel on ‘Sustainability and CSR – in consonance or dissonance?’ at the Conference on ‘Creating Conversations: From CSR Practice to Precept’ organized jointly by Center for Corporate and Tax Law, NALSAR University of Law, India and The Institute for Law and Philanthropy, Tel Aviv University Law School, Israel (February 2019).
  • Presented a paper at the 22nd Interdisciplinary Legal Studies Graduate Conference on ‘Law and Contemporary Problems’ at University of British Columbia (May 2018).
  • Presented a paper at the 11th Annual Graduate Law Conference on ‘Hard Cases: the limits of the law’ at McGill University (May 2018).
  • Presented a paper at the Osgoode Graduate Student Conference on ‘Legal Pluralism: intersections, interactions, and embeddedness in law’ at Osgoode Hall Law School (February 2018).
  • Participated in the Anthropocene Campus Philadelphia on ‘Writing Global Histories in the Anthropocene’ and ‘Voice and Representation in the Anthropocene’ at Drexel University, Philadelphia (October 2017).
  • Delivered a lecture titled ‘The Forest Rights Act: functional hurdles and informal impediments’ at University Institute of Legal Studies, Panjab University, Chandigarh (30 April 2017).
  • Delivered a lecture titled ‘The Forest Laws case – Godavarman, and its legacy in environmental jurisprudence’ at Government Mohindra College, Patiala (3 August 2016).
  • Participated in the Professional Development Training National Workshop on ‘Environmental Law and Practice’ at Vaikom (1-3 July 2016).
  • Participated in the Indo-Irish Policy Encounter co-organized by Centre of Disability Studies, NALSAR University of Law, Centre of Disability Law & Policy, National University of Ireland, Galway, and the Open Society Foundation (December 2015).
  • Gave a lecture on ‘Third World Approaches to International Law’ at NALSAR University of Law (19 January 2014).
  • Gave a lecture to the Assistant Commandant level officers of the Central Industrial Security Force on ‘Security and Human Rights’ at the National Industrial Security Academy, Hyderabad (23 October 2014).
  • Conducted a session on ‘Extradition’ for Senior Police Officers as part of a five-day Vertical Interaction Training Program jointly organized by the Bureau of Police Research and Development (BPRD), Ministry of Home Affairs, Government of India and NALSAR University of Law (22-26 October 2013).