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Rights based climate litigation in the Indian courts: potential, prospects & potential problems

Climate litigation is in its infancy in India. Climate-related claims have yet to be litigated in the courts. There are a few cases in which climate change has been referred to but only in passing. This report argues that the situation may well be set to change. Climate change and its impacts are rapidly capturing the popular imagination in India. There is a growing recognition of the importance and urgency of the issue and multiple climate policies and initiatives have been launched in response. Moreover, India has an engaged and proactive civil society, an activist judiciary, a progressive body of enviro-legal jurisprudence and an unparalleled culture of public interest litigation. This suggests not just that there are potential litigants waiting in the wings, but also that climate-related claims are likely to be favourably entertained by the judiciary.