Science & Tech

Legislative Procedures Using Artificial Intelligence (AI)

Artificial intelligence (AI) has received widespread attention, and many mature democracies are employing technology to improve legislative procedures. In India, artificial intelligence (AI) can be used to help parliamentarians prepare responses for lawmakers, improve research quality, and access information about any Bill, legislative drafting, amendments, interventions, and more. However, before AI can be used in India, the country’s laws must be codified, as they are opaque and complex, with a large translation gap between law-making, law-enforcing, and law-interpreting organisations.

What exactly is artificial intelligence (AI)?

  • AI is a set of technologies that enables machines to function with more intelligence and to mimic human abilities to sense, comprehend, and act.
  • Natural language processing and inference engines can help AI systems analyse and comprehend the data they collect.
  • An AI system can also intervene in the physical environment by utilising technologies such as expert systems and inference engines.
  • These human-like talents are enhanced by the ability to learn from experience and continuously change over time.
  • AI systems are increasingly being used to complement these capabilities in a variety of industries.

Laws Must Be Codified

  • Current laws are confusing and ambiguous: Current Indian laws provide numerous issues, such as their complexity, opacity, and absence of a single source of truth.
  • The India Code portal does not have all of the necessary information: The India Code web does not give comprehensive information on parent Acts, subordinate legislation, and amendment notifications.
  • AI can be used to deliver detailed information: There is a need to make laws machine-consumable through the use of a central law engine that can serve as a single source of truth for all acts, subordinate legislation, gazettes, compliances, and regulations. This engine can be used by AI to deliver information on applicable acts and compliances for entrepreneurs, as well as to recommend qualifying welfare systems for citizens.

Legislators’ Assistance

  • AI’s potential for legislators: AI can assist Indian parliamentarians in managing large constituencies by analysing citizens’ grievances and social media responses, flagging issues that require immediate attention, and assisting in gathering citizen input for public consultation of laws and preparing a manifesto.
  • AI-powered assistance: AI-powered assistants are being tested in many parliaments across the world.

As an example:

  • Speech2Write system in the Netherlands House of Representatives: The Speech2Write system in the Netherlands House of Representatives, which transforms voice to text and translates voice into written reports.
  • AI applications Japan’s AI tool aids in the preparation of responses for its legislature as well as the selection of significant highlights in parliamentary debates.
  • Brazil has created an AI system called Ulysses that promotes transparency and citizen participation.
  • India is likewise innovating and attempting to digitise parliamentary activities through the “One Nation, One Application” and the National e-Vidhan (NeVA) portal.

Simulating Potential Effects of Laws

  • Modeling datasets: AI can simulate the potential consequences of legislation by modelling datasets such as the Census, statistics on household consumption, taxes, beneficiaries of various schemes, and public infrastructure.
  • In this situation, AI can reveal probable policy effects and flag obsolete laws that need to be amended.
  • As an example: During the COVID-19 pandemic, the ‘Epidemic Diseases Act of 1897’ failed to handle the problem when the virus overtook the country. Several articles of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) are contentious and redundant, such as Article 309 of the IPC, which remains a criminal offence. Many elements of criminal legislation enacted more than a century ago are no longer relevant.

@the end

The COVID-19 epidemic has given a strong push to the Digital India project, and service digitization must be maintained in the fields of legislation, policymaking, and legislative operations by leveraging the potential of AI. However, because AI is a means to a goal rather than an end in itself, its usage must be fostered in an open, transparent, and citizen-friendly manner. As a result, before AI can be effectively employed to assist lawmakers in their legislative duties, it must first address the existing difficulties confronting India’s laws.

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