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Human Rights Due Diligence as a Regulator to Business and Human Rights’ Challenges in India

Paper Details 

Paper Code: AIJACLAV3RP072023

Category: Research Paper

Date of Submission for First Review: March 9, 2023

Date of Publication: December 29, 2023

Citation:  Indra Nath Day, “Human Rights Due Diligence as a Regulator to Business and Human Rights’ Challenges in India", 3, AIJACLA, 56, 56-64 (2023), <https://www.aequivic.in/post/human-rights-due-diligence-as-a-regulator-to-busi-ness-and-human-rights-challenges-in-india>

Author Details: Indra Nath Day, Assistant Professor (Law), Amity University, Kolkata





Abstract

Human Rights Due Diligence has become an important and necessary topic of discussion in national and international forums to ensure corporate accountability for realizing human rights. It is a process by which businesses are expected to access actual and potential human rights impact, integrate and act upon the findings, track the responses and to communicate as to how those impacts are addressed. In changing dimensions of world business, in ages of neo-liberal economy, the culture of social responsibility needs to go deeper in the governance of businesses. However, there is very limited research to understand how effective human rights due diligence is. It has now at the crossroads as it is about to become part of legislation, which will firmly test it’s potential to contribute substantially to the prevention of corporate human rights abuses. Being the largest democracy in the world, protection of human rights has been an intrinsic part of Indian tradition. India is one of the fastest growing economies of the world. Huge capital is on investment from within and outside the country. Businesses in India have traditionally been responsible socially and some of them have demonstrated their sincere efforts in a laudable manner. In the present economic and social milieu of India it is essential to have mandatory HRDD in the form of ‘hard law’. HRDD mechanism will function with specific objective of identifying actual or potential human rights impacts, taking effective measures to address these impacts and tracking or monitoring the effectiveness of these actions. This research paper has briefly captured a considerable practice of HRDD in different countries of the world and studied on how essential for India to implement it.

Keywords

Corporate Accountability; Due Diligence; Human Rights; Mechanisms; United Nations


Introduction

Every individual on the Earth is entitled to cherish the rights of being human. States have a social and legal obligation to protect its subjects from human rights abuses. States should also ensure that businesses respect human rights. Human Rights Due Diligence is emerging as a global norm for ensuring responsible corporate behaviour.

In an era where corporations have no national boundaries, the idea of Human Rights Due Diligence (HRDD) has been embraced as offering the international community a step forward that have the potential to conceptualise and operationalize responsible business conduct in a globalised economy. Today Human Rights Due Diligence is recognised globally as an effective mechanism through which states can promote and secure maximum corporate responsibility and accountability for human rights violations those crops up from their business activities and relationships. Risks management arising from transnational corporate activities in areas of anti-corruption and private security, the approach has now become institutionalised in a wide range of forms, even in levels of government.[1] ‘Irresistible rise’ of Human Rights Due Diligence mechanism is a growing academic literature on the subject. [2]

Scholars working in the field of human rights has recognised the requirement of due diligence as an instrument to ensure human rights and argued that the concept need to be institutionalised  to secure greater accountability of corporate actors to prevent human rights abuses.[3] Steps have been initiated to document and evaluate business practices in various international and national platforms although empirical studies are still limited.

This article seeks to contribute an analysis and understanding of national and international regulations in shaping corporate human rights due diligence mechanism and its practices. In this article the researcher wants to show how the concept of HRDD is emerging as a dominant factor in India through which business responsibility for human rights impact is understood and functionalised. Initially many national and international legislative and quasi legislative authorities has adopted the idea of HRDD in the form of ‘soft law’ rather than ‘hard law’ but gradually the trend is shifting towards having ‘hard law’. However, institutionalising the concept will eventually transform it into significant improvement in corporate respect for human rights, but there is also a risk that these regulatory interventions might result in achieving only ‘cosmetic compliance’[4] which is not the objective of HRDD. In brief the objective of HRDD is to reduce or eliminate adverse human rights impact. Attention should be given to influence the quality of HRDD rather than quantity. Legislatures need to consider commentaries and discourses of international organisations and United Nations treaty bodies to give shape to national HRDD policies. Legislative authorities should take into consideration not only national perspectives but also mandates of international organisations and UN treaty making bodies which are constantly apprising about the need of HRDD. Moreover, it has become very important for national and international lawmakers to not only discuss ways as to how to encourage and endorse human rights due diligence but also to discuss as to how to design HRDD mechanism that can actually bring changes which it intends to.


Human Rights in India

Human rights are generally rights that include the values common to all individuals. The idea of human rights in India is embedded in the social and cultural ethos since Vedic times. Human rights were styled as ‘manava dharma’ in ancient India.  It is said in Rig Veda that ‘there is one race of human beings’[5] and the sanctity of different traditions; religions are different paths to the ultimate Truth. Different thoughts are practiced and respected. An ancient text says ‘I seek no Kingdom, nor heaven nor rebirth, but I wish that all living beings be spared of the manifold pains and distresses.’[6] Buddhist doctrine of nonviolence in deed and thought is a humanitarian doctrine per se. It was the foremost duty of the king to protect the people and to rule without fear and favour thereby establish rule of law. In Kautilya’s book Arthasastra it is stated that in the happiness of the subject lies the happiness of the king, in their welfare lays his welfare, the good of the king does not consist in what is pleasing to him, but what is pleasing to the subject constitutes his good. These great orthodoxies of India brought into the fold of independence movement, people from all walks of life, and of all persuasions from towns, cities and villages. The independence movement represented a struggle to secure fundamental human rights for the people of India.

India was a signatory to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights 1948. The Constitution of India is influenced by the principles of the declaration. The Constitution of India envisages a noble democracy, which ensures freedom and dignity of the individuals.[7] Part III of the Constitution of India enumerates fundamental rights[8] and Part IV enumerates Directive Principles of State Policy. The use of the word ‘fundamental rights’ mean these rights are inherent in all human beings and are basic and essential for the individuals.[9] The framers of the Constitution were conscious of the fact that mere political democracy i.e. right to vote once in five years or so will be futile unless it is accompanied by social and economic democracy. Political equality is meaningless unless people were made equal on social and economic planes.

Over the years human rights jurisprudence in India has reached to a stage where one can easily say that the Constitution of India recognises fundamental right to human dignity. Article 21 of the Constitution ensures fundamental right to human dignity. The Supreme Court of India has taken a paradigm shift from a narrow and contrite meaning to widest possible interpretation of Article 21 in Maneka Gandhi v. Union of India.[10] Maneka Gandhi decision gave a new direction to human rights jurisprudence. It is laid down that not merely should there be procedure established by law, but the procedure must be reasonable, fair and just otherwise the law will violate Article 21.[11] India made a commitment at the United Nations Human Rights Council in 2014 to establish an open-ended inter-governmental working group to negotiate a legally binding international treaty to impose human rights obligations on business enterprises. As per the ‘Making Growth Inclusive -2018: Analysing Policies, Disclosures and Mechanisms of Top 100 Companies’[12] higher disclosure is only in areas that are legally binding, defeating the spirit of voluntary disclosure. The report reflects a wide gap between the interests of business and shareholders and those of communities and of workers when seen alongside the profits of corporate India. Since the passing of the Companies Act, 2013 the legislative mandate of 2% spend on Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) is actually narrowing down the wider accountability of India Inc. In India the reality is that while businesses have been engaging across multiple domains of community but they have negligible formal guidance on what to do, and how to do it.[13]

There are number of cases which stand as an iota of evidence of gross failures on the part of corporations to respect human rights at work places and across supply chains. In 2017 the explosion at the National Thermal Power Corporation (NTPC) in Unchahar plant at Rae Bareli, 43 lives lost which media report suggested because of inadequate safety measures[14]. In Thoothukudi, Tamil Nadu the Anti-Sterlite protests seeking the closure of Sterlite Copper’s smelter plant as it was heavily polluting, turned violent resulted into thirteen casualties[15]. In 2014 tribals in Kalahandi and Rayagada of Odisha protested against mining in Niyamgiri as they were polluting the environment and affecting livelihoods of the tribals[16]. In Rampal, the Coal Power Plant which was a diplomatic project of India and Bangladesh faced protest from both sides of the border as it was causing irreparable damage of livelihoods to about two million inhabitants[17]. Even UNESCO was invited to step in and prevent destruction of World’s largest mangrove forest. People who are working, amongst them just 27% are women which is significantly below the average for Asia-Pacific[18]. 82% of male workers and 92 % of female workers in India earn less than Rs.10,000 in a month[19]. There are disparities in wages between upper caste and lower caste labours.[20] Efforts to push economic growth by easing the path of business lead to compromise with labour regulations[21]whereby labour rights are jeopardised. There are instances which show complex pictures of State aggression in defence of corporate interests.

Business has immense potentiality to shape the lives and destinies of people in India. However, in the midst of their potentiality, there are doubts about the sincerity of their attention to protect the interest of the people. A large section of business houses in India are not that much sincere to rise to their responsibilities. Businesses in India have a lot to do in order to ensure respect of basic rights of human being. If businesses intend to contribute constructively to national development, they need to abide by democratic values.  There is a clear need for effective mechanism of public accountability. Authorities empowered with legislative power should take into consideration not only national perspectives but also mandates of international organisations and UN treaty making bodies which are constantly apprising about the need of HRDD.


Human Rights Due Diligence - Emergence of the Concept

The idea of Human Rights Due Diligence was introduced for the first time into global governance through the United Nation’s resolution of ‘Protect, Respect and Remedy: A Framework for Business and Human Rights[22]and the ‘UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights’[23]These instruments were framed and drafted by John Ruggie during his tenure as UN Special Representative of the Secretary-General on Human Rights and Transnational Corporations and Other Business Enterprises. These resolutions were introduced and endorsed by the Human Rights Council in 2018 and 2011 respectively[24]. The framework consist of three  pillars – firstly, the State’s duty to protect against human rights abuses by third parties, secondly, corporate responsibility to respect human rights and thirdly, to ensure greater access to effective remedy by the victims. In simple words States must protect, corporates must respect and those who are harmed must have redress. To elaborate, first pillar is to ensure that under international law it is duty of States to protect all persons against abuses of human rights by third parties, including business enterprises by making appropriate policies, regulations and adjudications. Second pillar is to ensure that businesses have the  responsibility to respect human rights which means corporate should act with due diligence to avoid violations of human rights of others who are directly or indirectly associated. Third pillar is to ensure maximum access to effective and meaningful remedy by the victims of human rights, both judicial and non-judicial. UN Guiding Principles (UNGP) is an elaborate explanation of implementation of ‘Protect, Respect, Remedy’ framework. It need to be mentioned that neither ‘Protect, Respect, Remedy’ framework nor the UNGP were intended to create new international law obligations but to act as an ‘authoritative focal point’ as to how human rights compliance mechanism should be in the States and in business enterprises.[25]

As per UNGPs, HRDD is the process by which a business enterprise assesses areas of actual and potential human rights risks, acts to prevent and mitigate these risks, tracks the effectiveness of responses and communicates externally on these efforts.[26] It should cover adverse human rights impacts that may be caused or contributed by business enterprises to through its own activities or which may be directly linked to its functions, products or services by its business transactions.[27] It is to be noted that the concept of HRDD is different from due diligence undertaken by businesses in other commercial contexts.[28] Such distinguishing features emphasizes business enterprises the need for a company to focus on risks to right- holders rather than to the companies itself. There is a need to engage effectively with right-holders and other stakeholders during the process. According to John Ruggie and John Sherman, the idea of HRDD is not related to due diligence doctrine that is most familiar to international human rights lawyers, advocating standards of conduct defining States’ obligations to prevent and respond to abuses of human rights by non-state entities within its jurisdiction.[29]In fact, UNGPs want to ensure responsibility of business enterprises to respect human rights as a social obligation rather than a legal obligation.[30] The first pillar specifically says that companies domiciled in its territory to respect human rights and thereby provide guidance as to how to do it. States need to encourage them to engage in HRDD.[31]Further States should take ‘additional steps’ to protect against human rights abuses by business enterprises.


Human Rights Due Diligence in International Law

United Nations Guiding Principles were adopted in the UN’s platform in 2011. Since adoption of the UNGP, there has been extensive and rapid institutionalisation of the HRDD concept in international and national laws. In fact it will not be an exaggeration to say that the concept was finding its way into international and national regulatory instruments even prior to the adoption of the UNGPs.[32] At the national level proliferation of HRDD related regulations is strengthening the concept gradually. These developments are certainly not a parameter to suggest that a customary international law regulation that States want business enterprises within their territory to engage in HRDD exists. However, the rapid and broad adoption of the practice does suggest that the scope of State obligation to require HRDD continues to evolve and that such development could be a future possibility.

Since the adoption of HRDD in the Human Rights Council in 2011, the concept of HRDD has been integrated into major international public ‘soft law’ business and instruments of human rights.[33]The category of soft law includes UN Global Compact,[34] ILO’s Protocol of 2014 to the Forced Labour Convention, 1930,[35] Tripartite Declaration of Principles concerning Multinational Enterprises and Social Policy of ILO,[36] Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises (commonly known as OECD guidelines).[37]The OECD has also developed a general due diligence guidance document with an intention to provide practical assistance to business enterprises for implementation of these guidelines.[38] Not only has it ended here, HRDD also found its trajectory into UN treaty body commentaries. In 2013 the committee on the Rights of the Child expressed the view that States should require businesses to undertake child rights due diligence[39]. It further says that States should encourage business enterprises to be transparent regarding efforts to address child rights impact and where reporting is mandatory, States should emphasise on verification and enforcement mechanisms to ensure compliance. International forum is working on transforming ‘soft law’ to ‘hard law’ which is manifested on ‘zero draft’ of the Legally Binding Instrument to Regulate, in International Human Rights Law, the Activities of Transnational Corporations and Other Business Enterprises.[40]Article 9(1) of the draft specifically mentions that States are to ‘ensure in their domestic legislation that all persons with business activities of transnational character within such States Parties’ territory or otherwise under their jurisdiction or control shall undertake due diligence obligations throughout such business activities.’[41]It also imposes obligations on States to implement appropriate legal liability mechanism to hold businesses accountable for violations of human rights[42]


Human Rights Due Diligence in Different Countries

In accordance to the procedure of transforming principles of international law in the domestic legal regime, States are also working to establish the concept of due diligence mechanism to promote greater business responsibility to prevent adverse human rights impacts. HRDD offers a clear and pragmatic way for national regulators who have been ‘as perplexed in the past by business and human rights challenges as business itself.’[43] There are differences in purpose, scope and legal status in various national initiatives across the globe. Some countries are practising ‘soft law’ in nature, encouraging and incentivising, on the contrary some States are ‘hardening’ HRDD into legal obligations. There is an assumption that HRDD will become the general trend across the globe gradually. HRDD in national level can be broadly grouped into two categories.

First, which is commonly found in Anglo-Saxon liberal economies such as United Kingdom, United States and Australia where businesses are required to report specific non-financial risks in their business activities and supply chains. This idea is based on assumptions that transparency will empower stakeholders to judge corporations for their human rights performance.[44]

Second, comparatively a recent trend is found in mainland Europe particularly in France[45], Switzerland[46], Netherlands[47] and Germany where initiatives are broader in their scope in respect to covering of rights and impose civil liability on corporations that fail to act with due diligence. Vigilance mechanism is designed in such a way that it effectively identifies risks and prevents serious violations of human rights and fundamental freedoms that are ensured by the Constitutions of the land.


Scope of Human Rights Due Diligence in India

India has ratified a number of international human rights instruments that expressly or impliedly imposes obligations on State authority to ensure that business enterprises respect human rights.  The UN Guiding Principles is one such instrument among others which reiterate international obligations. The concept of business and human rights framework is inconsistent with the mandate flowing from Article 51 (c) of the Constitution of India which says that the ‘State shall endeavour to foster respect for international law.’ The concept of business and human rights framework can only function if a well-designed mechanism is devised for its implementation. Human Rights Due Diligence (HRDD) is one such mechanism for effective implementation of business and human rights framework. HRDD is firmly entrenched in global governance. Today it is embraced by national regulators and forming the basis of legally-binding obligations on business enterprises.

In 2009, Ministry of Corporate Affairs, Government of India issued the ‘Voluntary Guidelines on Corporate Social Responsibility’ as an instrument towards ensuring business responsibility.[48] In June 2011, the UNHRC adopted the United Nations Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights (UNGPs)[49] which India endorsed. In July 2011, Ministry of Corporate Affairs issued the ‘National Voluntary Guidelines on Social, Environment and Economic Responsibilities of Business, 2011’ (NVGs).[50] It was framed and developed through extensive consultations with business, academia, civil society organisations and governments. NVGs aims at providing guidance to businesses as to what constitutes responsible business conduct. In order to bring parity to the NVGs with the emerging global trends, specifically Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the United Nations Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights (UNGPs), the process of revising and re-writing NVGs started in 2008. After numerous rounds of consultation with stakeholders it was revised and released as the National Guidelines on Responsible Business Conduct (NGRBC) in 2019. It has been framed in such a way that businesses will be encouraged to embrace principle of responsible conduct going beyond the requirements of regulatory compliance[51]. Emanated from NVGs, the Securities Exchange Board of India (SEBI) in 2012 directed top 100 listed companies by market capitalisation to file Business Responsibility Reports (BRR) through the Listing Agreement. These disclosures were intended to enable businesses to engage more meaningfully with stakeholders and encourage them to move beyond regulatory financial compliance and disclose reports on their social and environmental impacts. From 2015-16 requirements for filling BRRs was extended to top 500 listed companies by market capitalisation. From the financial year 2019-20 SEBI further extended BRR requirement to top 1000 listed companies by market capitalisation. For better reflection of the intent and scope[52] of reporting requirement the Business Responsibility Reporting (BRR) is now being called the Business Responsibility and Sustainability Report (BRSR). To further this agenda, Ministry of Corporate Affairs is also in the process of formulating the National Action Plan (NAP) on Business and Human Rights. All legislations in India need to make keeping in mind the warning given immediately after the adoption of the UNGPs in 2011 that if HRDD is interpreted as an obligation-of-process compared to one of outcome, then it might degenerate into a ‘tick-box’ exercise designed for public relations purposes.[53]


Conclusion

The emergence and development of the idea of HRDD in business and human rights in last ten years has led to some subtle shifts in approaches from government, business, civil society, trade unions and workers in how they identify and communicate risk and impact around human rights. India is a country where rapid development is taking place. Developments are a welcome step but the dominant business responsibility discourse is still a grey area in India. Each corporation has to make an internal assessment as to why human rights matter to them.  Human rights due diligence mechanism need to have more uniform responses. HRDD includes four key steps – Assessing actual and potential human rights impacts, integrating and acting on the findings, tracking responses and communicating about how impacts are addressed.[54] Studies reveal that laws focused on disclosure or reporting of risks have limited success in improving business practices or ensuring corporate accountability. HRDD has to be mandatory by State authorities in a way which will provide clarity around its scope and includes an appropriate enforcement framework to engender compliance. Institutionalising HRDD will not prevent abuse of human rights per se. HRDD when implemented must focus on outcomes and not just process.



[1] See generally - Ingrid Landau, ‘Human Rights Due Diligence and the Risk of Cosmetic Compliance’. 20 Melbourne Journal of Australia. (2019). Available at https://law.unimelb.edu.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/000 5/3144344/Landau.pdf.Last visited 23.05.21 at 9.15 PM.

[2] Holley Cullen, ‘The Irresistible Rise of Human Rights Due Diligence: Conflict Minerals and Beyond’. 48(4) George Washington International Law Review, 743 (2016). Available at https://www.researchgate.net/publication/3315 61252  last visited 11.08.21 at 11.04 AM.

[3] See Generally – Surya Deva, ‘Treating Human Rights Lightly: A Critique of the Consensus Rhetoric and the Language Employed by the Guiding Principles’  in Surya Deva et al, 78 Human Rights Obligations of Business: Beyond the Corporate Responsibility to Respect? (Cambridge University Press, 2013). 

[4] Kimberly D Krawiec, ‘Cosmetic Compliance and the Failure of Negotiated Governance’, 81(2) Washington University Law Quarterly, 487 (2013). Available at https://scholarship.law.duke.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=2674 &context=faculty_scholarship visited on 16.08.21.

[5] S.D.Sharma, Speech by the President of India on Human Rights Education organised by the National Human Rights Commission of India, New Delhi on 16.02.1996.

[6] V.S. Mani, Human Rights in India: An Overview (1997). Unpublished manuscript. 

[7] See generally, H.M. Seervai, Constitutional Law of India. 1086 (Universal Law Publishing Co. 1993).

[8] Constitution of India Article 12 to 35 deals with Fundamental Rights and Article 36 to 51 deals Directive Principles of State Policy.

[9] See generally, Manoj Kumar Sinha, ‘Business and Human Rights : An Indian Perspective’, Business and Human Rights, 55 (Sage Publications India Pvt. Ltd. 2013).

[10] AIR 1978 SC 597

[11] Supra note 9, 57.

[12] Working paper on ‘Corporate Responsibility Watch, 2018’. Available at www.oxfamindia.org/sites/default/fi les/Finding_Making%20Growth%20Inclusive%202018 %20INSIDE_20%20Feb%2018_printable%20file %20_%202.pdf  visited on 16.08.21 at 9.24 PM.

[13] See generally, Working paper on ‘Status of Corporate Responsibility in India, 2018’ Available at https://ww w.traffickingmatters.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/1 0/Status_of_CR_Report_2019-2.pdf  visited on 17.08.21 at 12.21 AM.

[14]  Reported in The Hindu on 01.11.2017.

[15]  Sruthi Radhakrishnan, ‘The Hindu explains: Sterlite protests’ published in The Hindu on 23.05.2018.

[16]  Romy Kraemer et al ‘Conflict and Astroturfing in Niyamgiri: The importance of National Advocacy Networks in Anti-Corporate Social Movements’ Available at  file:///C:/Users/Indra/Downloads/Pageproofsfinal.pdf visited on 03.09.21 at 9.32.

[17] Meenakshi Ganguly, ‘Bangladesh coal plants threatened World’s largest mangrove forest’ Available on https://w ww.hrw.org/news/2020/06/18/bangladesh-coal-plants -threaten-worlds-largest-mangrove-forest.Visited 03.09.21 at 9.57 PM.

[18]  The Power of parity: Advancing women’s equality in Asia Pacific report by McKinsey Global Institute (MGI) available at http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/articles how/64655536.cms?utm_source=contentofinterest&ut m_medium=text&utm_campaign=cppst Visited 23.04.18.

[20]  Ammu J. Christopher, ‘Labour reforms: The cost of optimising Indian economy’ Published in The Week on 06.08.2018.

[21]  Ibid. 

[22] John Ruggie, Protect, Respect and Remedy: A Framework for Business and Human Rights, 8th session, Agenda item 3, UN Doc A/HRC/8/5 (7 April 2008) 17–19 [56]–[64] (‘Framework’). 

[23] John Ruggie, Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights: Implementing the United Nations ‘Protect, Respect and Remedy’ Framework, 17th session, Agenda item 3, UN Doc A/HRC/17/31 (21 March 2011).

[24] Human Rights Council, Mandate of the Special Representative of the Secretary-General on the Issue of Human Rights and Transnational Corporations and Other Business Enterprises, HRC Res 8/7, 8th session, 28th mtg, UN Doc A/HRC/RES/8/7 (18 June 2008); Human Rights Council, Human Rights and Transnational Corporations and Other Business Enterprises, HRC Res 17/4, 17th session, Agenda item 3, UN Doc A/HRC/RES/17/4 (6 July 2011). 

[25] UN Doc A/HRC/8/5 (n 8) 4 [5]. 

[26] UNGPs, UN Doc A/HRC/17/31 (n 9) 13 (Guiding Principle 11-21). 

[27] Ibid (Guiding Principle 17 (a))

[28] John Ruggie, Just Business: Multinational Corporations and Human Rights 99–100, (WW Norton & Co. 2013).

[29] Under this doctrine, a failure by the state to prevent and punish a violation of a human right by a non-state entity may trigger a state’s legal responsibility. John Ruggie and John F Sherman, III, ‘The Concept of “Due Diligence in the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights: A Reply to Jonathan Bonnitcha and Robert Mc Corquodale’ 28(3) European Journal of International Law 921, (2017).

[30] UNGPs, UN Doc A/HRC/17/31 (n 9) 13 (Commentary on Guiding Principle 11).

[31] UNGPs, UN Doc A/HRC/17/31 (n 9) 7–8 (Guiding Principles 2 and 3). 

[32] Mark B Taylor, ‘The Ruggie Framework: Polycentric Regulation and the Implications for Corporate Social Responsibility’ 5(1) Nordic Journal of Applied Ethics (2011). Available at   www.researchgate.net/publication/228497 878_The_Ruggie_Framework_Polycentric_regulation_an d_the_implications_for_corporate_social_responsibility. Visited on 05.09.21 at 10.15 PM.

[33] Justine Nolan, ‘The Corporate Responsibility to Respect Human Rights: Soft Law or Not Law?’ in Surya Deva et al, Human Rights Obligations of Business: Beyond the Corporate Responsibility to Respect? 138 (Cambridge University Press, 2013).

[35] Protocol adopted at the International Labour Conference, 103rd Session, 11June 2014. Available at https://www.ilo.org/dyn/normlex/en/f?p=NORMLEXP UB:12100:0::NO::P12100_ILO_CODE:P029 visited on 06.09.21 at 8.25 PM.

[36] International Labour Organisation, 5th Ed, 2017. Available at https://www.ilo.org/wcmsp5/groups/public/---edemp/---empent/--multi/documents/publication/wcm s_094386.pdf  visited on 06.09.21 at 8.30 PM.

[37] Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises (OECD Publishing, 2011) 31, 34 (‘OECD Guidelines’). Available at https://www.oecd.org/corporate/mne/48004323.pdf visited on 06.09.21 at 8.34 PM.

[38] OECD Due Diligence Guidance for Responsible Business Conduct (OECD Publishing, 2018) Available at   http://m neguidelines.oecd.org/OECD-Due-Diligence-Gui dance-for-Responsible-Business-Conduct.pdf visited on 06.09.2 1 at 8.44 PM.

[39] Committee on the Rights of the Child, General Comment No 16 (2013) on State Obligations regarding the Impact of the Business Sector on Children’s Rights, 62nd Session, UN Doc CRC/C/GC/16 (17.04.2013) [62]. Available at https://www2.ohchr.org/english/bodies/crc/docs/CRC. C.GC.16.pdf visited on 06.09.21 at 8.59 PM.

[40] Human Rights Council, Report on the Fourth Session of the Open-Ended Intergovernmental Working Group on Transnational Corporations and Other Business Enterprises with Respect to Human Rights’, 40th Session, Agenda Item 3, UN Doc A/HRC/40/48 (2 January 2019).  Available at https://www.ohchr.org/EN/HRBodies/HRC /RegularSessions/Session40/Pages/ListReports.aspx vis ited on 06.09.21 at 9.46 PM.

[41] Ibid.

[42] Ibid Article 9(3). 

[43] Interview with John Ruggie (Michael Connor, Business Ethics: The Magazine of Corporate Responsibility, 30.10.2011) Available at https://business-ethics.com/20 11/10/30/8127-un-principles-on-business-and-human-rights-interview-with-john-ruggie visited on 09.09.21 at 4.16 PM.

[44] Marcia Narine, ‘Disclosing Disclosure’s Defects: Addressing Corporate Irresponsibility for Human Rights Impacts’ 47(1) Columbia Human Rights Law Review, 94. (2015). Available at https://repository.law.miami.edu/c gi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1761&context=fac_articles vi sited 09.09.21 at 5.18 PM.

[45] French Devoir de Vigilance law.

[46] Swiss Responsible Business Initiative.

[47] Dutch Child Labour Due Diligence law. 

[49] The Human Rights Council endorsed the Guiding Principles in its resolution 17/4 of 16 June 2011. (A/HRC/17/31). Available at https://www.ohchr.org /documents/publications/guidingprinciplesbusinesshr_ en.pdf  visited on 11.09.21.

[51] Report of the Committee on Business Responsibility Reporting, prepared by the Ministry of Corporate Affairs, Government of India. Available at https://www.mca. gov.in/Ministry/pdf/BRR_11082020.pdf  visited on 27.05.21 at 11.30 AM.

[52] Ibid. P 6.

[53] Peter Muchlinski, Multinational Enterprises and the Law, Oxford University Press, (2nd Edition, 2007).

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