Saga of River to the Courtroom: Natural Entities like Rivers and Lakes Should be Considered as Legal Person

  • Meera Shahana H
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  • Meera Shahana H

    LLM student in India

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Designating rights for nature is a potentially powerful way to open up the dialogue on nature conservation around the world and provide enforcement power for an ecocentric approach. The notion of a juristic person underlines the Judges’ argument for rights for river Goddesses and the argument that river Goddesses also constitute nature. Other legal and legislative initiatives in which rights of nature have been articulated around the world give some basis for this, as they have joined cultural or indigenous ideas of personhood with the preservation and conservation of nature. Conferring rivers a legal personhood is a great venture where this is accomplished by various countries. This paper looks at a fusion of legal traditions, religious worldviews, and practices of environmental protection and advocacy in the context of India. Apart from this, analysis of Bangladesh and New Zeland part was also put forwarded. It takes two specific legal cases in India and examines the recent high-profile rulings designating the rivers Ganga, Yamuna, and their tributaries and glaciers as juristic persons.


Research Paper


International Journal of Legal Science and Innovation, Volume 3, Issue 6, Page 354 - 362


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This is an Open Access article, distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution -NonCommercial 4.0 International (CC BY-NC 4.0) (, which permits remixing, adapting, and building upon the work for non-commercial use, provided the original work is properly cited.


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