Rajya Sabha MP P. Wilson calls for effective regulatory framework to ensure responsible AI

Rajya Sabha MP P. Wilson calls for effective regulatory framework to ensure responsible AI

 Rajya Sabha MP P. Wilson. File.

Rajya Sabha MP P. Wilson. File.
| Photo Credit: Sandeep Saxena

Rajya Sabha member P. Wilson has called for Parliaments across the world to ensure that powerful Artificial Intelligence (AI) systems are developed only if their effects will be positive and their risks manageable.

Speaking at the 2nd World Summit of the Committees of Future held in Uruguay, on the role of Parliament in the Democracy of the Future, Mr. Wilson — on behalf of the Indian Parliamentary delegation — said on September 27 that there was an urgent need for all governments to adopt an AI regulatory framework. It should be applicable across sectors.

Mr. Wilson said AI has been redefining society in ways that had never been anticipated. While welcoming the technology, it could not be ignored that AI also posed a great threat, he said.

“The rapid development of AI and its increasing influence on all areas of life are undeniable. AI applications can be found across almost all sectors. While AI is constantly opening up new opportunities, it also poses the challenge of understanding and managing the risks associated with its use,” he said.

Pointing out that there were demands from the AI experts for a global regulatory framework for the technology, similar to the treaties used to regulate use of nuclear arms, as the competition to advance in the technology could lead to safety concerns being sidelined, he said: “The regulatory framework should ensure that the use of AI use cases is regulated on a risk-based framework where high-risk use cases that directly impact humans are regulated through legally binding obligations.”

The Rajya Sabha MP said the Parliaments’ task was onerous and challenging because the issues at stake pertained not just to regulation, but also to ethics, privacy, transparency, biases and manipulations. The challenges posed to the democracies were manifold, and an important one was AI as that would lead to a lot of unemployment and lakhs would be losing jobs.

“Therefore, regulations should take care of job security and allow usage of AI technology only in specific areas which really requires (it). The Parliaments should urge the governments to establish independent regulatory bodies responsible for framing regulations concerning various aspects of AI, including defining principles for responsible AI and their application based on risk assessment, regular auditing of AI applications, so as to effectively regulate and restrict AI applications,” said Mr. Wilson.

He said before legislating any law relating to AI, Parliamentarians should place a draft law and engage in consultations with the general public, stakeholders, field experts, eminent bodies, human rights, women and child rights organisations, study global best practices and also carry out legislation impact assessment and then frame a regulatory law on AI.

The law on AI should ensure that principles of responsible AI are made applicable at each phase of the AI framework lifecycle like design, development, validation, deployment, monitoring and refinement and periodical auditing.

Noting that a Parliamentary committee on future institutions had been established in Uruguay, which was focusing on the democracy of the future, Mr. Wilson said anticipatory governance in Parliament was highly commendable and such a commission was also in countries like Chile, Brazil, Austria, South Korea, Iceland, Philippines and Lithuania.

He said it was high time such commissions were considered to be established in all Parliaments to focus on the democracy of the future and on anticipatory governance.

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