Facebook India on Friday announced a new initiative — the Facebook India Tech Scholars (FITS) programme — for law students in the country.

The novel programme aims to provide students from select leading law schools in the country a platform for research and mentorship on topics related to technology law and policy.

The first edition, the FITS programme 2021-2022, will offer eight law students an opportunity to work on a research project with leading Indian thinktanks who will also extend mentorship support to the students. It will be open to 4th and 5th year students from the National Law School of India University, Bengaluru, the WB National University of Juridical Sciences, Kolkata, the National Law University, Delhi, and the National Law University, Jodhpur.

“With rapid advancements in technology and the evolution of technology law and policy in India, the programme is designed to encourage students to develop an independent voice on pressing topics that will have a bearing on future policy discussions in this area,” the social networking giant said in a statement.

“We hope to expand the FITS programme to more students in coming years,” it added.

The FITS programme 2021-2022 will see the Centre for Internet and Society, the Observer Research Foundation, the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace India, and the Software Freedom Law Center participating as mentoring institutions. Facebook is also guided by an experienced and expert Advisory Committee for the duration of the programme. Shardul Amarchand Mangaldas & Co. will be a knowledge partner.

Applications will close on June 20. The FITS programme will run for a period of nine months, commencing in Summer 2021.