26 Feb 2019 7:06 AM GMT
The National Legal Services Authority (NALSA) has had a year of great accomplishments in 2018, highlighted by a number of important initiatives to expand and improve the delivery of free legal services to marginalized sections of society. This included providing legal aid and advice to people across various classes such as scheduled castes, scheduled tribes, women, children, transgenders,...
The National Legal Services Authority (NALSA) has had a year of great accomplishments in 2018, highlighted by a number of important initiatives to expand and improve the delivery of free legal services to marginalized sections of society. This included providing legal aid and advice to people across various classes such as scheduled castes, scheduled tribes, women, children, transgenders, people in custody, persons with disability, industrial workmen, victims of trafficking, mass disasters, violence, floods, droughts, earthquakes and industrial disasters. Following is the list of various legal services programs and activities carried out by NALSA over the past year:
(i) Campaign for women prisoners – This campaign was devised and implemented for women prisoners and children accompanying them in jails. The key achievements of the 10 day campaign initiated from 17th May, 2018 were: -
(ii) Door to door campaign – This campaign aimed at making the weaker and marginalized sections of society aware about existence of legal services institutions and availability of free legal services. During this Campaign -
(iii) Campaign for Convicts - This pan India campaign was launched to address the issues faced by convicts, such as lack of legal information and their legal rights as well, to meet the objective of securing their rights of appeal. The key achievements of the campaign were: -
To summarize, the year 2018 was marked as a year of great endeavours for NALSA, having far-reaching outcomes. The aforementioned legal services programs and activities that NALSA undertook helped vulnerable and marginalized groups to better understand and exercise their rights and entitlements, resolve their disputes peacefully, and seek remedies for grievances, thereby enjoying equal protection of the law. This year witnessed adoption of new approaches that undertook comprehensive assessments of legal needs and access to justice to understand the needs and priorities as well as to identify best ways to organize systems to respond to the realities on the ground. Legal empowerment became NALSA's cornerstone the preceding year by undertaking activities, initiatives schemes and programmes which provide access to legal information and assistance with legal or justice-related issues, thereby playing a key role in upholding human rights, including social and economic rights.
Yet another focus area was ensuring equal access to justice, protecting the rights of women and persons with special needs, such as children, people with disabilities and persons belonging to other minority groups. Such legal empowerment played a crucial role in enabling people to navigate the justice system, to make informed decisions, as well as to obtain judicial remedies. In addition, inclusivity was taken into account by bringing far-flung areas within the umbrella of NALSA's reach and providing them with legal assistance.
Lastly, steps were also taken to bolster the framework as well as the infrastructure providing court-based legal services. It is indeed noteworthy to mention that these activities have laid down an impressive road map for the years to come.