Legal Aid Cell
Legal aid implies giving free legal services to the poor and needy who cannot afford the services of a lawyer for the conduct of a case or a legal proceeding in any court, tribunal or before any authority and to effectuate this DME has created a Legal Aid Cell. The purpose of this cell is to provide justice irrespective of social or economic incapacity.
The 39A of the Constitution of India provides for equal justice and free legal aid:
“The State shall secure that the operation of the legal system promotes justice, on a basis of equal opportunity, and shall, in particular, provide free legal aid, by suitable legislation or schemes or in any other way, to ensure that opportunities for securing justice are not denied to any citizen by reason of economic or other disabilities.” This Article emphasizes that free legal service is an inalienable element of ‘reasonable, fair and just’ procedure, for without it a person suffering from economic or other disabilities would be deprived of the opportunity for securing justice.
In the civil side, Order XXXIII. R.18 of the Code of Civil Procedure 1908 provided that the state and central governments may make supplementary provisions as it thinks fit for providing free legal services to those who have been permitted to sue as an indigent person. The Legal Services Authorities Act, 1987 made drastic changes in the field of legal services. It is an Act to constitute legal services authorities to provide free and competent legal services to the weaker sections of the society to ensure that opportunities for securing justice are not denied to any citizen by reason of economic or other disabilities, and to organize Lok Adalats to secure that the operation of the legal system promotes justice on a basis of equal opportunity
The legal aid cell at DME conducts number of activities such as:
- Spread legal awareness
- Expand consumer awareness
- Discuss cyber awareness
- Promulgate legal knowledge
- Set-Up Legal Aid Camps
- Provide Legal Advice free of cost
Apart from the above mentioned activities the Legal Aid Cell at DME has several ambitious projects in the pipeline to supplement Juvenile Justice Mechanism.
Inauguration of Legal Aid Clinic at DME and Legal Aid Camp
Hoshiyarpur Village, Gautam Buddha Nagar
November 4th, 2018
Free legal aid has been made an intrinsic fiber of the Fundamental Rights of our Constitution. It is a Fundamental Right of all citizens to be provided with free legal aid. As a duty bound institute of this country, DME strives to extend its help in creating legal awareness amongst people so that they are able to realize their rights in a judicious and efficacious manner. In pursuance of this objective a Legal Aid Clinic was inaugurated in the premise of DME as a functional unit in association with the District Legal Services Authority NOIDA on 4th November, 2018.
The Legal Aid Centre of Delhi Metropolitan Education had organized a Legal Aid Camp in the village of Hoshiyarpur, Sector 51, NOIDA, Gautam Buddha Nagar District on 4th November, 2018 in collaboration with the District Legal Service Authority. The event was graced by Mr. P.K. Shrivastava, District Judge, Gautam Buddha Nagar as the Chief Guest. He was accompanied by Ms. Neelu Nainwal, the Secretary, District Legal Services Authority NOIDA and Mr. Rakesh Singh Chauhan, the District Information Officer.
The event commenced with the dignitaries arriving at DME and inaugurating the newly constituted Legal Aid Clinic in the DME campus. The venue was then shifted to Hoshiyarpur Village, Sector 51 NOIDA where the Legal Aid Clinic was officiated by our esteemed dignitaries. The Legal Aid Centre of DME also organized a one day camp to solicit the people of Hoshiyarpur village with knowledge about law on various pressing issues such as filing of an FIR, domestic violence, property matters, matters relating to the interests of children, consumer rights etc. so that they are better equipped and informed about the protection of laws that exists for them.
The programme started with the lighting of the lamp and invocation of Goddess Saraswati and the guests were asked to grace the dais. Mr. P.N. Parashar, the Head of the Legal Aid Committee of DME was then invited to address the gathering and pave out the outline of the ensuing programme. He stated that as a responsible citizen every member of DME Law School was committed towards providing any kind of aid and assistance in the matters of law and attainment of justice. He stressed that justice, be it political, economical and social was a virtue promised by our Constitution and that everyone was entitled to achieve it. He then went on to thank the dignitaries for investing their time in this social enterprise initiated by DME.
Prof. N.K. Behl, the Director, Judicial Training Academy was then invited upon the podium to present his views on the concept of free legal aid. He stated that the idea of legal aid works on the collaboration and consensus between the parties. He stated that government policies need efficacious application on the ground level and DME is trying to help in the implementation of those policies.
Ms. Neelu Nainwal, Secretary District Legal Services authority was then called upon to give her insights on the need for free legal aid. She provided the audience the much needed basic information about provisions of free legal aid and the rights available to the people by virtue of article 21 and article 39A of the Constitution. She explained the mechanisms enlisted in the Legal Service Authority Act. She explained the hierarchical level of the legal services authorities in India, ie. the National Legal Services Authority, the State Legal Services Authortiy, District Legal Services Authority and Tehsil Legal Services Authority. She gave a holistic view about the statutory backing of legal aid.
Mr. Rakesh Singh Chauhan was next in line to grace the podium and he averred on the necessity of free legal aid in a democratic welfare society.
After various insightful comments by the esteemed guests, it was the turn of DME team to throw light upon the issue of free legal aid and its necessity in making people more conscious about their rights.
Dr. Bhavish Gupta stressed upon the importance of legal awareness in people as it is one of the major components in the all round growth and development of the society.
Next, Saurav Kumar, a student of DME Law school gave a presentation on the evils of human trafficking and the rights of the victims involved in it.
A Nukkad Natak was then staged by the students of DME under the guidance and direction of Ms. Navjot Suri, Assistant Professor of Law. The play brought the issue of domestic violence into a sharp relief highlighting the problems faced by women and men alike in abusive domestic relationships and environment.
Ujjwal Sharma, another student from DME informed the audience about the issue of exploitation of women and women rights, whereas Keshav Nagi initiated a discussion on rights of children such as right to education and right against child labour.
Mr. Pramod Kumar, an advocate working with the District Legal Services Authority NOIDA explained to the audience the duties that entail along with various rights.
Finally the Chief Guest of the event, Mr. P.K. Shrivastav was ushered on the podium to express his valuable opinions. He urged the students to understand the practicalities of the legal profession and that the educational institutes through activities like the present legal aid camp should provide the law students ample opportunities to interact with the people and understand their idea of law, rights and their applicability. He commented that in the present course of education system, the law students are quite ignorant of the ground realities of the court and the people and through free legal aid the students can get a firsthand experience of dealing with the cross sectioning of law and society.
Mr. P.K. Shrivastav then addressed the audience stating that litigation should always remain the last recourse to any dispute. He averred that one should try to resolve the disputes amongst each other and as amicably as possible rather than initiating the process of litigation at the first instance, because litigation and all its forms are a long drawn, time consuming and tedious process. He stressed on minimizing litigations by keeping court as the last option of dispute settlement. He quoted Abraham Lincoln and said that in a case, those who win are actually those who lose, pointing out to the loss of good relations between the parties and the long years of litigation.
Mr. Aman Sahni, the Vice President of DME institute was then called upon the podium to sum up the crux of the event. He asserted that the purpose of free legal aid and camps such as these was not to coax the people to take of litigation as a weapon against each other in smallest of issues. The only aim of this entire process and policy is to make people aware of their rights and benefits accruing to them in consonance with the ideals of the Constitution.
Mr. Padmesh Kataria, the Convener of the Legal Aid Committee of DME Law School was called upon to give the vote of thanks to all the revered guests.
With this the one day camp at Hoshiyarpur Village came to a successful end.