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Social Justice through Legal Aid Centre
Justice for all, resolving dispute without litigation, reaching to unreached is the prime concern of Legal Aid Centre of BVDU School of Law. The Legal Aid Clinic undertakes Continuous Legal Education Program, Legal Literacy Camps, Research Projects, Women Empowerment, Juvenile Justice, Protection of Rights of Senior Citizens, participation in LokAdalat, Social Lawyering by PIL, social work through NGO’s , Environment protection programs, free services in education related matters & Social justice to poorest of poor through NSS camps. To promote Continuous Legal Education Program & to train young advocates on family court practice & justice for women & children, Family Free Legal Aid Centre was inaugurated on 23rd December 2012, at the hands of Hon’ble Ms. Justice S. Vimla, Judge , Madras High Court. The basic objective of Family Legal Aid Centre is to strengthen matrimonial harmony in the society, to help women & children to solve their matrimonial disputes & to provide social justice to poorest of poor. Against the backdrop of rise in family litigation, less number of family courts, slow pace of gender justice, absence of political will to strengthen the judicial system in India, as a part of Continuous Legal Education Program the Legal Aid Clinic provides platform for amicable mode of settlement of dispute in family matters to common man. Speedy justice which is a fundamental right declared by the Supreme Court of India under Art.21 of Indian Constitution, is more relevant & required in personal matters. Delay is denial of justice in other matters; however delay is death of justice in family matters. The rise in the cost of litigation makes marriages cheaper & divorce costly. In family matters, majority of the people wish to keep the things secret, which is no more true in the functioning of courts in India. The Family Legal Aid Clinic supports the justice seeker in early resolution of their matrimonial disputes keeping their personal matters confidential, providing amicable solutions by legal experts at zero cost of litigation as per their convenience. The Legal Aid Clinic is supported and guided by 20 eminent practicing lawyers, 4-5 marriage counselors’ and family court judges. During last two years, 415 matrimonial cases were addressed, wherein efforts were made to resolve the matters amicably through counseling & pre-litigation advice.
|Type of Dispute||Cases Addressed|
|Issues relating to children||25|
|Live in Relationship||10|
|Pre Marriage Counseling||29|
|Issues of family members||122|
|Will & others||16|
During the course of counseling & resolution, young budding lawyers are encouraged to observe & actively participate in outside court room settlements. This helps them to learn methods of family dispute resolutions through counseling, negotiation, mediation & arbitration. The activity undertaken by Legal Aid Clinic is to complement & supplement working of family courts in India. Gender sensitization amongst law students, lawyers, judges, is the need of the hour. Court room teachings with class room teaching is the essence of academic justice. Prevention of commercialization in family litigations in matrimonial matters, empowerment of women, resolving socio-legal problems of disabled, & ensuring matrimonial harmony is the mission which we cherish at this Centre. Everyone can bring change if he is committed. Courts shall be the last resort in family matters as law cannot create love, litigation promotes enmity but counseling can ensure harmony. Happy family is happy nation.
Prof. Dr. Mukund Sarda
Dean and Principal
New Law College, BVDU, Pune
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