ACCESS OF JUSTICE FOR All
Address of -Dr. Gurpreet Kaur Chief Judicial Magistrate-com-Secretary, District Legal Services Ludhina
Every citizen of India has been provided with the fundamental rights in the form of Right to Life, Right to Equality, Right of Free Trade and Education, Right of Religion, Right of Education, Right of Privacy and Fundamental Right for the Constitutional Remedies. There is another legal right called right of Free Legal Aid whereby free legal aid is being provided to the poor persons, women, children, jail inmates, mentally or physically infirm, persons of weaker sections of the society. In order to provide teeth to the same, Legal Services Authority Act, 1987 has been enacted wherein three authorities have been formed as National Legal Services Authority (NALSA), State Legal Services Authority(SLSA) and District Legal Services Authority(DLSA). At the sub-division level, Sub-Division Legal Services Committees have been formed.
The main function of these authorities is to pro vide Free Access of Justice to all i.e. to provide free legal aid to all the persons of all the categories having annual income below 150,0001-, Women, Children, Jail Inmates, S.C./S.T.’s, Industrial Labourer, victims of natural disaster and Mentally and Physically infirm. The advocates are being provided free of cost to the above said persons. All the expenses of their litigation are being borne by the state. In addition to that, DLSA work for the awareness campaign of all the NALSA schemes. There are victim compensation schemes for the Acid attack victims, Rape Victims, Accidental Cases where accused cannot be identified. The DLSA works for the awareness of the public specially students by arranging seminars in-coordination with Legal Literacy Clubs and Legal Aid Clinics working in different schools and colleges.
The Lok Adalat and Mediation Centers are the other mechanisms for the amicable, quick, easy, cheap settlement of disputes with the motive of “Jhagre Mukaao Pyar Wadhaao”. This is the welfare scheme for the common man and is available all over India.