Legal Aid & Rights

NIDAN Legal Aid and Rights Issue

Adequate and time bounded legal support is considered as last resort to protect rights and dignity of any citizen. Also, if prevalent legal and administrative mechanism suffers from any limitation or inadequacy it needs strong and collective voice to advocate for suitable ramifications. Today, like any other administrative arrangement which ideally claimed to be for the entire population of the Indian state, convenience of judicial services often found to be non- accessible among the poor and weaker sections of the society. Today, for easy accessibility of various legal protection provisions and to voice against the inherent limitations within the existing legal arrangements, weaker section needs systematic legal aid and advocacy intervention on sustainable manner. Nidan within its holistic approach of empowerment and development renders momentous importance to legal aid and advocacy work.

Legal Aid

Issues like police -harassment, pestering by anti social elements, inadequate, untimely or nonpayment of wages, exploitation at work place including gender empathy and sudden raids to evict vendors from their business spots and seizure of their selling goods requires regular legal aid in order to amicably tackle these problems. Nidan with its legal aid services has taken reasonability to do so. Action programme like public meetings, demonstrations/ dharna, rally, petition, submission of memorandum are regularly organized in order to ensure peaceful working environment. Panel of lawyers have been engaged at district level to assist victim workers.

Once informal sector workers get unionized in form of a registered organization they can avail better protection against the various kind of exploitations under the law of land. Also, in comparison of an individual worker their organizational profile gives them better collective bargaining power to negotiate their rights in much effective manner and enhances their accessibility to various social security schemes.

This all puts direct impact on women’s role and status in positive manner affirming their recognition in social and economic milieu of society.

Some women member found to be more confident and articulate, although overall women folk considered to be less aware and vocal than their male counterparts. But, with the regular advocacy work by these small organizations under the leadership of Nidan, even women workers are now more organized towards their rights. The physical attacks on these workers and unwarranted arrests have become negligible. Also, since now they do not need to bribe police and administration employees which has significantly enhanced their annual saving. Additionally, efforts are being carried to organize the rural workers into associations.

Different booklet and handbook on situation of unorganized sector workers, women and children have been published. These handbooks details various legal provisions for the unorganized workers like street vendors, construction workers etc. Some of booklet refers to various legislations and statutory provisions for the protection of labourers including female workers. Various IEC materials have been also developed to sensitize workers towards various rights and schemes.

Nidan also conducts and facilitates various capacity building activities for unorganized sector labourers on issues related to their life and living- domestic violence, right to avail services from police department, basic legal formalities like FIR filing, provisions and procedure for workman compensation, Minimum wages, Constitution and Fundamental rights, Child rights, Right to Information etc.

 

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