National Legal Services Authority (NALSA) carried out a six week Legal Awareness and Outreach campaign from 2nd October to 14thNovember, 2021 as part of Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav to reach each and every village/Urban areas of the country in order to maximize the outreach of Legal Services Authorities as well as to spread awareness regarding the availability of free legal services.
The major activities carried out during the above campaign included door-to-door campaigns, legal awareness programs, awareness through mobile vans and awareness through legal aid clinics. Apart from these major activities, the Legal Services Authorities organised specific legal awareness programs for women and children, organised mega legal services camps, programs for children who lost either or both parents due to covid, exhibitions at State and District level, moot court competitions for students of law universities, etc. During this period 1623 Legal Services Mega Camps were organised wherein more than 75.64 lakh people were benefited.
Further, Nationwide Legal awareness and outreach programme campaigns namely “Empowerment of Citizens through Legal Awareness and Outreach” and “Haq_humara_bhi_to_hai@75” were conducted from 31st October 2022 to 13thNovember 2022, for bridging the gap between the institutions & the underprivileged by spreading legal awareness & ensuring delivery of legal entitlements to eligible beneficiaries and for providing basic legal assistance to persons confined in prisons and child care institutionsto commemorate the 75thyear of Independence respectively.
Location-wise number of such campaigns being run in the state of Maharashtra and Kerala is not maintained by NALSA. However, 14400 villages in Maharashtra and 733 villages in Kerala were visited thrice or more during the above campaignand 37 Legal Services Mega Camps in Maharashtraand 92 Legal Services Mega Camps in Kerala were organised wherein 3,26,796 and 8,763 people were benefited respectively. Regarding consideration of intensifying such special campaigns, it is submitted that State Legal Services Authorities may independently organise such campaigns at their own.Presently, there is no such proposal for organising any special campaign across the country.
Under DISHA scheme, in the state of Maharashtra, six law colleges have constituted Pro Bono Clubs wherein law students participate and organize legal awareness activities in the villages. In addition, Yashwantrao Chavan Academy Of Development Administration (YASHADA), State Institute of Rural Development (SIRD), Pune one of the implementing agency under DISHA scheme is executing legal awareness programmes in four Aspirational districts of Nandurbar, Gadchiroli, Osmanabad and Washim. In the first phase, the programme has trained 500 volunteers as "Vidhidoots" in 100 Gram Panchayats of these Aspirational districts. These Vidhidoots will conduct legal awareness at the community level.In the state of Kerela, one law college have constituted Pro Bono Club and legal awareness activities are organized in the villages adopted by the Law college.
This information was given by the Union Minister of Law and Justice, Shri Arjun Ram Meghwal, in a written reply in Lok Sabha on Friday.