Judicial Pendency

What is Tele-Law Scheme?


From UPSC perspective, the following things are important :

Prelims level : Tele Law Scheme

Mains level : Pendency issue in Indian Judiciary

The Law Ministry recently commemorated an event to mark the coverage of more than nine lakh beneficiaries of the government’s tele-law scheme, using common service centres (CSCs) to provide justice across the country.

Tele-Law Scheme

  • The concept of Tele-Law is to facilitate the delivery of legal advice through a panel of lawyers stationed at the State Legal Services Authorities (SALSA) and CSC.
  • Tele-Law means the use of communications and information technology for the delivery of legal information and advice.
  • The project initiates to connect citizens with lawyers through video conferencing facilities by the Para-Legal Volunteers stationed at identified 50,000 CSCs.
  • This e-interaction between lawyers and people would be through the video-conferencing infrastructure available at the CSCs.

Features of the program

  • Under this programme, smart technology of video conferencing, telephone/instant calling facilities available at the vast network of CSC.
  • It enables anyone to seek legal advice without wasting precious time and money.
  • The service is free for those who are eligible for free legal Aid as mentioned under Section 12 of the Legal Services Authority Act, 1987.
  • For all others, a nominal fee is charged.

Back2Basics: Free legal aid in India

  • Article 21 of the Constitution of India states, “No person shall be deprived of his life or personal liberty except according to procedure established by law”.
  • Hence ensuring legal aid to everyone is necessary for ensuring substantive equality.
  • Article 39A of the Constitution of India provides for free legal aid to the poor and weaker sections of the society, to promote justice on the basis of equal opportunity.
  • Articles 14 and 22(1) also make it obligatory for the State to ensure equality before the law and a legal system that promotes justice on a basis of equal opportunity to all.

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