Free legal services in India
Fighting legal matters is a horror dream for those who cannot afford to engage in costly legal disputes. Therefore, to help those who cannot obtain justice on their own, India enacted the Legal Services Act 1987. Article 12 of this law makes the government (at all administrative levels) responsible for providing free legal aid to the following categories:
â € ¢ A member of a listed caste or tribe.
â € ¢ Victim of trafficking or forced laborer.
â € ¢ A woman or a child.
â € ¢ A disabled person.
The same categories were included in section 12 of the Jammu and Kashmir Legal Services Act, enacted in 1997.
Free legal services include:
â € ¢ Payment of fees.
â € ¢ Supply of lawyers.
â € ¢ Provide certified copies of documents in legal proceedings.
â € ¢ Call preparation, paper book and translation of documents.
J&K Legal Services Authority
Right to legal services
A person is entitled to legal services under this Act if he is:
(a) A member of a listed caste or tribe.
b) A victim of human trafficking or a beggar referred to in article 23 of the Constitution.
(c) A woman or a child.
(d) A person with a disability as defined in clause (i) of section 2 of the Persons with Disabilities Act 1995 (equal opportunities, protection of rights and full participation).
(e) A person in circumstances of undeserved need as a victim of mass disaster, ethnic violence, caste atrocity, flood, drought, earthquake or industrial disaster.
(f) An industrial worker.
(g) In detention, including detention in a safe house within the meaning of clause (g) of section 2 of the Prevention of Immoral Trafficking Act 1956 (104 of 1956) or in a juvenile home within the meaning of clause (j) of section 2 of the Juvenile Justice Act, 1986 (53 of 1986) or in a psychiatric hospital or psychiatric care home within the meaning of clause (g) of the Section 2 of the Mental Health Act, 1987 (14 of 1987); or
(h) Receive an annual income of less than Rs 9,000 or such higher amount as may be prescribed by the state government, if the case is before a court other than the SC, and less than Rs 12,000 or any other higher amount as may be prescribed by the central government, if the case is before the CS.
Or a citizen whose income does not exceed Rs 3 lakh, if the case is before a court other than the SC and does not exceed Rs 5 lakh if the case is before the SC will be entitled to legal services.
(i) The Authority may also provide legal services to the following persons, regardless of their income, including transgender people, the elderly and people with HIV / mental illness.
(Mohammad Umar is Assistant Professor, Bennett University, Greater Noida. He can be contacted at [email protected])