The government today said it has started 'Tele-Law' to facilitate free legal consultation service across 1,000 common service centres in rural areas of Uttar Pradesh and Bihar as a pilot project.
The government today said it has started ‘Tele-Law’ to facilitate free legal consultation service across 1,000 common service centres in rural areas of Uttar Pradesh and Bihar as a pilot project. “In its effort to make legal aid easily accessible to the marginalised communities and citizens living in rural areas, the Government of India has launched the ‘Tele-Law’,” an official statement said. The Ministry of Law and Justice partnered with the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY) to provide legal aid services through its Common Service Centres (CSC) at the panchayat level, spread across the country. In the first phase, the ‘Tele-Law’ scheme will be tested as a pilot across 500 Common service Centres (CSC) each in Uttar Pradesh and Bihar to understand the challenges and make necessary corrections to the scheme before it is scaled up and rolled out across the country in a phased manner. The cost of service will be available for free to individual legal consultation seeker under the scheme, CSC e- Governance Services India’s CEO Dinesh Tyagi had said earlier.
At present, there are about 2.5 lakh CSCs that are authorised to provide internet-based government service to people in rural area. Under the scheme, a portal called ‘Tele-Law’ will be launched, which will be available across the CSC network. ‘Tele-Law’ will enable people to seek legal advice from lawyers through video conferencing available at the CSCs. “Additionally, law school clinics, District Legal Service Authorities, voluntary service providers and Non-Government Organisations working on legal aid and empowerment can also be connected through the CSCs anywhere and anytime, in order to strengthen access to justice for the marginalized communities,” the statement said.
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The National Legal Services Authority (NALSA) will provide a panel of lawyers from state capitals, who will be available through video conferencing to provide legal advice and counselling to the applicants, across the 1,000 CSCs. “Tele-Law will fulfill our commitment to ensure access to justice & empowerment of the poor. The CSCs and Para Legal Volunteers will offer easy legal advice to litigants in rural India making them digitally and financially inclusive,” Law and IT Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad said.