LEGAL AID FOR VICTIMS OF INJUSTICE (`LAVI`)
The Underlying Concept Behind (`LAVI`)
While ideally speaking, the preventive laws enacted by the Parliament from time to time such as MISA, TADA, POTA etc. have their justification and utility for maintaining public order and for safeguarding the internal security of the country, in practical terms, the frequency with which glaring instances of gross abuse of such preventive laws for settling personal and political scores have been taking place in some states, causes severe concern to all the responsible citizens of this country
Legal Aid to the Victims of Injustice (`LAVI`) has been formed to shield and rally around such innocent and law abiding citizens of our Country who have been falsely implicated and charged under such draconian laws who eventually become victims of injustice and unlawful incarceration caused by `state terrorism` on account of over-zealous, arbitrary and high handed actions of some of its officials.
The personal experience of Sri SARPV CHATURVEDI SWAMIJI around an year`s illegal imprisonment, had driven him to resolve that his should be the last case of abuse of the power and authority vested with the law enforcing authorities under the preventive detention laws for causing injustice against honest and law abiding citizens of this country, under the influence of money, political and such other powers.
(`LAVI`) is deeply committed to the rule of law and considers that the fundamental rights and the civil liberties guaranteed to all the law-abiding citizens of the Country by our Constitution as sacrosanct and non-negotiable. Hence, (`LAVI`) considers it essential that indiscriminate and arbitrary actions of invoking of the provisions of the preventive laws by the State without reasonable and sufficient cause need to be discouraged and frowned at.
This could be achieved primarily by generating adequate public opinion on the instances of the specific cases and by making the concerned officials of the State who have been empowered and authorized to invoke the necessary provisions of these preventive laws personally accountable against their abuse and misuse on personal and political grounds .It shall be the endeavor of these officials that they insist and demand adequate evidence and validated intelligence data for each of the detentions to justify invoking these preventive laws and strike the right balance between over-action and under-action by their sound judgment.
They will identify and exercise close supervision and control on such of their subordinate officers who have a history and past track record of arbitrariness and high-handedness in their attitude towards the law abiding citizens and keep them under close monitoring in order to rein them when found to be overstepping the limits of legal actions.
(`LAVI`) plans to mobilize a strong public opinion in favor of enactment and amendments to the existing preventive laws which give due regard to the civil liberties and fundamental rights of the law abiding citizens and provide for punitive actions and deterrent punishments on such of the officials who transgress their legal limits and abuse their power and authority for personal and extraneous considerations eventually leading to miscarriage of justice and imprisonment to the innocent law abiding citizens of the Country.
(`LAVI`) plans to hold periodic seminars and conferences to be addressed by leading lawyers, jurists, senior civil servants, police officers, journalists, prison officers and activists in the fields of human rights and civil liberties. These fora shall highlight and expose the glaring instances of the violations of the human rights and civil liberties in the various states and point out the areas in the administration which need to the toned up.
(`LAVI`) plans to consolidate all the recent cases of Court judgments at the state and at the Center where the actions of the State have been over ruled as unlawful and enumerate the full details of the major cases of abuse and misuse of the preventive laws as articles in leading newspapers and magazines and explain the implications of these actions in T V talks to educate the general public for asserting their due lawful rights.
(`LAVI`) plans to organize regional and state level committees in all the major states comprising of eminent and service- minded lawyers, jurists, senior civil servants, police officers, journalists, prison officers and activists in the fields of human rights and civil liberties who will coordinate and drive the actions of (`LAVI`) in their respective areas and regions.
(`LAVI`) plans to give wide publicity through the media to reach the needy people who might be in the various prisons and who would most require its services. (`LAVI`) also plans to open a web site in the Internet for enabling any of the affected citizens to express his grievance directly.
In response, the members of the regional and state level committees of (`LAVI`) will take appropriate actions to initiate proper legal steps for establishing contact and to proceed further for highlighting the details of the injustice to the appropriate legal forum and seek judicial remedies.
(`LAVI`) plans to work in coordination and in close unison with other like minded bodies such as National Human Rights Commission, People`s Union of Civil Liberties, Amnesty International and Free Legal Aid Center in different states while proceeding on rendering such assistance to the needy people in the above lines.
(`LAVI`) plans to exercise a special watch on the selected states of the Country where the tendency to invoke the provisions of the preventive laws even for flimsy and inadequate grounds is very pronounced and plans to highlight and expose such arbitrariness to general public through the media and bring a moral pressure on such States for restraint and moderation.
(`LAVI`) also plans to highlight and appreciate the services of such states and their enlightened civil, police and the judicial officials who managed well with the laws of the land like IPC, CrPC etc. without indiscriminately resorting to the draconian preventive laws, to convey the `message` to the overzealous states.
(`LAVI`) plans to work closely with the reviewing judicial committees in the various states and plans to actively follow up with them on the noted and glaring instances of abuse and misuse of preventive laws and ensure their conclusions for rendering justice to the innocent and the poor citizens languishing in the various prisons.
By all these initiatives and actions, (`LAVI`) aspires to reestablish and revalidate the well known (but least respected) basic legal axiom, which states that even if thousand guilty men could go un-punished, one innocent man should not be punished for a crime he has never committed.
(`LAVI`) hereby solicits the co-operation and support of all the right-thinking citizens in this new Venture, across the Society from all walks of life such as academicians, bureaucrats, lawyers, journalists, jurists, businessmen and other professionals .It expects that by the unity of purpose by such like minded and enlightened group of people, greater awareness is created about the rights of the common citizens on their individual liberty and their legitimate human rights and how their basic human dignities can be safe-guarded.
MAIN OBJECTS OF THE TRUST:
- The aims and objects of the Trust are to create legal awareness on various enactments and explain the methodology of implementation to the general public at large.
- The trust will provide free legal aid and necessary technical support to the victims of injustice, whether it is Criminal, Civil or any other rights.
- The Trust will conduct legal seminars, exchange programs, workshops, symposiums and hold conference with regard to the legal issues and other related aspects.
- The Trust will establish knowledge centers, libraries including digital so that the litigant public and lawyers can have access to the facilities and it will also procure and preserve rare treatises on law and preserve them for posterity.
- The Trust will endeavor to engage senior counsels, eminent jurists to impart continuous training in the Art and Science of Legal Methodology, General Logic, Mental Aptitude, Criminal Psychology and Medical Jurisprudence (Toxicology, Forensics), etc.
- The Trust will provide free medical care, assistance in educational opportunities and other facilities to the deprived and visit Reform institutions and put its efforts to change the mind set of the people and propagate the importance of avoidance of crime and to take up projects to bring in the change in attitude of the person concerned so that they will be active agents for restoration of peace and harmony. The trust will conduct counseling and take steps for rehabilitation of Ex-convicts.
- The trust will encourage the academicians, lawyers, social activists and other general public to present papers of academic excellence and their works will be made available to the general public by publishing the said works.
- The Trust will give dynamic insight into the philosophical, socio, psycho, economic dimensions to the litigations and suggest appropriate strategy within the four corners of law for obtaining speedy, effective and substantial justice.
- The Trust will publish legal journals in various languages of the world keeping in view of the cross-cultural dimensions into account.
- The Trust will encourage the people at large to go for negotiations and arbitration of the matters as an alternative method for obtaining speedy and effective justice so that the burden on the judicial administrative mechanisms will be lessened.
- The Trust will establish a University of repute so that the continuous legal education will be imparted to the required in tune with the time and it will associate itself with the institutions, universities and other recognized organizations and coordinate with the legal literacy agencies in order to create awareness on various facets of laws.
- The Trust will arrange for visits to rural areas, slums and other backward areas and coordinate with various authorities and take up measures for betterment of life of the public.
- The Trust will provide free scholarships to students, Aspirants who want to pursue the legal education and will provide scholarships for members who are representing in the Courts of law and design such crash courses for general public, women, journalists and teachers for continuous interaction on various facets and dimensions of law.
- The Trust will aim for crime free society and will create awareness with regard to importance of uniform legal system for the entire world in common aspects.
- The Trust will coordinate with similar bodies like trusts, associations, institutions, etc and work for betterment of the society.
- The Trust will establish branches whenever and wherever necessary for achieving the objectives for which it is established.