Legal aid to the poor does not mean poor legal aid: Judge Lalit

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He also stressed the need for the active participation of good lawyers to ensure quality legal aid to people in need.

Shedding light on the fact that the overwhelming majority of the general public do not use free legal aid services for a number of reasons, including lack of awareness and the poor quality of the help offered, Judge Uday U. Lalit, a Supreme Court judge and executive chairman of the National Legal Services Authority, said good quality legal aid must be provided so that people have confidence in the legal aid system.

“Most of us who deserve or potential beneficiaries of free legal aid are not even aware of our rights. Only 1% of the total criminal cases heard by the courts receive legal aid from legal service authority offices across the country. Do the remaining 99% of the general public not want legal aid? There can be two reasons for not getting legal help. First, most of them do not even know that it is their constitutional right to receive free legal aid. Second, they may not have confidence in the provision of legal aid, which is more dangerous. If they don’t trust the organization or the mechanism of legal aid, then we have to do some soul searching. Good quality aid must be provided. Legal aid for the poor does not mean bad legal aid. There must be a better standard, a better quality and a better standard [of legal aid offered through legal services authorities].

He was delivering a keynote address at a legal outreach program titled “Updating Rights and Rights in Achieving the Sustainable Development Goals – 2030” held at the auditorium of PDA Engineering College here on October 24. The program, which was part of the Pan-Indian Awareness Campaign, was organized by district and state legal service authorities.

Emphasizing the need for the active participation of good lawyers to ensure quality legal aid to those in need, Justice Lalit called on lawyers to increasingly join the state’s efforts to expand aid services. legal to more people.

“Some of the top lawyers in the bar have to choose legal aid as a matter of choice and practice … We in legal services authorities can educate people about their rights to get free legal aid. But, the final legal help when it comes to litigation in the courts must come from lawyers. As a result, more and more good lawyers have to come forward to offer legal assistance. This will generate an atmosphere of trust in the minds of the general public, ”Justice Lalit said.

Justice Lalit inaugurated legal services (off-campus) clinics at universities and law colleges statewide and issued standard operating procedures for them. He also published the second edition of the cartoon book on legal literacy to the general public.

Karnataka High Court Chief Justice Ritu Raj Awasthi delivered the special speech in the program.

The judges of the High Court of Karnataka, Judge B. Veerappa, PS Dinesh Kumar, Judge Krishna S. Dixit and R. Devdas and the Advocate General of the State of Karnataka, Prabhuling K. Navadgi, were present.

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