11 November, 2014

JFA and Tangail District Legal Aid Committee hold Inception Meeting

Last Updated: 13 November 2014

 

On November 11, 2014, Mr. Muhammad Mahbub-Ul Haque, District & Session Judge and Chairman of the District Legal Aid Committee (DLAC) of Tangail District, chaired the Justice for All (JFA) Inception Meeting to launch the partnership between the DLAC and USAID’s JFA Program. Legal Aid Officer Mr. Shahidul Islam welcomed participants and shared a brief description of the present situation of government legal aid in Tangail District where the number of applications increased from less than 100 per year before 2014 to an average of 70-75 per month since January 2014. JFA Chief of Party Ms. Violaine Autheman presented the goals and parameters of JFA and DLACs collaboration and GO-NGO coordination for better legal aid service delivery. She emphasized the importance of Upazila and Union level committee activation to facilitate access to justice grassroots people and ensure citizens’ legal rights to representation before the court. NLASO Assistant Director Mr. Sadakin Habib shared successes and challenges of NLASO and initiatives taken with the assistance of national and international agencies.

 

Representatives of the Tangail judgeship, bar, and NGO community shared valuable comments and suggestions for enhancing the quality of legal aid service and increasing mass awareness among grassroots populations. The District Information Officer expressed interest in participating in awareness campaigns and disseminating information on legal aid service among villagers. NGO representatives commented that inadequate cooperation from the panel lawyers may hamper litigant confidence in the government legal aid program and suggested that close monitoring would increase client satisfaction with the formal justice system. Panel lawyers requested to fix an amount for witness’s conveyance as legal aid seekers are unable to produce witnesses duly.

 

District Judge Mr. Muhammad Mahbub-Ul Haque encouraged participants to assist the DLAC by providing suggestions and recommendations on how to improve the government legal aid service. He thanked NLASO and USAID’s JFA Program for selecting Tangail as a pilot district and expressed hopes that the joint effort of DLAC and JFA will bring a quality service of legal aid program.