As part of JVI’s Urban Justice Initiative in Mumbai, in November, JVI and its local partners launched a series of virtual legal aid clinics working through our e-Justice Resource Center. The purpose of these clinics was to provide free legal services to advocates and community members, especially in Mumbai. JVI’s new e-Justice Resource Center is increasing rapid dissemination of information throughout our network of partners to ensure timely access to a variety of resources.
The Urban Justice Initiative empowers men, women, and children suffering in Mumbai and Kolkata slum communities through access to justice, protecting families from violence and helping them to secure access to opportunity for a better life through legal action, training, advocacy, and capacity building.
JVI has created a variety of tools and resources to provide individuals, NGOs and lawyers information and practical tools to advocate for citizens’ rights in a several areas — from securing basic identity documents and government entitlements in the areas of food, jobs, education and health care to protecting human rights.
For example, ration cards are a vital citizen’s right in India, yet the process to receive these cards can be challenging. India has the largest concentration of people (approximately 21% of the population) living below the World Bank’s international poverty line of US $1.90 per day . The National Food Security Act established the “ration card” system to provide food at a subsidized price. Destitute residents, such as widows or those with a disability, with no means of support are eligible for additional food subsidies. JVI’s Citizens’ Rights Manuals contain the information aftercare workers need to find the responsible government body and lays out the process to apply for the card.