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23 YEARS OF SPEAKING TRUTH TO POWER. Who are we… A secular collective of human rights defenders, eminent jurists, retired judges, lawyers, academics,

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Presentation on theme: "23 YEARS OF SPEAKING TRUTH TO POWER. Who are we… A secular collective of human rights defenders, eminent jurists, retired judges, lawyers, academics,"— Presentation transcript:


2 Who are we… A secular collective of human rights defenders, eminent jurists, retired judges, lawyers, academics, writers, thinkers, artists, social workers, and activists representing humanism, culture, creativity, and knowledge.

3 What we stand for We strive to defend life, dignity, liberty and other fundamental rights of all using law and legal systems as therapeutic agents. We adopt a rights-based, victim-centered approach for total healing through legal, social, psychological and emotional reparation.

4 Our Journey 1992 MayRegistration of the Society 1992 DecemberFormal Inauguration Initial services included – public adalats (neethimela), free legal aid, legal literacy, mediation & reconciliation and public interest litigation. Started campaign against torture, death penalty, dowry, child labour and trafficking. 1993Launch of Jananeethi Publication 1994Women’s Desk 1996Environmental Advocacy 2000Helpline for women, children and elderly in distress started Declaration of first litigation-free village in Thichoor in Varavoor Panchayat

5 Our Organizational Mandate  Providing a Helpline for victims of violence, abuse and prejudices.  Enabling the poor to access justice.  Building social capital for promoting peace.  Promoting justice education and therapeutic jurisprudence.  Combating torture, corruption and human trafficking.  Advocating for sustainable development and safe environment.

6 Our Domains Democracy Rule of Law Secularism Human Rights DiversityLivelihood

7 Services we provide  Psycho-legal counseling  Helpline to victims of violence, injustice and those in distress  Scrutiny of documents and legal advice  Assisted negotiation and mediation for amicable settlement of disputes  Sensitization seminars and workshops on gender, and child rights  Public meetings/debates on contemporary concerns  Training of para-legal volunteers, service providers etc…  Consultancy services

8 Core Competencies  Legal aid and assistance  Conflict management & Dispute Resolution  Pedagogies for legal literacy  Facts finding surveys and alternate reports  Campaigns on rights based issues  Public interest litigations  Constructive Engagements & Coalition Building  Research, Documentation & Dissemination

9 Our Track record Humanitarian Assistance  Disaster management and relief works in Latur in Maharashtra following the devastating earth quake in 1993.  Services for legal reparation and legal aid in Tsunami-hit areas in Kollam and Alappuzha districts in the year 2004

10 Our Track record Environment Protection  Investigative Research Study Report in 2002 on toxicity of ground water and pollution at Plachimada due to illegal and unscientific operations of Coco Cola company.  Investigative Research Study Report in 2003 on ecological and environmental damages in Vagamon owing to illegal human encroachments.

11 Our Track record Fact Finding Missions  Investigative Survey and Study Report in 2003 on the Prevalence of Dowry System in Kerala and its impact on different sections of Society.  Investigative Research Study Report in 2010 on air, soil and water pollutions at Kathikkoodam by Nitta Gelatin India Limited.  3-year study and reports on the perils of Unethical Clinical Drug Trials in Kerala and to make drug trials clinically safe and ethically sound, conducted during 2009-12 period.  Pollution of Chaliyar River by Mavoor Rayons  Politically /communally motivated killings at Kannur and Marad  Brutal attack on Adivasis by armed forces at Muthanga in 2002  Agitation by landless Dalits in Chengara

12 Our Track record Legal Interventions  PIL in the matter of custodial torture and death of Gopi s/o Thankappan, Cherthalai, Alleppy. Final order given in favour of Jananeethi by Kerala High Court in 1998.  PIL in the matter of trafficking of 75000 young women from Kerala and North East States to Thailand for sex trade by Shillong based H & Z International. Interim stay was given by Kerala High Court in 1995 and was made final in 2008.  PIL filed by Jananeethi in the Supreme Court against the confirmation of capital punishment awarded to Mr. T.A. Joseph by the Division bench of Kerala High court in a communally sensitized issue of land dispute that caused death of three people. The appeal resulted in reducing the death penalty to life imprisonment.  Jananeethi filed several PILs in matters of waste dumping stations at Calicut and Thodupuzha and the respective courts decreed in favour of Jananeethi.

13 Our contributions as Change Maker…1  Jananeethi introduced the concept of ‘litigation-free zone’ for the first time in India and proved that it was possible. The first litigation-free village in India made in 2000 in Thichoor village of Varavoor Panchayat in Thrissur district of Kerala. The State Legal Services Authority later accepted it as a model and initiated at several places in the State for the creation of litigation-free villages.  Jananeethi started negotiated settlement of disputes through mediation and clinical legal counseling as alternate dispute resolution (ADR) in 1992. This was intended to avoid unnecessary delay in judicial adjudication and to save hard-earned revenue of poor citizens. The process was democratic and participatory. The Supreme Court of India adopted this idea after two decades and now it has been widely accepted in all States of India.

14 Our contributions as Change maker…2  Jananeethi introduced sensitization workshops in rural areas through its association with the ICDS network. Women groups on an average of 200 numbers in a year were trained in elementary legal principles so that they could be watch-dogs of any untoward incidents on women at home and in society. The State Women’s Commission has now adopted this idea in the name of Jagratha Samithys. Each panchayat in the State has opened Jagratha Samithy to protect and promote women’s rights and to resolve issues related to women.  From the year of its inception, 1991, Jananeethi has been organizing several neethimelas in a year in order to reduce the workload of the courts. Dozens of pending civil cases and minor criminal complaints were amicably settled on such occasions. Now adalats are being held on weekly basis in every district court and mega adalats are conducted on special reasons whereon large number of pending cases are sorted out in a spirit of mutual agreement and cooperation.

15 Our contributions as Change maker…3  Therapeutic Jurisprudence through psycho-legal counseling process was introduced in Kerala by Jananeethi from 2001 when it was unheard of in judicial proceedings. At Jananeethi law is only a therapeutic agent opening into a healing process. Justice should heal. Justice is incomplete without healing. This is completely a victim-centred approach where freedom and dignity of victim is of paramount importance.  Jananeethi monthly journal in Malayalam was started from 1993, covering topics of socio, political and economic importance judiciously and dispassionately.

16 Accreditations  Jananeethi is accredited with the Department of Social Justice, Government of Kerala and State Legal Services Authority. It enjoys accreditation of Credibility Alliances, India under its desirable norms. It is further accredited by national bodies like National Human Rights Commission, Human Rights Defenders Alert, India, All India Network of NGOs and individuals working with NHRIs and National Campaign for People’s Right to Information. Jananeethi is accredited to international bodies like Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch, OMCT Geneva, May 18 Foundation Gwangju, S.Korea.  Jananeethi represents Non-profit organizations/voluntary organizations at many of the district level bodies on recommendation of the District Collector. They include Institutional Complaint Committee on sexual harassment at workplace in district/Taluk offices, revenue departments, public sector institutions, private institutions, Institutional Ethics Committees in Medical colleges and Research Institutes, Anti-ragging committees in institutions of higher education including Kerala Agricultural University and Kerala Veterinary University.

17 Jananeethi - Organogram

18 Governance Advisory Board Board of Directors Executive Committee Dr. N.R. Madhava Menon - Chairman Dr. K.N. Panikkar Prof. K.G. Sankara Pillai Smt. Aruna Roy Adv. Kaleeswaram Raj Prof. Sara Joseph Shri. B.R.P. Bhaskar Dr. Karine Bates Ms. Anita Joseph Prof. N.N. Gokuuldas – Chairman Dr. George Mathen – Vice Chairman Adv. Faritha Ansari – Secretary Prof. Binu Poornamodan – Jt. Secretary Prof. Kusumam Joseph – Treasurer Fr. John Kavalakkatt Dr. Francis Xavier Shri. V.K. Sharaffuddin Sri. K. Rajagopal Director, International Affairs Dr. Gopakumar Thampi Executive Director Adv. George Pulikuthiyil Shri. R. Vijayarajan Fr. Johnson Ainikal Shri. Ajayakumar Melveettil Shri. M.N. Suresh Babu Adv. P. Sunilkumar Ms. E. Jayasree Ms. Beena George Ms. K. Radhamani

19 Our Roadmap  Sustain core activity of providing legal aid and psycho-legal counseling services, including helpline support to women, children and elderly in distress.  Function as a resource centre for research, intellectual exchanges and dissemination of news and views on human rights, migrant labor, human trafficking, gender justice, environmental justice, sustainable developments, public health and social legislations;  Establish a training centre for para-legal activists, social work students, social activists, service providers and law students with residential facilities for 50 persons at a time;  Built a short stay home for women and adolescent youth in crisis and victims of violence;  Reclaim the vantage position as an operational hub for human rights defenders, environmental activists and change makers.

20 We thank you for your time JANANEETHI P.B. No.8, Mannuthy P.O. Thrissur – 680651, Kerala, India. Ph: 0487-2373479 Fax: 0487-2373281 E-mail: Web:

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