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Jananeethi was initiated by its Executive Director, Advocate George Pulikuthiyil in the year 1991 as service centre providing free legal aid and consultation to poor and marginalized communities to have access to justice and equity. This was registered as a Charity under the Charitable Societies Act in the year 1992 and got developed as a movement by involving many eminent people who had profound service records as jurists, social scientists, academia, thinkers, writers, human rights defenders and social critics. Among the many achievements of Jananeethi during its 21 years’ existence, the most spectacular contribution it has made for the social harmonising of the civil society could be its psycho-legal therapeutic services. Jananeethi uses law and legal system as therapeutic agents. Justice is the entry point. This is a right based, victim-centered approach for total healing of the physical, psychological, emotional, social and legal injuries inflicted on them.
In 1995 it started addressing rural women, particularly women of low-income families and marginalized communities, who often are silent sufferers of widespread discriminations, sexual atrocities, domestic violence etc. A special team of lawyers and para-legal activists and social workers were formed in Jananeethi and they were given proper direction and training to effectively address women and girl children who were targets of violence at home and in society.
Jananeethi organized nature lovers, environmental activists, youth clubs and farmers’ associations to fight the encroachments on nature and pollution of air, soil and water, unauthorized sand mining, deforestation, conversion of agricultural land to industrial basement etc. This group campaigned in schools, educational institutions, public offices, and centres of public activity against environmental degradation focusing on the use of plastics, chemicals and pesticides.
Jananeethi had campaigned for the idea of a LITIGATION FREE village since 1994 in the State of Kerala. In 2000 Jananeethi with the help and co-operation of community leaders, law students, district bar association and under guidance of district legal services authority did the pioneering work in creating the FIRST EVER LITIGATION FREE VILLAGE in India, at Thichoor in Thrissur district.
From the year 1993, Jananeethi has been regularly publishing a monthly journal, and has published several books and handouts, all in relation with protection and promotion of human rights. The message of equity and justice has gone to many thousands both in Kerala and else where through the publications. The monthly publication in vernacular language has influenced the thinking process of many people.
Jananeethi has developed a good network of committed activists in other parts of the State. Wayanad and Palakkad are the two districts where large number of tribal families and indigenous groups exist. These two districts are far behind in development and the people are mostly engaged in farming. Jananeethi has extended its presence in these districts as well. Jananeethi has opened its service even on the internet so as people who live in foreign land can also make use of its services. There are several individuals and corporate bodies abroad that regularly seek help of Jananeethi through Internet. Jananeethi has also introduced special training for young men and women who have graduated in social science and social work. The aim is to sharpen their views and convictions in relation to hard social realities of poverty, insecurity, communal disharmony, gender violence, corruption, politics of hate etc.
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Kerala State in India
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Human Rights Lawyering, Conflict Resolution, Clinical Legal Education, Psycho-legal counseling, Promotion of ethical standards and best clinical practices in drug trials.
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