Nyayika, an initiative of IDEAL Foundation for Social and Economic Development, is a chain of multi-speciality law centres in Gujarat that offers affordable professional legal services and advice in all types of legal matters, including civil, criminal, revenue, consumer and labour related matters.
The current Indian legal and administrative system is intimidating for a large proportion of citizens, who hesitate to approach the system for claiming their entitlements under various Government schemes or approach the courts of law for enforcing their legal rights and for settlement of disputes. Often, they lack knowledge about the law, legal entitlements and rights, and are afraid of the extraordinarily long, time consuming and complicated procedures. Further, when a person does approach a court of law, she/ he incur costs such as the advocate’s fees (which are often charged in an arbitrary manner) and other expenses. Consequently, people often give up on their legal entitlements and thereby do not access justice at the cost of denial of citizens’ rights.
Nyayika charges a fixed fee for its services in order to ensure the sustainability of the model. The fee is payable as per a schedule which allows the litigant to pay in parts as the matter progresses. A cash receipt is issued against all payment made. The focus is on enabling access of middle and low income citizens, especially those facing social exclusion, including Dalits, Adivasis, women and religious minorities, access to justice and promoting reconciliation rather than taking a litigation approach.
Nyayika, through trained paralegals, offers an alternative to the existing system as follows:
The impact of Nyayika’s services is that existing barriers in access to justice is ending and more people are opting to claim their legal entitlements and rights and opt for legal resolution of their disputes.