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November 28, 2020

How to get Legal Advice for Free in 11 States Villages through online video-conferencing

by CA Shivam Jaiswal in Circular and Notifications

How to get Legal Advice for Free in 11 States Villages through online video-conferencing

2.05 lakh advices have been enabled during the first seven months of FY-20-21 as against total 1.95 lakh advices given till April 2020

Tele-Law has touched a new milestone on 30th October 2020 with 4 Lakh beneficiaries having received legal advice under this through CSCs (Common Service Centres). As against total 1.95 lakh advices given till April 2020 since the launch of the programme, 2.05 lakh advices have been enabled during the first seven months of this financial year.

Embarking on the “Digital India Vision” of the Government of India, Department of Justice has been harnessing “emerging” and “indigenous” digital platforms to accelerate and make access to justice a reality for all.  In meeting this objective, Tele-Law programme was launched in 2017 to address cases at pre–litigation stage. Under this programme, smart technology of video conferencing, telephone /instant calling facilities available at the vast network of Common Service Centres at the Panchayat level are used to connect the indigent, down-trodden, vulnerable, unreached groups and communities with the Panel Lawyers for seeking timely and valuable legal advice.

Especially designed to facilitate early detection, intervention and prevention of the legal problems, the Tele-Law service is proactively outreached to groups and communities through a cadre of frontline volunteers provided by NALSA and CSC- e Gov. These grassroot soldiers have been additionally equipped with a mobile application to pre-register and schedule appointment of the applicants during their field activity. Dedicated pool of lawyers has been empanelled to provide continued legal advice and consultation to the beneficiaries. Enriching IEC has been uploaded on its public portal that may be accessed on https://www.tele-law.in/. Separate Dashboard has been developed for capturing real time data and nature of advice rendered. In order to ensure district level granularity in the near future, data is also being pushed to the PMO Prayas Portal.

How the Tele Law Free Advice Works

States Covered in India

S.NoStatesNo. of CSCs
1Assam450
2Arunachal Pradesh29
3Bihar500
4Jammu & Kashmir150
5Meghalaya42
6Manipur19
7Mizoram12
8Nagaland48
9Sikkim10
10Tripura40
11Uttar Pradesh500
Total1800

Citizen Eligible for Tele-Law Service and Fees

S.NoCategories of Marginalized persons (Section 12 of Legal Services Authorities Act 1987)Fees For Tele Law ServiceDocuments to be brought to CSC for Registration
1WomenNilNil
2Children( Below 18 years of age)NilNil
3SC / STNilCaste Certificate
4Victims of TraffickingNilSelf- Declaration /Copy of Police FIR /Affidavit
5Mentally Ill and Differently abledNilDisability Certificate
6Victims of Natural Disaster/Ethnic ViolenceNilDistrict
7Workers in unorganized SectorNilJob Card / MGNREGA Card
8People with low income groups (Income as specified by State)NilBPL Card /Income Certificate
9Under trials /In custodyNilAny relevant Case document
S.NoCategoriesFees for Telelaw ServiceDocuments to be brought to CSC for Registration
10Persons other than those mentioned above30/-Aadhar Card / Any ID proof

Legal Advice is Now Available in Your Village Through Common Service Centers (CSCs)

1. Legal Advice can be obtained on following matters:

  • Dowry, Family Dispute, Talak, Domestic Violence & Maintenance
  • Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace
  • Words, Acts, Gestures intended to insult the modesty of women Indecent representation of women
  • Land Disputes, Tenancy and Lease, Property and Inheritance rights Equal Pay for Equal Work, Minimum wages
  • Maternity Benefits, Medical termination of Pregnancy, Prevention of misuse of Pre and Post Natal
  • Child Marriage
  • Protection of Children from Sexual Offences
  • Child Labour/ Bonded Labour, Right to Education
  • Lodging of FIR, Arrest, Bail
  • Atrocities Against Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribes

2. Video conferencing with Lawyer

  • Women
  • Children (Below 18 years)
  • Scheduled Caste, Scheduled Tribes (SC/ST)
  • Victims of Trafficking
  • People living Below the Poverty Line
  • Workers in Unorganized Sector
  • Victims of Natural Disasters
  • Mentally-ill and Differently-abled
  • Under trials and in Custody

*Under Section 12 of the Legal Services Authorities Act, 1987

Any other category needs to pay Rs. 30/- per counseling

3. Appointment with your Lawyer

Get Convenient Date and Time

Take help of Tele-Law Pam Legal Volunteer (TPLV) to Register your case on Tele-Law Mobile Application

List of Registered Tele-Law PLVs (TPLVs) and Registered CSC in your village is available at www.tele-law.in

5. Working of Tele-Law

i. Community mobilization and Information on Tele- law by TPLV

ii. Pre- Registration  of case through mobile by TPLV

iii. Citizens can also directly reach CSC and get their case registered

iv. Receive SMS to know your scheduled time and date

vi. Receive SMS to know your scheduled time and date for seeking legal advice

v. Reach CSC on scheduled date and time

vi. Tele-consultation with panel lawyer

vii. Advice given

FAQ on Tele-Law

1. What is Tele-Law service?

Answer: Tele-law is a service uses video conferencing facility and telephone services to connect lawyers to litigants who need legal advice. This service aims to reach out to the needy especially the marginalized and disadvantaged. The service is provided through Common Service Centers or CSCs located at gram panchayat level. For more information click on http://www.tele-law.in

2. What are the benefits of Tele- Law service?

Answer:Tele Law service enables anyone to seek legal advice without wasting precious time and money. The service is free for those are eligible for free legal Aid as mentioned under Section 12 of Legal Services Authority Act, 1987. For all others a nominal fee of INR 30 Rs is charged.

3. Where is the Tele -Law service available?

Answer: Since 2017 Tele law service has been provided in selected 1800 CSCs of 11 states: Bihar (500), Uttar Pradesh (500), eight states of North-East (Assam, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Nagaland, Arunachal Pradesh, Manipur, Tripura and Sikkim) and Jammu and Kashmir (800).

At present Tele- Law service is available in 28060 CSCs in 115 Aspirational Districts across 28 states in the country.

For more information to find CSCs in Aspirational Districts click on

http://www.tele-law.in/static/tele-law-aspirational-districts.php

4. What is a CSC?

Answer: CSCs are shops/Kiosks that deliver various government services online like public utility services, social welfare schemes, healthcare, financial, education and agriculture services to citizens in rural and remote areas of the country.

Common Service Centre (CSC) is one of the mission mode projects under the Digital India Programme run by Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY). There are approximately 3.19 lakh CSCs in India. CSCs are located in Gram Panchayats.

5. Is this Tele-law website available in regional languages?

Answer: Yes the Tele-law website can be accessed at http://tele-law.in and is available in 22 official languages.

6. Who all can get advice through Tele-Law Service?

Answer: Legal advice is made available to everyone under Tele-Law service Advice is free of Cost to those who are eligible for free legal aid under Section 12 of LSA Act,1987

  • Women
  • Children
  • Persons belonging to Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribe
  • Victims of Trafficking
  • Mentally ill and differently abled people
  • Victims of natural disaster/ethnic violence
  • Workers in unorganized /industrial workers
  • Under trials
  • People of low income group

For all others a nominal fee of Rs INR 30/- charged for each consultation. http://www.tele-law.in/static/citizens-eligible.php

7. For what kind of cases/Matters I need to avail Tele-Law Service?

Answer: Legal matters in which advice can be taken through Tele-Law service :-

  • Dowry, family dispute, divorce, protection from domestic violence.
  • Sexual harassment, sexual abuse, eve teasing at the workplace.
  • Maintenance of women children and senior citizens.
  • Rights regarding property and land.
  • Equal wages for males and females.
  • Maternity benefits and prevention of foeticide.
  • Prohibition of child marriage, protection of children from sexual assault, prevention of child labour and implementing right to education.
  • Arrest – (F.I.R)/ process of registering the First Information Report.
  •  Atrocities against scheduled castes/ scheduled tribes and their rehabilitation.

8. Will my case and my personal details be kept confidential?

Answer: Yes, Your personal and case details are kept confidential

9. What IEC (Information / Education and Communication) material is available on Tele-Law portal?

Answer:

  • You can access/download and Print IEC material from http://www.tele-law.in/static/iec-materials.php
  • Flyer/Poster/Brochure in ( 22 languages)
  • E- Tutorial on use of Mobile Application
  • User Manual on use of DASHBOARD by PLV, VLE , Panel Lawyer
  • E- Tutorial on use of DASHBORAD by PLV, VLE , Panel Lawyer
  • Presentations on Role and Responsibilities on PLV, VLE and Panel Lawyer, Legal Aid Seeker

.

10. What is the role of a Village Level Entrepreneur?

Answer: VLE is a Village Level Entrepreneur who runs the CSC in your area and provides for the Tele Law Service through his center. You can also approach the VLE directly by going to the CSC and enquiring about the service. The VLE will

  • Provide you with the name and contact details of the PLV attached to his CSC or put you in touch with the (Para Legal Volunteer) who will give you details about the benefits of legal advice under the Tele-law Service, or
  • He or She will brief you about the benefits of legal advice under the Tele-law Service,
  • Register you as an applicant for the Tele-Law Service by uploading your details in the information form on the Tele-Law portal. He or She will also upload and scan the required documents furnished by you.
  • Generate an online appointment to connect you with a Panel Lawyer via a VCF (Video Conferencing Facility/ chat and/or telephone available in his CSC.
  • Automatic SMS would be generated and sent to you on your registered mobile number with details of date and time of your appointment

11. Who is a PLV? What is the role of a PLV in Tele Law?

Answer: PLV is a Para- Legal Volunteer deployed in your area by District Legal Services Authority (DLSA) or CSC e- Governance Services India Ltd for facilitating Tele-Law Service.
Under the Tele-law program a PLV is attached with the selected CSC in your village. A PLV is not a lawyer but has basic understanding and knowledge of legal process and laws. A PLV will

  • provide information about Tele Law Service to citizens in community gatherings and public places,
  • identify citizens in rural and remote areas in need of legal advice and information
  • understand nature of the legal issue faced by the citizen
  • facilitate registration of case at CSC;
  • ensure that the persons availing free legal service must have the required documents;
  • may ask for documents such as Aadhaar for filling the case registration form;
  • facilitate pre-appointment with panel lawyer,
  • connect citizen to the Panel Lawyers through video conferencing facility at the CSC;
  • If the need arise PLV, with the consent of the applicant can be a part of the consultation to make the applicant understand the legal advice given by the Panel Lawyer;
  • keep track of progress of the applicant’s cases/grievances and maintain a record of the same;

12. Where can I find a PLV?

Answer: Step-2: You can find the contact details of the PLV attached to the CSC in your area by clicking at the given link- http://www.tele-law.in/static/tele-law-csc.php.
This link flashes the name of the States in which Tele-law service is being currently available.
Step-2:  Click on the name of your desired State or the State to which you belong, a list of selected CSCs with their address and contact details of the Para legal Volunteers (PLVs) appears on the portal.
Step-3: You can call at the given number of the PLV or go straight at the address given for CSC.
Step-4:  You may also find the details of the PLVs attached with the CSC in your village through the Village Headmen.

13. Who is Legal Advice Seeker/Beneficiary? What is his/her role?

Answer: Any person who comes to CSC to seek legal advice is Legal Advice Seeker/Beneficiary. She/he must come to the CSC for Consultation.

14. Who is a Panel Lawyer? What is the role of a Panel Lawyer in Tele-law?

Answer: A Panel Lawyer is a practicing advocate selected by Department of Justice and CSC-e Governance Services or registered on the Panel of State /District Legal Services Authority. A Panel Lawyer will
SHOW his availability on Tele-Law Portal for a period of Seven Days (weekly basis) of his availability to give advice
MAKE him / herself available on the appointed date and time
Any Change in the date/ time of advice has to be intimate to VLE or can be changed by Panel Lawyer
Mandatory to fill feedback form before closing the case

15. Can I choose a lawyer?

Answer: In choosing a lawyer, you have the following options:-

  • From Dropdown Column You may chose between Male /Female Lawyer
  • You may choose the lawyer as per the schedule of availability shown in the calendar during the time of registration of your case.
  • Before filling the feedback form, in case you are not satisfied with the advice of the lawyer, you can always chose another Lawyer.

16. How can I get an appointment with a Panel Lawyer?

Answer: The PLV or the VLE will help you get an appointment with the Panel Lawyer.
The PLV or VLE will ask you to carry some important documents at the time of registration. Please refer to question number No 14 below.
Appointment with Panel Lawyer is fixed for the next day after you register your case at the Tele-Law Service with the CSC.

17. Can I get legal advice on the same day?

Answer: Instant Video conference facility has been added to the Tele –Law portal.
Under the Instant VC facility, You will be able to connect and take legal advice on the matter on the same day depending on the availability of the Panel lawyer.

18. Do I need to provide any documents during registration?

Answer: Citizen will need to provide personal information and any appropriate document (where applicable). In case citizen belongs to category of Section 12 of LSA, Act, 1987 He/She will need to provide proof of the same. List of documents that are accepted as proof is given at the under-mentioned link
http://www.tele-law.in/static/citizens-eligible.php

PLV can also guide you regarding case related or any other documents to be provided.

19. What is the cost of using Tele-Law service? What is provided under this service?

Answer: The cost of Tele-law service is free for the persons eligible to free legal advice as mentioned under section 12 LSA 1987 whereas persons belonging to categories mentioned under section 12 LSA 1987 has to pay Rs. 30 for availing the Tele-Law Service.

  • It will include basic understanding of their case by PLV ;
  • One appointment with Legal expert over VCF/chat or telephone for a fixed timeslot of 20 minutes.
  • In case the Panel Lawyer reschedules the appointment, you need not pay for the rescheduled appointment.
  • You get maximum 3 chances for the consultation on the same case.

20. Am I eligible for free legal advice through Tele -Law?

Answer: Yes, if you are eligible under Section 12 of LSA Act, 1987 , that include Women ,Children, persons belonging to Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribe, victims of trafficking, mentally ill and differently abled people, Victims of natural disaster/ethnic violence, Workers in unorganized sector/industrial workers, under trials and people of low income group.

21. What if I miss my appointment with the Panel Lawyer?

Answer: If you miss your appointment with the Panel Lawyer then you will have to seek a fresh appointment.
If you belong to categories other than those mentioned under section 12 of LSA 1987 then the fee paid by you for the missed appointment will be forfeited. However in case your appointment is not completed because of absence of the Panel Lawyer, VLE/PLV, it will be rescheduled by the VLE. For this appointment you need not to pay again.

22. What if my consultation with the Panel lawyer gets disrupted in the middle? Do I get another chance?

Answer: In such case the consultation could be done via phone call.

23. What is the process to reschedule the appointment?

Answer:

  • Applicant – An applicant cannot reschedule the appointment by him-self or herself.
  • Panel Lawyer – If the Panel lawyer wants to reschedule the case he will click on reschedule option. The VLE checks Panel lawyer next availability for the consultation with the applicant and VLE finalizes the next appointment.
  • VLE – VLE checks Panel Lawyer next availability for the consultation with the applicant and then he finalizes the next appointment.

24. What if I am not Satisfied with the Tele-Law Service?

Answer:  You have the option to give Feedback

25. Where can I make a complaint or any suggestion about Tele-Law?

Answer:  Yes, you can email your grievance or any suggestion at telelaw.grievance@csc.gov.in or help.tele-law@gmail.com
Call us at -011 -23074401/23070627

26. What is the Tele-Law mobile application?

Answer: Tele-Law mobile application is an application developed to enable pre-registration of cases for legal advice and to provide a choice to the beneficiary to seek his/her preferred date and time for legal advice and consultation

27. Who will use this Tele-Law mobile application?

Answer:  Paralegal Volunteers (PLVs) who are specifically engaged under Tele-law programme will use this mobile application.

28. Where can the PLV download the Tele-Law mobile application?

Answer: Tele-Law mobile application can be downloaded by a Paralegal Volunteers (PLVs) on his/her mobile number registered on the Tele-law dashboard wherein, he/she will receive a link, by SMS, to download the application. She/he can download the application through Google Play Store also.

29. Can this application be downloaded on every mobile phone?

Answer:  It can be downloaded on every smart/android phones only.

30. How will this Tele-Law mobile application benefit the PLV, Beneficiary and Village level Entrepreneur (VLE)?

Answer: The Tele-Law mobile application will benefit in the following ways :-

1. PLVs

  • She/he can pre- register cases of the beneficiary or legal aid seeker while conducting outreach and awareness activity.
  • She/he can fill and save the pre-registration forms even when there is no net connectivity.
  • She/he can upload the form when they are online.

2. Beneficiary

  • She/he can seek preferred date and time for legal advice.
  • She/he has the option to chose three different dates and time

3. VLE

  • She/he will get notification of Pre-registered cases on the Tele-Law dashboard
  • II. She/he can block the appointment for the beneficiary from the preferred date and time submitted in the pre-registration form.

31. How will the beneficiary know about his date and time for legal advice?

Answer:  Beneficiary will receive three SMS regarding his /her chosen date and time for legal advice:-

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