The Mumbai Unit of HRLN, also known as the India Center for Human Rights and Law, established in 1997 is one of the oldest units of the HRLN network. The work done by this unit is the Criminal Justice Initiative (CJI) and is now recognized as a pioneer in providing legal aid to prison inmates. The CJI has also played a key role in training activists and lawyers in Gujarat to pay a critical role post–Gujarat communal violence. The Mumbai unit is also involved in the campaign for the implementation of the Sri Krishna Commission post the Mumbai communal riots of 1996. Due to the close collaboration with the labour unions in the state, the Mumbai unit has achieved several landmark judgment that championed the cause of labour rights, against contractualisation of the workforce and protecting the rights of salt pan workers being the most significant order.
- Women’s Justice: The focus area includes matters pertaining to sexual harassment of women, reproductive rights, and obtaining adequate care and compensation for acid attack survivors
- Environmental Justice: Displacement and livelihood issues arising from environmental destruction, particularly its impact on marginalised communities.
- Criminal Justice: Providing legal aid to prisoners and juveniles. The unit also takes up issues pertaining to illegal detention of refugees and trafficking victims in trial courts as well as in the Bombay High Court.
- Labour Rights: We take up issues pertaining to discrimination, illegal closures and illegal termination of workers.
- Housing and Land Rights: Matters pertaining to forced evictions and illegal demolitions
- Health Rights: Issues pertaining to lack of access to medication, medical negligence, right to choose, access to pre and post-natal services particularly to women from marginalised communities.
- Disability Rights: Accessibility for persons with disabilities in the built environment, discrimination in employment and housing rights for persons with disabilities.
PIL's & Cases
Slideshow - PIL's & Cases.
The unit collaborates closely with the Labour Movement, women’s groups, and disability rights groups amongst others and has been the go-to place for people from the community since its inception.
Labour cases are undertaken by the unit in the Central Administrative Tribunal, the Armed Forces
Tribunal as well as the Bombay High Court.
The unit has championed the cause of accessibility for persons with disabilities, most significantly that of the Mumbai Suburban Railway Network. On the direction from the Bombay High Court, it has undertaken an accessibility audit of all the railway stations in Mumbai along with the Centre for Spatial Alternatives. The Unit’s work on accessibility has resulted in a more accessible built environment for persons with disabilities as well as protection of jobs and education opportunities for persons with disabilities.
The unit is recognized as a pioneer in providing legal aid to prison inmates and juveniles in conflict with the law. It also has, to its credit, several landmark judgments on anti-trafficking , including directions from the Bombay High Court to ensure that trafficking victims are treated as victims and put through the ordeal of trials and imprisonment.
The unit has also done significant work in several acid attack cases. A number of Petitions have been filed in the Bombay High Court seeking free medical treatment and enhanced compensation for acid attack survivors. The work of the unit in this area has lead to the State government to enhance the compensation amount payable to acid attack survivors under the State’s Victim Compensation Scheme.
The unit has taken up several matters in the National Green Tribunal (NGT), Western Zone Bench as well as the Bombay High Court, for the protection of the environment and displacement and livelihood issues arising therefrom. Several orders that have been obtained have lead to the protection of eco-sensitive areas in the State, notably Aarey Colony and Sanjay Gandhi National Park in Mumbai. Several environmental justice matters of Gujarat are also taken up by the Unit at the NGT.
Donate to improve the city of Mumbai in India
Visit the HRLN office for legal support or to know more about our work:
61, Jalaram Jyot
Fort, Mumbai 400 001
Phone: 022 2282 0109