Law Students come together to promote ‘Good Governance Now’ Model in Bihar
Law students of Chanakya National Law university came together and made action plan to promote Good Governance Now model successful in Bihar. Good Governance Now Model developed by Institute of Rural Development and Research (IRRAD), Gurgaon; Jindal Global Law School (JGLS), Sonipat comprises of training of select group of citizens on their legal rights, government programmes and policies; organizing panel discussions and legal literacy camps creating a platform for rural people to voice their demand and launch campaign on ‘Good Governance Now’ or ‘Sushasan Abhi’ to make people aware of government programmes and policies. Prof. Ajay Pandey of Jindal Law School said that the participation of law students in promoting this model would teach values of making law work for the poor and ensure justice to common man. He added that this model seeks to secure effective participation of rural community in realization of the goals of the Indian democratic framework using clinical legal methodological approach (i.e. by simple explanation, learning by doing)
The action by students becomes relevance in view of fact that every law college in India is mandated to have legal aid clinic for providing legal aid to communities. This mandate is not being followed by most law colleges in the country. Chanakya National Law University, premier institute of Bihar is taking steps to start legal aid clinic in the state. Various dimensions of this model was discussed in a regional conference on ‘Good Rural Governance and Citizen Participation’ organized by IRRAD, JGLS and Chanakya National Law University (CNLU) at CNLU campus in Patna on November 19, 2011. Dr. S.P. Singh, Registrar, CNLU, Patna inaugurated the conference with lighting of the lamp and welcomed the participants with an encouraging inaugural address. Prof. D.M. Diwakar, Director, A.N. Sinha Institute of Social Studies, was the keynote speaker for this session. He pointed out that real poverty is hidden under various poverty line estimates.
He highlighted that according to multi level poverty index, a 10 point indicator for assessing poverty, nearly 62 crores of people are under poverty line. He suggested that community participation and ownership can be the critical mass in bringing in good rural governance. Dr. Vikas Jha of IRRAD emphasized on need of developing community ownership for making legal aid to community successful. Mr. Lalit Mohan Sharma of IRRAD, shared the model of ‘community managed water resource management’ in improving availability of fresh water in rain deficient Mewat, district, Haryana located on Aravali hills. At the end of the workshop, students of National Law University came together with NGOs make action plan of spreading ‘Good Governance Now’ Model in some villages of Vaishali and Patna district in future. They focused on creating awareness on main government schemes, so that they could get entitlements / benefits of these schemes. They decided to make Gram Sabha as main stakeholder in making ‘Good Governance Now Model’ successful in Bihar.