We are an all-women team of lawyers and social activists that provide legal representation and social support to victims (women and children) of domestic and sexual violence from marginalized sections of society across caste, class and religion. Further, we ensure the protection and promotion of women and children’s rights through advocacy, stakeholder accountability, public interest litigations, policy interventions, research, training, awareness and capacity building. Broadly our programs are as follows
Legal and Social Support
Majlis provides legal support to survivors of domestic and sexual violence. Apart from making them aware of their rights we provide legal support to negotiate the daunting justice system during investigation and trial. We also provide social support to help them rehabilitate their lives. The aim is to ensure that the dignity of the victim and safeguarding her rights is maintained at all times.
Domestic Violence: Our team of lawyers provide quality legal consultation, advice and legal representation to women in cases relating to domestic violence, maintenance, child custody, divorce etc across Magistrate Courts, Sessions Courts and Family Court in Mumbai and Thane.
Sexual Violence: We provide continuous legal support from registration of the case, through investigation to completion of the trial and beyond. We connect and liaison with the state stakeholders including the Police, Medical Officers, CWC, Prosecutor, Judge and Women and Department of Child Development to ensure that the dignity and best interest of the victim is upheld throughout the legal process
Social Support: We help victims access support services to rehabilitate their lives. 1. Access to medical, shelter, ration, education, documents, schemes and more. 2. Trauma counselling to ensure therapeutic healing. 3. Saksham an initiative that handholds them towards financial independence by providing career guidance, up-skilling, jobs and more.
Our 5 point support model includes
- Immediate Response: Meet the victim-survivor to reassure her and offer support. Explain to her the journey of the trial she has traversed and what is to follow and the expectations from her during the trial
- Inform the victim about the availability of services & schemes she can access and help her access these services
- Ensure protocol & safety guidelines are followed by different stakeholders
- Keep the victim informed about the current status and future course of the case
- Conduct a court orientation visit and accompany her at different stages of trial
- Connect her with social support services to enable her rehabilitation
Policy Level Intervention
Our efforts are aimed at placing women and children’s rights on the public policy agenda. Organizing national level conferences, public meetings, responding to Bills, Schemes and Policies concerning women and children’s rights, being part of expert committees etc., are some of the activities. Our notable campaigns include reform within Personal Laws, The Maharashtra State Handbook on Domestic Violence which was approved by Bombay High Court; Standard Operating Procedures for Mumbai Police in domestic and sexual violence cases.We are instrumental in the passing of Manodhariya Scheme in Maharashtra, a compensation and rehabilitation scheme for survivors of sexual violence and acid attack.
Training and Awareness
Majlis evolves innovative courses on the subject of sexual and domestic violence. We adapt content, teaching aids and films as per the needs of the group. Our modules include
Implementation of Laws Capacity building and training of State Stakeholders including Police, Judiciary, Medical Officers, Public Prosecutors, Child Welfare Committees and Protection Officers and Public Administration
‘Know your Rights’ Legal rights lectures at organisations, colleges, schools and community
“Expression” engaging youth for social change
Legal Aid camps in the community
Para Legal Understanding for Social Workers (PLUS),
Sexual Harassment at Workplace (Prevention, Prohibition & Redressal) Act, 2013. and Child Protection Policy
Research and Publications
Based on our practical experience and understanding of law and legal rights, we bring out publications. Our Defending Women … series which demystifies laws and procedures is very popular among students, teachers and lawyers.