Vijaywada: KL Deemed-to-be University, one of the leading universities in the country for graduation and higher education, has undertaken a massive pilot project in association with AP Legal Services Authority, in Guntur. This extensive survey which covered over 800 citizens of 3 villages adopted by the University was done by 100 students belonging to BBA LLB and LLB programs at the KL College of Law in Vaddeswaram, Andhra Pradesh.
The objective of the survey was to ensure that the villages are made litigation-free via free legal aid, arbitrations, conciliation processes and awareness services. The study undertaken is aimed to utilize the results to provide true feedback on the present state of the rural areas and facilitate effective administrative mechanisms yielding benefits to the villagers. As the law is not just a tool to resolve disputes, it can also be utilized to avoid litigation at the grass-root levels. These surveys may enrich the knowledge of the Indian Society in general and rural India in particular. Some of the findings of such surveys may result in great encouragement to the growth of rural society. It may help in bringing about changes in the formulation/ reformulation/ modification of the existing system/state for rural development.
The initiative started off with a door-to-door survey, where relevant data was obtained, analyzed, and classified by the students. The 2-day survey successfully identified over 230 pressing problems faced by the citizens. The problems were classified into five categories – health, infrastructure, familial, financial and legal issues. It included problems faced by farmers, elderly citizens having trouble with receiving timely pensions, long awaited divorce & death certificates, sanitation, among others. Post research findings, the students, assisted by 4 mentors from KL Deemed-to-be University have secured a written assurance from the Secretaries of the 3 villages to address the common concerns at once.
Dr. G. Pardha Saradhi Varma, Vice Chancellor, KL Deemed to be University said, “I am happy to see that our students have embodied the core values of the University to erect a flourishing community in the villages. Through this project, we are happy to witness our law students develop into social entrepreneurs as they address problems at base level. I’m certain that a change was instilled through the legal literary camps held by our pupils to educate the villagers on their legal rights. Once they learn first-hand that their education has a purpose, their ‘qualification’ becomes their ‘calling’.”
Mrs. Ratna, a resident in Kunchanapalli, has stated that “I have been separated from my husband for years and I am yet to receive the divorce decree. I was repeatedly told that divorce is a laborious process, and I must therefore wait. Only after speaking to the students did I understand my true rights and realize how I was held back all these years. For finally enabling a platform for our voices to be heard, I am truly thankful to these youngsters.”
The students, deeply attached to the survey, are closely monitoring the status of the progress in the 3 villages. KL College of Law has recently gained national recognition owing to the popular student innovations. A recent milestone is an app developed by a law student, called Cyber Alert, which has helped a particular user reclaim close to INR 2 Lakhs, lost to a cyber fraud. This achievement was in the very first week of the app launch.