Live Stream

Recent Legal Issues in India 2022

All India Law Entrance Test is a nationwide national entrance exam for admission to the LL.M program at Delhi National Law University. This year, it will take place on June 26, 2022 from 10:00 to 11:30. NLU-D has recently changed the test model for AILET. This year`s document will include objective and subjective questions. Therefore, it is necessary for candidates to follow the updated template in order to prepare accordingly. Sex workers are subjected to constant brutality, violence from their clients, and banishment from community activity and even from their own families. The recent release of the film Gangubai Kathiawadi, which revolves around the life of a sex worker turned activist, has once again put the issue in the spotlight. At the beginning of the new year, old issues of considerable importance have still not been decided by the Supreme Court of India. Government-run and funded shelters remained inadequate due to lack of space, financial resources and qualified personnel. NGOs relied mainly on donor contributions, although some received public funding. The disbursement of public funds to NGOs has sometimes been delayed for several years. In 2020, an amendment to the Foreign Contribution Regulation Act prevented the continuation of foreign contributions from the original recipient Indian NGO to other NGOs, preventing cooperation and coordination and severely hampering their activities, including anti-trafficking NGOs.

This remained the case until the end of the reporting period. The Ministry of Women and Children`s Development continued to fund NGO and state government shelters, assisting them through the Ujawala programme for women victims of sex trafficking in 107 shelters and the Swadhar Greh programme for vulnerable women in approximately 361 households. The central government provided INR 250 million ($3.36 million) to the Swadhar Greh and Ujjawala programmes in the 2020-2021 budget, but did not include separate allocations for the 2021-2022 budget. MWCD operated one-stop centres for women victims of all crimes, including sex trafficking. In 2021, 704 CSOs were operating in India, up from 700 in 2020. MWCD did not report on whether the centres assisted victims of human trafficking, and some NGOs had previously reported that the centres were ineffective and difficult to access. Efforts by law enforcement agencies throughout the country, particularly against debt bondage, remained insufficient in relation to the scale of the problem. The law required police to submit a First Information Report (FIR) as soon as information became available about the commission of a recognizable crime, such as forced labor or sex trafficking, which required police to open a criminal investigation. Police did not always arrest suspected traffickers, file FIRs to file a formal complaint, or file FIRs for human trafficking offenses. Public servants often resolved cases at the complaint stage. The National Investigation Agency (NIA) continued to investigate and prosecute cases of cross-border trafficking in persons, including those involving Bangladeshi and Sri Lankan nationals. Civil society has welcomed the NIA`s actions as a deterrent to potential traffickers.

In recent years, authorities in the states of Assam, Jharkhand and West Bengal have reportedly asked the police to record cases of human trafficking as abductions or missing persons in order to reduce the number of cases of human trafficking in official statistics. During the pandemic-induced lockdown, district courts granted bail to some alleged traffickers without notifying prosecutors or victims, including underage victims, at bail hearings, in violation of the POCSO Act. In addition, law enforcement agencies were regularly deployed for public health operations and were unable to conduct routine operations and investigations of trafficking-related offences. Representatives from the states of Karnataka and Tamil Nadu said efforts to maintain progress in the fight against debt bondage have been hampered by the diversion of government resources to fight the pandemic and increased economic pressures have increased the risk of repetition for survivors. In southern India, some inspections conducted by the Vigilance Committee to identify victims of debt bondage at the county level were reportedly halted during the pandemic, reducing the total number of people exempt from debt bondage. The National Human Rights Commission has issued two tips on measures for the prevention, identification and reintegration of bonded labourers and on the prosecution of traffickers. Servided Labor Counseling, developed in consultation with civil society organizations, made specific recommendations to district judges, including instructing them to train teams for fortnightly inspections in certain industries, to promptly complete debt bondage investigations within 24 hours of receiving a complaint, and to provide immediate assistance of 20,000 Indian rupees (INR) ($269) to each servant. identified in easement. In response to the increased use of social media platforms to attract victims during the pandemic, state and local law enforcement agencies have focused on training in cybercrime investigations, and some police departments have released cybersecurity manuals to raise public awareness.

Preventive measures to combat trafficking in human beings vary considerably from one State to another. Some state Governments conducted awareness-raising campaigns against trafficking, although NGOs reported that local officials, migrant workers and agricultural workers were often unaware of human trafficking and their legal rights. In April 2021, the Government of Andhra Pradesh distributed human trafficking manuals and training manuals to government officials, members of the judiciary, civil society and other stakeholders in Andhra Pradesh, Odisha and Telangana. The Bihar State and Delhi Legal Services collaborated with an NGO to develop public awareness programmes on human trafficking. AHTU worked with civil society to mark “Children`s Day” with an awareness campaign against child trafficking along the Indo-Nepal border. In addition, officials in Himachal Pradesh conducted awareness campaigns on trafficking in women and children in several districts, while the Telangana Police operated a human trafficking information website. The Civil Service Training Institute of the Ministry of Labour and Employment provided training to AHTUs, labour administrators, members of the Child Welfare Board and other civil servants on issues such as debt bondage and child labour. Government officials noted that child trafficking and labor have increased during the pandemic. The Minister of State for Labour and Employment said the government removed 58,289 children from child labour in 2020-2021, an increase from about 54,894 children in 2019-2020. Several state governments maintained suspensions or changes to labor laws to boost economic activity after the first pandemic-related lockdown.

The changes included higher maximum working time limits for certain industries, lower social security benefits, suspension of settlement of labor disputes, and suspension of the right to strike. Trade unions and union representatives criticised the changes and highlighted the possible negative impact on vulnerable groups. State governments emphasized that economic recovery measures did not circumvent debt bondage, POSCO or other anti-trafficking laws.