Internship @ Punjab Human Rights Commission, Chandigarh: Petition Review, No Stipend

Your Name, College, Year of Study

Prerit Sethi, Rajiv Gandhi National University of Law, Punjab, 2nd Year

Name of Organisation, Location, Team Strength

Punjab State Human Rights Commission, Chandigarh, 30-35

Application Process

Just drop in a mail to Rohit Chatrath at [email protected]  and you will get a response from him as the internship date nears.

Duration of internship and timings

02 June 2014 (Monday) – 02 July 2014.

First impression, first day formalities, infrastructure

Punjab State Human Rights Commission is an ideal place to intern in Chandigarh, specially for 1st year students.

On our first day we were given an introduction about the working of the commission. We were also handed out the The Protection of Human Rights Act, 1993. We were told to read it and key points of it were explained to us. A small open book test was also taken on it in the post lunch session.

The interns were seated in the conference room in the 3rd floor. The room was big enough to accommodate all of us. It had fans and AC’s which would work for the most part.

Main tasks

It is compulsory to go to the PSHRC office for the first two weeks. The other two weeks are left for a research project on topics related to human rights in the state of Punjab.

In the first week we were made to review the complaints/petitions which came into the commission and we had to decide whether the cases fit into a certain criteria so as to be taken up by the commission. In the post lunch session debates were conducted between all the groups which were very fun and improved our public speaking skills.

In the second week we were made to read some of the past cases which were decided by the commission. The cases were huge and we read and studied them in groups. After we finished reading the cases, we were thoroughly quizzed on them by the Mr. Rohit Chatrath.

Rohit sir is the systems manager in PSHRC and all the credit goes to him for conducting an amazing internship which made each and everyone feel involved in the working and functions of the commission.

We were also shown every floor in the building and were walked through the process of registering a complaint to taking action on it. We also had an eye opening Q & A session with 2 senior members of the commission and a retired police DGP.

Work environment and people

The work environment was quite relaxed and open. There were interns from various law schools, mostly from the first and second year. Co-interns were fun to work with and interaction was free flowing.

Best things

Relaxed work environment, good work, friendly co-interns, helpful staff, fast wifi.

Bad things

None

Stipend

None

Biggest Lessons

Initially, I found some of the work/cases boring. But my biggest takeaway from this internship was when I realized any work (however boring) can be made interesting if a little fun is infused in it. The co-interns in my group were a big help and time seemed to fly by.

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