Internship Experience @ Human Rights Law Network, Chandigarh: Get a True Picture of Social Issues in the Country

Name of the Student

Anonymous

Name of Organisation, Location (city), Team Strength

Human Rights Law Network, Chandigarh, 4-5 members

Application Process

The application process is quite simple.

A month before you want to start interning, send an e-mail at the following ID: [email protected] with your CV.

The Director, Ms. Veena Kumari will ask a couple of basic questions; just a formality. You will then be sent a confirmation mail stating the date when you are to report.

Duration of internship and timings

4 weeks, starting 1 July. The timings were 10:00 am to 3:00 pm

Most of the days, either Veena ma’am or Jatinder sir used to be in the office.

However, when both of them had to go to the High Court, you had the option of working from home, though you could work in the office as well with the co-interns.

First impression, first day formalities, infrastructure

I reached on the first day and met Veena ma’am and two other interns.

She asked me about the subjects I had studied in the University and the areas I would like to work on.

I told her I wanted to work on rights of disabled persons.

Hence I was asked to go through important provisions of the PWD Act and then I was assigned a couple of cases to research on.

Since a small residential apartment has been converted into an office, there were no cabins or a coffee machine!! However, we were supposed to have a professional attitude and work accordingly.

Main tasks

The main tasks involved conducting research for the cases that were to come up in the court, filing petitions and figuring out the appropriate remedies for people who visited asking for help.

But before conducting research, all the relevant issues were discussed in detail with the interns to give them an overview and provide a base for research.

Since Veena mam had to attend a conference in Delhi on acid attacks, I assisted her in preparing the paper that had to be presented there.

Work environment and people

Though the place is residential, you are expected to be professional in your conduct. The environment is of the kind that is found in any other office, with all the people visiting for advice and the reading and research you are expected to undertake.

Veena mam and Jatinder sir are extremely helpful and they guide the interns whenever there is a need.

Best things

The best thing is that an intern is free to choose the areas he or she would like to work on.

However, if there is a petition coming up in the court, you will be expected to work on that first.

The other thing is that both Veena mam and Jatinder can be approached any time for guidance.

They will make all efforts to ensure that you understand a point or concept before proceeding ahead.

Bad things

The only problem is that the office is small and hence too many interns can’t be accommodated.

Therefore, there aren’t many people to interact with and learn from.

Biggest Lessons

One of the things I learnt is that interning with HRLN will teach me things I would never learn at law school.

There are so many issues like rights of disabled persons, acid attacks, declining sex ratio etc. that are never taught to us but there are numerous people who are affected by these problems.

Only by working here I could explore some of these issues and actually contribute in a meaningful way.

Any Other Thing

Even though the office is small and there aren’t a lot of people, working here has given me an insight into some of the most pressing problems and I have learnt how I can help as a law student.

If you want a true picture of these issues, you can only get that by actually working on cases and conducting research at a place like HRLN.

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