Internship Experience @ People’s Union for Civil Liberties, Jaipur: Learnt to Organise Press Conferences

Your Name, College, Year of Study, Email ID

Anonymous

Name of Organisation, Location city, Team Strength

People’s Union for Civil Liberty, Jaipur, PUCL Jaipur usually take around 30- to 40 interns at a time and while doing field work they divide the students into groups of 5-6 students.

Application Process

I applied to PUCL at least three months in advance since there are limited seats for students. Some of my friends did not make through because of delay in their applications.I emailed my application along with my CV at [email protected] and/or [email protected] (preferably to both).

I did not mentioned the exact dates unless you I was not sure, since Kavita ma’am (the General Secretary of PUCL) is strict about dates. When I got selected, I got a reply get a reply which will warn me to accept the selection only if i can work hard.

Duration of internship and timings

2nd July, 2014 – 22nd July, 2015

First impression, first day formalities, infrastructure

The first day, I had to filled up the register kept at the office and complete some other formalities to mark the beginning date of my internship. I had made a good contact of the intern who was still working there from since long, beforehand to know what is the agenda for the day at PUCL, through which I can access easily from the PUCL interns FB page.

Yes, there is an FB page for PUCL Jaipur Interns, the link for which had sented to me as part of the instructions when I had accepted my selection for internship).

It was required to work from Day 1 itself, which will be detailed by the student coordinator.

Main tasks

One of the main works involved by us and the other citizens of Jaipur protested the attack and repression of a Gandhian Institution, whose land was grabbed by the the Government of Rajasthan, despite ongoing cases in various courts.

Apart from taking out rallies and holding Public meetings, they also filed a RTI application. The 1100 pages worth information received under the RTI was extremely valuable for the court case.

We also undertook a study of six schools run by the Jaipur Municipal corporation, called “The Pink City Schools”, which were founded initially by the Harijan Sewak Sangh, these schools for Dalit children were in an utter state of Neglect with the agenda of educating the Dalits and bringing them to a level playing field was definitely undermined.

A report was written up and presented to the JMC, with the objective of handing these schools to Sarwa Siksha Abhiyan. We learnt to organise a press conference addressed the media on the issue of the Pink City Schools. We also understood the economics of free cost medicines.

Every analysis for us was preceded by a talk or seminar on the legislation to be analyzed making us acquainted with the loopholes in the legislation and the process of its implementation. The analysis was followed by a presentation of the analysis to the authority or people that can play a role in improving the situation.

For instance, the analysis of the RTI Act and decisions was presented in a Public Hearing in front of activists including Aruna Roy and Nikhil Dey; the survey of the Women Police Desks was presented in front of Jaipur Police.

We also understood the functioning of the District and Session Courts and the Rajasthan High Court, including visiting the labour Courts, consumer court, revenue court as well as the Alternative Dispute Resolution Court in Operation. we also researched the cases of women at the One Stop Crisis Centre against violence against women and Visited Shakti Stambh the oldest short stay home in the state.

Through workshops organised by experts , the student tried to understand the analytical concepts of gender, caste, religion, bonded labour and tribe for understanding the reality of our society.

This work was interspersed with evening discussions on politics, law and India at Kavita madam’s residence involving knowledgeable arguments from each side, which made working here all the more fun and awarding.

Work environment and people

The work environment was really amazing and educational which can be made out from the work which interning at PUCL involved. Our co-interns gave us an impression of a mini India, with people coming from all across the country, some of which because of Lawctopus. Kudos to you.

We had to work in teams generally, sometimes working ceaselessly, preparing slogans and banners for the agitation next day, which might lead to lifelong friendships and gives a scope for building team work skills and accommodating differences.

As mentioned earlier, We get to meet some exceptional names in the social field and get to expand your network and learn from their experience. Occasionally we were called for team outing.Once the whole PUCL, Jaipur team including the interns went for a theatre show at Ravindra Munch, which is a very famous theatre at Jaipur. So, it was not only a internship full of learning but also a internship full of fun.

Best things

Apart from the value of the internship here;

Firstly, the enriching experience of working with some brilliant minds.

Secondly, the chance of getting interviewed every other day by one or the other news channel because of the various seminars, press conferences and other activities organized.

Thirdly, the sense of accomplishment and the happiness which one receives when people thank you for helping them and for your contribution.

Fourthly, getting to know closely about the not so rosy picture of the Indian legal system and getting a chance to help improve the same.

Bad things

The only bad thing was the internship being a field job I had to travel a lot .

Stipend

None

Biggest Lessons

I received the best lesson from the internship from Kavita ma’am. Although she is a person with extreme views on certain issues, yet she has a standing matched by few in the socio-legal field.

It was then that what she said sounded very important and significant to me, “Remember you are a human, then a lawyer and at the end a girl. Your gender matters little if you want to make a difference in this field”. How true!

Any Other Thing

I have to work hard, since it is only what you work that is added in the certificate, which has no set format. Also do not miss the opportunity of being the coordinator if asked, it entails extra perks of conducting a one to one contact with the guests while escorting them and planning the activities and workshops everyday.

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