Your Name, College, Year of Study, Email ID
Name of Organisation, Location city, Team Strength
Supreme Court Commissioners’ Office, New Delhi, Team Strength: 5 people
Application Process with contact details
I got a call for applications via the Internships Committee at my college. However, if one wishes to apply, they can reach the office at (011) 26851335 or (011) 26851339, or via email at [email protected]
The office is located at B-68, 2nd Floor, Sarvodaya Enclave
Duration of internship and timings
18th April 2016 to 20th May 2016
First impression, first day formalities, infrastructure
The office as such is not that big and it has a very comfortable environment. I was introduced to the people working at the office, who were extremely helpful. There is a sense of professionalism but it is not in an overt manner, hence I felt more comfortable than intimidated. The infrastructure is sufficing, all the basic requirements of an office are present. Everything was done to make me feel comfortable as I was the only intern, and the nature and requirements of the job were well explained to me so that I could formulate my short and long term goals for the internship period.
Since the office was established for the purposes of tracking the implementation of the orders given in the Right to Food case ( WP (C) 196/2001), all my work was related to this and other issues stemming from this case such as homelessness, maternity benefits, etc. I worked with the Legal Advisor to the Commissioners, hence my work included reading through the orders given by the Supreme Court and work in compiling them, and tracking the implementation of these orders in different states.
I also attended a National Level Conference organized by the National Human Rights Commission, organized events such as “Jan Sunvaai” (A public hearing) with regard to maternity entitlements and child care, and also participated in meetings with a Member of the National Commission for Women for pursuance of the recommendations made in the public hearing. I also had the good fortune of being able to work closely with Ms Sejal Dand and Ms Kavita Shrivastava (National Advisors to the Commissioners).
I also had the chance of visiting the Supreme Court for a hearing in a case related to the issue of Right to Food and learnt how the proceedings work. I also had to travel a lot to the offices of different advocates to pick up documents related to the case, and had to spend time at the Human Rights Law Network office in Jungpura, New Delhi with regard to the case.
The main tasks would differ with the general environment as with the changes in the environment, the work would change as well. However, the main task was to work towards tracking the implementation of the SC orders.
Work environment and people
The work environment was very comfortable as the all the people were extremely sweet and helpful to me. They helped me understand my job and assisted me whenever I needed them. They were very supportive and made sure I was not overworking myself. Since I was the only intern and the only person who was relatively younger, I had a lot of perks such as free lunches, ice cream treats on hot summer days and free rides to different places where I needed to go. There were days when the pressure was a lot at work due to pressing deadlines with regard to the events we were organizing and so on, but having an office wherein I could work efficiently as well as relax whenever required was important, which I got here.
A high point in my internship was getting to contribute in an important meeting with a Member of the National Commission for Women, discussing maternity entitlements and child care. Despite being an intern, I was treated as an equal to the people who had been working in this field for long, and I was given a chance to make my contributions. Another high point was attending a National Level Conference organized by the National Human Rights Commission wherein I was given a chance to submit my recommendations to a working group with regard to the amendments needed in the National Food Security Act, 2013 and they were shortlisted for the purposes of an amendment.
A low point was that there were a few days, here and there, when I had absolutely no work to do which like a criminal waste of time to me. This situation sometimes occurred because there were no clear instructions as to what needed to be done, or there was nothing that I, as an intern, could do. However, such events were rare, since there generally was a great burden of work on all of us.
I did not receive any stipend. However, I was given a travel reimbursement form, apart from occasional free lunches, etc. Also, whenever I traveled to anyplace in the city with my boss, I wasn’t allowed to pay at all. So, there wasn’t much expenditure out of my own pocket.
One of the biggest lessons I learnt was working under pressure. Having worked with Ms Sejal Dand and Ms Kavita Shrivastava, I can say that I learnt how to deal with extreme stress and yet manage to complete my work so as to retain a good image. I learnt the value of effective communication, as a large part of my job profile required me to speak with people personally and obtain relevant documents. All in all, this internship has made me a better manager, and I also got exposed to a very new aspect under Human Rights law, a cause that will remain close to my heart and make me work towards the betterment of the society.
Since my parents live in the same city as the internship, I didn’t have to look for a PG accommodation.
There is not a strict policy of clocking in at a particular time, however it is expected of the intern to complete the work assigned before leaving. Even then, leaving work early hasn’t been much of an issue, as long as the work can be completed at home. I used to clock in at around 10.30-11 AM everyday and left around 6 PM, if I didn’t have to go anywhere else that day (to the Court, advocates’ chambers, etc)