iProbono co-hosted with the Confederation of Indian Industry, Hewlett-Packard and IndiaLaw, a Pro Bono Legal Workshop on 21 August in New Delhi.
The workshop was attended by 18 leading civil society organisations in Delhi, including Action for Autism, Operation Asha and Centre for Development and Population Activities (CEDPA). The attending organisations have been working on a range of issues like maternal health, tuberculosis control, empowerment of marginalised women and environmental conservation.
The workshop was the first of its kind in India where independent lawyers along with in-house corporate lawyers addressed an audience of civil society organisations on legal issues. Nine lawyers from HP and two from IndiaLaw provided specialised legal assistance during the event, which was designed to create awareness and disseminate information on legal issues commonly faced by civil society organisations, whilst addressing structural challenges that many of them face.
“NGOs often have limited resources to seek legal counsel. Added to this is a limited exposure to latest developments around legal issues that impact our work, like intellectual property issues. This workshop helped us a great deal in un-packaging these issues in the context of our work”, says Aparajita Gogoi of CEDPA India.
The first half of the day consisted of informative presentations from the lawyers on the legalities of Tax, Corporate Structuring, Employment, Data Privacy and Intellectual Property followed by one-on-one consultations.
iProbono plans to organise more such workshops across India in the near future. “iProbono’s offline connections complement our online network by providing our members with more avenues to engage. We are looking forward to reaching out to CSOs and lawyers in other parts of the country to deliver similar events”, says Priyanka Dahiya of iProbono.