: The Madurai District Legal Services Authority has set up free legal aid clinics at the Collectarate and the offices of Commissioner of Police and Superintendent of Police with an aim to take free legal services at the doorstep of public litigants.

The legal aid clinics were opened by the Principal District and Sessions Judge, B. Gokuldas, on Wednesday.

The legal aid clinics would be manned by a panel of advocates who would be paid by the Madurai Legal Services Authority. But, the litigant public would get their legal services free of cost, Mr. Gokuldas said. People who come to the offices of the CoP and the SP could get the help of the advocates to resolve all kinds of disputes with their neighbours, family problems and marital disputes among other issues.

“Not only the litigant public, but also the staff members of these offices can get legal services to establish their civil rights,” Mr. Gokuldas said.

The clinic would be open between 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays. Though the alternative dispute redressal system could reduce the burden on the courts, Mr. Gokuldas said that it would be of much service to the people.

Under such system, the legal services authority would provide advocates for free legal services at court. People who have annual income of less than Rs one lakh were eligible to avail themselves of the services.

However, the income ceiling was not applicable to people belonging to Scheduled Castes and Schedules Tribes, children, women, physically challenged and those who were accused in criminal cases.

Chief Judicial Magistrate, Saravanaperumal, secretary of Madurai District Legal Services Authority, Jacintha Martin, the Commissioner of Police, Sanjay Mathur, and Superintendent of Police, V. Balakrishnan, were among those who were present.

By setting up Legal Aid Clinics in the offices of the Superintendent of Police and the Commissioner of Police, the Madurai District Legal Services Authority (MDLSA) has set a new record.