The Arunachal Pradesh Unit was established in 2003 with the intention of providing free legal aid and education to poor and to strengthen human rights movement across the state.
Major issues of concern for human rights revolve around environment, displacement and protection of civil and political rights in view of the two district of the state under stringent Armed Forces Special Powers Act, 1958. There are about 100 hydro projects proposed in the fragile and ecologically sensitive areas threatening to displace thousands of people, most of them tribals, apart from causing major ecological disasters. There is a huge movement in the region against these projects and HRLN has organised People’s Tribunals on dams and displacement and conducted a number of trainings and public awareness campaigns in this regard.
Child rights and trafficking are two other prominent issues where major cases of rights violations stem from. The unit’s goals include overall implementation of the Juvenile Justice Act, Persons with Disability Act, Child Marriage Restraint Act and improved functioning of state jails. The unit has also been very active on women’s rights, prisoner’s rights, disability rights, labour rights, and right to information. Our activities include providing free legal aid and legal counseling to prison inmates and filing cases for victims of trafficking, child victims of sexual abuse, tribals, women and others. Additionally, the unit holds workshops, capacity building training, awareness campaigns and IPTs (people’s tribunals) on these issues as a means to empower those whose voices would normally not be heard.
Apart from filing PILs on behalf of a number of vulnerable groups, HRLN Arunachal has distinguished itself as being the only human rights organisation in the state providing free legal aid to prison inmates.