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Pre Litigation Counselling Cell

Pre Litigation Counselling Cell

The West Bengal Commission for Women has been running a complaints,pre-litigation and counsellin cell from 21st January 1999 for women suffering from injustice and gender discrimination. The cell is run from the Commission office with the help of two quilified counsellors and a clerk cum typist.

The complaint and pre litigation counselling cell of the West Bengal Commission for Women was introduced in 21st January, 1999.
Pre litigation counselling is the most important service rendered by the commission. Not only is counselling done here, women can get legal advice when they are being harassed, tortured and exploited, sexually harassed and when there is a conflict with husband or other members of the family. The commission tries to ensure the security of women in their workplace and asks the police to intervene and monitors the nature of intervention whenever is necessary, with the help of higher administrative authority. The commission has empanelled lawyers who visit the commission according to a pre fixed schedule and serves the commission with necessary legal advice. The counselling cell constitutes of all the members of the commission with whom lies the responsibility of proper scrutiny of the complaints and providing necessary advice.
The complaints are accepted in written form from the tortured women or from their relatives if it is not possible for them to launch the complaint themselves. The application should be addressed to the chairperson of the commission. The counselling procedure is kept secret.
The Pre-litigation and counselling cell of the West Bengal Commission for Women remains open on every every working day including Saturday ( except fifth Saturday ) from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Women facing problems can contact the commission with written complaints and other supporting documents either by mail or in person from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.

In several cases, the Commission has made spot visits, called upon the police to investigate cases properly and has tried to resolve disputes in the family by counselling both parties. They have also intervened where inordinate delay is being made in submitting charge sheets.
Apart from this since 1997, the Commission has been holding quarterly meeting with police administration in Kolkata and the districts to discuss pending cases. This too has been helpful in some cases. However, in spite of the members have felt that in view of the fact that the work load on the Commission has increased, it has not been able to regularly monitor the received complaints. So, the Commission is thinking of setting up a cell to give immediate and proper attention to the cases those come from the districts.On 21st January 1999, the Pre-Litigation and Counselling Cell was set up.

Mainly two methods are used in counselling:

  • Individual Counselling
  • Group Counselling

Individual Counselling
  • Interview
  • Fact Finding
  • Collecting Information

Group Counselling
  • Interview
  • Fact Finding
  • Feel at ease and facilitate to talk
  • FD - Family Dispute
  • PMT - Physical & Mental Torture
  • DWT - Dowry Torture
  • DD - Dowry Death
  • FM - Female Murder
  • SHW - Sexual Harassment at Workplace
  • PM - Property Matter
  • PWDVA - Protection for Women against Domestic Violence
  • RP - Rape & Molestation
  • KGM - Kidnapping & Missing
  • ICR - Illicit Relation
  • HRS - Harassment & Security
  • MSC - Miscellaneous