Legal Service Authority Bill (No. 82, 1987), aimed at providing free legal services to the weaker section of society, was rushed through both the houses of parliament in the last session without much discussion.The bill seeks to co-opt the legal aid movement and local efforts at adjudication. It gives the executive more power than judiciary, centralises power in government controlled legal aid authorities and leaves the provision of legal aid services in the hands of few judges.
The Act comes in a climate when the limited role which the judiciary had established as enforcers of social justice is being negated. This Act would serve only to strengthen this trend and ensure than the limited space for legal redress which exists for the people of this country is totally wiped out.