Legal Empowerment for the Poor and the Disadvantaged: Strategies Achievements and Challenges
  About the book

The absence of an accessible and credible justice and governance system not only adversely impinges on citizens fundamental rights but also regards growth and development. Accordingly, issues of rule of law, judicial independence, equality, accountability and non-discrimination have in the past few years transcended the boundaries of legal arena and have become the focus of development discourse. This book examines some of the principal factors that deny the poor and disadvantaged people access to justice and administrative processes in Bangladesh and explores the approaches used by relevant actors for empowering them in meaningful ways. In so doing, the book broadly looks at legal literacy, public interest litigation, alternative dispute resolution and legal aid as tools of legal empowerment and critically evaluates their role in tangibly changing the lives of the poor and the disadvantaged. It also underscores the achievements and drawbacks inherent in these various initiatives and poses vital questions regarding the sustainability of their impact in the long run.

Sumaiya Khair is a Professor of Law at the University of Dhaka, Bangladesh. She has L.L.B. (Hons).) and L.L.M. degrees from the University of Dhaka and a Ph.D. from the University of East London, UK. She was a commonwealth post-doctoral Academic Fellow at the School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London in 2006-2007. She was involved with clinical legal education programme run by the Faculty of the Law, University of Dhaka for a number of years. She is on the Board of Editors of two academic journals of the University of Dhaka. She holds executive positions in select research bodies, both in and outside the academia. Her areas of interest include human rights, child rights, juvenile justice, migration, governance, labour and gender issues. She has written extensively on law, justice, human rights and governance and has to her credit a number of publications and articles in both national and international journals and books. She has been a consultant for UN agencies, ILO, International donor agencies and local organizations on numerous occasions. She has travelled extensively and has served as a resource person in her areas of expertise in national and international forums.