STUDENTS FOR HUMAN RIGHTS (SHR)
HRLN units across the country are helping build an independent national network of students to participate in human rights activism and bring fresh perspectives to campaigning and awareness-raising. The SHR network began on law college campuses, but today has members across the education spectrum. Through SHR, students are given opportunities to engage with human rights issues on a day-to-day basis both through legal interventions and by engaging with grass roots movements.
Through the SHR programme, HRLN provides scholarships for at least twenty Dalits, Muslim and Tribal students every year. This enables under-represented groups to intern with HRLN offices to acquire leadership skills and legal knowledge. The impact of this has been twofold: it has created young role models from within marginalized communities; and it also has produced skilled legal professionals who understand the issues of minority communities first-hand. Since its inception in 2008 SHR has worked with students in the states of Goa, Assam, West Bengal, Madhya Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, Kerala, Maharashtra and Delhi.
Local meetings and training sessions with SHR groups take place ten times a year and a national level meeting is also held annually. For example, in December 2008 over 200 students from across India met in Mumbai for a national convention. An impressive inspirational speakers attended the convention, including Justice Zakeria Yakoob (Constitutional Court, South Africa), David Barsamian (Alternate Radio, USA), Professor Ram Paniyani and senior journalists Praful Bidwai, Amit Sengupta and Harsh Dobhal amongst others.