November 9 – National Legal Services Day

Status and class should never become an impediment when there is a need to enforce one’s rights in a court of law. Providing the needed access to justice through legal aid and accessible legal services is at the heart of a welfare society. The National Legal Services Day is observed on November 9 to commemorate the Indian Legal Services Authorities Act 1987, which began on November 9, 1995.[1] Under the Indian Legal Services Authorities Act, 1987, the National Legal Services Authority ( NALSA) provided free legal aid to specific sections of society.

The day holds immense significance as it shows the public how far the country has come in terms of equal opportunity and justice and highlights the need for strategic legal developments to empower marginalized sections of people. The landmark judgment in  NALSA v. Union of India[2] declared transgender people as the third gender and provided them with the right to self-identification. NALSA being the primary petitioner in the case, had provided free legal service and has simultaneously created awareness surrounding the exclusion of people from socially and economically backward sections in the legal redressal system. The day is also a reminder that while the law protects someone, help is always there for those struggling to receive the support they need.


[1] Rohan Patil, National Legal Services Day 2020: History And Significance Of The Day, Republic World ( Nov.8, 2021, 3:00 pm), https://www.republicworld.com/lifestyle/festivals/national-legal-services-day-2020-history-and-significance-of-the-day.html

[2] National Legal Services Authority vs. Union Of India & Ors, (2014) 5 SCC 438

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