KARACHI - The Sindh government has not yet given consent to constitution of District Legal Empowerment Committees (DLECs) in remaining 19 districts of Sindh to run Access to Justice Development Fund.The Fund was established by the federal government to strengthen the under-resourced judiciary and provide access to justice to the vulnerable groups, sources told The Nation on MondayThe Fund is being managed by a governing body headed by the Chief Justice of Pakistan and Chief Justices of the High Courts, secretaries finance, law, justice and parliamentary affairs and LJCP are its members. Though, the Law and Justice Commission, about two months ago, through a letter to Sindh Chief Secretary reminded that despite lapse of considerable time, the requisite concurrence for the constitution of District Legal Empowerment Committees in the remaining districts of the Sindh was still awaited.The District Legal Empowerment Committees will operate the district legal empowerment fund through an account to be opened in a branch of an authorised bank which shall be operated by the chairperson of the committee. Presently, only five District Legal Empowerment Committees ie, Karachi West, Hyderabad, Mirpurkhas, Sukkur and Larkana have been constituted by the commission on the concurrence of provincial government of Sindh and Sindh High Court to provide free legal aid to the poor and underprivileged persons in the province, said a letter of federal law and justice commission.Sources said that the justice commission in its second letter, sent on May 16, reminded the Sindh government to constitute the District Legal Empowerment Committees soon.The justice commission in the official letter reminded that the Honourable Chairman Law and Justice Commission of Pakistan/Chief Justice of Pakistan desired in the meeting of governing body of AJDF held on January 7, 2012, that such District Legal Empowerment Committees be constituted in all the districts of each province for provision of legal aid to poor and marginalised segment of the society who fails to pursue their cases before the courts. The first step towards the operationalisation of this facility is constitution of District Legal Empowerment Committees in all the districts of the province. The size of future grants to be made available to the committees shall depend on the income/profit generated by the endowment fund, being invested by the LJCP. For accounting procedures of the access to justice development fund, the law and justice commission of Pakistan has to constitute the District Legal Empowerment Committees with the concurrence of the concerned High Court and provincial government having composition of district and sessions judge/Zila Qazi as ex-officio chairperson of the committee. Deputy Commissioner, Superintendent district/central jail, president district bar association and a representative of the civil society will work as member. One of the key objectives of the access to justice development fund is to educate people in the use of law and provide legal aid to the vulnerable under legal empowerment. Any deserving litigant can submit requests in writing to the Chairperson or in a manner prescribe by the District Legal Empowerment Committee, beside Superintended District Jail may also forwarded applications of the under trial or convicted prisoners, or any person confined in jail in relation to civil proceedings for free legal aid.However, the provincial government has yet to give concurrence for constitution of the District Legal Empowerment Committee in 19 districts including Karachi South, Karachi East, Karachi Malir, Thatta, Badin, Dadu, Jamshoro/Kotri, Mithi, Umerkot, Sanghar, Naushahro Feroze, Benazirabad, Khairpur, Ghotki, Kambar Shahdadkot, Shikarpur, Jacobabad, Kashmore and Kandhkot.Despite repeated attempts, Sindh Chief Secretary Raja Muhammad Abbas and Law Secretary Ghulam Nabi Shah were not available for their comments due to meetings at Bilawal House.