HEVA (Habiting Ethics, Value and Accountability), an initiative of Institute for Development Education and Learning (IDEAL)-CSJ, Ahmedabad, is mandated to facilitate dialogue between the Private Sector and Civil Society Organizations to explore opportunities to partner and work towards furthering the Rule of Law and Access to Justice. It is experienced that, Low prevalence of Rule of Law and high inaccessibility to justice are twin features of our present times owing to a lot of reasons;
HEVA aims at Furthering the Rule of Law and addressing inaccessibility to Justice through increased involvement of the Private Sector as a driver of policy including financial investment as CSR. To achieve this, we envisage strategic engagement between the Private Sector and Civil-Society Organisations along with Law Universities, not only from the standpoint of philanthropic efficiency, but equally, recognising the commercial benefits of a strong Rule of Law framework for business itself.
We intend to build public arguments around the statement “Why Businesses should invest in the Rule of Law for their own Sake”.
What is the Rule of Law?
The rule of law is a durable system of laws, institutions, norms, and community commitment that delivers:equality, accountability, justice and fundamental rights. Rule of Law believes: it is the Law and not Individuals or groups of Individuals that govern people; equality of Law and equal protection of Law.
At the national level, the rule of law is necessary to create an environment for providing sustainable livelihoods and eradicating poverty. Poverty often stems from disempowerment, exclusion and discrimination. The rule of law fosters development through strengthening the voices of individuals and communities, by providing access to justice , ensuring due process and establishing remedies for the violation of rights . Security of livelihoods, shelter, tenure and contracts can enable and empower the poor to defend themselves against violations of their rights. Legal empowerment goes beyond the provision of legal remedies and supports better economic opportunities
Why should Private Sector care?
A strong and robust Rule of Law environment ensures policy stability and greater efficiency in business operations. It is a multidimensional investment: firstly, it enhances the standards of living for the workforce which contributes directly to increased productivity and job satisfaction. Consequently, it allows Businesses an opportunity to develop a cohesive and meaningful relationship with the local vulnerable communities that may lead to increased sustainability of the company.