Chief Justice Prakash Tatia (blue suit) at Rinpas in Ranchi on Wednesday. Telegraph picture
Chief Justice of Jharkhand High Court Prakash Tatia on Wednesday inaugurated a free legal aid clinic on the premises of Ranchi Institute of Neuro-Psychiatry and Allied Sciences (Rinpas), the state-owned asylum in Kanke, to mark Word Mental Health Day.
The clinic, which will be managed by Jharkhand State Legal Services Authority (Jhalsa), will counsel patients and their kin on various issues, primarily abandonment and property row.
Currently, Rinpas has 87 inmates who have completely recovered from their illnesses, but are not being taken back by their family members.
“I am here for 20 years. I am alright now and am waiting for my family members to take me home. But, I do not know whether I will ever go home,” said an inmate who hails from Buxar, Bihar.
Another long-time inmate broke down when asked whether he believed the legal clinic would help him reunite with his family.
B.K. Goswami, a member secretary of Jhalsa, said a full-time advocate would man the clinic. “Abandonment is a recurring problem patients face. We will try to locate families of such patients and counsel them,” he added.
Amul Ranjan Singh, the director of Rinpas, said the legal aid clinic would focus on patient rehab and other rights.
“Advice will come free with treatment at our hospital. Many find themselves in the middle of land/property disputes after they leave the asylum. We will provide them legal guidance,” he added.
Besides Tatia, Justices D.N. Patel and N.N. Tiwari also attended the day’s programme at Rinpas.
At Ranchi Women’s College, World Mental Health Day was observed with a team of doctors from Central Institute of Psychiatry (CIP), Kanke, addressing students on stress management.