Special Newsletter from UNODC South  Asia 

March 2022

Building Back Better:
Strengthening Security, Peace, Justice and Health
Sri Lanka: UNODC promotes access to justice to foster peace and the rule of law
Thirty-four women lawyers from the Sri Lanka Bar Association (BASL) were trained in a 2-day workshop, centered on challenges pertaining to access to justice in the framework of fundamental rights. The workshop was aimed at enhancing the understanding of the participants on clients’ needs, effective dispute resolution mechanisms and strengthening access to justice. The discussions were led by senior judges and legal experts. The workshop was held under UNODC’s project on "Promote Access to Justice and Protect the Rights Space to Foster Peace in Sri Lanka” as part of the UN Secretary General’s Peacebuilding Fund. 
(Supported by
UN Secretary General's Peacebuilding Fund)
India: UNODC participates in the 8th INTERPOL Liaison Officers Conference 
UNODC joined the 8th Interpol Liaison Officers Conference convened by India’s Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) in New Delhi. The event was inaugurated by the Home Secretary of India Mr. Ajay Kumar Bhalla and opened by the CBI Director Mr. Subodh Kumar Jaiswal. UNODC experts contributed to the discussions and delivered a presentation, reflecting on Phantom Secure, the Organised Crime Convention and the global SHERLOC initiative.
Bangladesh: UNODC trains prison staff on crisis management during COVID-19

Prison staff from select prisons in Bangladesh were trained on crisis management during COVID-19 and its psychosocial impact. Participants welcomed the initiative, acknowledging the need for a comprehensive programme to help prison population effectively manage the pandemic. During the discussion, they advocated for a mechanism to enable the appointment of psychologists and correction officers in prisons to address mental and psychological issues. Seven out of eight batches of prison staff have been successfully trained by UNODC so far.  

  (Supported by
US Bureau of International Narcotics and
Law Enforcement Affairs)
India: UNODC advocates multi-stakeholder responses to strengthen HIV treatment and care in prisons
Under the Unified Budget, Results and Accountability Framework (UBRAF) mechanism, UNODC is providing support to the State AIDS Control Society and Prisons/Women Shelter Homes in the state of Gujarat in India. The aim is to strengthen HIV prevention, treatment and care in prisons and other closed settings and on provision of harm reduction services by supporting inter-state learning.  One of the objectives of this intervention is to identify the key gaps in the harm reduction programme and provide necessary technical support to stakeholders. To further cooperation, UNODC’s criminal justice expert Ms. Seema Joshi Arya held dialogues with heads of the prison department and officials from the Ministry of Women and Child Development, Gujarat State AIDS Control Society and national consultants to develop suitable HIV interventions in the state.
  (Supported by the
Unified Budget, Results and Accountability Framework )
Bangladesh: UNODC Workshop engages judges on legal frameworks to counter Trafficking in Persons
Judiciary plays a central role in combating Trafficking in Persons. Besides convicting and acquitting, judges also make key decisions on the interpretation of laws and legal frameworks, and process the evidence required to establish the crime. Under the aegis of the GLO.ACT/Bangladesh project, 22 judges were trained in a three-day workshop focusing on the international and domestic legal frameworks to counter trafficking in persons. The workshop was opened by the Minister of Law, Justice and Parliamentary Affairs, Government of Bangladesh, and attended by the Secretary for Law and Justice, the Head of Cooperation of the European Delegation to Bangladesh and international experts. The discussions focused on sentencing, international cooperation and experiences and good practices from different courts. 

  (Supported by
the European Union)
India: UNODC’s ‘Lockdown Learners’ engages youth and educators on peace, integrity and SDGs
As nations build back from COVID-19, enabling youth to create a safer, peaceful and inclusive world is key. In March, UNODC engaged students from economically disadvantaged backgrounds in public and private schools with activity-based interactive sessions on peace, integrity, gender equality and anti-corruption. Using Whatsapp and online platforms, over 6 interactive sessions were conducted—chaired by youth representatives to promote peer-to-peer learning--with over 375 students and educators in 3 states/Union Territories. With the threat of the fourth wave of COVID-19 infections looming over India, messages to raise awareness on COVID-19 precautions and vaccination were also shared via online youth collectives developed as part of the series. An impact report of the Lockdown Learners series, highlighting key achievements and good practices, was also disseminated among stakeholders and educators. Marking the International Women’s Day on 08 March, youth also created and shared special messages to promote gender equity. “Ending gender-based discrimination and violence is critical for Global Goals and peace,” they said.
Sri Lanka: UNODC calls for enhanced capacity building to strengthen multi-stakeholder responses against Trafficking in Persons

At a panel discussion organised by NGO Solidarity Centre, UNODC’s Sri Lanka Program Officer Ms. Anusha Munasinghe joined experts from IOM Sri Lanka and The Asia Foundation to discuss key aspects of Trafficking in Persons, including capacity building on victim identification and referral procedures. Representatives of trade unions from the Voice of Migrants (VoM) network in Sri Lanka participated in the meeting. 
Nepal: UNODC trains customs and law enforcement officials on countering synthetic drugs, opioids and precursors
Under the aegis of UNODC’s Container Control Programme, a four-day training on Synthetic Drugs, Opioids and Precursors was organised for officials from the Air Cargo Control Unit (ACCU) in Kathmandu and Narcotics Control Bureau, Nepal. The training was aimed at enhancing the knowledge of officials on challenges and emerging trends in the illicit trafficking of synthetic drugs, opioids and precursors. 

  (Under the aegis of
UNODC's Container Control Programme)
UNODC Global Strategy (2021-2025)
UNODC’s mission is to contribute to global peace and security, human rights and development by making the world safer from drugs, crime, corruption and terrorism. Our new Global Strategy (2021-2025) will equip UNODC to deliver effectively, efficiently and with accountability, elevating our support to Member States to build just, inclusive and resilient societies that leave no one behind.  Our interventions will pay special attention to human rights, protection of children, gender equality, empowerment of women and youth.
Join the UNODC Network in South Asia
Our Partners
Our activities in South Asia are possible
due to the generous support of:

  • European Union
  • Germany
  • India
  • Japan
  • Sweden
  • United Kingdom
  • United States of America
  • UN Secretary General's Peacebuilding Fund
Government Partners:
  • Bangladesh
  • Bhutan
  • India
  • Maldives
  • Nepal
  • Sri Lanka
Call for Partnerships:
Impacting Lives with Innovation
Building Back Better from COVID-19: Leaving No One Behind
In response to COVID-19, and its impact on vulnerable groups and emerging risks to security and peace, UNODC Regional Office for South Asia has developed a wide range of projects and initiatives on the following thematic areas:

-- Addressing Gender-based Violence
-- Strengthening Law Enforcement Responses
-- Countering Corruption
-- Youth Engagement through Education
-- Promoting Family Skills
-- Addressing the Needs of Drug Users, those with HIV/AIDS and Hep-C and those in prison settings
-- Strengthening Responses to COVID-19 in Prisons
-- Countering Cybercrime and Promoting Online Safety
-- Responding to the Needs of Human Trafficking Survivors, Refugees, Migrants and the Homeless 

Active support from partners is requested to enable the implementation of these programs and to scale-up efforts to promote security, justice and health among vulnerable groups in South Asia. Our partnerships aim at building national and regional alliances on our mandates, which are closely linked to national, regional and global priorities as well as the achievement of Sustainable Development Goals. Let's join hands to enable and aid large-scale and impactful initiatives that help people lead safer and healthier lives .  Your support can make all the difference!

To know more, please contact:

Mr. Samarth Pathak
Communications Officer
UNODC Regional Office for South Asia
Cellphone: +91-9811347927
The United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) assists Member States in their efforts to combat illicit drugs and international crime. Over the past two decades, the UNODC Regional Office for South Asia (ROSA) has been working with governments and civil society in Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Maldives, Nepal and Sri Lanka, providing specialized assistance to address challenges pertaining to drugs, organised crime, security, justice and health. The commitment to Sustainable Development Goals, human rights and the rule of law is at the core of our mandate.
Contact Us

C-97 (Ground Floor), Defence Colony, New Delhi-110024, India
Email: samarth.pathak@un.org

Website: www.unodc.org/southasia/
Facebook: @unodc.rosa
Twitter: @unodc_rosa

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