Research Associate, Prison Reforms Programme, based in Kolkata

The Commonwealth Human Rights Initiative (CHRI) is an independent, non-partisan, non-government organisation working for the practical realisation of human rights across the Commonwealth, with a focus on access to justice and access to information. Further information can be accessed at (

CHRI is looking for a Research Associate for its Prison Reforms Programme. The programme focuses on improving prison monitoring through the strengthening of oversight mechanisms nationally, and ensuring early safeguards against unnecessary detentions, specifically in Rajasthan and West Bengal.

This position is a part-time consultancy based in Kolkata, West Bengal. This is part of a UNHCR supported project to identify and assist Rohingya Muslims detained in West Bengal Correctional Homes.    

Job Description

The Research Associate will:

  • Assist in conducting interviews of Rohingya Muslims detained across various correctional homes of West Bengal
  • Maintain accurate and up-to date records and data related to all work on individual cases of Rohingyas currently on-going in West Bengal
  • Assist in conducting workshops and consultations with criminal justice functionaries pertaining to the project
  • Monitor, research and report on issues related to Rohingya Muslims
  • Prepare effective and targeted advocacy  material
  • Other tasks as required

Essential Qualifications:

  • Master’s / Bachelor’s degree in Law, with minimum 1 year experience of working in district or high courts in India
  • Ability to communicate in English and Bengali
  • Ability to work independently with a high degree of initiative
  • Comfortable with travelling alone on work

Desirable qualifications:

  • Experience of working on  refugee rights, criminology, migration, social work or related fields
  • Experience of working on access to justice issues
  • Experience of field research

Type of Appointment and duration:

6 months consultancy from 1 June 2018 to 1 December 2018.

Remuneration will be commensurate with knowledge and experience levels.

Interested candidates should apply with:
• a current CV;
• a cover letter;
• one writing sample (no longer than four pages); and
• contact details of two referees

Applications should be sent to by 18th May 2018. Incomplete applications will not be considered.