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An Advocate Can't Be Both Power Of Attorney Holder Of Client & His Counsel: Delhi High Court

Nupur Thapliyal
23 Nov 2021 6:45 AM GMT
An Advocate Cant Be Both Power Of Attorney Holder Of Client & His Counsel: Delhi High Court
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The Delhi High Court has observed that the practice of advocates acting as power of attorney holders of their clients and also as advocates in the matter, is contrary to the provisions of the Advocates Act, 1961.Observing that the said aspect has to be scrupulously ensured by all the Trial Courts in the city, Justice Pratibha M Singh directed that a copy of the order is circulated to all...

The Delhi High Court has observed that the practice of advocates acting as power of attorney holders of their clients and also as advocates in the matter, is contrary to the provisions of the Advocates Act, 1961.

Observing that the said aspect has to be scrupulously ensured by all the Trial Courts in the city, Justice Pratibha M Singh directed that a copy of the order is circulated to all the lower courts by the Registry.

"It is made clear that the practice of advocates acting as power of attorney holders of their clients, as also as advocates in the matter is contrary to the provisions of the Advocates Act, 1961," the Court observed.

It added, 

"Any advocate who is engaged by a client would have to play only one role, i.e., that of the advocate in the proceedings and cannot act as a power of attorney holder and verify pleadings and file applications or any other documents or give evidence on behalf of his client."

The Court was dealing with three petitions arising out of three different suits relating to the same property. 

The question in the pleas was that whether one Amarjeet Singh Sahni, who was acting as the power of attorney holder of the Plaintiff and had verified the plaint on behalf of the said Plaintiff could appear also as a counsel in the matter?

In one of the cases, he had submitted before the Court that he would withdraw his Vakalatnama and continue as the power of attorney holder.

An assurance was also given by the advocate that he would withdraw his Vakalatnama in the Trial Court proceedings and would no longer act as a counsel for the Plaintiff in this matter.

Taking the said assurance on record, the Court was of the view that no further observations are to be passed in the matters.

The advocate also apprised the Court that the dispute between the parties had been resolved by way of Deed of Settlement/Memorandum of Understanding dated 30th July, 2021.

"Since this Court has perused the original MoU and both Mr. Pankaj and Mr. Sahni, confirm that the MoU/Deed of Settlement has been executed, the petitions are disposed of as the disputes have been settled. No further orders are called for in these petitions," the Court said.

Accordingly, the Court directed the parties to appear before the Trial Court on 28th January, 2022, for presenting the settlement and for recording of the same.

"At the time of recording of the settlement, the Trial Court, if it deems appropriate may also record the statement of the parties themselves apart from their power of attorney holders. The Parties may appear even virtually as the Plaintiff is stated to be a resident of Thailand and the Court may record its satisfaction after statements of parties are recorded that the settlement is legal, in accordance with law," the Court added.

The petitioners were represented by Advocates N.K. Aggarwal, Yogita Sunaria and Pankaj whereas the respondent was represented by Advocate Amarjeet Singh Sahni.

Case Title: ANIL KUMAR AND ANR v. AMIT and other connected matters

Click Here To Read Order 


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