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No Fake Lawyers In Kerala: Plea In SC For Conducting Kerala Bar Council Elections Before Dec 31

Manu Sebastian
25 Oct 2017 5:10 PM GMT
No Fake Lawyers In Kerala: Plea In SC For Conducting Kerala Bar Council Elections Before Dec 31
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Verification process of almost 90% advocates enrolled in Bar Council of Kerala is stated to have been over, and no fake lawyers are reported, claims the Petition.Some of the former office-bearers of the Bar Council of Kerala have approached the Supreme Court seeking directions for conducting elections before 31.12.2017. They have filed impleading petitions in the matter Ajayinder Sangwan v....

Verification process of almost 90% advocates enrolled in Bar Council of Kerala is stated to have been over, and no fake lawyers are reported, claims the Petition.

Some of the former office-bearers of the Bar Council of Kerala have approached the Supreme Court seeking directions for conducting elections before 31.12.2017. They have filed impleading petitions in the matter Ajayinder Sangwan v. Bar Council of Delhi and others, in which the Supreme Court is considering the legality of Bar Council of India Certificate and Place of Practise(Verification) Rules 2015.  Though the term of almost all State Bar Councils and also the Bar Council of India has expired long ago, elections are put on hold on the ground that verification of certificates of advocates as per Verification Rules 2015 has not been completed. The BCI has taken the stand that final electoral roll can be prepared only after verification process.

Various petitions filed in different High Courts challenging the validity of the Rules, as well as seeking directions for polls in the State Bar Councils have been transferred to the Supreme Court, and are being jointly considered as the matter titled Ajayinder Sangwan v. Bar Council of Delhi and others.  Taking note of the urgency of the matter, the Supreme Court had passed an order on 23.08.2017, setting a time frame for completion of various stages of verification process. An outer time limit of 31.12.2017 was set for finalization of election process.

The ex-members of Kerala Bar Council assert that it is impossible to meet the time-line. They point out that Universities are not able to trace out old records, and verifications process thus gets indefinitely delayed. They also state that the earlier time-limits fixed by the Court, i.e 30.09.2016 and 30.11.2016, were missed. The stringent warning issued by the Court that the Registrar’s of Universities failing to give timely responses would be dealt with contempt action could not evoke much positive result as well. Therefore, according to them, it is unrealistic to expect the completion of process as per the present time-frame fixed.

They place reliance on the observations made by the Court in order dated 29.07.2016 that pendency of the proceedings would not be a bar for holding elections, wherever they were due. They also point out that the Court had directed the completion of election process in Bar Council of Delhi by 31.08.2017( though that direction is also allegedly not complied).

Verification process of almost 90% advocates enrolled in Bar Council of Kerala is stated to have been over, and no fake lawyers are reported. Therefore a suggestion is put forth that elections in Bar Council of Kerala could be done by drawing a provisional electoral roll on the basis of Certificate of Practice applications received up to 30.11.2016. According to them, the delaying of elections is perpetuating the continuance of ad-hoc committees as governing bodies, which does not augur well for the democratic spirit and representative character of Bar Councils. The Special Committees governing the Bar Councils consists of nominated members, and not elected ones, and they have been governing without any election. Such committees are envisaged as only an ad-hoc mechanism; but they have attained permanence of sorts on account of delay in elections. So, the former office bearers seek to expedite elections in Kerala Bar Council. The matter will be considered on 26.10.2017.


 
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