Faced with continuous flak from the detractors of Advocate-General Subodh Kantak, the State Government, in an order issued last week, directed him to refrain from accepting any case from private parties even where the State government was just a formal party and even if no relief was sought against the government.
The order issued by the Under Secretary, Department of Law, inter alia states that the most important duty of the Advocate-General (AG) was to maintain a high level of dignity and honour while keeping the position of Advocate-General above board and free from any aspersions or criticism.
The government's decision to issue these directives to the AG came after the Bombay High Court in Goa forwarded to the Chief Secretary in October last year a complaint filed by a social activist and lawyer Aires Rodrigues against the AG accusing him of appearing before the High Court for a private contractor in a case where the State of Goa was a party.
Mr. Rodrigues had complained to the Chief Justice of the Bombay High Court that in the writ petition 365/2010 before the High Court filed by Mr. Nagvenkar where the State of Goa was a party, Advocate-General Kantak had appeared for one of the private contractor Primeslots Events Private Ltd. This is the second time the government has issued an advisory to Advocate-General Kantak.
In an order issued on December 11, 2008, the government had directed that the Advocate-General Kantak would be entitled to only a single fee if two or more cases involving an identical question was heard together with a common argument and a common judgment.
That time too it was Mr. Rodrigues who had complained to the then Governor on the propriety of fees charged Mr. Kantak.