Bar Council of India rules to discipline non-practising advocates

As non-practising advocates posed a serious problem to the legal fraternity, the Bar Council of India (BCI) has come up with a new set of rules for weeding them out of the hallowed profession.

The Certificate of Practice and Renewal Rules-2014 framed by BCI have come into force in October paving the way for elimination of those who figure in the ‘rolls of advocates’ (maintained by Bar Councils under Section 22 of Advocates Act, 1961) but either do businesses or indulge in some other activities.

Such advocates are sought to be stopped from tarnishing the image of the profession.

The most important of the new rules is the condition that every advocate has to seek renewal of his or her certificate of practice issued by the State Bar Council concerned and membership thereof once in five years. In the previous system, advocates could register with the respective Bar Councils and be its members for an indefinite period.

This is done away with under the new rules that BCI made under Section 49 of the Advocates Act of 1961.

The rules are intended to enable the local Bar Associations, Bar Council of States and the BCI to achieve better administrative and disciplinary control over advocates with the stated objective of taking appropriate action against the non-practicing ones.

Andhra Pradesh Bar Council member S. Rajendra Prasad told The Hindu that the new rules were welcome as the legal profession came under increasing disrepute due to the unethical conduct of some non-practising advocates.

Such persons do not practise law but still claim benefits under the welfare schemes of BCI. This is to be checked. Besides, the non-practicing advocates would not be entitled to cast their votes in elections to Bar Associations.

“The practising advocates are far outnumbered by the non-practicing ones, which cannot be allowed to continue if the profession is to survive,” Mr. Prasad observed.

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Printable version | Jul 30, 2021 9:54:18 PM |

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