Advocates’ body opposes amendments to Advocates’ Act
 Source : News Bharati English  Date : 21-Apr-2017

Jammu, Apr 21: The Akhil  Bharatiya Adhivakta Parishad (ABAP), an organization of advocates supported by the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS), has opposed the proposed Law Commission amendments to the Advocates Act of 1961.

In a resolution adopted at its just concluded National Executive meeting at Jammu, the ABAP expressed ‘grave concerns’ over the proposals of the Law Commission. The two-day meeting was held on April 15 and 16.

In a press release, the ABAP said that there are clauses in the set of proposals that tend to put the legal profession in docks, and this is not acceptable, it added.

In the Bharatiya value system justice is not considered as a commodity, the resolution said alleging that the proposed amendments tend to lower the stature of the noble profession of justice to a mere trade.

The resolution further said that the proposals seek to reconstitute the respective state bar councils in such a way that majority in these bodies would be the nominees of the High Courts and this is not acceptable, it added.

This would undermine the autonomy of the bar council and dilute the independence of the legal profession, the ABAP said that several methods were suggested in these amendments to instill fear in the advocates and make the legal profession subservient. The opinions of the High Court Bar Association and District Bal Association were not called for by the Law Commission, the ABAP said.

Fearless Bar is the minimum guarantee for robust functional democracy. Any effort however subtle it may be, to meddle with the independence of bar councils poses a threat to the justice delivery system. When an advocate is sought to be browbeaten in the name of disciplinary proceedings at the drop of hat, it is detrimental to the justice delivery system. Independence of Judiciary is not confined to independence of judges only. It includes the independence of lawyer to argue the case and take up cause fearlessly, the resolution said.

The ABAP calls upon the Union of India to reject these proposed amendments forthwith. The ABAP demands that amendments to Advocates act be taken up only after wide consultation with all the stakeholders.