SC seeks reply on plea to ban MP/MLAs from practising law
The Supreme Court on Monday sought the response of the Bar Council of India (BCI) on a plea seeking ban on lawmakers from practising as advocates.
A bench comprising Chief Justice Dipak Misra and Justices A M Khanwilkar and D Y Chandrachud issued a notice to the BCI on the plea which alleged that parliamentarians and legislators, practising as lawyers, posed a “conflict of interest” and violated the provisions of the Advocates Act and the Bar Council of India Rules.
Attorney General K K Venugopal, whose assistance was sought by the apex court on February 17, referred to an earlier judgement in a similar case and sought dismissal of the PIL.
The top court, however, did not agree with the con- tention of Venugopal saying “this is slightly different” and asked the counsel for the petitioner which rules have been violated.
“Let the copy of this petition be served on parties. Issue notice to BCI,” the bench said and fixed the matter for further hearing on April 23.
The petition, filed by BJP Delhi spokesperson Ashwini Kumar Upadhyay, said while a public servant cannot practice as an advocate, legislators are practising in various courts a violation of Article 14. “Legislators take fees from litigant and salary from the public exchequer, which is professional misconduct,” the plea said.