HC up­set over ‘un­ruly’ ad­vo­cates

Frowns upon those who act as ‘paid hooli­gans’ in prop­erty dis­putes

The Hindu - - TAMIL NADU - Spe­cial Cor­re­spon­dent

Peo­ple lose faith in ju­di­ciary and the rule of law only be­cause of “so-called ad­vo­cates who pur­chase law de­grees” from neigh­bour­ing States and roam around in black and white dresses only to get en­gaged as “paid hooli­gans” for solv­ing prop­erty dis­putes through force and vi­o­lence, the Madras High Court has said.

Jus­tice N. Kirubakaran made the ob­ser­va­tion while hear­ing a plea made by the stu­dents of An­nai Med­i­cal Col­lege at Sripe­rum­budur in Kancheep­u­ram district to trans­fer them to gov­ern­ment med­i­cal col­leges since there was a se­ri­ous dispute be­tween the trustees of the col­lege due to which the in­sti­tu­tion had vir­tu­ally be­come de­funct.

Dur­ing the course of hear­ing of the case con­ducted by se­nior coun­sel A. Si­ra­judeen, the judge was told that the old trustees of the col­lege as well as the new trustees had en­gaged a group of “so-called lawyers” to take pos­ses­sion of the in­sti­tu­tion.

Cer­tain pho­to­graphs were also pro­duced in the court to sub­stan­ti­ate the claim. En­raged over such a com­plaint, the judge, in his in­terim or­der, ob­served: “It is very shame­ful to hear these kinds of al­le­ga­tions. Time has come for the Bar Coun­cil of In­dia (BCI) as well as the Bar Coun­cil of Tamil Nadu and Puducherry to wake up and un­der­stand the re­al­ity and act against such el­e­ments.”

Re­call­ing that se­nior coun­sel Gopal Subra­ma­nium, dur­ing his ten­ure as ex-of­fi­cio chairman of the BCI in 2010, had pointed out that the num­ber of law col­leges in the coun­try was 800 as against the re­quire­ment of just 175, the judge said that the sub­se­quent of­fice-bear­ers of the BCI had in­creased the num­ber to 1,200 within a span of two years.

Mush­room­ing of col­leges

“In the year 2014, for every three days, the BCI had ap­proved one new col­lege. In­stead of bring­ing ex­cel­lence in le­gal ed­u­ca­tion, the Bar Coun­cil had in­sti­tu­tion­alised medi­ocrity,” Mr. Jus­tice Kirubakaran lamented and took note of the fact that many col­leges in Andhra Pradesh and Kar­nataka is­sue law de­grees with­out in­sist­ing on at­ten­dance.

“Thus, time has come for the BCI to make the bio­met­ric at­ten­dance sys­tem manda­tory in the law col­leges and also cre­ate a cen­tralised por­tal con­tain­ing the de­tails of the teach­ing staffs avail­able in the law col­leges through­out In­dia,” he said, and stressed that the num­ber of lawyers in the coun­try must be con­tained as it was be­ing done in the case of char­tered ac­coun­tants.

In so far as the plea of the stu­dents of the med­i­cal col­lege was con­cerned, the judge pre­ferred to wait for the or­ders of the Supreme Court in a re­lated case sched­uled to be heard on Fri­day.

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