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All law students, teachers, schools to pay BCI Rs 100 to 5,000 to build new database

BCI crackdown: One teacher, many colleges
BCI crackdown: One teacher, many colleges
The Bar Council of India (BCI) has decided to charge law students a mandatory one-time fee of Rs 100 and law teachers a recurring fee of Rs 3,000, while law schools will have to pay the BCI Rs 5,000 by 30 June.

The BCI has proposed to launch a new web portal with a database of all undergraduate LLB students, teachers, colleges and universities that impart legal education in India, as well as a record of all advocates and disciplinary cases, according to a circular on the BCI website.

All law students, teachers and law schools will have to pay the registration fees under a proposal that was announced today in the circular.

While law students have to pay Rs 100 once to the BCI, law teachers have to renew their Rs 3,000 registration every three years and also remit another Rs 1,000 if they join another educational institution.

Colleges and universities will have to register for Rs 5000 “as per approval of affiliation”, according to the release.

A source in the BCI said: “We are constructing a portal in tune with other regulatory bodies like AICTE and CTE. This idea was being considered for the last five to six months.”

“We are consulting various IT agencies since we don’t have the expertise for doing this. At this juncture we have not yet started the process, so the deadline [for remission of fee] may be extended,” he added.

He said that the portal was expected to be operational in the next six months.

The circular was emailed to registrars of all national law universities and other universities imparting legal education, as well as to the principals of all law colleges in India on 2 May 2012.

It also stated that the portal would be essential to collect all relevant information about students, teachers, and conditions of work, building, hostel facilities, library and other facilities, in one place.

It would ensure transparency in BCI’s inspection of the colleges imparting legal education.

The BCI also noted in the circular that “name of one teacher has been shown in many law colleges at the same time and various reports of fake persons practicing in different courts in India by obtaining fake degrees from the colleges which are not approved by the Bar Council of India are also evident”.

Through the registration process, the council intends to eliminate the practice of fake degree holders enrolling themselves in various state bar councils.

Last month the BCI said it planned to roll out a unique identification number (UIN) system for all lawyers and law students studying at recognized law schools in India by September 2012.

A unique ID number project was first proposed by former BCI chairman Gopal Subramanium in 2011.

Correction: The first published version of the article erroneously stated law teachers’ time period of renewal. Law teachers will have to pay Rs 3,000 every three years, according to the proposal. We regret the unintentional error.

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