•  •  Dark Mode

Your Interests & Preferences

I am a...

law firm lawyer
in-house company lawyer
litigation lawyer
law student
aspiring student

Website Look & Feel

 •  •  Dark Mode
Blog Layout

Save preferences

Why Dushyant Dave resigned as SCBA president during EC tug-of-war

The president of the Supreme Court Bar Association (SCBA), Dushyant Dave, has quit in disgust after his differences with SCBA secretary Gaurav Bhatia and the SCBA executive committee became unresolvable.

The differences, which were simmering for some time, reached their crescendo at the recently-held farewell party for Justice MY Eqbal, who retired on 12 February.

Dave was conspicuous by his absence at the function organised by the SCBA, which elicited a comment from the Chief Justice of India, Justice TS Thakur, who hoped that things would be back to normal.

Dave was the only candidate at the recently-held SCBA elections, to secure more than 50 per cent of the votes polled, and he enjoys massive support among the lawyers.

His sudden resignation, therefore, has led to widespread dismay among SCBA members, who want to discuss the move at a general body meeting of SCBA to persuade him to reconsider his resignation.

Trivial issues?

SCBA vice-president Ajit Kumar Sinha said that he had not received any resignation letter from Dave as of the night of 15 February, and that the differences were on trivial issues.

The EC, which met on 15 February, apparently objected to Dave’s absence at the 12 February farewell function organised for Justice Eqbal.

The EC members, according to sources, also accused Dave of not consulting it about his absence.

“There was heated discussion at the EC meeting, though the issues were not serious, and we are trying to persuade him not to resign”, said an EC member.

Dave, according to sources, supported austerity measures, and did not endorse the massive arrangements made for the judge’s farewell function.

According to one member, Dave just wanted to arrange tea and biscuits, whereas Bhatia had planned an elaborate menu for the function.

Even the cost of the pandal, put up at the venue of the function at the Supreme Court, was a subject of speculation.

Political presence?

The presence of the erstwhile Samajwadi party leader, Amar Singh, at the function was also a surprise.

Although Amar Singh is a member of the SCBA, he is not a practising advocate, and therefore, his being seated at the front row raised eyebrows.

He was not only introduced to many senior advocates, but some judges too.

As some of cases in which Amar Singh is a party are pending in the Supreme Court, some judges apparently felt embarrassed to interact with him at the function.

Amar Singh’s presence made some gossip about whether it was a sponsored function.

Internal communications

Meanwhile, Dave was apparently unhappy that Bhatia did not take him into confidence while making extravagant arrangements for the function.

Bhatia’s proposal to initiate the process of keeping a register to record comments in honour of retiring Judges was another contentious issue.

Dave had serious reservations about this, because according to him, such registers could only encourage hagiography, as no one would write honest critical assessments for a retiring judge.

The proposal, it appears, was abandoned, following the CJI’s reluctance to endorse it.

Bhatia’s faction in SCBA, however, blamed Dave for not supporting measures to ensure transparency.

It is understood that Bhatia wanted the SC Registrar-General to give in writing that a specific number of chambers in the complex coming up in the Pragati Maidan area would be allotted to SCBA members.

Dave, according to sources, did not approve of the idea of insisting that such a commitment be obtained in writing at this stage.


The last straw, however, was Dave’s direction to the EC members not to comply with any communication from the Secretary.

The EC, at its meeting held today (15 February) quickly rescinded the President’s directive, setting the stage for confrontation, and the resignation.

With Dave openly expressing his difficulty to work with the current team of the EC, observers wondered what purpose would be achieved by persuading him to reconsider his decision to quit.

The SCBA may well now have to go for re-election to find a successor to Dave.

Click to show 1 comment
at your own risk
By reading the comments you agree that they are the (often anonymous) personal views and opinions of readers, which may be biased and unreliable, and for which Legally India therefore has no liability. If you believe a comment is inappropriate, please click 'Report to LI' below the comment and we will review it as soon as practicable.