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Bar Council of India (BCI)

09 July 2013

BCI LLB age-limit challenged : A writ before the Lucknow bench of the Allahabad HC has challenged the BCI’s upper age limit to appear in law entrance tests. BCI has banned those 20 or older from sitting for the five-year degree, and those 30 or above for three-year LLB courses through Clause 28 of Schedule III to Legal Education Rules, 2008 [Parda phash]

Late litigation policy: The National Litigation Policy was first floated three years ago when Veerappa Moily was law minister. Now it has resurfaced as a draft policy under new law minister Kapil Sibal. Under the draft, in cases where the court imposes costs against the government as a condition to granting adjournment, the head of the government department will have to report on why and list the persons responsible. “Suitable action” will be taken against the persons, stated the draft [PTI]

Law firms advertise: Lawyers can’t solicit business in India, directly or indirectly, which means they can’t advertise their services. That hasn’t stopped Indian law firms from finding ways of creating a brand and gaining the attention of prospective clients, discusses [Mint]

Academic appreciation: NLU Jodhpur associate professor Prabhash Ranjan argues that the judiciary and the executive are ignoring the constitutional mandate to appoint distinguished jurists to the Supreme Court, while the Supreme Court is constitutionally bound to develop new legal principles and constitutional jurisprudence. Law professors would be perfect for the job [Hindu]

Placement trends: Out of an average batch of 110 law students, only 15 to 20 opt out of placements. Generally such graduates work as assistants to senior lawyer for four to five years before establishing their independent practice, writes the [Business Standard]

Abusive 498A: A Rajasthan HC writ challenging immediate arrests under section 498A (dowry harassment) and 407 (criminal breach of trust) of the IPC, alleges that 70 per cent of matrimonial disputes are converted into criminal cases by misuse of sections 498A and 406 [TOI]

25 June 2013

Pune has been declared one of Maharashtra’s four official bar All India Bar Exam (AIBE) centres, after the Bar Council of India (BCI) acceded to the “persistent and convincing demands” of the Bar Council of Maharashtra and Goa’s demands over the last two months [Pune Mirror]

Pune has been without its own test centre since the start of the AIBE, as previously reported by Legally India.

11 June 2013

The Bar Council of India’s (BCI) chairman Manan Kumar Mishra and vice chairman Zafar A Khan will prepare a report on the manner in which the BCI and the state bar councils could participate in the appointment process of Supreme Court judges and the chief justices of all high courts. The report is planned to be submitted to the central and state governments.

The BCI is acting on the Madhya Pradesh state bar council’s and high court’s letter written to it, highlighting the concerns of former assistant solicitor general of India Radhe Lal Gupta. Gupta had shot a letter in March to all SC judges and chief justices of all HCs, questioning why some name recommendations to the SC collegium for judicial appointments were not considered positively.

Taking this into account the BCI has resolved to lobby for representation of lawyers’ bodies in the appointment process and has decided to raise this issue at a conference of judges and lawyers expected to be held after the court vacations. [Express]

The collegium system of judicial appointments has been a recent bone of contention between the executive and judiciary.

10 June 2013

BCI v Tamil Nadu police: The Bar Council of India (BCI) has written to the chief justice of the Madras HC requesting action against cops who registered a case against 20 advocates in Tamil Nadu who had visited the state police headquarters to lodge a complaint against the Kanyakumari district police [TOI]

Cross-border judicial training: India has offered to train Maldivian judges and judicial officers through linkages between the National Judicial Academy in Bhopal and the Judicial Training Academy in Villingili [BS]

Modi scoffs at lawmin: Gujarat chief minister Narendra Modi takes a dig at law minister Kapil Sibal. Modi says: “We have a law minister here, who all his life made rounds of the Supreme court wearing a black coat, and when a scandal took place in IPL, he jumped to say he would draft a law on it, without realising that the centre did not have the capacity to do so. He did not know it is a state subject. He first went ahead to say he will make a law, then said he cannot make a law, what is this law minister who does not know the legal system.” [Parda Phash]

Billing high-low: After telco lawsuits coincided with an FDI drop from $2bn to $304m in one year in the Indian telecom market, which is the world’s second largest, communications minister Kapil Sibal, who is also now in charge of the law ministry, vows to resolve the lawsuits after discussion with the telcos [Bloomberg]

I-spy emulator: The UK Guardian’s expose of American eavesdropping program PRISM which sends user information from Gmail, Skype, Facebook and others to American spies, has dangerous analogies in India and its right to privacy [Firstpost] Meanwhile, the PRISM whistleblower has gone public after seeking shelter in Hong Kong [Guardian]

03 June 2013

Bar examMajority of affected candidates from Hyderabad; BCI “regrets any inconvenience caused”.

28 May 2013



3nj4mcwoThe Bar Council of India (BCI), the Bar Council of Maharashtra and Goa (BCMG), and the union law ministry were yesterday served with a legal notice asking that the bar councils be suspended for failing in their duty to update a “defective” law syllabus in law schools across the country.

13 May 2013

Ineffective BCI: SC justices BS Chauhan and Dipak Mishra today said: “Bar Council has become ineffective. No action is taken against erring lawyers and we have to suffer. We are actually the victim and lawyers are making money… Lawyers think that they are above law. We are facing such situation every day.” [PTI]

Collegium conspiracies: 1,000 Punjab & Haryana High Court Bar Association members have signed a resolution opposing the elevation of seven lawyers to the bench, asking the Chief Justice of India to intervene in the “conspiracy of silence” [Express]

CCI market research: The Competition Commission of India has decided to have a dedicated Market Research Unit with the help of some external agency [Zee News]

3 new Bom HC judges: Member secretary of the Maharashtra State Legal Services Authority P N Deshmukh, secretary general of the Supreme Court A I S Cheema and Registrar General of the HC S B Shukre have been elevated as additional judges of Bombay high court [Express]

Imagine world without lit: Andhra Pradesh State Legal Services Authority (APSLSA) has identified 172 villages across the State as ‘litigation-free’ and the AP High Court will soon declare them as ‘litigation free areas’. Disputes will be settled only by Lok Adalats in these villages [Hindu]

American Hindu?: Janata Party President Subramanian Swamy has filed a plea in the Delhi High Court saying editors of news organisations in India “must be Indian citizens and residents of India” and not foreign citizens. He has attacked the US citizenship of editor of The Hindu Siddharth Varadarajan [Newslaundry]

24 April 2013

BCI BhavanUp to four bids have been received for the project, which was tendered for four days.

01 April 2013

AIBEPIL wins to allow lawyers practice while waiting for the next AIBE.

01 April 2013

BCI & Gov must resurrect directorate of legal education that was killed due to shortage of central funds, says parliament committee. The Parliamentary Standing Committee on Personnel, Grievances Law and Justice wrote: “The committee fails to comprehend why the government did not accede to the request made by the BCI for sustaining the Directorate of Legal Education. It, therefore, desires that the BCI in conjunction with the ministry should take a re-look in the matter and explore how the scheme can be revived.” [Deccan Herald]

The Supreme Court denies Novartis patent protection for its own amended form of caner drug Glivec in major IP judgment [Times of India / Download judgment via @thefirmupdate]

Ex-Supreme Court Justice Markandey Katju and current Press Council of India (PCI) chairman will stop blogging and writing newspaper columns after his comments attracted too much controversy.  He announced on his blog today: 
“It is true that I wish to be uncontroversial […] In this connection, I may refer to Chapter 2 Shloka 34 of the Geeta where Lord Krishna said to Arjun ‘For a self respecting man, death is preferable to dishonour’.” [via Katju blog
The judge has made his fair share of enemies and friends with his outspoken blogs and newspaper columns, infamously writing in 2012 that 90 per cent of Indians were fools. [And this story too was a bit too foolish, we're afraid. Happy April Fools Day!]

29 March 2013

The Bar Council of Punjab & Haryana is now India’s first state bar council (SBC) to have photo identification on its electoral rolls to curb bogus voting. The Bar Council of India (BCI) has asked other state bar councils to follow suit, for “fair and transparent” elections.

Till now the voter list contained only the names, addresses and enrolment number of voting advocates, according to the Indian Express. "It was observed that lot of bogus voting was taking place in the absence of photographs of the lawyers," claimed the SBC’s chairman Minderjit Yadav.

He also told the paper that honorarium fees of Rs 5,000 per month had been earmarked for “budding lawyers who lack financial means at the start of their career”. A pension for lawyers above 65 years of age was in the process of being worked out.

It was observed that lot of bogus voting was taking place in the absence of photographs of the lawyers.

21 March 2013

Senior counsel Anil Divan wants practical position paper on liberalisation from government.

21 March 2013

Bar ExamThe Gujarat High Court today issued notice to the Bar Council of India (BCI) over bar exam delays, reported TOI.

08 March 2013

The Bar Council of India (BCI) has called for all lawyers in the country to abstain from work on Monday, 11 March 2013, “in protest against the brutal assault on Lawyers in Jaipur and Chandigarh”.

The notification on the BCI’s website adds:

“The Lawyers all across the country (except the Lawyers of Delhi who have already observed the abstention on 7.3.13) should abstain from the work on 11.3.13 in support of Lawyers of Rajasthan and Chandigarh. The protest should be peaceful and in most dignified way.”

Legally India re-reported yesterday that lawyers in Jaipur were protesting for long-pending housing project and personal allowance demands, while Chandigarh lawyers protested at the Punjab & Haryana high court to  support of 20 advocates against whom a case was registered for allegedly manhandling a police officer.

The government’s law minister Ashwani Kumar stated yesterday ago that over 30 million cases were now pending across courts, with 66,569 pending in the Supreme Court of India.

07 March 2013

AIBE Exclusive: While the Bar Council of India (BCI) has not yet released the complete results of the fourth All India Bar Examination (AIBE) held on 9 December, the regulator has decided to consider the complaints of December’s AIBE’s examinees.

21 February 2013

Manmohan SinghPrime minister Manmohan Singh addressed lawyers present at the Bar Council of India’s (BCI) centenary celebrations on 16 February in Delhi, urging them to take on more pro bono matters.

18 February 2013

BCI-RTI-11-1-2013-1-redactIn 2011 there were 1.3 million lawyers in India, revealed a right to information (RTI) response by the Bar Council of India (BCI) to Delhi-based advocate Kush Kalra, with an average annual growth rate between 2007 and 2011 of around 4 per cent.