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BCI suspends 15 Madras lawyers for violence, pins blame on rubbish law schools & 'abnormal increase in number of lawyers'

BCI chairman wonders how things could have got so bad...
BCI chairman wonders how things could have got so bad...

The Bar Council of India (BCI) has suspended 15 lawyers who were allegedly involved in violence in the Madras high court, reported The Hindu and others.

The notice sent by BCI chairman Manan Kumar Mishra on 22 September, directs the Tamil Nadu bar council to conclude the disciplinary proceedings against the lawyers started a month ago.

According to the Hindu, Mishra in his notice is:

partly blaming the mushrooming of private law colleges which “casually” grant law degrees to all and sundry, the BCI saw the Madras high court violence as the tipping point in the growing incidents of vandalism.

The number of law schools, which have to be accredited by the BCI, has increased from 800 to 1,200 in only two years, Legally India reported late last year.

Mishra’s notice states:

We are aware that because of the abnormal increase in the number of lawyers, it is becoming very difficult to maintain the standard of profession. But it is also a fact that most of the State Bar Councils are very slow in punishing the advocates even in cases of gross professional misconduct. The number of non-practising advocates and the number of persons with fake and forged certificates (posing themselves as lawyers) is increasing day by day.

The Bar Council of India has taken notice of the fact that after getting enrolled, the lawyers don’t provide any information to the State Bar Councils or the Bar Council of India about their antecedents, criminal cases lodged, if any, against them or leaving the practice and joining some other private jobs, business, contracts, property dealing or any other occupation. In a survey, the Council found that the number of such non-practising and farzi lawyers has increased to such an extent that they are playing a vital role even in the constitution of Bar Associations and Bar Councils.

The Tamil Nadu bar council has since resolved in its general body meeting for the BCI to reconsider the order suspending the advocates, reported The Hindu.

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