Published on: October 3, 2022 at 19:54 IST
The Supreme Court, on Thursday, extended time for the Bar Council of India to dispose off complaints against advocates received by it and/or transferred to it by it by 31st December, 2022.
The Court noted that, “to have the discipline and maintain the purity of the profession, the complaints made by the concerned litigants are required to be disposed off at the earliest so that the litigants may continue to have faith in the justice delivery system and in the profession.”
Considering Section 35 and Section 36B of the Advocates Act, in its judgment dated 17.01.2021, the Court had directed the BCI to issue appropriate directions to the State Bar Councils the decision and disposal of the complaints within a year from the date of receipts of such proceedings.
It was specified that the failure to do so would result in the transfer of all complaints to the BCI, which took place conclusively.
The bench of Justices M R Shah and Krishna Murari heard a contempt petition in connection to the aforementioned judgment, to which Justice Shah iterated to Senior Advocate and BCI Chairman Manan Mishra,
“When the litigant goes to the bar council, initially he goes to the bar Council of the concerned state. When the state bar council did not take any action, thereafter the cases are deemed to have been transferred to the bar Council of India. Now if they are also taking 1, 2, 3, 4 years, what will happen? Indiscipline cannot be tolerated.”
The bench remarked that a person who has committed misconduct should be punished and one who is innocent should be exonerated.
They stated that the matter has left advocates hanging and, that the blame cannot be thrown upon state Bar Councils as they fall under the authority of the Bar Council of India.
Mr. Mishra further pleaded for holding circuit benches in the respective State Bar Councils for the disposal of cases, which were entertained by the Judges and were granted three months for the disposal of cases.