PIL challenges provision of 'lawyers only' clause in Bar Council panels

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Chennai, July 5 (PTI) A PIL petition has been filed in the Madras High Court challenging the validity of a provision in the Advocates Act, which stipulated that lawyers alone should comprise the disciplinary panels constituted by the Bar Council of India and its units in the states.

The first bench of Chief Justice Sanjib Banerjee and Justice Senthilkumar Ramamoorthy, before which the petition from advocate Karthik Ranganathan cam up for hearing, ordered notice to the Centre, Bar Council of India and the Bar Council of Tamil Nadu and Puducherry.

Section 9 of the Act provides for constitution of disciplinary committee by the BCI and the State Bar Council to examine complaints of misconduct against advocates.

The petitioner submitted that the committees should have retired judges rather than the present scheme of having lawyers decide cases involving other lawyers.

Currently, as per Section 9, a disciplinary committee is to comprise of three lawyers, two of whom are elected by the State Bar Council concerned from amongst its members and a third one to be co-opted from non members. PTI COR SA APR ADMINISTRATOR APR ADMINISTRATOR

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