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Bar Council can’t initiate disciplinary proceedings against lawyers, says Supreme Court

Team SoOLEGAL 19 Dec 2017 11:46am

Bar Council can’t initiate disciplinary proceedings against lawyers, says Supreme Court

In a recent judgment, the Division Bench of Justices AK Sikri and Ashok Bhushan of the Supreme Court has emphasised that disciplinary proceedings cannot be initiated by the Bar Council for transactions that are unconnected with the professional conduct of an advocate, as reported in Bar & Bench.

The Bar Council of India had upheld the order of Chhattisgarh Bar Council which had held advocate Kaushal Kishore Awasthi guilty of professional misconduct, on the basis of a complaint filed by his client. The Bar Council of India, had however, reduced the term of suspension of license from 2 years imposed by the state bar council to one year, along with cost. The Lawyer assailed the order before the apex court.

The advocate had been engaged by the complainant in connection with a case concerning the division of certain land in 1989. With the consent of the parties, the land was divided by a court decree passed in 1994. Then in 2003, the complainant sought to sell his apportioned land to a third party for a price of Rs 30,000.

The advocate, however, objected to the sale, claiming that the complainant did not have full ownership of the proposed land and that the market value was also shown less in the sale deed.

The bench referred to Rule 22 under Chapter II of the Standards of Professional Conduct and Etiquette which proscribes and advocate from directly or indirectly making a bid for or purchase either in his own name or in other’s name for his own benefit or for the benefit of any other person any property sold in the execution of a decree or order in any suit.

“Even as per the complainant’s own admission, it is much thereafter that the complainant intended to sell the property in question when he found himself in need of money. It is this sale which the appellant tried to interdict. He was not doing so in the capacity of an Advocate. As per him, the complainant was not authorised to sell the property without repaying his debt,” the bench said.

  

Tagged: Supreme Court   Bar Council of India   Judge   Lawyer  
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