Senior Advocate Challenges Supreme Court’s Chamber Allotment Criteria

Team SoOLEGAL 1 Aug 2018 11:00am

Senior Advocate Challenges Supreme Court’s Chamber Allotment Criteria

Senior Advocate V Mohana has approached the Supreme Court challenging the latter’s prescribed cut-off date as the criterion for allotment of lawyer’s chamber.

In the petition, Mohana has prayed that the cut-off date of June 30, 2016 prescribed by the top court be extended, so that she can fulfil the regularity of practice requirement which is required for getting a chamber in the SC in accordance with the Supreme Court Lawyers’ Chambers (Allotment and Occupancy) Rules.

Mohana was enrolled as an advocate in the year 1988 and became an Advocate-on-Record (AoR) of the top court in the year 1996. She was later designated as Senior Advocate on April 23, 2015.

What started the controversy is a notice issued by the Additional Registrar of the SC on October 31, 2017 that invited applications for allotment of lawyers’ chamber.

The notice allowed applicants to apply for a chamber in the Supreme Court under the Senior Advocate category only if they had a "minimum of fifty appearances each year for any two consecutive years between June 1, 2011 and June 30, 2016".

Aggrieved by the same, Mohana had made a representation to the Chamber Allotment Committee asking for a date closer to the date of application as the cut-off date. The petitioner, however, alleges that the cut-off date remained the same in the revised notice issued on May 16, this year. This is what led advocate Mohana to file a petition in the SC.

In the petition, Mohana claims that the purpose of the two-year condition is to test the regularity of practice of the concerned lawyer. However, the cut-off date of June 2016 for a notice issued in October 2017 would make it impossible for her to fulfil the criteria, since she was designated as a Senior Advocate only in April 2015.

Mohana in her petition further submitted that she has more than adequate appearances and fulfils all the criteria mentioned in the notice if her appearances as ‘AoR’ is considered. She also said that she will have more than adequate appearances as Senior Advocate in case the cut-off date is aligned with the date of the notice or date of application.

The petitioner has also has sought quashing of the notice issued by the Supreme Court on May 16, 2018.

This is not the first time when a petition has been filed concerning chamber allotment in the top court. In fact, two similar petitions have been filed challenging the allotment rules earlier and are still pending in the Supreme Court.


Tagged: Chamber Allotment   Lawyers’ Chamber Allotment   Supreme Court   Senior Advocate   V Mohana   Advocate On Record   AoR  
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