Supreme Court says, No bar on legislators from practising in court

Team SoOLEGAL 25 Sep 2018 11:37am

Supreme Court says, No bar on legislators from practising in court

Today, the Supreme Court dismissed a plea seeking to ban lawmakers from practising as advocates during their tenure. 

The SC bench of CJI Dipak Misra and justices A M Khanwilkar and D Y Chandrachud said that there is no bar under the Bar Council of India Rules to debar the legislators from practising in court. 

The order came after a PIL was filed by BJP leader and advocate Ashwini Upadhyay seeking to bar lawyer-lawmakers (MPs, MLAs, MLCs) from practising in courts during their tenure in the legislature. 

The bench had earlier taken note of the Centre's submission that an MP or an MLA is an elected representative and not a full-time employee of the government, hence the plea was not maintainable. 

Senior advocate Shekhar Naphade, appearing for Upadhyay, had told the court that a lawmaker draws a salary from the public exchequer and a salaried employee is debarred by the Bar Council of India from practising in the courts of law.

The bench had replied that employment postulates a master-servant relationship and the government of India is not the master of a Member of Parliament.

The petition said that while a public servant cannot practice as an advocate, legislators are practising in various courts which was a violation of Article 14 of the Constitution.

The petition also pointed out that the MPs have the power of voting on the impeachment of judges of the Supreme Court and the high courts.

Tagged: Supreme Court   criminal case   Lawmakers   Article 102(1)(e)   Article 324   Attorney General K K Venugopal   Chief Justice Dipak Misra   Criminalisation of politics   Election Commission   Election Symbols (Reservation and Allotment) Order 1968   Justice D Y. Chandrachud   Justice Rohinton Nariman   Representation of People’s Act   Senior Advocate Krishnan Venugopal   Senior Counsel Dinesh Dwivedi   Senior Counsel Meenakshi Arora   Separation of Powers  
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