Rs 5,000 Cr Budget for Advocate Welfare and more, BCI calls for Nationwide Rally to highlight demands on Feb 12
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Rs 5,000 Cr Budget for Advocate Welfare and more, BCI calls for Nationwide Rally to highlight demands on Feb 12

Bar & Bench

Weeks after addressing a representation to the Prime Minister to implement measures for Advocate welfare, the Bar Council of India (BCI) today intimated that a resolution has been passed to hold a nationwide rally to highlight their demands.

A press release made by the BCI today expresses consternation over the Prime Minister’s lack of response to the earlier representation dated January 22. The release goes on to warn the Government against taking steps to throttle democratic institutions while condemning steps taken to dismantle institutions such as the MCI. Inter alia, it also makes mention of grave concern being expressed over the frequent criticism of judiciary and judges by “some Lawyers and few other people with vested interest”. 

The press release was made today, following a Joint meeting of the BCI with State Bar Council representatives held on the morning of February 2. The release signed by BCI Chairman Manan Kumar Mishra informs that the participants in the meeting have decided to give a call to the Lawyers of the country to come on roads in order to protect their rights and privileges.

On this note, the release reiterates certain demands made for the general welfare of advocates. Notably, a demand has been made for an Annual Budgetary allocation of Rs 5,000 crores for lawyers’ and litigant welfare. The budget allocation is intended to cover the following expenses. i.e.

  • Insurance cover for lawyers and their families (dependants)
  • Stipend of at least Rs. 10, 000 per month for new entrants to the Bar up to 5 years of practice

The release also states that this fund would be managed by State Bar Councils under the aegis of the Advocate General and the State Bar Council Chairman, as previously suggested by the BCI chairman in the previous representation. It is also pointed out that the Telangana Government has already provided a Rs 100 crores budgetary allocation for lawyers’ welfare in 2015, as well as an annual fund of Rs 10 crores every year.

Other demands highlighted in today’s release include the following,

  • All Bar Associations should have chamber, adequate building/accommodation/siiting facilities, well equipped libraries, e-libraries, internet facilities, toilets (including separate facilities for lady adequate) etc.
  • The Government should frame schemes to acquire land at cheaper rates for Housing for Advocates (on the pattern of the Haryana Government)
  • Legal Services Authority Act – amendments and necessary changes should be made in the Act so that the functions under this Act could be discharged by the Lawyers (and not the Judges or Judicial Officers only).
  • All the Acts (which provide for appointments of retired Judges/Judicial Officers as the presiding Officers/Member of different Tribunals, Commissions or Forums/Authorities) should be properly amended so that competent Advocates (and not only the Judges) could also be appointed on these places.

In order to raise awareness amongst the legal fraternity with respect to the demands raised, the BCI release also informs that State Bar Councils are expected to hold a General Body Meeting on February 11. The Bar Associations are to pass their respective resolutions. These resolutions, addressed to the PMO, are to be handed over to the local collector with copies to the Member of Parliament, District Judges, State Bar Councils and the BCI. A rally is also to be conducted on the said date between 1 and 2 pm to the Collectorate by the members of the Bar.

The Nationwide Rally is to take place the following day i.e. February 12, at the respective state headquarters at 12.30 pm. The Rally is to be conducted in a peaceful and decent manner by the members of the Bar in full dress. The release also informs that the designated rally venue in Delhi is at the Jantar Mantar.

Read the BCI Release (English):

Press-Release-6.2.201BCI.pdf
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Read the BCI Release (Hindi):

Hindi-Memorandum-BCI.pdf
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