Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Plea against compulsory eligibility test for law grads

Ahmedabad: The issue regarding Bar Council of India’s (BCI) resolution on compulsory eligibility test for law graduates has reached Gujarat High Court as six LLB degree holders filed a plea to obtain licence to practise law.

A PIL was also filed to revoke the system of compulsory eligibility test introduced recently by BCI as All India Bar Examination. BCI has amended the provisions of rules of the Advocates Act and made it compulsory for any law graduate from academic year 2009-’10 to clear an eligibility test.
The plea by law graduates filed by advocate Amit Panchal has challenged the provisions of rules 9, 10 and 11 of the Act. They have contended that they obtained the degree in law in 2008-09 and completed specialisation in 2009-10.
They have argued that the new BCI resolution can only be applicable to them if the Bar does not consider their degree of 2008-09.
They further submitted that their specialisation in law was completed in 2009-10 and if BCI considers 2009-10 as a cut-off year then they would be allowed licence to practise subject to the result of eligibility test.
Panchal stated that BCI would conduct the exam on December 5, 2010, which would result in waste of precious six months for the petitioners.
He requested the court to direct BCI to allow them the licence to practise and allow them to appear in the exams later.
The PIL has been filed by a city-based engineer Babu Waghela, who has claimed the amendment is ultra vires and against the constitution of BCI. Hence BCI’s decision to introduce exam should be quashed.
A bench headed by Chief Justice SJ Mukhopadhaya heard these petitions and kept further hearing on Wednesday.

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