The Bar Council of India
is a statutory body that regulates and represents the Indian bar. It was created by Parliament under the Advocates Act, 1961. It prescribes standards of professional conduct
Professional conduct is the field of regulation of members of professional bodies, either acting under statutory or contractual powers.Historically, professional conduct was wholly undertaken by the private professional bodies, the sole legal authority for which was of a contractual nature...
Etiquette is a code of behavior that delineates expectations for social behavior according to contemporary conventional norms within a society, social class, or group...
and exercises disciplinary jurisdiction. It sets standards for legal education
Legal education is the education of individuals who intend to become legal professionals or those who simply intend to use their law degree to some end, either related to law or business...
and grants recognition to Universities whose degree in will serve as a qualification for students to enrol themselves as advocates upon graduation.
After the Constitution of India
The Constitution of India is the supreme law of India. It lays down the framework defining fundamental political principles, establishes the structure, procedures, powers, and duties of government institutions, and sets out fundamental rights, directive principles, and the duties of citizens...
was established on January 26, 1950, the Inter-University Board passed a resolution emphasising the need for an all-India Bar and the importance of uniformly high standards for law examinations in different Universities. In May 1950, the Madras Provincial Lawyers Conference, held under the presidency of Shri S. Varadachariar, resolved that a committee appointed by the Government of India
The Government of India, officially known as the Union Government, and also known as the Central Government, was established by the Constitution of India, and is the governing authority of the union of 28 states and seven union territories, collectively called the Republic of India...
should evolve a scheme for an all-India Bar and amend the Indian Bar Councils Act such that it conforms to the new Constitution.
On April 12, 1951, Shri Syed Mohammed Ahmad Kazmi, a Member of Parliament, proposed a bill to amend the India Bar Councils Act. The Government of India concluded that it was necessary for the Government to sponsor the Bill. In August 1951, a Committee of Inquiry was set up to consider the feasibility
Feasibility may refer to:*Logical possibility, that which is achievable.*Feasible region, a region that satisfies mathematical constraints*Feasibility study, a preliminary study to determine a project's viability....
of a unified Bar in India, the continuance or abolition of the dual system of counsel for each state, possibility of a separate Bar Council
A bar council , in a Commonwealth country and in the Republic of Ireland, the Bar Council of Ireland is a professional body that regulates the profession of barristers together with the King's Inns. Solicitors are generally regulated by the Law society....
for the Supreme Court and the revision of enactments related to the legal profession.
On March 30, 1953, the All India Bar Committee, headed by Hon’ble Shri S. R. Das, submitted a report. This report proposed the creation of a Bar Council for each state and an All-India Bar Council as an apex body. It was suggested that the All India Bar Council should regulate the legal profession and set the standard of legal education. The Law Commission of India
Law Commission of India is an executive body established by an order of the Government of India. Its major function is to work for legal reform. It membership primarily comprises legal experts, who are entrusted a mandate by the Government...
was assigned the job of assembling a report on judicial administration reforms.
In 1961, the Advocates Act was introduced to implement the recommendations made by the All India Bar Committee and Law Commission. Shri M. C. Setalvad
M. C. Setalvad was an eminent Indian jurist, who became the first and longest serving Attorney General of India . He also remained the Chairman of the First Law Commission of India , which is mandated for legal reform in the country by Government of India...
was the first Chairman and Shri C. K. Daphtary as the Vice Chairman. In 1963, Shri C. K. Daphtary became the Chairman and Shri S. K. Ghose became the Vice Chairman.
Section 7 of the Advocates Act, 1961
lays down the Bar Council’s regulatory and representative mandate. The functions of the Bar Council are to:
1. Lay down standards of professional conduct and etiquette for advocate
An advocate is a term for a professional lawyer used in several different legal systems. These include Scotland, South Africa, India, Scandinavian jurisdictions, Israel, and the British Crown dependencies of Jersey, Guernsey and the Isle of Man...
2. Lay down procedure to be followed by disciplinary committees
3. Safeguard the rights, privileges and interests of advocates
4. Promote and support law reform
Law reform or Legal reform is the process of examining existing laws, and advocating and implementing changes in a legal system, usually with the aim of enhancing justice or efficiency....
5. Deal with and dispose of any matter which may be referred by a State Bar Council
6. Promote legal education and lay down standards of legal education.
7. Determine universities whose degree in law shall be a qualification for enrolment as an advocate
8. Conduct seminar
Seminar is, generally, a form of academic instruction, either at an academic institution or offered by a commercial or professional organization. It has the function of bringing together small groups for recurring meetings, focusing each time on some particular subject, in which everyone present is...
s on legal topics by eminent jurist
A jurist or jurisconsult is a professional who studies, develops, applies, or otherwise deals with the law. The term is widely used in American English, but in the United Kingdom and many Commonwealth countries it has only historical and specialist usage...
s and publish journals and papers of legal interest
9. Organize and provide legal aid
Legal aid is the provision of assistance to people otherwise unable to afford legal representation and access to the court system. Legal aid is regarded as central in providing access to justice by ensuring equality before the law, the right to counsel and the right to a fair trial.A number of...
to the poor
10. Recognize foreign qualifications in law obtained outside India for admission as an advocate
11. Manage and invest funds of the Bar Council.
12. Provide for the election of its members who shall run the Bar Councils
The Bar Council of India consists of members elected from each State Bar Council, and the Attorney General of India and the Solicitor General of India
The Solicitor General for India is subordinate to the Attorney General of India, who is the Indian government's chief legal advisor, and its primary lawyer in the Supreme Court of India. The Solicitor General for India is the second law officer of the country, assists the Attorney General, and is...
who are ex-officio members. The members from the State Bar Councils are elected for a period of five years.
The Council elects its own Chairman and Vice-Chairman for a period of two years from amongst its members. Assisted by the various committees of the Council, the chairman acts as the chief executive and director of the Council.
The current Chairman, Ashok Parija succeeded Gopal Subramaniam who laid down office upon his resignation as Solicitor General of the country.
The other members of the Council are:
R. Dhanapal Raj
R. Dhanapal Raj, the Vice-Chairman of the Bar Council of India, enrolled in Tamil Nadu
Tamil Nadu is one of the 28 states of India. Its capital and largest city is Chennai. Tamil Nadu lies in the southernmost part of the Indian Peninsula and is bordered by the union territory of Pondicherry, and the states of Kerala, Karnataka, and Andhra Pradesh...
in 1978. He was first elected to the State Bar Council of Tamil Nadu in 1994 and to the Bar Council of India in 2005, where he was Chairman of the Executive Committee till 2007.
Ashok Kumar Deb
Ashok Kumar Deb, the Managing Trustee of the Bar Council of India Trust, is the member from the State Bar Council of West Bengal
West Bengal is a state in the eastern region of India and is the nation's fourth-most populous. It is also the seventh-most populous sub-national entity in the world, with over 91 million inhabitants. A major agricultural producer, West Bengal is the sixth-largest contributor to India's GDP...
Milan Kumar Dey
Milan Kumar Dey, who is the Chairman of the Executive Committee, is the member from the State Bar Council of Jharkhand
Jharkhand is a state in eastern India. It was carved out of the southern part of Bihar on 15 November 2000. Jharkhand shares its border with the states of Bihar to the north, Uttar Pradesh and Chhattisgarh to the west, Orissa to the south, and West Bengal to the east...
. He enrolled as an advocate in 1990. He was elected member of the Bar Council of Jharkhand and a member of the Bar Council of India in 2006.
Daulat Ram Sharma
Daulat Ram Sharma, the Associate Managing Trustee of the Bar Council of India Trust, is the member from the State Bar Council of Himachal Pradesh
Himachal Pradesh is a state in Northern India. It is spread over , and is bordered by the Indian states of Jammu and Kashmir on the north, Punjab on the west and south-west, Haryana and Uttar Pradesh on the south, Uttarakhand on the south-east and by the Tibet Autonomous Region on the east...
. He enrolled as an advocate in 1976. He was elected to the State Bar Council of Himachal Pradesh in 2000 and to the Bar Council of India in 2006.
Brij Mohan Vinayak
Brij Mohan Vinayak is the member from the State Bar Council of Punjab & Haryana
Haryana is a state in India. Historically, it has been a part of the Kuru region in North India. The name Haryana is found mentioned in the 12th century AD by the apabhramsha writer Vibudh Shridhar . It is bordered by Punjab and Himachal Pradesh to the north, and by Rajasthan to the west and south...
. He enrolled as an advocate in 1979 and became a member of the State Bar Council of Punjab and Haryana in 2002. He became Vice-Chairman in 2005 and was elected member of the Bar Council of India in 2010.
G E Vahanvati
G E Vahanvati is the Attorney General of India and an ex-officio member of the Bar Council of India.
Faisal Rizvi is the member from the State Bar Council of Chhattisgarh
Chhattisgarh is a state in Central India, formed when the 16 Chhattisgarhi-speaking South-Eastern districts of Madhya Pradesh gained separate statehood on 1 November 2000....
. He has practiced law since 1991. In 2002, he was first elected to the State Bar Council of Chattisgarh and was elected to the Bar Council of India in the same year.
Rajendra B. Raghuvanshi
Rajendra B. Raghuvanshi is the member from the State Bar Council of Maharashtra
Maharashtra is a state located in India. It is the second most populous after Uttar Pradesh and third largest state by area in India...
Goa , a former Portuguese colony, is India's smallest state by area and the fourth smallest by population. Located in South West India in the region known as the Konkan, it is bounded by the state of Maharashtra to the north, and by Karnataka to the east and south, while the Arabian Sea forms its...
. He enrolled as an advocate in 1981. He was elected Chairman of the Bar Council of Maharashtra and Goa in 1998, and in 2004, he was elected to the Bar Council of India.
S. Gopakumaran Nair
S. Gopakumaran Nair is the member from the State Bar Council of Kerala
or Keralam is an Indian state located on the Malabar coast of south-west India. It was created on 1 November 1956 by the States Reorganisation Act by combining various Malayalam speaking regions....
Gopal Narain Mishra
Gopal Narain Mishra is the member from the State Bar Council of Uttar Pradesh
Uttar Pradesh abbreviation U.P. , is a state located in the northern part of India. With a population of over 200 million people, it is India's most populous state, as well as the world's most populous sub-national entity...
. He enrolled in Lucknow
Lucknow is the capital city of Uttar Pradesh in India. Lucknow is the administrative headquarters of Lucknow District and Lucknow Division....
in 1970. He was first elected to the State Bar Council of Uttar Pradesh in 1994 and to the Bar Council of India in 2006.
M. Rajender Reddy
M. Rajender Reddy is the member from the State Bar Council of Andhra Pradesh
Andhra Pradesh , is one of the 28 states of India, situated on the southeastern coast of India. It is India's fourth largest state by area and fifth largest by population. Its capital and largest city by population is Hyderabad.The total GDP of Andhra Pradesh is $100 billion and is ranked third...
where he was previously Chairman.
Hemantkumar J. Patel
Hemantkumar J. Patel is the member from the State Bar Council of Gujarat
. He enrolled in Ahmedabad
Ahmedabad also known as Karnavati is the largest city in Gujarat, India. It is the former capital of Gujarat and is also the judicial capital of Gujarat as the Gujarat High Court has its seat in Ahmedabad...
in 1977. He was first elected to the State Bar Council of Gujarat in 1994 and to the Bar Council of India in 2006.
Ashok Parija is the member from the State Bar Council of Orissa
Orissa , officially Odisha since Nov 2011, is a state of India, located on the east coast of India, by the Bay of Bengal. It is the modern name of the ancient nation of Kalinga, which was invaded by the Maurya Emperor Ashoka in 261 BC. The modern state of Orissa was established on 1 April...
Zafar Ahmed Khan
Zafar Ahmed Khan is the member from the State Bar Council of Madhya Pradesh
Madhya Pradesh , often called the Heart of India, is a state in central India. Its capital is Bhopal and Indore is the largest city....
. He enrolled as an advocate in 1973. He was first elected member of the State Bar Council of Madhya Pradesh in 2008 and a member of the Bar Council of India in the same year.
Jagdeesh C M
Jagdeesh C M is the member from the State Bar Council of Karnataka
Karnataka , the land of the Kannadigas, is a state in South West India. It was created on 1 November 1956, with the passing of the States Reorganisation Act and this day is annually celebrated as Karnataka Rajyotsava...
. He enrolled as an advocate in 1981 and was elected as a member of the State Bar Council of Karnataka in 2006. In 2008, he was elected to the Bar Council of India.
Apurba Kumar Sharma
Apurba Kumar Sharma is the member from the State Bar Council of Assam
Assam , also, rarely, Assam Valley and formerly the Assam Province , is a northeastern state of India and is one of the most culturally and geographically distinct regions of the country...
Nagaland is a state in the far north-eastern part of India. It borders the state of Assam to the west, Arunachal Pradesh and part of Assam to the north, Burma to the east and Manipur to the south. The state capital is Kohima, and the largest city is Dimapur...
Meghalaya is a state in north-eastern India. The word "Meghalaya" literally means the Abode of Clouds in Sanskrit and other Indic languages. Meghalaya is a hilly strip in the eastern part of the country about 300 km long and 100 km wide, with a total area of about 8,700 sq mi . The...
Mizoram is one of the Seven Sister States in North Eastern India, sharing borders with the states of Tripura, Assam, Manipur and with the neighbouring countries of Bangladesh and Burma. Mizoram became the 23rd state of India on 20 February 1987. Its capital is Aizawl. Mizoram is located in the...
Sikkim is a landlocked Indian state nestled in the Himalayan mountains...
and Arunachal Pradesh
Arunachal Pradesh is a state of India, located in the far northeast. It borders the states of Assam and Nagaland to the south, and shares international borders with Burma in the east, Bhutan in the west, and the People's Republic of China in the north. The majority of the territory is claimed by...
Vijay Bhatt was a noted producer-director-screenwriter of Hindi cinema, who made such films as Ram Rajya , Baiju Bawra , Goonj Uthi Shehnai and Himalaya Ki God Mein .He founded Prakash Pictures, a film production company and Prakash Studios in Andheri East, Mumbai, which...
is the member from the State Bar Council of Uttarakhand
Uttarakhand , formerly Uttaranchal, is a state in the northern part of India. It is often referred to as the Land of Gods due to the many holy Hindu temples and cities found throughout the state, some of which are among Hinduism's most spiritual and auspicious places of pilgrimage and worship...
. He was first elected to the State Bar Council of Uttarkhand in 2004. He was elected to the Bar Council of India in 2010.
Biri Singh Sinsinwar
Biri Singh Sinsinwar is the member from the State Bar Council of Rajasthan
Rājasthān the land of Rajasthanis, , is the largest state of the Republic of India by area. It is located in the northwest of India. It encompasses most of the area of the large, inhospitable Great Indian Desert , which has an edge paralleling the Sutlej-Indus river valley along its border with...
. He was elected Chairman of the Bar Council of Rajasthan in 2003 and recently to the Bar Council of India.
Shri Rajinder Singh Rana
Rajinder Singh Rana is the member from the State Bar Council of Delhi
Delhi , officially National Capital Territory of Delhi , is the largest metropolis by area and the second-largest by population in India, next to Mumbai. It is the eighth largest metropolis in the world by population with 16,753,265 inhabitants in the Territory at the 2011 Census...
. He was first elected to the state Bar Council of Delhi in 1998 where he became Vice Chairman in 2000. In 2010, he was elected to the Bar Council of India. He was arrested on 20 December 2010 by CBI on charges of taking bribe for granting recognition to a Law college in Ghaziabad.
Manan Kumar Mishra
Manan Kumar Mishra is the member from the State Bar Council of Bihar
Bihar is a state in eastern India. It is the 12th largest state in terms of geographical size at and 3rd largest by population. Almost 58% of Biharis are below the age of 25, which is the highest proportion in India....
. He enrolled as an advocate in 1980 and was elected a member of the State Bar Council of Bihar in 1988. He was elected to the Bar Council of India in 2010.
Enrolment of advocates
Eligible persons are admitted as advocates on the rolls of the State Bar Councils. The Advocates Act, 1961 empowers State Bar Councils to frame their own rules regarding enrolment of advocates.
The Council’s Enrolment Committee may scrutinise a candidate’s application. Those admitted as advocates by any State Bar Council are eligible for a Certificate of Enrolment.
All applicants for enrolment as advocates are required under Section 24 (1) (f) of the Advocates Act, 1961
to pay an enrolment fee of Rs.600/- (Rupees Six hundred only) to the respective State Bar Council and Rs.150/- (Rupees One hundred Fifty only) to the Bar Council of India. These payments should be made using separate demand drafts.
The Bar Council of India has various committee
A committee is a type of small deliberative assembly that is usually intended to remain subordinate to another, larger deliberative assembly—which when organized so that action on committee requires a vote by all its entitled members, is called the "Committee of the Whole"...
s that make recommendations to the Council. The members of these committees are elected from amongst the members of the Council.
The Executive Committee is the head authority of the Council and responsible for giving effect to the resolutions of the Council. The chairman is Shri Milan Kumar Dey. The committee’s duties are to:
1. Manage and invest funds in a manner directed by the Council
2. Grant leave to staff members
3. Prescribe books of account, registers and files for the proper management of the Council’s affairs
4. Assign and supervise the staff’s work and define the conditions of service
5. Appoint auditors and determine their pay
6. Present the annual audit
The general definition of an audit is an evaluation of a person, organization, system, process, enterprise, project or product. The term most commonly refers to audits in accounting, but similar concepts also exist in project management, quality management, and energy conservation.- Accounting...
report, administration report and statement of account to the Council
7. Maintain a library
In a traditional sense, a library is a large collection of books, and can refer to the place in which the collection is housed. Today, the term can refer to any collection, including digital sources, resources, and services...
and issue legal publications
8. Determine allowances to members of the different committees of the Council as well as staff members
9. Delegate any of the powers to the Chairman and/or Vice Chairman
Legal Education Committee
The Legal Education Committee make recommendations to the Bar Council of India on matters related to legal education. The Legal Education Committee has the authority to set standards of legal education, visit and inspect universities, recommend the pre requisites for foreign advocates practicing law in India, recommend recognition or discontinuance of a law degree
A Law degree is an academic degree conferred for studies in law. Such degrees are generally preparation for legal careers; but while their curricula may be reviewed by legal authority, they do not themselves confer a license...
from a University. The Chairman, presently Hon’ble Mr. Justice A. P. Misra, is elected by the members of the committee.
The disciplinary committee of the Bar Council of India reviews applications by persons against summary dismissal of their complaints against advocates for professional misconduct, by the State Bar Councils.
An appeal is a petition for review of a case that has been decided by a court of law. The petition is made to a higher court for the purpose of overturning the lower court's decision....
s lie before the Bar Council of India against orders of the disciplinary committees of the State Bar Councils. Every such appeal is heard by the disciplinary committee of the Bar Council of India, which may pass an order, including an order varying the punishment awarded by the disciplinary committee of the State Bar Council.
Each disciplinary committee consists of three members. The term of the members of this committee is three years.
Advocate Welfare Committee
The Advocates Welfare Committee looks into applications made by advocates for welfare funds. It verifies the application and provides funds. The Advocates Welfare committee is certified by the
Advocates Welfare Fund Act, 2001.
Legal Aid Committee
The Legal Aid Committee provides aids to those requiring legal assistance.
The Building Committee is responsible for setting up offices for the Council.
The Rules Committee reviews the rules and regulations of the Council.
Directorate of Legal Education
The Bar Council of India has established a Directorate of Legal Education for the purpose of organizing, running, conducting, holding, and administering the following.
(a) Continuing Legal Education
(b) Teachers training
(c) Advanced specialized professional courses
(d) Education program for Indian students seeking registration after obtaining Law Degree from a Foreign University
(c) Research on professional Legal Education and Standardization
(f) Seminar and workshop
(g) Legal Research
(h)Any other assignment that may be assigned to it by the Legal Education committee and the Bar Council of India.
Prof. V.B. Coutinho, the former Vice-Chancellor of Gulbarga University
- Institution :Gulbarga University was a post graduation centre of Karnatak University, India. In 1980 The Government of Karnataka enacted a law and gave it the status of university....
is the first Director of the Directorate of Legal Education .
All India Bar Examination
On April 10, 2010, the Bar Council of India resolved to conduct an All India Bar Examination that tests an advocate’s ability to practice law. It is required for an advocate to pass this examination to practice law. This examination shall be held biannually, in April and November, and will test advocates on substantive and procedural law. It will assess basic analytical capabilities and knowledge of law. The syllabi for this examination will be published at least three months before the examination. An advocate may appear for the examination any number of times. Once the advocate passes the examination, he/she will be entitled to a Certificate of Practice.
The first All India Bar Examination is scheduled to take place on December 5, 2010. It will be mandatory for law students graduating in the academic year 2009-2010 and onwards to clear this exam in order to practice law in India.