COVID-19 Epidemic: Indian Lawyers in Financial Crisis, Ignored, Depressed: In pursuit of Financial And Moral Support
14 Pages Posted: 10 Jul 2020
Date Written: July 8, 2020
This research paper aims to discuss about the background, role of lawyers in administration of justice, pre post conditions, economic crisis of Indian Lawyers during COVID-19 Epidemic. An advocate's duty is as important as that of a Judge. Advocates have a large responsibility towards the society. India ranks 68 out of 126 countries, down 3 places from last year in 2019 in “Rule of Law Index” which measures how the rule of law is experienced and perceived by the general public. The Indian Law profession is one of the largest in the world, with more than 2 million enrolled advocates Nationwide. The Nationwide lock down has brought to the fore the great disparity in the legal profession & lock down has financially damages lawyers. Lawyers in India are the most neglected and overlooked during COVID19 comparative of other professional. 70% Lawyers are almost daily wage workers who earn per appearance hearing. COVID-19 has impacted deep and triggered many social, mental and psychological issues as well.
In past four months many State Bar Councils came up with circular for Conditional Financial Assistance to Advocates. On 28-05-2020 I have drafted the petition [“Seeking Financial & Moral Support of Hon’ble Supreme Court of India”: “Save the dignity of Advocates”] campaign on change.org platform and sent the petition along with more than six hundred (600) Advocate signatories, on 15-06-2020 to Hon’ble Prime Minister, Hon’ble Home Minister, Hon’ble Law Minister, Hon’ble Chief Justice of India & Companion Judges, Hon’ble Chairman, Law Commission of India, Hon’ble Chairman Bar Council of India with three key demand & payers namely:
1 - Implementation of Advocates welfare fund act, 2001 in COVID-19 pandemic is crisis:
2 - Amendment of Advocates Act 1961, Bar Council of India Rules 1975 [Rules 47 to 52 of Section VII of the Rules deals with restrictions on other employments]:
3 - Monthly Financial support, not Loan.
The fundamental principle which determines the privileges and responsibilities of lawyer in relation to the court is that he is an officer to justice and a friend of the court. Lawyers status as an officer of justice does not mean he is subordinate to the judge. It only means that he is an integral part of the machinery for the administration of justice.
Keywords: COVID-19, Epidemic, Lawyers, Financial, Policy, Scheme, Supreme Court of India, Prime Minister, BCI, Bar Associations, SCBA
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