Every profession requires some standards. When a person opts to practice a particular profession, he needs to meet the criteria of those standards. These standards are set up by the concerned authority to ensure the professional ethics followed by all the people in that profession. It regulates the code of conduct among its members. One such kind of body regulating/ guiding all the advocates and people in legal profession is Bar Council of India.
BAR COUNCIL OF INDIA:
Bar Council of India is a statutory body established through the act of parliament. Bar Council of India derived its authority from the Advocates Act 1961. Bar Council of India was set up to maintain the discipline and decorum of the legal professionals in the court of law. It performs regulatory function by prescribing the standards of professional conduct and etiquette and by exercising the disciplinary jurisdiction over bar.
Section 7 of the act Covers the Bar Council’s regulatory and representative mandate for the legal profession and legal education in India –
1. To lay down standards of professional conduct and etiquette for advocates.
2 . To lay down procedure to be followed by its disciplinary committee and the disciplinary committees of each State Bar Council.
3. To safeguard the rights, privileges and interests of advocates.
4. To promote and support law reform.
5. To deal with and dispose of any matter which may be referred to it by a State Bar Council.
6. To promote legal education and to lay down standards of legal education. This is done in consultation with the Universities in India imparting legal education and the State Bar Councils.
7. To recognise Universities whose degree in law shall be a qualification for enrolment as an advocate. The Bar Council of India visits and inspects Universities, or directs the State Bar Councils to visit and inspect Universities for this purpose.
8. To conduct seminars and talks on legal topics by eminent jurists and publish journals and papers of legal interest.
9. To organise legal aid to the poor.
10.To recognise on a reciprocal basis, the foreign qualifications in law obtained outside India for the purpose of admission as an advocate in India.
11.To manage and invest the funds of the Bar Council.
12.To provide for the election of its members who shall run the Bar Councils.
The Bar Council of India can also constitute funds for the following purposes:
1. Giving financial assistance to organise welfare schemes for poor, disabled or other advocates,
2. Giving legal aid, and
3. Establishing law libraries.
The Bar Council of India can also receive grants, donations, and gifts for any of these purposes.
Every state has its own Bar Council and the Bar council of India acts as the Apex body to all the councils.
CONSTITUTION OF THE BODY:
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As per the Advocates Act, 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 who are ex officio members. 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.