Allahabad: Taking serious note of people with criminal background practising law in Uttar Pradesh, the Allahabad High Court has directed district judges to obtain
details of such lawyers from respective district police chiefs and forward them to its registry for further action.
In a recent order, a five-judge bench headed by Chief Justice FI Rebello asked "judges of the respective districts to call for information from the SSP/DIG about the criminal cases pending against lawyers and forward the information to the registry".
The registry, on receiving the information from the district judges, should immediately forward the same to the secretary of the Bar Council of Uttar Pradesh.
Similarly, if any fresh case is registered against any advocate, the information should be given to the registry of this court", the bench said while hearing a PIL for
"restoration of holidays in subordinate courts".
The court issued the directions following the High Court Bar Association`s complaint that "persons with criminal backgrounds possessing law degree, or sometimes, having no law degree are being enrolled as advocates by the UP Bar Council".
The court also issued a number of directions to prevent, in future, people with criminal records from getting enrolled by the UP Bar Council.
The court asked the Bar Council to "ascertain the criminal background of applicants" by demanding "a certificate issued by the district police chief that he is not involved in any criminal case".
Besides, the court directed "vice-chancellors of all universities, state and central" in Uttar Pradesh to declare results of law examinations on their respective websites.
In addition, the court ordered that "If a request is made by the Bar Council to the universities for verification of any degree, mark sheet produced by a candidate for
admission to the roll of the Bar Council or of any existing member on the roll of the Bar Council," the varsity authorities shall provide the information "at the earliest"
after "charging the requisite fees".
The court also asked the Bar Council "to take appropriate steps within their jurisdiction as permissible in law" if it found that any applicant or a person already
enrolled "had provided false information".
The court has fixed February 9 as the next date of hearing of the PIL.