A little update from the Legal world.
CLAT aspirants read a lot of news about so called legal current affairs. Most of which, in my day, I found not too interesting and drab. So here’s what is actually happening – the real spicy news from the world of law. Interesting and hopefully informative as well.
The entire Liberalisation debate.
This is the most worrying and hottest topic in the legal world now. Let’s call it to be or not to be a ‘liberalised legal market’.
The issue mainly centres around the entry of foreign law firms into India. Firms like Ashurst, Chadburne etc. had set up liaison offices in India and operated out of back offices in Mumbai and Delhi. However there are certain provisions in the Indian Advocates Act, 1961 which do not allow foreign lawyers or law firms to practice or set shop in India. Contravention of such resulted in a suit of action in the Bombay HC wherein the foreign firms were ordered to shut shop.
The main anti liberalization lobby is comprised of Indian law firms, led by Mr. Bhasin who is the President of the SILF (Society of Indian Law Firms) who argue that such entry of foreign law firms would adversely affect the legal climate in India and that the Indian laws are not in place to keep a check on the practices of these foreign entities. Also Indian lawyers would lose jobs to foreign shores.
The pro liberalization lobby argues that they would only enter in transactional business and that no legal market has lost jobs but in reality have actually gained business and economy has boomed manifold from entry of foreign law firms. They argue that they are not going to go and plead in courts so the counter argument of Indian lawyers losing jobs would hold no water.
It seems likely that foreign law firms would indeed enter the market but albeit the timing in uncertain and surely would involve legislations to be put into place.
Currently a writ petition lies before the Madras High Court and the entire legal fraternity eagerly awaits the outcome.
The All Indian Bar Exam (AIBE) fiasco.
The Bar Council of India (BCI) is the regulatory statutory body for the entire legal profession in India. Earlier the rule was that once one passed his final LLB exam and had his degree he could file for registration at the State Bar Councils and get his certificate of practice. However, under the dynamin leadership of Gopal Subramaniam , Solicitor General of India, and present head of the BCI there evolved a new concept of a qualifying test to enter the legal profession. It was made mandatory to pass this test to become a practicing lawyer right from the 2010 graduating session. The exam is yet to be conducted and the graduates are facing innumerable difficulties. A host of writ petitions were filed challenging the BCI’s decision and one such WP was also filed at Chandigarh in the Punjab and Haryana HC by a NALSAR alumni, Mr. Fatehpal Singh.
The Supreme Court is soon to hear the matter and the legal world is awaiting the verdict with baited breath.