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Thursday, 24 December 2020

Mull over quality of legal education, HC tells BCI

Saurabh Malik
Tribune News Service
Chandigarh, December 23

In a scathing observation on the quality of legal education in the country, the Punjab and Haryana High Court has asked the Bar Council of India (BCI) to mull over the issue as more than a few young lawyers were not up to the mark.

Justice Rekha Mittal asserted that she would like to express that the BCI "should seriously dilate on the issue of maintaining the standard of legal education". "Many new entrants in the legal profession are not up to the mark in drafting of petitions or assisting the court. Some of them are not confident enough to speak court language," Justice Mittal observed.

The observations came on a petition filed against the BCI and other respondents by the Chandigarh Educational Society through counsel HS Brar. The petitioner, among other things, was seeking directions to the BCI and another respondent to grant approval for starting Chandigarh Law College, Jhanjheri, from the academic session 2020-21.

Justice Mittal also suggested that the BCI could take steps to ensure practical training to law students in its "real meaning and sense". "It may also examine creating a portal or/and nodal agency to ensure compliance with BCI instructions, guidelines and 2008 rules by centres of legal education," Justice Mittal added.

Disposing of the matter, Justice Mittal also directed the BCI and another respondent to take a decision in the matter of approval expeditiously, preferably within three months. The direction came after Justice Mittal observed that the society indisputably had submitted an application on December 13, 2019, for grant of approval. "As the resolution passed by the BCI imposing moratorium of three years for approval of new law colleges/institutes has been set aside, the BCI is duty bound to process the application of the society in accordance with the 2008 rules/circulars/guidelines relevant in the contexthellip;," Justice Mittal added.

Justice Mittal made it clear that the BCI was to decide whether the society satisfied the requirements for grant of necessary approval after taking into consideration the relevant rules/circulars/guidelines as the court had not gone into the question of eligibility/non-eligibility of the society for grant of approval.

from The Tribune

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