FOR A CLARIFICATION SOUGHT ON DUTIES OF AN ADVOCATE - KARNATAKA HIGH COURT JUDGEMENT QUOTE
Hon’ble Justice: Ajit J. Gunjal, J. in a judgement of F. Moily Vs. Lokayuktha, State of Karnataka, Bangalore and Others, Reported in 2010 (5) KarLJ 127 SOURCE: KARNATAKA HIGH COURT WEBSITE “Indeed as to the duty cast on the petitioner as well as the Counsel appearing for the parties is concerned, Hon'ble Mr. Justice MN Venkatachalaiah, former Chief Justice of India, has this to say: "The subject of traditions of the Bar, has quite unfortunately come to be associated with certain indelicate assumptions than the best traditions of the Bar are myth and illusions of by gone times and nostalgia of 19th century. I venture more hopefully to think that the great traditions of Bar have sustained the profession of law which every civilised society cherishes as a part of very valuable inheritance. The high traditions are spring of strength and sustenance in its days of trial. The profession of the lawyer is perhaps the single most powerful for the protection of the liberty of man and the decision of civilised living". Advocates are the inheritors of tradition of scholarship, wisdom, dignity, courage and service. The Advocate by his tradition is under several duties. They comprise of duty to the Court, duty to the profession, duty to the opponent, duty to the client, duty to the self and duty to public and State. The duty of an Advocate to the Court is also equally important. This duty encompasses and comprises courtesy and respect to the Court. An Advocate can differentiate without being abject, independent and fearless without being disrespectful, firmness can co-exist with an equal amount of grace and politeness. Section 49 of the Advocates Act, 1961 would speak about the General Power of the Bar Council of India to make certain rules. For the present, we are concerned with Section 49(1)(c) of the Act, which would speak about the standard of professional conduct and etiquette to be observed by the Advocates. Standard of Professional Conduct and Etiquette is to be found in Chapter 2 of Part VI of Bar Council of India Rules which is framed under Section 49(l)(c) of the Advocates Act read with the proviso would clearly indicate as to the duty of an Advocate towards the Court. We are more concerned with item No. 4 of Section 1 which would read as under. "An Advocate shall use his best efforts to restrain and prevent his client from resorting to sharp or unfair practices or from doing anything in relation to the Court, opposing Counsel or parties which the Advocate himself ought not to do. An Advocate shall refuse to represent the client who persists in such improper conduct. He shall not consider himself a mere mouthpiece of the client and shall exercise his own judgment in the use of restrained language in correspondence, avoiding scurrilous attacks in pleadings, and using intemperate language during arguments in the Court". The Apex Court in the case of M.Y. Shareef and Another v Hon''ble Judges of the Nagpur High Court and Others, AIR 1955 SC 19; has observed thus: "This misconception has to be rooted out by a clear and emphatic pronouncement, and we think it should be widely made known that Counsel who sign applications or pleadings containing matter scandalising the Court without reasonably satisfying themselves about the prima facie existence of adequate grounds therefor, with a view to prevent or delay the course of justice, are themselves guilty of contempt of Court, and that it is no duty of a Counsel to his client to take an interest in such applications; on the other hand, his duty is to advise his client for refraining from making allegations of this nature in such applications".