Supreme Court reserves verdict on plea for banning lawmakers from practising as advocates

New Delhi: The Supreme Court reserved its verdict on a plea seeking to ban legislators from practising as advocates.

 Supreme Court reserves verdict on plea for banning lawmakers from practising as advocates

A view of Supreme Court of India. PTI

A bench of Chief Justice Dipak Misra and justices AM Khanwilkar and DY Chandrachud reserved the order after taking note of the Centre's submission that an Member of Parliament or an Member of Legislative Assembly is an elected representative and not a full-time employee of the government.

However, senior advocate Shekhar Naphade, appearing for petitioner-lawyer Ashwini Kumar Upadhyay, told the court that a lawmaker draws a salary from the public exchequer and a salaried employee is debarred by the Bar Council of India from practising in the courts of law.

To this, the bench replied that employment postulates a master-servant relationship and the Government of India is not the master of a Member of Parliament.

The apex court was hearing the petition which said that while a public servant cannot practice as an advocate, legislators are practising in various courts which was a violation of Article 14 of the Constitution.

The plea said the issue is a matter of concern to both the judiciary and the legislature as most of the lawmaker-advocates are involved in active practice of law, despite receiving salaries and other perquisites drawn on the public exchequer.

The petition also pointed out that the MPs have the power of voting on the impeachment of judges of the Supreme Court and the high courts.

Updated Date: Jul 09, 2018 22:10:15 IST