In the Matter of Gaurav Kumar v Union of India, A writ appeal asking for a stay of execution of a court ruling dated February 15, 2023, which instructed the Kerala Bar Council to accept the petitioner’s enrollment application with a cost of only Rs. 750
The petitioner argued that Section 24(1)(f) of the Advocates Act, 1961 stipulates that applicants must pay enrolment fees to the State Bar Council and the Bar Council of India in order to be admitted as advocates. In addition, the candidate must pay Rs. 100 to the Bar Council of India in order to enlist if they are a member of a Scheduled Caste or Scheduled Tribe. The State Bar Councils, on the other hand, charge outrageous fees that vary from State to State. In addition, the petitioner claimed that if a candidate wants to complete his enrolment within 24 hours, different State Bar Councils will charge an additional amount towards circulation fees on top of the total amount of enrolment fees. Even the BCI forbids the State Bar Councils from imposing any further costs on top of the Advocates Act, 1961 for circulation fees. This thereby violates the Advocate Act’s 1961 restrictions. Furthermore, it was claimed that although there is no law allowing for the levying of any fees, the Bar Council of India charges Rs 2000 for transferring a name from one State roll to another State roll. As a result, the aforementioned practise is arbitrary, unjust, and unlawful.
Analysis of Court order
In order to avoid specific instances requesting fee reductions, the Kerala High Court ordered the Bar Council of Kerala to take an enrollment fee of Rs. 750 from all applicants wishing to become solicitors. The divisional bench of justices S.V.N. Bhatti and Basant Balaji is made up of the bench. Upon learning of the current situation
The Court cited the Bar Council’s contention that it was acting pursuant to an order dated March 16, 2023, which authorised the Kerala Bar Council to accept applications for enrolment with a minimal enrollment cost until the current appeals were resolved. According to a report, steps are being taken by the Bar Council of India to establish a standard fee structure when enrolling law graduates as advocates. It was advised that instant appeals be treated appropriately at a later time as the Supreme Court had already taken the matter under consideration.