Reached Daily Limit?

Explore a new way of legal research!

Click Here
Indian Case Summary

R. Muthukrishnan vs The Registrar General Of The High … on 28 January, 2019 – Case Summary

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

In the case of R. Muthukrishnan vs The Registrar General of the High Court of Judicature at Madras, the Supreme Court of India was called upon to adjudicate on the validity of certain amendments to the Rules of the High Court of Madras, 1970. The petitioner, R. Muthukrishnan, an advocate, challenged the amendments under Article 32 of the Constitution of India.

Facts of the Case

The High Court of Madras had amended Rules 14­A, 14­B, 14­C, and 14­D of its 1970 rules, empowering the High Court to debar an advocate from practicing if they were found guilty of certain misconducts. These misconducts included accepting money in the name of a judge, tampering with court records or orders, abusing a judge or judicial officer, participating in a procession inside the court campus, or appearing in court under the influence of liquor. The High Court could also pass an interim order prohibiting the advocate from appearing before it or any subordinate courts pending inquiry.

The petitioner argued that these amendments violated Articles 14 and 19(1)(g) of the Constitution of India, as well as sections 30, 34(1), 35, and 49(1)(c) of the Advocates’ Act, 1961. He contended that the power to debar for such misconduct lies with the Bar Council of Tamil Nadu and Puducherry, and the High Court could not have framed such rules.

Issues Raised

The primary issue raised was whether the High Court of Madras had the power to frame rules that could debar an advocate from practicing due to certain misconducts. The petitioner argued that this power rested with the Bar Council, not the High Court.

Court’s Observations

The Supreme Court observed that the legal profession is not commercial in nature and is a noble one, considering the nature of duties to be performed and its impact on society. The independence of the Bar and the autonomy of the Bar Council has been ensured statutorily to preserve the democracy itself and to ensure that the judiciary remains strong.

The Court noted that the Bar and the Bench are complementary to each other. Without active cooperation of the Bar and the Bench, it is not possible to preserve the rule of law and its dignity. Equal and even­handed justice is the hallmark of the judicial system. The protection of the basic structure of the Constitution and of rights is possible by the firmness of Bar and Bench and by proper discharge of their duties and responsibilities.

The Court also pointed out that the Bar is the mother of the judiciary and consists of great jurists. The Bar has produced great Judges, they have adorned the judiciary and rendered the real justice, which is essential for the society.

The Court concluded by stating that the atmosphere that had been created in Madras as projected in the counter affidavit filed by the High Court, would have prompted them also to take a stern view of the matter by invoking Contempt of Courts Act, but for the time gap and things.

The case is significant as it highlights the importance of the independence of the Bar and the judiciary in maintaining the rule of law and the democratic setup. It also underscores the need for mutual respect and cooperation between the Bar and the Bench.