An new online system for verification of lawyers was launched by the Bar Council of Tamil Nadu and Puducherry last week.
The system has been developed by IIT-Madras and can verify the credentials of lawyers anywhere and at any time, according to IIT-M professor Ashok Jhunjunwala. He further pointed out that the system would reduce paperwork and time taken in regards to the verification process.
Justice Kurian Joseph, of Supreme Court, inaugurated the new system.
He spoke on the subject ‘Role of legal profession and its ethics for social justice’ on the occasion, wherein he noted that only discipline would decide the destiny of the legal profession.
Pointing out that lawyers were “spokespersons “ of people who didn’t have a voice and were forgotten, Justice Joseph asked that the fraternity be fearless in upholding the rule of the law and also stand up for persons on whose behalf they appear.
Justice R Banumathi, of Supreme Court also spoke on the occasion and said that lawyers must be in “SHAPE” which stands for “Sincerity, Honesty, Ambition, Positivity And Equipping oneself with legal nuances”.
Legal Profession Not a Business Chief Justice of Madras HC Says
In her address, Chief Justice of Madras High Court Justice Indira Banerjee highlighted that being a lawyer was not about “pursuing a business” but upholding “honour, majesty and dignity” of the court.
She further noted that “devious litigants” may delay cases due to “ulterior motives”, but lawyers must close cases in a reasonable frame of time else, litigants may chose other forms of settlement.
She also emphasised that lawyers must avoid seeking unnecessary adjournments.
Advocate-general of Tamil Nadu, Vijay Narayan, opined that integrity was core and if once lost, it was lost forever. He added that this applied to not just professional integrity, but also to intellectual integrity.
Senior advocate S Prabakaran, who is also co-chairman of Bar Council of India, noted lawyers must remain accessible and that they were duty-bound to accept briefs for which they have been paid fees as per “their standing at the Bar.”