About 1,000 lawyers in Tamil Nadu face deregistration by the state bar council as they had obtained their law degree after completing post graduation through open university without regular basic degree.
“About 1,000 lawyers may be deregistered and asked to surrender their enrolment certificate (EC),” an official of the Bar Council of Tamil Nadu said in the state recently.
The identification process of lawyers who got their PG degree from open universities was on and BCT had already sent letters to some of them cancelling their enrollment. The Madras High Court had last year declared as invalid the post-graduation degrees obtained without basic degrees (through regular university) and 12 years of school education.
Dismissing appeals, the Supreme Court had recently upheld the high court judgement following which the BCT decided to deregister lawyers without the basic degree. A section of lawyers here have welcomed the BCT’s decision saying it would help in weeding out “semi professionals” and “bad elements”.
However, those affected by the court order opposed the deregisteration move questioning why Ambedkar Law University gave them admission for the law course and awarded BL degree. According to BCT Chairman R.K.Chandrasekaran, the Bar Council of India was also against allowing persons without regular basic degree to practice law.
Many of the lawyers, including R.Seethalakshmi, who got their law degree after Post Graduation through open university, say they studied law out of passion and they should not be deregistered.