Kerala HC reserves order on anticipatory bail plea of woman who pretended to be lawyer
The Kerala high court on Thursday reserved its decision on the anticipatory bail plea moved by a woman accused of misrepresenting herself as a qualified lawyer and practising in a district court here without a licence for nearly two years.
Justice Shircy V heard arguments on behalf of the woman and the state, which has opposed grant of any relief to her, before reserving her verdict.
Advocate Roy Chacko, appearing for the petitioner, contended that her custodial interrogation was no longer required as all the documents and records related to her alleged misrepresentation were available with the bar association concerned.
A member of the Alappuzha Bar Association, where the woman was a member and was also elected as its librarian, was recently allowed by the court to intervene in the matter.
The intervener, during the hearing, contended that the woman’s custodial interrogation was necessary to find out who provided her with the forged documents and certificates which enabled her to misrepresent herself as a qualified lawyer.
The intervener said that this aspect requires investigation for which the petitioner’s arrest and interrogation was necessary.
The state also opposed the anticipatory bail plea on the ground that the woman appeared as a lawyer in various criminal cases, contested in bar elections and was elected as the association’s librarian and also accepted a few briefs of the state government, all on the basis of her fake and forged documents which portrayed her as a qualified lawyer.
The state also told the court that the woman has been booked for offences which are non-bailable and therefore, no interim protection from arrest be granted to her.
Chacko, during his arguments, urged the court to take a sympathetic view in the case on the ground that the accused woman and her family have already suffered immense humiliation and if she is arrested or subjected to custodial interrogation, her life would be spoiled.
The accused woman had earlier attempted to surrender before a magisterial court in Alappuzha under the belief that she would be released on bail, but when the likelihood of getting any relief appeared bleak, she fled from the courtroom.
According to the Alappuzha Bar Association, which revoked her membership and also passed a resolution that none of their members would represent her, she had not even completed her Bachelor of Law course and was impersonating as a lawyer for around two years.
The association also lodged a complaint with the police which registered a case of cheating against her.