‘This is something unpardonable’: Judges shocked as advocate appears shirtless for online hearing

Justice DY Chandrachud asked who the advocate was during the online hearing. But there was no response.
Senior advocate Rajeev Dhavan was seen smoking during an online hearing. (HT File photo)
Senior advocate Rajeev Dhavan was seen smoking during an online hearing. (HT File photo)
Updated on Oct 27, 2020 04:24 PM IST
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Hindustan Times, New Delhi | Byhindustantimes.com | Edited by Poulomi Ghosh

A lawyer appeared shirtless for a few seconds on the screen when the Supreme Court was hearing the Sudarshan TV case over video conference on Monday. The lawyer logged out soon after Justice DY Chandrachud asked the lawyer to identify himself. The bench later mentioned the incident to the government’s second most-senior law officer Tushar Mehta. Justice Indu Malhotra, who was also part of the bench, described the incident as ‘unpardonable’.

Court hearings, including that of the Supreme Court, are being conducted online and this is not the first incident of an advocate or lawyer found violating decorum.

A senior lawyer was once spotted smoking during an online hearing at the Supreme Court.

A Rajasthan high court lawyer, in another instance, appeared in an online bail hearing in vest, drawing the ire of a judge. “This court has already observed that during this pandemic where court functioning is being done through video conferencing, lawyers must appear in proper uniform... keeping in view that the petitioner’s counsel was not in proper uniform, the matter is adjourned,” the court said. Advocates Act requires lawyers to appear before courts in a prescribed dress, it had noted.

Gujarat high court imposed a penalty of Rs 10,000 on an advocate who was caught smoking during online hearing.

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Thursday, December 02, 2021