Bar Council of India has stayed its July 24 order suspending 126 Tamil Nadu lawyers, including leaders of various bar associations, in view of the temporary withdrawal of their three month-long protest over recent amendments to the disciplinary rules under the Advocates Act.
Staying the suspension till August 22, the BCI directed the Bar Council of Tamil Nadu and Puducherry (BCTP) to file a report with regard to attendance of lawyers in the courts across the state, BCTP sources in Chennai said on Tuesday.
BCI had suspended the 126 lawyers and prohibited them from practising in any court or tribunal in the country on the eve the move by the Joint Action Committee (JAC) of various bar associations to stage a sit-in at the Madras High Court here, High Court bench in Madurai and subordinate courts on July 25, protesting the amended rules to Advocates Act.
Those suspended included JAC Chief Co-Ordinator P Thirumalairajan, its member M Velmurugan, Madras High Court Advocates Association Secretary Arivazhagan, Women Lawyers Association President Nalini and Egmore Bar Association President Chandan Babu.
Undeterred by the action, the lawyers, who have been on a warpath over the amended rules which among others provide for disciplinary action against erring lawyers, went ahead with their protest and several of them had courted arrest on July 25.
However, at a meeting of the JAC held in Erode on August 14, the lawyers decided to temporarily withdraw all forms of agitations, including boycott of courts, and attend courts from today.
In the backdrop of this, BCI Chairman Manan Kumar Mishra has stayed the suspension till August 22.
The lawyers are opposing a notification issued by the Madras High Court in May last making amendments to existing rules under the Advocates Act with a view to ensure peaceful conduct of court proceedings and suggesting disciplinary action to be taken against erring advocates.
The court later constituted a judges committee to look into the grievances of the lawyers and repeatedly urged the lawyers to give up their agitation and approach the panel.
It had also made it clear that practically the rules were already in abeyance for the time being in view of a Full Court's assurance that no action would be taken under the rules till they were reviewed.