He Has To Tread A Long Professional Path’ Gujarat HC Accepts Apology From The Advocate Found Smoking During Virtual Hearing [Read Order]

first_imgNews UpdatesHe Has To Tread A Long Professional Path’ Gujarat HC Accepts Apology From The Advocate Found Smoking During Virtual Hearing [Read Order] Sparsh Upadhyay6 Oct 2020 11:52 PMShare This – xA Gujarat High Court advocate, who was found smoking during the course of Court proceedings via video conferencing and therefore, the Gujarat High Court had imposed a cost of Rs. 10,000 upon him, has submitted the said amount and has tendered an unconditional apology before the court.On Monday (05th October), the Bench of Justice A. S. Supehia noted in its order that the advocate’s apology…Your free access to Live Law has expiredTo read the article, get a premium account.Your Subscription Supports Independent JournalismSubscription starts from ₹ 599+GST (For 6 Months)View PlansPremium account gives you:Unlimited access to Live Law Archives, Weekly/Monthly Digest, Exclusive Notifications, Comments.Reading experience of Ad Free Version, Petition Copies, Judgement/Order Copies.Subscribe NowAlready a subscriber?LoginA Gujarat High Court advocate, who was found smoking during the course of Court proceedings via video conferencing and therefore, the Gujarat High Court had imposed a cost of Rs. 10,000 upon him, has submitted the said amount and has tendered an unconditional apology before the court.On Monday (05th October), the Bench of Justice A. S. Supehia noted in its order that the advocate’s apology was being accepted with no hard feelings or malice. The Bench further remarked,”I only advise him to be mindful of the observations of the Apex Court since he has yet to tread a long professional path.”Notably, the Registrar, Judicial tendered his exhaustive Report dated 04.10.2020. The Bench perused the same. The Report was forwarded to the Bar Council of Gujarat and the Bar Association of High Court of Gujarat for perusal.Significantly, the Bench wished to incorporate few observations of the Supreme Court for the constructive consumption of both the governing bodies.The Bench cited the ruling of the Supreme Court in the case of In Re Vs Vinay Chandra Mishra, reported in 1995(2) SCC 584, wherein it was observed thus:”A lawyer has to be a gentleman first. His most valuable asset is the respect and the goodwill he enjoys among his colleagues and in the Court.”The Bench further cited the ruling of the Apex Court in the case of R.D.Saxena vs Balram Prasad Sharma, 2000 (7) S.C.C. 264, wherein it was observed that,”An advocate shall, if at all times, compose himself in a manner befitting his status as an officer of the Court, a privileged member of the community and a gentleman, bearing in mind that what may be lawful and moral for a person who is not a member of the Bar or for a member of the Bar in his non-professional capacity may still be improper for an advocate.”Lastly, the Bench also cited the ruling of the Apex Court in the case of Devendra BhaiShanker Mehta vs Union of India, 1993 (1) G. L. H. 36, wherein it was observed thus, “To say the least, an advocate enrolled under the Advocate Act, 1961, having a license to represent, the case of litigants is expected to maintain a high standard of morality and unimpeachable sense of legal and ethical propriety.”Further, the Court in the present matter remarked,”Though, I cannot direct both the esteemed organizations to undertake necessary colloquium for its members, but I hope that the afore-noted observations of the Apex Court are conveyed so that such inopportune and regrettable incidents can be avoided. The Apex Court has addressed the lawyer as a gentleman, who has to maintain high standards of morality and unimpeachable sense of legal and ethical propriety.” (emphasis supplied)Thus, the advocate was advised to be mindful of the aforesaid observations of the Supreme Court which lay down the acceptable code of conduct for lawyers.With the aforementioned observations, this Court closed the “undesirable chapter with a hope that such an incident should not occur in future”.It was further clarified that forwarding of the Report of the Registrar, Judicial and the observations of this Court “shall not be in any manner be construed adverse against the advocate Mr.Ajmera.”It may be noted that the Bench of Justice AS Supehia on Thursday (24th September) had observed that the advocates appearing through video, conference are required to maintain “minimum dignified decorum” so that the majesty and dignity of the proceedings as well as the Institution are maintained.In the present case, advocate for the original complainant, Mr JV Ajmera was smoking while sitting in the car.Deprecating such conduct of the advocate, the Court had said,”It was not expected from an advocate to be smoking in the car during the Court proceedings. Such behaviour of the advocate is required to be strictly condemned.”The Court thus directed him to deposit a sum of Rs. 10,000 with the HC Registry, within a week.Inter Alia, there have been incidents where Advocates appear for a virtual court in inappropriate dresses.The Gujarat High Court on Wednesday (23rd September), while taking up a Criminal Misc. Application noticed that applicant-accused No. 1, Ajit Kubhabhai Gohil, who was present before the Court through video conferencing, was spitting openly.Deprecating such conduct of the accused, the Bench of Justice A. S. Supehia had said,”This Court is not inclined to take up the matter today looking to the conduct of the applicant-accused No. 1.”In the month of June, the Supreme Court had accepted the apology of an advocate who had made an appearance before the Court, whilst lying on the bed dressed in a T-shirt, and emphasised on the need to maintain minimum court etiquette during court video hearings.Rajasthan High Court once adjourned a Bail plea on account of inappropriately dressed counsel in a “baniyan” (undervest) during the Video conference hearing.Recently, the Orissa High Court condemned the practice of lawyers arguing cases through VC from inside vehicles, gardens & while eating etc.Furthermore, Calcutta High Court had initiated suo motu contempt action against an advocate-on-record for posting on ‘LinkedIn’ a screenshot of the virtual court hearing of the day when a favourable interim order was passed by the Single Judge while calling for affidavits.It was observed by the Calcutta High Court that taking a screenshot of the virtual court proceedings is akin to clicking a photograph of an actual court proceeding. However, the contempt proceedings were later dropped with a warning to the lawyer not to repeat such conduct in futureClick Here To Download Order[Read Order]Subscribe to LiveLaw, enjoy Ad free version and other unlimited features, just INR 599 Click here to Subscribe. All payment options available.loading….Next Storylast_img read more