I am not a lawyer. Still I like to pen down something about lawyers who are professionals, serving our society by upholding the law of the land. If I am a lawyer, I may not know some of the flaws committed by lawyers. As an ordinary citizen of our country, I keep myself informed about what is going on around us.
A full page report on the lawyers’ agitation in Madras High Court in a daily recently induced me to think about the lawlessness of lawyers! The statistics presented regarding pending cases in Tamil Nadu was 8.8 lakh criminal cases as on December 2014 is of course alarming! I think the increase in number of cases is something to do with the growing population or peoples’ intolerance.
Lawyers boycotting court, the sacred place where everyone including common men and women come to seek justice, leads to accumulate more cases. “Cancelling one day would quite obviously increase the cases at a faster rate” felt one of the advocates. A yesteryear-lawyer felt that he obeyed the law and kept himself away from litigants and maintained a safe distance. It is often said nowadays that olden time was the best to live in!
Why lawyers are lawyers indulge in lawless activities at times? We do observe the lawlessness in Government Law Colleges. Students go on strike for indefinite periods and take law in their hands creating lawlessness. These students become full-fledged lawyers and behave the same way as they behaved in their colleges.
In general, lawyers identify themselves with caste associations, political parties etc. No judge is enforcing discipline among lawyers who are vociferous and arrogant. Lack of infrastructure and too many vacancies in Government Law Colleges are cited as reasons for students’ lawlessness.
It is expected that a lawyer should be proud to call him or herself an honourable lawyer by suitably equipping themselves as one and not disobeying the law. It is not as if all lawyers are bad, but a few of them are! In fact, such number is increasing day by day. The issue raised by the lawyers of Tamil Nadu is that Tamil should be the court language. All lawyers fully know that High Court has no power to declare Tamil as the official court language. Still the lawyers protested in the Madras High Court campus.
One of the advocates, Sudha Ramalingam said that the few advocates who have taken law into their hands, eroded the image of Bar and the Bench in the eyes of the common man. Resolving the problem has become a responsibility of Judges. Negotiations and mediations are the ways by which the learned Judges can resolve differences and come to a conclusion to run the court for the countless clients who knock the doors of courts every day.
Whatever we may say, the fact remains that in India when a child lies, it is said that you are fit to become a lawyer. It is a general perception that if you are a lawyer you would lie! Actually it is not true as an advocate says. A lawyer is not supposed to lie and hence he is an officer of the court!