The Bar Council of Tamil Nadu and Puducherry has prohibited 742 lawyers from practising law, pending disposal of showcause notices to be issued against them. All these lawyers had pursued legal education based on degrees obtained through the open university system, the bar council said. A communication issued by the council's secretary C Raja Kumar said the special committee of the council had passed a resolution to this effect at its meeting held on November 9. The decision was made as the enrolment of 742 advocates was against Rule 5 of the Legal Education Rules, 2008 and in light of the order passed by the Madras High Court on October 25, it said. The communication clarified that advocates against whom the resolution has been passed, are prohibited from practising in any court of law or before any judicial or quasi-judicial forum, pending disposal of the showcause notice to be issued against them. The Madras High Court had last month directed the Tamil Nadu Bar Council and the Advocate General (AG) to cancel the membership of over 700 lawyers, who had enrolled as advocates after getting law degrees based on MA degrees of open universities. The order came after AG Vijay Narayan said that the persons who have not even passed 6th or 7th and 10th standards are able to procure open university MA degrees, which Justice N Kirubakaran termed as very shocking.
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