The foreign lawyers have demanded specific changes in the Advocates Act, 1961, such that the lawyers from foreign countries are allowed to practice in India and to setup their law firms.
Sanjay Chaubey, President of the New York State Bar Association said there were 500 lawyers of Indian origin practicing in New York. “New York once was not liberal but now they allow foreign law firms”, he said.
Another lawyer Sudish Sharma said legal sector too should be opened up like all other sectors. “There are MNCs in every sector. Now is the era of globalisation and gone is the era of protectionalism”, he saidAll this could lead to an imbalance in the country, as the law colleges in India are already producing a big number of lawyers every year, and with the addition of foreign lawyers, the competition would become surplus. The Bar Council of India have taken steps to improve the quality of law education and check the standards of Indian Institutes that are producing Lawyers by imposing a test called "All India Bar Examination" for all fresh candidates. The candidates passing this exam would be allowed in to get a permanent license to practice law in the state/country.
This exam has been opposed by young lawyers throughout India, stating that instead of making them appear for the exam after thy have passed their law degree, the law fraternity should conduct a test, while a student wants to take admission in the law studies, as it happens in other studies like MBBS, Engineering.
While the Supreme Court had in July this year directed Reserve Bank of India not to permit law firms from abroad to open liaison offices in the country, only time can tell the fate of foreign lawyers in India, whether they will be able to get themselves placed in Indian Courts or not.
Written by: Puneet Batish - ♂ Founder & Author
An Advocate at District & Session Court and Punjab & Haryana High Court, Chandigarh. He is the founder & author of GeekUpd8 and a Contributor at wikipedia.org, the online encyclopedia.