Prithvirajsinh Bhagirathsinh Jadeja v State of Gujarat and two others
C/SCA/1672/2022 is the case no.
The Gujarat High Court has reiterated that an advocate who does not appear and practice before the courts even when enrolled in the Bar Council cannot call himself an "advocate".
As per the Advocates Act and the Bar Council Rules, if the conditions of employment do not require an advocate to plead and appear before the courts, a person cannot be referred to as an 'advocate' during this period of employment. as he is not practicing as a lawyer.
The remarks were made during the hearing of two petitions in which petitioners desirous of the post of Joint Charitable Commissioner in the General State Service were declared ineligible due to lack of experience required as an advocate under the Recruitment Rules. The rules state that at least ten years of experience is required.
The primary contention of the petitioners was that as per the rules the candidate should be enrolled under the Advocates Act 1961 for at least ten years, which the petitioners did. He didn't lose his nomination just because he was employed. His nomination continues even if he is employed as his name is not removed from the list but only suspended.
The GPSC, on the other hand, relied heavily on the judgment of Deepak Agarwal v Keshav Kaushik et al. 2013 (5) SCC 277 to argue that an advocate essentially means someone who practices before the courts. If they are employed but not acting or practicing as per this definition, they are no longer 'advocates' as defined by the Advocates Act.
As a result, the High Court concluded that "the continuance of his name in the list of the Bar Council has no bearing on his right to practice, and such person cannot nominate himself as an advocate."
Taking these precedents into account, the High Court dismissed the petitions and refused to find fault with the GPSC's order.