Advocates have an obligation to provide legal aid to poor, said Justice P. Sathasivam, Judge, Supreme Court of India, here on Sunday.
Speaking on the Role of Lawyers in the 21st Century at the centenary celebrations of Andikadu R. Balasubramanian Iyer, an advocate of Thanjavur, Justice Sathasivam said that law stipulated as the duty of the lawyer to provide legal aid. Right to Legal Aid is provided by the Legal Services Authority Act of 1979.
He also called upon the lawyers and courts to endeavour for conciliation, arbitration to arrive at a settlement. He also appealed to lawyers to know the amendments brought out by Parliament to various laws and follow them strictly. Amendment brought to CPC in 2002 by Parliament called for reducing delay experienced by litigants in cases. “Lawyers should respect the mandate of the Parliament by sticking on to time while filing replies,” the Judge said.
Earlier the Judge declared open the Library section of books provided by K. Subramanian, former Advocate General of Tamil Nadu at Thanjavur Bar Council building. The Judge described Andikadu Balasubramanian Iyer as a person who acquired high reputation and name at Thanjavur Bar.
Ram Jethmalani, MP and President of Bar Association, Supreme Court, said that legal profession is not for money making. Money is only a by-product. Service is the main duty of a lawyer. He owed his duty not only to his client, or his opponent but also to the court, society and finally to administration of Justice. He called upon young lawyers to have the courage to speak and argue for truth. Regretting that the standard of Bar has come down, he appealed to young lawyers to bring back the glory of the bar as was in the sixties.
Justices K. Suguna, S. Rajeswaran, S. Nagamuthu, C.T. Selvam and G.M. Akbar Ali, Judges, Madras High Court, and K. Subramanian, Former Advocate General of Tamil Nadu, spoke. R. Sivasubramanian, President, Bar Association, Thanjavur presided.