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Right of an accused - Shanmugam IAS academy in coimbatore
Right of an accused

RIGHT OF AN ACCUSED

What’s in news?

The Karnataka High Court observed that it is unethical and illegal for lawyers to pass resolutions against representing accused in court. 

Background:

  • Recently, the local bar association objected to four students arrested for sedition being defended in court. The Hubli Bar Association submitted that it would take back a resolution it had passed on February 15.
  • On this resolution, the SC opined that, passing such resolution is against all norms of the Constitution, the statute and professional ethics.
  • Passing such resolution is not the first time by the bar association.

Key data’s:

Right of an accused and the constitution:

  • Article 22 (1): It is fundamental right to every person not to be denied the right to be defended by a legal practitioner of his or her choice. 
  • Article 14: Provides equality before the law and equal protection of the laws within the territory of India. 
  • Article 39A: Equal opportunity to secure justice must not be denied to any citizen by reason of economic or other disabilities, and provides for free legal aid – this is part of the Directive Principles of state policy.

Supreme Court on such resolutions:

A S Mohammed Rafi vs State of Tamil Nadu:

  • The case was dealt in 2010, when a situation arose from a confrontation between a lawyer and policemen in Coimbatore in 2006.
  • Immediately the lawyers passed a resolution to not support the policemen. But the Madras High Court said it is an unprofessional move after which lawyers appealed in the Supreme Court.

Opinion of the Supreme Court:

  • Supreme Court in a statement said that, passing such resolution against such accused is wholly illegal, against all traditions of the bar and against professional ethics. 
  • The society has a right to be defended in a court of law and correspondingly, it is the duty of the lawyer to defend him.

Links to note:

https://www.iasipstnpsc.in/investigation-agency-2/

https://indianexpress.com/article/explained/karnataka-sedition-case-bar-association-supreme-court-6303016/

 

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