“Every democratic process is based upon the freedom to elect and the freedom to remove, in accordance with law,” said the apex court bench of Justice B.S. Chauhan and Justice Swatanter Kumar.
Justice Swatanter Kumar said: “Our parliamentary system is the most significant example of a democratic process, where the ‘no confidence motion’ under Article 75(3) of the constitution is an integral part of the process of election.”
The court gave the ruling earlier this week while upholding the removal of Rameshwar Neekhra and Adarsh Muni Trivedi as chairman and vice-chairman, respectively, of the Madhya Pradesh Bar Council (MPBC) April 16. The removal of the two was upheld by the Madhya Pradesh High Court May 20.
The apex court was moved by appellants with the plea that the MPBC rules on the procedure for removal of chairman, vice-chairman and treasurer through no confidence motion were contrary to the provisions of the the Advocates Act.
It was contended that the delegation of legislative powers to the bar councils under the act to frame rules for the removal of the office bearers was excessive as it did not provide any guidelines for the same.
“When the law so permits, there is no right for that office bearer to stay in office after the passing of ‘no confidence motion’ and, in the facts and circumstances of the present case, it is clearly established that appellants had lost the confidence of the majority of the elected members and thus resolution dated April 16 cannot be faulted with,” the judges said.
Rejecting the contention of the challenge to the high court verdict, the apex court said that the “spirit behind this provision (of the MPBC) is that where a person is elected by following a process of election, he could be removed by following the prescribed procedure in accordance with the rules”.
The responsibility of the state bar council to perform functions as per the legislative mandate contained in Section 6 of the Advocate Act is of very wide connotation and scope, the judgment said. The section deals with the functions of the state councils.
“No purpose would be achieved by giving it (section 6 of the act) a restricted meaning or by a strict interpretation. The state bar councils have to be given wide jurisdiction to frame rules so as to perform functions diligently and perfectly and to do all things necessary for discharging functions under the act,” the judges said.