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The Supreme Court has said that a person holding a power of attorney but not enrolled as an advocate cannot appear in a case on behalf of another person unless permitted by a court.

The apex court bench of Justice Markandey Katju and Justice Gyan Sudha Misra in their recent order said that “a power of attorney holder cannot, unless he is an enrolled lawyer, appear in court on behalf of anyone, unless permitted by the court under Section 32 of the (Advocates) Act.”

The Section 32 of the Advocates Act says that notwithstanding anything contained in this chapter, any court, authority or person may permit any person, not enrolled as an advocate under this act to appear in a court in any particular case.

The court made it clear that a power of attorney holder could sign sale deeds, agreements and do other acts on behalf of someone else unless prohibited by the law.The court said this while granting four weeks’ time to Goa Antibiotics and Pharmaceuticals Ltd. to engage a lawyer to appear and argue on its behalf.

The court disallowed company employee Vishnu Karikar from appearing for it in a case.Karikar claimed that he had the power of attorney of the petitioner company and wanted to personally argue the case on behalf of it.

One Response to “Power of attorney no licence to argue case: Apex court”

  1. Prof. Abdul Gani Bhat

    By this order the intentions of the Judges to banish citizens from seeking justice from the courts is evident. As held by National commission for Reviewing the working of Constitution way back in 2002 that the courts are now serving only judges and the lawyers and not the common people, the court by this order is proving the statement as true. The court has given its own whimsical meaning to the Civil Procedure Code Order 3 R.1, when the legislature in no ambiguous terms has allowed a party himself, or through his attorney, or pleader seek justice from a court of law. This is the pathetic state of justice in India and the bad luck of the Indian masses who seemingly attained freedom from all dictatorial practices be it administrative or judicial in 1947. The unfortunate part of it is that the Judicial system has been received in its solid state as a precious British legacy and has not been touched, moulded and dyed in the county’s free democratic colour till this day. If the colonial judicial system is not uprooted forthwith the peoples’ peace and tranquility and well being will remain a distant dream.


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