Bar Council of India is established by the government of India under the Advocates Act, 1961 as a statutory body which regulates the legal education and legal practice in India. It sets out the standard for legal education system and also grants recognition to law colleges and universities. It formulates standard for professional conduct and ethics and also exercises disciplinary jurisdiction on the Bar.
During the Madras provincial Lawyers Conference held in May 1950, it was suggested that a committee to be appointed for evolving a scheme for All India Bar and Indian Bar Councils Act to be amended in conformity with the Constitution. All India Bar Committee was appointed which was headed by Hon'ble Mr. S.R. Das. The Committee proposed for the constitution of a Bar Council in each state and All India Bar Council as the apex body to regulate the legal profession and standards of legal education. The recommendations made by All India Bar Committee were accepted as the Advocates Act came into force and Mr. M.C. Setlvad became the first Chairman.
The Bar Council consists of members elected from different state bar council and ex officio members such as Attorney General and Solicitor General. The tenure of each member is for 5 years. The Chairman and Vice-Chairman are elected by the Council for 2 years. Mr. Manan Kumar Mishra and Mr. Satish Abarao Deshmukh are the acting Chairman and Vice-Chairman of the Bar Council of India respectively.
All India Bar Examination
Bar Council on10 April 2010 proposed to conduct All India Bar Examination (AIBE), a test to determine the ability of advocates to practice law. It has been made mandatory for the lawyers to pass the examination if they want to practice law. AIBE is conducted twice in a year and topics are included from substantive and procedural laws. It is an open book test with multiple choice type questions and no negative marking, which is conducted in 40 different cities across India. When a law graduate enrolls with any State Bar Council he/she gets a provisional certificate which is valid for 2 years and within these 2 years he/she has to qualify the AIBE to get the final certificate. An advocate may appear any number of times for the examination. The certificate is granted to the lawyer will make him eligible to practice law anywhere in India.
The Advocates Act
The Advocates Act, 1961 regulates the laws relating to legal profession. It has been introduced by the former law minister Mr. Ashoke Kumar Sen, a law passed by the Indian Parliament and enforced and administered by the Bar Council of India. It authorizes the Bar Council to make orders and pass regulations. The Act provides for the definition of advocates, qualification to be an advocate, creation of autonomous Bar Councils and functions of state Bar Councils etc.