The Bench issued notice to the Ministry of Finance, Delhi government, BCD and the Reserve Bank of India seeking their response to the plea moved by 14 lawyers.
A plea for financial assistance in the form of interest free loans to advocates enrolled with the Bar Council of Delhi (BCD), during the prevailing pandemic, was heard on Wednesday by the Delhi High Court which sought the Centre and Delhi government’s stand on the petition.
A Bench of Chief Justice D. N. Patel and Justice Jyoti Singh issued notice to the Ministry of Finance, Delhi government, BCD and the Reserve Bank of India seeking their response to the plea moved by 14 lawyers.
In their petition, the lawyers have urged the court to direct that the financial assistance of ₹5 lakh, in the form of interest free loans, be provided irrespective of the residential address or voter ID of the advocates as long as they are enrolled with the BCD.
The petition filed through advocate Sunil Kumar Tiwari, who is also one of the petitioners, has contended that the financial assistance would help the lawyers to “meet their basic needs and survive with dignity and make the payment of school fees, their pending EMIs against their various loans/credit card payments etc”.
“…it has become a real struggling issue to fulfil the their basic need for survival and pay off the school fees, and monthly loan installments as there is no constant and secured income of the legal professionals and independent litigators due to the continued closure of the courts of the country including the high court,” the petition has said.
It has contended that the “acute financial crisis” being faced by the lawyers was evident from the mass gathering of advocates for obtaining the 10kg of atta, 2kg of sugar, 5kg of rice and other items distributed by the BCD recently.
The plea has sought that the interest free loan of ₹5 lakh be provided to each lawyer for a period of five years.
This article was originally published on The Hindu