Chennai: Making it clear that there is no bar for students who have cleared SSLC and HSC board exams privately to be enrolled as an advocate, Madras High Court has observed that once a recognized university or a recognized board issues a certificate, there is a presumption of eligibility of the candidate to be conferred the certificate and it is not for any other authority to question the certificate on the ground of ineligibility to obtain the certificate, until and unless the certificate is cancelled by an appropriate authority and/or by a court of law.
The Full Bench comprising Chief Justice Indira Banerjee, Justice R. Subbaiah and Justice Abdhul Quddhose has observed this when a batch of petitions, challenging the decision of Bar Council of Tamil Nadu and Puducherry on the ground that it had cleared the Secondary (X Class) or the Higher Secondary (XII Class) Board Examination privately, came up for hearing on Monday.
The petitioners submitted that since they have successfully completed law degree under a university recognised by the Bar Council of India, they cannot be prevented from enrolling as advocate.
The bench said, successful completion of a regular course conducted by a university would include a regular course conducted by an institution affiliated to the university. Legal Education Rules does not exclude candidates who obtained the secondary or higher secondary course certificate without attending a regular course in a recognised educational institution from admission to the three-year LLB course, the court pointed out.
Similarly, for admission to five-year law course, an applicant should have successfully completed Senior Secondary School Course or equivalent from a recognized University of India or abroad or from a Senior Secondary Board or equivalent constituted or recognized by the Union or by a state government or from any equivalent Institution from a foreign country recognized by the government of that country for the purpose of issuing qualifying certificate on successful completion of the course, the court added and directed the council to process their application expeditiously....