Appeal seeking disclosure of criteria to designate an advocate as “Senior Advocate” in Supreme Court, dismissed

Central Information Commission (CIC): While observing that the opinion of the Chief Justice and Judges is the only criteria to designate an advocate as “Senior Advocate” and no particular procedure has been prescribed for it, CIC dismissed an appeal filed by a person seeking publication of procedure followed by Supreme Court for designating an advocate as “Senior Advocate”. Earlier, the appellant requested for a copy of guidelines/rules for designating a counsel as senior advocate in Supreme Court from the CPIO, Supreme Court of India and was informed that the designation of Senior Advocate is governed and regulated by the provisions of the Supreme Court Rules, 2013, which are available on the official website of the Supreme Court. The appellant was not satisfied with the answer and alleged that the Rules do not give any clarity about number of years of standing at the Bar or description or nature of special knowledge etc. Being dissatisfied with the response of the Supreme Court in the matter, appellant approached the Commission. After perusal of relevant record and referring to Rule 2(a) of Order IV of the Supreme Court Rules, 2013, CIC noted that the opinion of the Chief Justice and Judges is the only criteria to designate an Advocate as Senior Advocate and no procedure has been prescribed as per the record. “The action/steps taken by the respondent in dealing with the RTI application are satisfactory,” noted CIC while dismissing the appeal. [Satish Chandra v. CPIO/Addl. Registrar, Supreme Court of India, Appeal No. CIC/VS/A/2015/002087, decided on August 8, 2016]

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