RULES OF THE BOMBAY BAR ASSOCIATION
The Association shall be called "The Bombay Bar Association."
The Association shall be an Association of persons and shall be a non-profit organisation and shall have for its objects
(i) the safeguarding and promotion of the Rule of the Law and to preserve and protect the independence of the Judiciary
(ii) the safeguarding and promotion of the Rule of the Law and to preserve and protect the independence of the Judiciary
3.1 Every person enrolled as an Advocate by the Bar Council of Maharashtra and practicing on the Original Side of the High Court of Judicature at Bombay shall be eligible for admission to membership of the Association, on agreeing to comply with the conditions, terms and rules in this behalf and on making an application in the prescribed form.
3.2 There shall be the following classes of members :
(a) Temporary Members
(b) Permanent Members
3.3 The number of the permanent members shall not at any time exceed 1,000 or such number of members as the Standing Committee may from time to time determine.
3.4 Every applicant for membership, on submitting an application in the prescribed form and on paying the prescribed fees, may at the discretion of the Standing Committee be admitted in the first instance as a temporary member of the Association for a period of one year from the date of admission. Such person shall continue to be a temporary member of the Association until his application for permanent membership is decided as provided below.
3.5 On the expiry of the said period of one year, a person admitted as temporary member shall become eligible to apply for permanent membership. Every such temporary member on submitting his application for permanent membership in the prescribed form may at the discretion of the Standing Committee be admitted or be refused admission as a permanent member of the Association, subject to the limit mentioned in rule 3.3. Every such temporary member whose application for permanent membership has been accepted by the Standing Committee shall, pending his admission as permanent member, be entitled to participate in or vote at any General Meeting of the Association including at any elections held by the Association. Every temporary member prior to being admitted as permanent member shall be required to pay the prescribed fees for permanent membership when called upon to do so by the Association prior to such member being admitted as permanent member of the Association.
3.6 Temporary Members shall not be entitled to :
(i) contest any election held by the Association, or propose or second the nomination of any candidate at any such election ; or
(ii) [save and except in such areas as may be designated by the Standing Committee in its discretion from time to time,] 4A enter or remain in the premises of the Association between 1.30 p.m. and 2.45 p.m. on Court working days and during General Body Meetings ; or
(iii) requisition any meetings of the Association.
3.7 An application for temporary membership of the Association shall be submitted to the Honorary Secretary in the form prescribed. Every candidate for membership shall be proposed by one permanent member of the Association of at least 10 years' standing and seconded by another permanent member of at least 5 years' standing.
3.8 Every application for temporary or permanent membership shall be considered by the Standing Committee of the Association either at a meeting of the Committee or by circular as soon as may be practicable after receipt of the application. If the application is rejected, any money paid by the Applicant shall be returned to him.
4.1 The fees payable for membership of the Association shall, for the time being, be as follows :
[(i) Entrance Fees - Rs. 750/-
(ii) Temporary Members - Rs. 450/- per annum
(iii) Permanent Members - Rs. 1200/- per annum
(iv) Designated Seniors - Rs. 2000/- per annum]1 or such amounts for each of the above categories as may be prescribed by the Standing Committee from time to time. It is clarified that for all purpose the financial year of the Association will commence on the 1st of April of each year. [The subscription for each current year (i.e. 1st April to 31st March) shall be paid on or before 31st July of each year.]2
5.1 All powers of management and administration of the Association including in particular the power to convene meetings of the General Body shall be vested in a Standing Committee consisting of 23 members.
5.2 The Standing Committee shall consist of the following :
(a) an elected President;
(b) an elected Vice President;
(c) an elected Honorary Secretary and
(d) 20 elected members.
5.3 The members of the Standing Committee shall hold office for a term of three years and shall be eligible for re-election on the expiry of their term of office.
5.4 Members of the Standing Committee including the President, the Vice-President and the Honorary Secretary, shall be elected by secret ballot by the Permanent Members of the Association. There shall be separate ballot for the following :
(i) The President
(ii) The Vice-President
(iii) The Honorary Secretary
(iv) 20 members
5.5 Any permanent member of the Association [save as provided in clause 5.9A below]3 who has been such member for a period of at least 15 years shall be eligible to offer himself as a candidate for election as the President of the Association.
5.6 Any permanent member of the Association [save as provided in clause 5.9A below]4 who has been such member for a period of at least 12 years shall be eligible to offer himself as candidate for election as the Vice-President of the Association.
5.7 Any permanent member of the Association [save as provided in clause 5.9A below]5 who has been such member for a period of at least 7 years shall be eligible to offer himself as a candidate for election as the Honorary Secretary of the Association.
5.8 Any permanent member of the Association [save as provided in clause 5.9A below]6 shall be eligible to offer himself for election as a member of the Standing Committee.
5.9 All nominations for election shall be made in the prescribed form. Every candidate shall be proposed by one permanent member of the Association entitled to vote and seconded by another permanent member entitled to vote; provided that a permanent member shall have the right to propose or second only one candidate for each of the offices of President, Vice President and Honorary Secretary respectively and to propose one candidate and to second any one other candidate for membership of the Standing Committee.
[5.9A(i) A member who has not paid his annual subscription within the time specified in clause 4 above or has failed to pay any other dues to the Association shall not be eligible to offer himself as a candidate for election as President, Vice-President, Honorary Secretary or Member of the Standing Committee. Nominations of such candidates shall be rejected. Such member in default shall not be entitled to vote at the election of the office-bearers.
(ii) A member who has not paid his annual subscription within the time specified in clause 4 above or has failed to pay any other dues to the Association shall not be entitled to propose or second any nomination. Nominations of candidates who have been proposed or seconded by members who have not paid their dues as above shall be rejected.]7
5.10 The date of the election shall be fixed by the Standing Committee in such a way that at least 14 days' notice is given to the members by the Honorary Secretary. The notice shall also state the last date for submission of nomination forms by candidates and the last date for withdrawal of nominations.
5.11 The voting at the election shall be held by secret ballot on any Court working day in the premises of the Association between 10 a.m. and 5.00 p.m. The Standing Committee shall appoint two Scrutineers (who shall be permanent members of the Association) to supervise the conduct of the elections and the counting of votes. The results of the election shall be announced as soon as is practicable after the counting is completed.
5.12 In the event of there being an equality of votes in favour of two or more candidates and in the case of the election for 20 members, in the event of such members exceeding 20, the result of such election for the last candidate shall be determined by drawing of lots.
[5.13 In the event of any vacancy arising in the Standing Committee, by reason of death, resignation, or any other cause whatsoever, the Standing Committee shall be empowered to co-opt any permanent member of the Association as a member of the Standing Committee, provided that the total number of members of the Standing Committee shall not exceed 23 at any time. A member co-opted as aforesaid shall hold office until the confirmation of the next elections at the Annual General Meeting as provided for in clause 9.3 (f) below. Any reduction in the number of the members of the Standing Committee below 23 shall not invalidate any decision or proceedings of the Standing Committee.]
[5.14 Notwithstanding anything contained in Rules 5.5 to 5.8, a member who has held the office of President, Vice-President or Honorary Secretary for two terms in the aggregate in that office shall not be eligible to offer himself for election to the office that he has already so held.]
6.0. THE HONORARY SECRETARY
6.1 The day to day affairs of the Association shall be managed by the Honorary Secretary whose powers shall include inter alia, the power to
(i) operate bank accounts of the Association and sign cheques jointly with the President or any one of the members of the Standing Committee as may be nominated for the purpose;
(ii) employ necessary staff subject to confirmation by the standing committee;
(iii) organise seminars and discussions on any topic in furtherance of or relating to the objects of the Association;
(iv) from time to time to do such other acts as may be determined by the Standing Committee.
7.1 Notices including notice convening the General Meeting shall be issued by the Honorary Secretary.
7.2 All notices of the Association shall be displayed on the premises of the Association and shall be deemed to have been given on the day on which first so displayed.
7.3 Individual notice shall not be required to be given to any member except notice under Clause 12 below.
8. MEETINGS OF THE STANDING COMMITTEE
8.1 The Standing Committee shall meet every alternate month or as often as necessary. The President of the Association or, in his absence, the Vice-President or in the absence of both, the senior-most member of the Standing Committee, shall take the Chair at each meeting. In the event of equality of votes, the chairman shall have a second and casting vote.
8.2 Eight persons shall constitute a quorum for the purpose of meetings. In the absence of a quorum, the meeting shall stand adjourned to the same day in the following week. If no quorum is present at the adjourned meeting, the meeting shall stand dissolved.
8.3 The Honorary Secretary shall keep minutes of the proceedings of every meeting. In his absence, such member of the Standing committee as the Chairman of the meeting may nominate in this behalf shall keep the minutes.
8.4 The Standing Committee shall have the power to form Sub-Committees and members of such Sub-Committees shall be nominated by the Standing Committee from among the Permanent Members of the Association. Every such Sub-Committee shall include at least two members of the Standing Committee. The President or the Vice-President or the Honorary Secretary shall be ex-officio members of each Sub-Committee.
9. GENERAL MEETINGS
9.1 The Annual General Meeting of the Association shall be held every year on a court working day in the month of September.
9.2 Twenty-one day's clear notice of the date thereof shall be given to the members in the manner prescribed herein above specifying the business to be transacted at the Meeting.
9.3 The following business shall be transacted at the Annual General Meeting:
(a) confirmation of the Minutes of the last Annual General Meeting and any Extra-ordinary General Meeting held thereafter;
(b) presentation of the Annual Report by the President;
(c) adoption of the Audited Accounts;
(d) appointment of Auditors;
(e) consideration of any resolutions or recommendations as set out in the notice mentioned in Clause 9.2 above which in the opinion of the Standing Committee requires decision by the members in General Meeting;
(f) to confirm election results, if any;
(g) to transact any other business with the permission of the Chairman of the meeting.
9.4 The quorum for an Annual General Meeting shall be 25 members. If there is no quorum within ten minutes of the time fixed for the meeting, the meeting shall stand adjourned for half an hour. If at the adjourned meeting also a quorum is not present the members present shall form the quorum.
9.5 The President shall take the Chair at an Annual General Meeting. If the President is absent or unwilling to take the Chair, the Vice-President shall do so, failing whom for absence or unwillingness, the members present and entitled to vote shall elect one of themselves to take the Chair.
9.6 The fact as to whether a resolution has or has not been carried either unanimously or by a particular majority (i) shall be declared by the Chairman of the meeting and his decision shall be final and (ii) thereafter shall be entered in the book containing the minutes of the proceedings of the Association and such entry shall be evidence of the correctness of the facts therein stated.
9.7 Every resolution in order to be valid shall be passed by a majority of the permanent members of the Association present and voting (subject to clause 13.1). Voting shall in the first instance be by show of hands.
9.8 Before the declaration of the results of the voting on any resolution by show of hands, a poll may be ordered to be taken by the Chairman of the meeting of his own motion and shall be ordered to be taken by him on a demand made in that behalf by at least ten permanent members. A poll demanded on a question of adjournment shall be taken forthwith.
9.9 A poll demanded on any other question shall be taken at such time not being later than forty-eight hours from the time when the demand was made, as the Chairman may direct.
9.10 Voting by proxy shall not be allowed.
9.11 Minutes of the proceedings of all meetings shall be recorded by the Honorary Secretary in a Register kept for the purpose. The Minutes shall be signed by the Chairman of the Meeting concerned and shall be available for inspection by the members.
9.12 Minutes of the meetings kept in accordance with the provisions of these Rules shall be evidence of the proceedings recorded therein.
10. REQUISITIONED MEETINGS
10.1 The President or the Honorary Secretary shall, on a requisition signed by at least 25 permanent members, convene a meeting of the members of the Association; provided that if the Resolution relates to any sitting judge or relates to the abstention from work by Advocates, or calls for a boycott of Courts by Advocates, the requisition shall be signed by at least 100 permanent members.
10.2 The requisition shall contain the text of the resolution proposed to be moved at the meeting. No member shall be at liberty to discuss any subject other than that for which the meeting has been convened and no resolution except the resolution proposed (or any proposed amendment thereof) shall be put for vote before the members, at such a meeting.
10.3 The requisitioned general meeting shall be convened on any Court working day within 21 days from the receipt of the requisition, provided however that if the meeting is not convened as above, the requisitionists shall be entitled to convene and hold such meeting after giving seven days prior notice of such meeting. The notice in this behalf shall be displayed on the Association's premises.
10.4 The quorum for such requisitioned meeting shall be 25 permanent members and shall be 100 permanent members if the resolution proposed relates to any sitting Judge or to abstention from work or calling of a boycott of Courts by Advocates; if within ten minutes of the time fixed for commencement of the meeting, there is no quorum, the meeting shall stand dissolved.
10.5 The provisions relating to conduct of Annual General Meetings, shall apply mutatis mutandis, to such requisitioned meetings except that on a poll being ordered by the Chairman, whether of his own motion or on demand by the permanent members, the poll shall be conducted forthwith.
11. EXTRAORDINARY GENERAL MEETINGS
11.1 The Standing Committee may by resolution convene a General Meeting of permanent members at any time which shall be called an Extra Ordinary General Meeting to consider such matters as in the opinion of the Standing committee, ought to be placed before and decided by the General Body except that such matter shall not relate to any sitting Judge or to abstention from work by Advocates or to calling for a boycott of Courts by Advocates.
11.2 The provisions relating to the conduct of Annual General Meetings, including provisions relating to notices, quorum etc. shall apply mutatis mutandis to such Extra Ordinary General Meetings.
12. DISCIPLINARY PROCEEDINGS AGAINST MEMBERS
12.1 Any member of the Association who misconducts himself on the premises of the Association or who has conducted himself in a manner unbecoming of an advocate or who has brought or is likely to bring the profession or the Association into disrepute shall be liable to be warned, reprimanded, suspended or expelled from the membership of the Association.
12.2 The Standing Committee shall give notice to the member concerned either suo motu or on receipt of a written complaint, either from a member or from any other person seeking his explanation or representation. On receipt of such explanation/representation, the Standing Committee may, if it thinks fit, constitute a Sub-Committee of not less than two permanent members each of whom shall have been at least 15 years as a permanent member of the Association.
12.3 The Sub-Committee shall inquire into the complaint and for that reason shall frame charges, after giving notice to the member concerned and shall afford an opportunity of personal hearing to the member concerned if so requested. The Sub-Committee shall submit its report to the Standing Committee within a period of three months of its constitution as set out in clause 12.2 above or such other time as may be allowed in that behalf by the Standing Committee. The said report may either reject the complaint or recommend that the member concerned be warned or reprimanded or suspended or expelled from membership of the Association. In the event of the Sub-Committee recommending either warning or reprimanding or suspending or expelling of the member concerned, a copy of the report shall be forwarded to the member concerned and then an opportunity will be afforded to the member concerned of showing cause at a personal hearing before the Standing Committee of the Association at which hearing at least 8 members of the Standing Committee will be present (who will not include the two members who constituted the said Sub-Committee), why action should not be taken against him on the basis of the report of such Sub-Committee.
12.4 Any member against whom an enquiry under the foregoing clause has commenced, may be barred from using the facilities and exercising privileges as a member of the Association provided however that at least 50% of the members of the Standing Committee present and voting so decide.
12.5 The Standing Committee shall have the power to warn or reprimand or suspend or expel such member of the Association.
12.6 A member once expelled shall not be eligible to be considered again for membership of the Association.
13. SUSPENSION OR CESSATION OF MEMBERSHIP
13.1 Suspension of Membership The membership of any member of the Association who takes up judicial service will, during the continuance of such service, be suspended and on the cessation of such service, such member will be entitled to be readmitted as a member without payment of any entrance fees provided however that such person is otherwise eligible for membership.
13.2 A member shall cease to be a member of the Association when the member concerned:-
(a) becomes of unsound mind;
(b) is convicted of an offence involving moral turpitude;
(c) is declared an insolvent or applies to be declared an insolvent;
(d) ceases to be a member under clause 15.1 or 16.6 below;
(e) is unable to or ceases practice on the Original Side of the High Court;
(f) has been expelled under clause 12 above;
(g) voluntarily resigns (after paying all dues then outstanding).
14. AMENDMENT, ALTERATION OR REPEAL
14.1 Save as expressly provided herein, these Rules shall not be amended or altered except by a resolution passed at a General Meeting specially called for that purpose, by at least two thirds of the permanent members present and voting at the meeting. The quorum for such a meeting shall be 50 members. If there is no quorum within ten minutes of the scheduled start of the meeting, the meeting shall stand dissolved. At least 14 days' prior notice of such meeting shall be given to all members, as prescribed inclause 7.2 above.
15. DEFAULT IN PAYMENT OF FEES
15.1 If any member fails to pay his subscription or any dues to the Association after the same has been duly demanded of him in writing sent by registered post [or courier]10 at the last address registered with the Association, he shall be liable to have his name posted as a defaulter on the Notice Board of the Association for a period of 30 days. If at the expiration of the said period of 30 days, the amount due or any part thereof remains unpaid, the member shall cease to be a member of the Association, but he may be re-admitted as a temporary member on payment of all outstanding dues and further on payment of entrance fee and subscription and on his satisfying the Standing committee that he had adequate and sufficient grounds for not paying such subscription or dues and on his paying the amount thereof.
16. NON-PAYMENT OF FEES TO MEMBERS
16.1 Any member of the Association who has not received his fees for rendering professional legal service from any Advocate within 30 days of the submission of the Memorandum of Fees may lodge a complaint with the Standing Committee in regard to such non-payment of fees. Such complaint shall contain full particulars such as the particulars of the matter, copies of the Memo of Fees and fees payable.
16.2 On receipt of such complaint, the Standing Committee shall refer the same to a Sub-Committee, for brevity called "Fees Sub-Committee".
16.3 The said Sub-Committee shall forward a copy of the complaint to the concerned Advocate and the firm, if any, of which he was a partner when the fees became due and call for an explanation for such non-payment, within such period as the said Fees Sub-Committee may fix.
16.4 The concerned Advocate shall be entitled to submit his written explanation and if he so applies in writing, to be heard in person by the Fees Sub-Committee. At any such hearing, the Complainant shall also be entitled to be present and to be heard in person. The Fees Sub-Committee shall, after considering the written submissions and/or personal hearing as the case may be, submit a report in writing to the Standing Committee setting out therein its recommendations, including in particular its opinion as to whether the Advocate concerned has defaulted in payment of fees.
16.5 If on consideration of the said Report and such other material as is before it, the Standing Committee is of the opinion that the payment of fees has been unjustifiably withheld without good reason, the Standing Committee shall give notice in writing to the Advocate concerned that unless such fees are paid within a period of 15 days of receipt of notice under intimation to the Standing Committee, such Advocate shall be treated as a defaulter Advocate.
16.6 In such a case - (i) the name of such defaulting Advocate or the firm if any, of which he was a partner when the fees became due shall be notified on the Notice Board of the Association, and on the Daily Board published by the Association; (ii) notices regarding the fact of such default shall be sent to the Incorporated Law Society (where the defaulting Advocate is a solicitor / attorney who is a member of that Society) and to the Western India Advocates' Association and other Advocates' Associations in the City of Bombay and to the Bar Council of Maharashtra (iii) till such time as the default continues, no member of the Association shall accept a brief from such Advocate (or from the firm in which he was a partner when the fees became due) except where accompanied by fees for that engagement (iv) if the defaulting Advocate is a member of the Association then on such default, he shall be liable to be proceeded against under clause 12; (v) the Honorary Secretary shall notify the fact of the cessation of membership of such member or other action that may be taken against him on the Notice Board and on the Daily Board of the Association.
16.7 If any member accepts a brief from such defaulting Advocate or from the firm in which he was a partner when the fees became due, in breach of the above, such member shall be liable to be proceeded against under clause 12 above.
16.8 Nothing contained in these Rules shall in any manner prejudice the right of any member to adopt such other proceedings and take such other steps as he may be advised independently, including filing and pursuing complaints to the Bar Council of Maharashtra or any other authority.
16.9 The defaulting Advocate shall produce the receipt of payment of fees paid to the member, to the Honorary Secretary of the Association who, on verification of the receipt and on being satisfied that the fees have been paid, shall notify the same in the manner and to the parties mentioned in clause 16.6 above and the sanctions provided in clause 16.6 and 16.7shall stand lifted.
VIEWERS SHOULD SEE THE PRINTED RULES FOR THE LATEST UPDATES.
These Rules were adopted at the General Meeting held on 11 March 1994, and amended as indicated at the General Meetings held on 17 March 1994, 1 September 1998 and 23 November 2000