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Lawyer and legal profession in India

Through federal in structure, the unitary character of India under its constitution has influenced the country to have a unified bar. The pre-constitutional legal framework had to undergo a transformation in the backdrop of struggle by the people of India to achieve its freedom from the colonial rulers and eventually adoption of democratic republic constitution.

The Indian legal profession is one of the largest in world, with over 2.0 million enrolled Advocates nationwide according to bar council of India chairman Manan kumar mishra. The estimated total value of Indian legal market as of 2010 was approximately USD 1.25 billion. India and other emerging economic in Asia will continues to be attractive destination for law firm from North America and Europe their success in this regard will have a major impact on the potential benefit and future of the internationalization of strategies.

In India during the earlier period, people live in small groups. The heads of these groups or tribes delivered justice under open sky before all the members. Open arguments were made. There were no specialist like a lawyer during those days. When Kingships was established in the society, Kings delivered justice. In King's Court, the king was advised by his councilors. The law of those days was a rooted in Hindu religion and custom. Dharma was protected by the king. Though there was no Institution of a lawyer, some intellectual people served justice. From the stories of Maryada Ramayana and Vikramaditya, we are well aware of the wise man who solved the critical cases of those days. During those days the legal profession was administered by the administrators. For sometime religious heads dominated the society in administering the justice. During those days, the sufferer presented complaint before the king in his court and thereafter the court summoned the defendant to submit his reply. The Court then investigated the matter on the evidence. The King took the advice of the religious heads and wise courtier and then delivered the judgment. The same procedure was followed in all cases.

Legal practices are being evolving from time to time. During colonial period Indian law codified, diversified and emphasized for unitary law in whole India. Since independence law and legal profession undergone a huge transformation, the efforts of the member of the bar to achive excellence in all sphares of their practice through competition is not only apparent in their every leading with new challenges due to technological and other development, but also they earned recognisation in globalized world, Historically the member of bar provided leadership at national and as well as international level. Leader like Mahatama Gandhi, Dr. Rajendra Prasad, Arun jaitley and many more like them are lawyers and have significant impact in India and global world.

As of January 2017, there were about 1,248 laws.[3] However, since there are Central laws as well as State laws, it is difficult to ascertain their exact numbers as on a given date and the best way to find the Central Laws in India is from the official websites.

Advocate act 1961, regulates legal profession in India.

Legal practice India is regulated by the Advocate act 1961, As act passed by parliament which consist law relating to legal professionals in India and it provide for constitute of Bar council of India (BCI) and State bar council. Act also deal with admission, enrolment, rights and conduct of advocates. Almost every court have its bar councils, as it can be seen at every level:

  1. Bar council of India

  2. State bar council

  3. District bar council

The Bar Council of India is comprised of the Attorney General of India and the Solicitor General of India its ex officio members, as well as one member elected from each of the State Bar Councils. The members of the State Bar Councils are elected for a period of five years.

Main function of Bar council of India are:

  1. To lay down professional conduct standard for advocates.

  2. To lay down procedure that must be followed by various by various disciplinary committees.

  3. Protecting the rights, interests, and privileges of advocates.

  4. Promoting and supporting law reforms in various ways.

  5. To lay down standards for legal education in consultation with the Universities in India imparting such education and the State Bar Councils.

  6. Dealing with and disposing of any matter that is referred by any of the State Bar Council (SBC)

  7. Promoting legal education and laying down legal education standards.

  8. Determining universities whose law degree provides the needed qualification for enrolling as an advocate.

  9. Conducting seminars on legal subjects by renowned jurists and publishing papers and journals of legal interest.

  10. Organizing and providing legal assistance to the poor.

  11. Recognizing foreign law qualifications gained outside India for admission as an advocate.

  12. Managing and investing funds of the BCI.

  13. Providing for electing its members who will manage and administer the Bar Councils

  14. Organizing and providing legal assistance to the scheduled caste

The bar council of India is led by chairman and vice-Chairman, who are elected from amongst the member of the council for period of two years.

Every state bar council members strength is depends upon the numerical strength of advocates enrolled in state bar. In the case of an electorate not exceeding five thousand members, the State Bar Council shall consist of 15 members, while in the case of an electorate exceeding five thousand but not more than ten thousand, the strength of the Council shall be twenty members. If the electorate exceeds ten thousand, the strength of the Council shall be twenty five members. Additionally, each of the State Bar Councils counts their respective Advocate Generals as ex officio members. Each State Bar Council is headed by a Chairman, who is assisted by a Vice-Chairman and Secretary.


(1) Rules on Professional Standards

The Bar council of India lays down rules to set standard of conduct and professional equilibrium to be maintain by lawyers in court, with clients and opponent and towards fellow advocates. If any of advocate violating rules of BCI. Disciplinary proceeding against him/her will conduct by disciplinary committee of state bar council and Bar council of India acts as an appellate authority.

(2) Legal Education

Legal education in India is regulated by both UGC and Bar council of India (BCI). Promotion of legal education, Setting of standard of legal education such as course of study, eligibility for admission, course structure and infrastructure requirements. Different NLUs are set up with the help of Bar council of India for promoting legal education and for setting high level of standard of legal education. Courses in UG are BA LLB, BBA LLB, LLB, BLS LLB this are 5 year course and 3 year LLB. PG LLM is provided in various field like corporate, taxation, criminal law, constitutional law, human right etc. Examination and curriculum of this courses is conduct and set by BCI.

The Bar Council of India also initiated the All India Bar Examination from the year 2010, which is a compulsory examination for all law graduates seeking enrolment as advocates. This has been undertaken by the Bar Council to raise the standards of the bar, and encourage legal education.

(3) The Bar Council of India Trust

The Bar Council of India Trust is a public charitable trust which aims to further legal research and education. The Trust publishes a quarterly journal known called the ‘Indian Bar Review’. It also conducts a national moot court competition, and various seminars and workshops as part of its continuing Legal Education Program. A Fellowship and Placement Scheme for junior lawyers to render financial assistance to the best candidates was initiated and is being continued by the Trust.

(4) Bar Associations

Every court has its own form bar associations which work for welfare of advocates. Regular election is conducted for the election of member of bar associations. Maintain of lawyers chambers, library, sports hall etc, conducting of different program for advocates and much more. Every lawyer must be member of one of this bar. Member of one bar can participate in any court but its voting right is only executed in Bar where he/she is member. One person cannot take membership of more than one bar.


In India legal profession is consider as noble profession. There by still assume to have some standards of legal ethics which is followed very strictly in Supreme Court and High Courts of India but it seems it is not followed very strictly in district courts. Legal ethic is always been an important part of this profession. An example lawyers in India are not allowed to advertise their practice in market as per Rule 36 of Bar council of India. The Bar council of India aggressively reviewing the ethical standard with demand of Time its seen in rule 36 amendment is made by which now an advocates and law firm can maintain its own website. Contingency fees arrangements have been illegal in India. BCI is more emphasizing on legal ethics in legal education for saving modesty of this noble profession.


  1. Advocate act 1961.


  3. All India bar Examination (AIBE)

  4. The Bar Council of India, History of the Legal Profession, visited may. 21, 2021, 9:56 PM (IST

  5. Legal Services India, Legal Profession in India, visited may. 23, 2021, 4:45 PM (IST)).

Written and submitted by-

Hariom Choudhary

BBA LLB (3rd year)

Shri vaishnav institute of law

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