The Delhi High Court has quashed an FIR registered against a first year law student for appearing before a Metropolitan Magistrate as a proxy counsel.
The student appeared as a proxy counsel as the advocate she was interning with had instructed her to take dates for two cases.
In the recent order, Justice Anish Dayal observed that the student was either confused or unable to handle the situation, and said prior to being properly enrolled by a Bar Council and being admitted to the Bar, no law student should appear as a proxy counsel or counsel in any matter before any court of law.
Earlier, when the petitioner was not able to answer certain questions on the matter by the magistrate at the Dwarka court, the judge on August 29 had passed an order wherein cognizance was taken against her for the offences under Sections 177 and 179 of IPC and an FIR was registered on September 8 by the Honorary Secretary of Dwarka Bar Association.
The student moved the court challenging the above.
As per the student, she was a Hindi medium student and did not have any knowledge of the legal terminologies and therefore, could not understand what was being asked by the magistrate.
In view of the above, Justice Dayal said that the issue was “amplified disproportionately” before the trial court, noting that the magistrate had recorded that the petitioner had fairly disclosed that she was a first year law student and was also supported by the lawyer who instructed her to take dates.
Hence, the court quashed the FIR registered under sections 419 (punishment for cheating by personation) and 209 (dishonestly making false claim in court) of the Indian Penal Code.
The student has filed an affidavit mentioning that she shall never appear before any court as a proxy counsel or an advocate till she gets enrolled with a Bar Council.
The undertaking also stated that the petitioner accepted her mistake and that it may also be treated as her unconditional apology to the Bar Council of India, Delhi Bar Council and all Court Associations.
“In view of this undertaking filed before this court, as well as the observations made above, there is no purpose served for proceedings in this FIR to continue and the matter being proceeded further pursuant to the orders of the learned Metropolitan Magistrate. Accordingly, the said FIR No.473/2022 registered at PS Dwarka (South) is hereby quashed to secure the ends of justice,” Justice Dayal ordered.