The Delhi High Court Bar Association has assured the Delhi High Court that it would expeditiously examine the aspect of setting up a fund to provide aid to the needy members of the Court's Clerks' Association. (Delhi High Court Bar Clerks' Association vs UOI & Ors)
The assurance was given by Senior Advocate Mohit Mathur, President DHCBA before a Single Judge Bench of Justice Rekha Palli in a petition preferred by Delhi High Court Bar Clerks' Association.
The Clerks' Association had sought the creation of a Rs. 5 crore fund for the welfare of its members, as to ensure their survival during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Court was informed that the Petitioner Association is a registered association which is duly recognized by DHCBA and has 3500 members.
It was submitted that the members of the Association were finding it very difficult to survive during this grim period as their employers, who are Advocates practicing in this Court, were not in a position to pay them any salary because of insufficient availability of work.
The Petitioner Association stated that they had not received any assistance from any of the authorities, including the Government of NCT of Delhi and since DHCBA had already set up a COVID Relief Fund for Advocates in need, there was no reason to deny creation of a similar fund to help the clerks.
In response, Senior Advocate Mathur assured that the Bar Association would expeditiously examine the aspect of setting up a separate fund for the Petitioner Association.
He added that he would voluntarily donate a sum of Rs 2 lakh to the fund, as soon as it is set up.
"..in a similar vein of magnanimity, Mr.Dayan Krishnan learned Senior Counsel has already pledged a sum of Rs. 2 lakh while Mr (Inder Singh) Alag, learned Senior Counsel who is appearing for the petitioners herein has volunteered to donate a sum of Rs. 1 lakh to this fund as well.", the Court recorded.
While appreciating the voluntary offers made by the Senior Counsel, the Court said,
..hope that their generosity motivates other senior members of the Bar, especially those who are regularly appearing before Courts in video conferencing hearings for the last few months, to contribute benevolently and unsparingly to this fund, as and when it is created..The members of the petitioner association serve a crucial role and are so intrinsically linked to the work discharged by the Bar that they are indispensable to the smooth functioning of this entire institution. While considering the matter of setting up such a fund or making contributions to it, this Court hopes that all members of the Bar Association, including its senior-most members, will remain conscious of this fact and that, without the assistance rendered by the members of the petitioner association, no member of the Bar could effectively discharge their duties.
Delhi High Court
The counsel for Delhi Government also assured the Court that he would obtain instructions regarding the outcome of the representations claimed to have been made by the Petitioner Association to the Government.
The matter would be heard next on July 1.
Senior Advocate Inder Singh Alag with Advocates NK Aggarwal, Sanjana Antil, Yogita Sunaria, Atul Tanwar appeared for the Petitioner Association