12 December 2019
Chief Minister’s Advocates’ Welfare Scheme: 13 Member Committee submits recommendations to the Chief Minister; Four Schemes – Group Insurance, Medi-Claim, E-Library and Crèche Facility in the proposal to benefit Nearly 40000 advocates in Delhi
- The 13 member committee of Advocates headed by the Supreme Court Bar Association President Mr. Rakesh Khanna submitted its recommendations to the Chief Minister on late Thursday evening.
- The Committee announced by the Chief Minister on 29 November2019 held five meetings to finalize and compile the set of recommendations
- The recommendations consists of four schemes: Group (Term) Insurance for practising advocates; Group Medi-claim coverage for the advocates, their spouse and two dependent children; E-library with 10 computers loaded with e-journals in all the 6 district courts; and Creche facility for advocates and staff employees.
- Nearly 40000 advocates enrolled in the Supreme Court, Delhi High Court, District courts and other tribunals will benefit.
New Delhi: The 13 member committee of Advocates headed by the Supreme Court Bar Association President Mr. Rakesh Khanna submitted its recommendations to the Chief Minister on late Thursday evening. The committee was announced on 29 November with the mandate to recommend the utilisation of the Rs. 50 crore Chief Minister’s Advocates Welfare scheme.
The recommendations consists of four schemes: first, Group (Term) Insurance for practising advocates providing life cover of Rs. 10,00,000/ (Rupees Ten Lakhs) per advocate; secondly Group Medi-claim coverage for the advocates, their spouse and two dependent children unto the age of 25 years, for a family floater sum insured of Rs. 5,00,000/- (Rupees Five Lakhs); thirdly E-library with 10 computers loaded with e-journals and web editions of e-journals, along with printers in all the 6 district courts; and fourthly Creche facility for advocates and staff employees in each of the 6 district courts.
(Details of Recommendations enclosed)
Group (Term) Insurance for Advocates in Delhi
The committee proposed that every practising advocate in Delhi should be given Life Term Insurance of Rs. 10,00,000/- (Rupees Ten Lakhs) in collaboration with Life Insurance Corporation of India. Law Ministry of the Government of NCT of Delhi is proposed to be the nodal agency.
After consultation with various insurance companies the committee came to the following conclusion: Since the number of advocates likely to be covered under the scheme as per the data made available by the Bar Council of Delhi is approximately 40,115, the premium amount at the aforesaid rate works out to be Rs.10,07,70,894/- (Ten Crores Seven lakhs Seventy Thousand Eight Hundred and Ninety Four). The committee is prima facie of the view that the rate offered by the LIC seems to be quite competitive and can be accepted by the government. The Nodal agency for operating the said scheme shall be the Law Ministry of the Government of NCT of Delhi and it may further negotiate the premium, if it so desires.
Committee recommends Group Medi-Claim coverage for advocates
The members of the Committee deliberated at length the issue regarding providing Medical coverage for the advocates practising in Delhi and their families. The Committee is of the considered opinion that every practising advocate registered in Delhi should be given Medical coverage facility by providing them Group medical Coverage through an Insurance company.
The Committee recommends that the Delhi Government may consider accepting the offer given by the New India Assurance Company that Group Medi-Claim policy for the advocate, spouse and two dependent children at the premium of Rs. 8,500 plus GST. The Nodal agency for operating the said scheme shall be the Law Ministry of the Government of NCT of Delhi and it may further negotiate the premium, if it so desires.
Facility of E-library in all the 6 district courts
The committee recommends to set up E-Library facilities in all six district courts as the Committee found that the E-library facilities are lacking. “The advocates practising in the district courts face serious problem in carrying out legal research of the Acts, Rules and the case laws required to prepare their cases and arguments”, the report says.
The committee prposes to set up E-Library facilities in District Courts, namely, Tis Hazari Court, Patiala House Court, Kakardooma Court, Saket Court, Dwarka Court and Rohini Court, with 10 computers, fully loaded with e-journals, their web editions including SCC Online, All India Reporter, Manupatra, Delhi Law Times etc along with heavy duty printers.
Creche facility for advocates and staff employees
Factoring the concerns of the female advocates and female staff employed by the advocates in various courts in Delhi, the committee recommends to run creches free of cost in all six district courts. The committee also proposes to explore the scope of tapping LIC CSR to run the creches. If for any reason, LIC expresses its inability to run the creches, the Government of NCT of Delhi should undertake the establishment and running of these creches at its own cost under the “Chief Minister’s Advocate Welfare Scheme” on the lines of the creche being run in the Supreme Court of India.
Identification of eligible beneficiary advocates
The Committee is of the considered opinion that all the practising advocates in Delhi who are on the verified rolls of the Bar Council of Delhi i.e. 40,115 and who are on the electoral roll of any of the Bar Associations in Delhi namely; the Supreme Court Bar Association, the Delhi High Court Bar Association, the Bar Associations of the Rohini Court, the Tis Hazari Court, the Dwarka Court, the Karkardooma Court, the Saket Court, Patiala House, National Green Tribunal, NCLT, NCLAT, Income tax tribunals, Service Tax tribunal, Armed Forces Tribunal, Debt Recovery Tribunal, Central Administrative Tribunal, National Consumer Commission, State Consumer Forum, as on 01.12.2019, upon due endorsement by Bar Council of Delhi and cross-endorsement by the respective Bar Association where they have their voting rights, be treated as beneficiaries under this scheme.
The Committee held five meetings on 30th November 2019, 2nd December 2019, 3rd December
2019, 4th December 2019 and 5th December 2019 to finalize and compile the set of recommendations submitted to the Chief Minister on Thursday. It also consulted various insurance companies to make the best option.
In February, the Government of NCT of Delhi, in recognition of the role being played by the advocates in the society and the legal profession in particular, announced the ‘Chief Minister’s Advocates Welfare Scheme’ and an outlay of Rs. 50 crore, as annual fund. This first of its kind initiative by the Delhi Government has been widely appreciated by various quarters.