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Karnataka notifies Karnataka Prohibition of Violence against Advocates Act, 2023 [Read Notification]

By Saket Sourav      13 June, 2024 02:18 PM      0 Comments
Karnataka notifies Karnataka Prohibition of Violence against Advocates Act 2023

Karnataka: The Karnataka government has notified the Karnataka Prohibition of Violence against Advocates Act, 2023 (KPVA Act). The law aims to prohibit violence against advocates and provide them protection while rendering their professional services. 

The law was introduced in the State Assembly by Karnataka’s Law and Parliamentary Affairs Minister HK Patil on December 11, 2023. It was then passed by the Karnataka Legislative Assembly on December 12, 2023.

The notification of the KPVA Act follows the adoption of the “Basic Principles on the Role of Lawyers” by the Eighth United Nations Congress on the Prevention of Crime and the Treatment of Offenders in 1990, which India participated in. The principles state that governments shall ensure that lawyers can perform their professional functions without intimidation, hindrance, harassment, or improper interference, and that their security is adequately safeguarded by the authorities.

Clauses 16 and 17 of the declaration deal with guarantees for the functioning of lawyers, which are as follows, namely:

“16. Governments shall ensure that lawyers: (a) are able to perform all of their professional functions without intimidation, hindrance, harassment, or improper interference; (b) are able to travel and to consult with their clients freely both within their own country and abroad; and (c) shall not suffer, or be threatened with, prosecution or administrative, economic, or other sanctions for any action taken in accordance with recognized professional duties, standards, and ethics.  â€¨17. Where the security of lawyers is threatened as a result of discharging their functions, they shall be adequately safeguarded by the authorities.”

As per the provisions of the KPVA Act, any person committing an act of violence against an advocate shall be punished with imprisonment for a term ranging from six months to three years, a fine up to Rs. 1 lakh, or both. The Act defines “violence” as any activity that would endanger the life of an advocate, cause bodily harm, or involve criminal intimidation to obstruct them from discharging their duty in respect of a pending litigation or case.

Additionally, under the KPVA Act, all offenses are cognizable, and it mandates the police to intimate the arrest of an advocate to the President or Secretary of the Bar Association the advocate is a member of within 24 hours of such arrest. Such offenses shall be tried by a court not below the Judicial Magistrate of First Class.

The Act defines an “advocate” as one whose name is entered in the roll of advocates maintained under the Advocates Act, 1961, holding a valid certificate of practice issued by the Karnataka State Bar Council, and is a member of any Bar Association.

Section 9 of the KPVA Act also provides that the provisions of this Act shall be in addition to and not in derogation of the provisions of any other law, for the time being in force. 

[Read Notification]



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