Middle class? Get a star lawyer for Rs 5,000
By Tanu Sharma / ENS - NEW DELHI
19th September 2012 07:53 AM
If you are middle class and have a litigation to fight in the Supreme Court, it may not cost the earth to secure the services of a senior advocate.
Among the several court-mandated legal service facilities provided at the Supreme Court is the little-known Middle Income Legal Aid Society, in short the MIG Society, which enables a middle class person to access the services of senior advocates like Raju Ramchandran, Ranjit Kumar and P H Parekh for as little as Rs 5,000 or a maximum of Rs 10,000. The society, with Justice D K Jain as its current chairman and attorney-general as the ex-offico vice-president, has experienced advocates in all branches of law to help middle class litigants.
The Supreme Court offers several statutory legal services to underprivileged groups. for instance, the Supreme Court Legal Services Committee accepts the briefs of litigants who earn less than Rs 50,000 or those belonging to the SC or ST categories. Also, mentally ill persons or inmates of juvenile homes or victims of mass disasters and ethnic violence etc can also access such services for free.
The services offered by the Middle Income Legal Aid Society are made available to individuals who earn up to Rs 60,000 per month or 7.50 lakh yearly. They can avail the services of top legal minds for a maximum of Rs 10,000, which is less than half of what is charged by a senior advocate for a mere consultation.
Also, only a part of the costs incurred like expenditure on photocopying, stenography or binding, are paid by the client. The rest is borne by the society. “The scheme applies to any type of case filed in the apex court,” said noted advocate Raju Ramachandran.
The society has a panel of about 30 senior advocates. The litigant has the option of stating three names as his choice of counsel. “Out of the three names we receive, the society contacts them and whoever is willing to appear at the mandated fee is engaged,” said Ranjit Kumar, another senior advocate.
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