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Lawyers restrained from donning gown, black coats and neckband during protests

Observing that the lawyer’s gown is meant to be worn only in court and cannot be taken advantage of by advocates while participating in strikes and street protests, the Madras High Court, through an interim order on Wednesday restrained the lawyers from donning black coats, gown and neckband during protests.

Lawyers restrained from donning gown, black coats and neckband during protests
File photo of a rail roko by Tamil Nadu lawyers


A division bench comprising Justice N Kirubakaran and Justice B Pugalendhi granted the interim injunction on a plea moved by advocate B Ramkumar Adityan seeking to ensure that advocates maintain a proper dress code during court proceedings and to restrain them from wearing the lawyer’s neckband and gown during strikes, boycotts and agitations.

Based on this, the bench, on issuing notice to the State and the Bar Council of Tamil Nadu and Puducherry, also directed the latter to ensure adherence to non-use of black gown and neckband during such protests.

The petitioner contended that advocates participating in strikes, boycotts of courts and road roko wear their gown and neckband, although such demonstrations are the antithesis of their obligations under the Advocates’ Act, 1961.

Seeking for a direction to strictly avoid the same, the plea also submitted that some advocates are found to use their own mode of dress and not appearing in proper dress code during the court proceedings. “Even, a few of the women Public Prosecutors in subordinate courts also do not attend court in uniform which casts a bad impression and diminishes the majesty of law,” the petition said.

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