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Bar Council of North Eastern States Frame Scheme For Financial Assistance Of Needy Advocates

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The Bar Council of Assam, Nagaland, Mizoram, Arunachal Pradesh & Sikkim has formulated a scheme for granting some relief by way of Financial Assistance to needy Advocates who are in financial difficulties and who have been without any income from about the middle of March 2020 due to the Covid–19 pandemic and the lockdown imposed.

Objective:-

The objective of this Scheme is to assist the advocates enrolled with the Bar Council of Assam, Nagaland, Mizoram, Arunachal Pradesh & Sikkim who are in financial difficulties due to the Novel Corona Virus (Covid – 19) pandemic and shall be applicable to the advocates enrolled with the Bar Council of Assam, Nagaland, Mizoram, and Arunachal Pradesh & Sikkim.

Scope of Assistance:-

At present, an amount upto Rs. 5,000/- would be given as a one-time measure of financial assistance from the said Bar Council of Assam, etc. Covid–19 Financial Assistance Fund to needy and eligible Advocates who apply for the same in the prescribed format, upon selection by the said Bar Council under this scheme for being granted the assistance in accordance with this scheme. If any further assistance is to be given, the same may be decided by the said Bar Council later on, depending on any further developments and/or requirements.

Eligibility Criteria:-

  • The applicant should be enrolled with the Bar Council of Assam, Nagaland, Mizoram, Arunachal Pradesh & Sikkim.
  • The applicant should be in active practice.
  • The applicant should not be an income tax payee.
  • The applicant should not have any other source of income.
  • The applicant should not be in receipt of any pension or any kind of remittance  from any company / bank / Public Sector Undertaking / Government / semi – Government / body / authority / institution / university / college, etc.
  • The applicant should not be dependent on his/her parent(s) and if the applicant is married, his/her spouse should not have any source of income, pension or any kind or remittance.
  • The applicant should not be a Standing Counsel / Government Advocate / Government Pleader / Public Prosecutor / Additional Public Prosecutor / Assistant Public Prosecutor / Retainer Advocate / Counsel, etc. of any company / bank / Public Sector Undertaking / Government / semi–Government / body / authority / institution / university / college, etc. or a Notary.

Application Procedure:-

The applicant has to apply only in the prescribed Application Form  –  A  in  accordance with the procedure hereinafter described by way of e-mail to:

barcouncilofnecovid19aid@gmail.com

or in person or by Speed Post / Registered Post / courier, superscribing the cover envelope with the line –

Application for assistance under the Covid–19 Financial Assistance Scheme” addressed to:

The Chairman, Bar Council of Assam, Nagaland, Mizoram, Arunachal Pradesh & Sikkim, 2nd Floor, Old Building, Gauhati High Court, Mahatma Gandhi Road, Guwahati – 781001.

The last date of receipt of applications under this scheme, either by email or in person or by Speed Post / Registered Post / courier is 07 May 2020.

Procedure for selection of beneficiaries:-

The State Bar Council, vide a Resolution adopted in its Requisition Meeting held on 23rd April, 2020 has constituted a Special Committee comprising of 9 members of the said Bar Council to scrutinize and select the beneficiaries to be extended the financial assistance under this scheme. The quorum for any meeting of the said Special Committee shall be six members.

The Special Committee the scheme shall decide and fix the amount to be given as financial assistance to the applicant under this scheme and the total number of beneficiaries to be extended the assistance at a particular time / during a particular period, taking into consideration the total quantum of funds available for the assistance and the number of applications received / that might be received for assistance under the scheme.

Disbursement of assistance to beneficiaries:

The amount of financial assistance would be transferred to the bank accounts of the respective selected beneficiaries, mentioned in their application forms, by way of NEFT / RTGS after preparation of List of Beneficiaries of the scheme. It is made clear that the bank account of the applicant mentioned in his/her Application Form – A has to be in his/her own name as recorded in the roll of the Bar Council of Assam, Nagaland, Mizoram, Arunachal Pradesh & Sikkim, otherwise his/her application shall be rejected.

Action for false statements & false / fabricated / forged documents:

If any statement of the applicant in his/her application made under this scheme is found to be incorrect or false statement, knowing it to be not correct / true and/or the applicant submits any false / fabricated / forged document, the same shall render the said applicant liable to appropriate action.

Ms. Monjuli Dev, Vice President of the State Bar and Member of the Selection Committee while speaking to India Legal said that on 28th March the Bar requested the Advocate General  of north eastern states to make contributions to the fund and Advocate general for each state i.e. Arunachal Pradesh, Mizoram, Assam, Nagaland paid Rs. 1 Lakh each. And, former advocate general of Tripura made voluntary contribution of Rs. 1,10,000 to the welfare Fund.

The State Bar also requested assistance from Bar Council of India on 23rd of April and the BCI representative has assured assistance of Rs. 45 Lacs to the welfare fund.

Many State Bar councils and local bar associations across country are coming forward to aid the needy advocates in the challenging times of the pandemic COVID-19 and subsequent lockdown.

-India Legal Bureau

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