Our streets are often seen thronged with the lawyers protesting against certain ails of our society. Sometimes such protests are equated with remarkable tasks done by the lawyers in the largest interest of public rightly pointing out the issues facing society. In such cases, it is generally said that it is the only lawyers who could bell the cat and put the institutions on their way, it may be executive, legislature or even the judiciary which is from the lawyer’s community itself. Whereas, on the other hand the lawyers on the streets are labeled with extremist demeanor and with such other terms which are, perhaps, rightly taken up by media or the society for certain questionable acts of a segment of the lawyers done as an individual and not as a community.

Admittedly, the profession of law used to be a profession of lords and it still remains so for those who have faith in its being truly a profession of lords. The believers of this school of thought believe in hard work, application of judicial mind on the table at the time of selecting the case to be engaged for, due preparation and assistance to the courts in the light of precedents, unique fresh solutions and above all, the growth of law emerging out of social problems rising day to day in the society and asking for their solutions to run the society on the optimum levels of peace, growth and harmony.

Quaid-i-Azam, Muhammad Ali Jinnah was a professional lawyer who won a separate homeland for the Muslims of India called Pakistan where we are living peacefully at least in comparison to the plight of Muslim living now in India. We also see a substantial contribution made by the lawyers in the past and present growth of Pakistan. Even today, we find a sizable number of lawyers are playing their role in the Senate, National and Provincial Assemblies, judiciary and other important institutions of the country.

No hoodwinking the facts, there has been a sharp deterioration in the legal profession due to some commercial elements which are generally witnessed in the society. Unfortunately, the lawyers’ regulatory bodies called bar councils at length have not fully been able to cope with the situation despite their best efforts made in the past.

As a matter of fact, I as Chairman, Executive Committee of the Punjab Bar Council, deeply feel that direction merits more than mere efforts. What we as members of Bar Councils need to do is to set a direction exemplary for the grooming of the lawyers in general and young lawyers in particular.

The first and foremost measure required to be taken was development of very structure of the Bar Council on the lines of modern technology. The life of the organisations is gauged by the way it is run on the modern tools and techniques of developing an organisation. The members of an organization cannot deliver if they are not organised on corporate lines. Their grooming will lay impact on their personalities and the same in turn would also reflect while their dealing with the public, police, courts and other institutions of the society. It shall have an ultimate healthy impact on the consumer or society member.

The presence of undesired elements in the profession was a big problem for the organization which brought in bad name for the profession. Certain non-professional, land grabbers, touts and even criminals somehow were able to make their entry in the profession. Our bar took it as a challenge and left no stone unturned to curb this peril. Verification of degrees, scanning of lawyers records are being conducted and disciplinary and criminal cases are being registered against the delinquents and properly pursued in the litigation to lead them to their logical conclusion through a special cell established for the purpose.

Funds collected from the lawyers are a trust upon the management. These funds must be used fully and transparently on the welfare of the lawyers and the staff employed to their service. Transparent and fool proof internal and external audits are being conducted on the international standards of chartered accountants of all the Bar Associations across the Punjab. It would ultimately lead to optimum spending and results for the well-being of the lawyers community, especially financially and socially vulnerable. Their provident and medical funds are being properly managed and distributed under sub-committees under close supervision of the higher management. The Bar Council is not oblivious of constructive development of cyber tools such as social and electronic media by way of their active participation with legal acumen and education. Professional and moral ethics are being closely monitored to make the services professional and long lasting.

Perfection is an ideal and ideal can never be achieved. What we can achieve is the optimum and be on the the road the optimum. Room for amelioration is always there and it cannot be claimed that all ails are absolutely removed. However, it can be fairly said that we are on the way to our objectives. We are enthusiastic, motivated to serve this community which shall ultimately lead to the public service and the state. And it is what the lawyers are made for. The lords and bearing one of the names of Allah Almighty Himself called ‘Wakil.’ It is, however, also expected from the individuals of this community to give their input for the constructive growth of this profession without which all efforts would be in vain. The individuals have to show highest characteristics of a ‘lord’ so that people, law enforcing agencies, media and bench should grant them the status of a lord by their hearts and raise no finger upon them. And for this we are truly committed to groom and prepare them as the best community of society.

 

The writer is the Chairman Executive Committee, of the Punjab Bar Council.