Misconduct in any field is defined as an unethical behaviour through the
perspective of ethics. According to Black Law's definition, misconduct is
defined as a transgression committed via the commission of an act that is either
banned or unlawful. The profession of advocate is likewise subject to such form
of misconducts on their side, although the Advocates Act 1961 defines misconduct
as "unprofessional behaviour".
Professional ethics is a set of standards that everyone joining the legal
profession is anticipated and expected to follow. The importance of ethics in
sustaining the composure of legal practise cannot be overstated. These
principles assist the lawyer in maintaining a good and honourable relationship
with the Bar and Bench, the client, and the witness, as well as in promoting
In the present case of PD Gupta v/s Ram Murthi 1997
, PD Gupta is the
advocate of Vidyawati, one who claims right over immovable estate of the
deceased Srikishan Das. He being well aware of the facts and circumstances of
the case goes forward to purchase a part of the disputed suit. This in the eyes
of court amounts to unprofessional behaviour and exercising undue influence over
Although, PD Gupta contended that their was no external pressure on Vidya wati
to execute the sale deeds of him and his son-in-law and further claims that Ram
Murti, the one who filed a complaint against him to buy the disputed property
and claims to be the rightful heir of Srikishan Das has malafide intentions and
he himself has no title to Srikishan Das's property.
However the judgement by the Bar Council of India was against the actions of PD
Gupta. It stated that PD Gupta knowning the facts and circumstances of the case
still goes on to purchase the disputed suit , therefore his conduct is
unbecoming of a lawyer and against professional ethics , as a punishment for
which he was suspended from practice for one year. PD Gupta had not only
purchased property for himself but also made his son-in-law purchase the same,
by reselling the property he also had gains out of it.
Brief Facts And Issues
- After the death of one Srikishan Das in the year 1980, one Miss
Vidyawati, claiming to be his sister and the only legal successor, sought to
manage the estate of the deceased Srikishan Das in the District Court of
Delhi under Section 276 of the Indian Succession Act. Vidyawati's motion was
disputed by another Mr. Ramamurthi and three others who claim to be
Srikishan Das' legal heirs and produced three separate wills to prove it.
- This matter in regards to claiming Srikishan Das's property is
transferred from the district court Delhi to High court of Delhi and is
still pending and awaiting adjudication. PD Gupta , the appellant in this
case , is the advocate of Miss Vidyawati, and had been her counseller since
the beginning of the suit. Not going deep into the matter of property and
the contentions filed by Vidyawati and Ramamurthi , a complaint was filed by
Ramamurthi (the respondent in the present case) against the misconduct of PD
Gupta the advocate of Vidyawati , for his act of purchasing the ground floor
of the property in dispute and immediately reselling it.
- Although PD Gupta was well aware of the doubt cast on Miss Vidyawati
regarding her claim of being Srikishan Das's legal heir or not , he still
went forward in purchasing the property.It is to be noted that not only PD
Gupta purchased a part of the property but also made his son-in-law to do
- PD Gupta purchased the property in a mere sum of 1,80,000 in the year
1982. PD Gupta also claims to know Vidyawati when Srikishan Das was
alive.The agreement to sell was entered into by both of them as for back in
September 1980 and he kept advancing her money as if he knew that vidyawati
would take contradictory stands in relation to her relationship with
- Some important facts are also that. Vidya Wati has died, and she is said
to have been survived by her only daughter Maya Devi, who has also died.
Vidya Wati allegedly made a will in favour of her grandson Anand Prakash
Bansal, who is said to be the son of the deceased. Maya Devi bequeathed all
her possessions to him. Vidya Wati passed away on October 26, 1991, and Maya
Devi passed away on April 13, 1992. According to reports, P.P. Bansal has
been serving as Vidya Wati's General Counsel and directing P.D. Gupta.
- In view of the aforementioned circumstances is P.D. Gupta guilty of
professional or other misconduct and if so is the sentence handed to him is
disproportionate to the professional or other misconduct of which he has
been found guilty?
Misconduct, in basic terms and terminology, refers to a behaviour that is
inappropriate or unexpected in a certain sector. Law is regarded as one of the
most sacred and divine professions since it assists us in seeking justice.
Nonetheless, the formula of misconduct applies here as well; attorneys and
advocates must occasionally use unprofessional techniques that result in
Our country's attorneys and advocates are regulated by two statutory entities:
the Bar Council of India and the State Bar Councils. These bodies govern and
steer the advocates when they wander from the road of rectitude that has been
established for them. These institutions have established specific norms and
codes of behaviour that attorneys and advocates are expected to follow. The
Advocates Act 1961, on the other hand, offers us with profession on how to
consider the job of code of conduct and numerous important topics surrounding
Section 35 of the Advocates Act 1961 addresses professional misconduct by
attorneys and advocates in Indian territory.
After a complaint is filed against an advocate for professional misconduct, the
matter is sent to a disciplinary commission, which decides the culpability of
the advocate, following which a show cause notice is delivered to the advocate
and advocate general of the state, followed by argument by both sides.
The disciplinary committee has several powers that it can use, including the
- It can reprimand the advocate.
- Has the authority to suspend the advocate for as long as it sees proper.
- May also delete the advocate's name from the state list of advocates.
The Bar Council of India is empowered under section 49 to frame rules and
standards dealing with professional ethics and misconduct.
In this specific case, in my opinion, the decision made by the Supreme Court and
the Honorable Bar Council against PD Gupta was correct, and I firmly endorse it.
Since PD Gupta has been a practising attorney for a while, it is reasonable to
assume that he is aware of the fact that purchasing a disputed suit would amount
to many legal assumptions, such as using undue influence.
Nevertheless, he proceeded to purchase the property at a throwaway price and
joined the lawsuit.. Furthermore, PD Gupta's assertion that because he sold the
property, he is no longer guilty of any wrongdoing is incorrect because the
issue here was his action, and anything once accomplished cannot be undone. As
an advocate, he was entrusted with the obligation of being fair during the
trial. His job was not only to be fair to his client, but also to the opposing
But his acts tainted the entire process of administering justice. He was charged
with contaminating the administration of justice under Section 35 of the
Advocates Act 1961. Mr YK Jain the experienced counsel standing for the
appellant PD Gupta had also made comments , in reference to rescuing PD Gupta
from further procedures and actions.
However there was material discovered in such dispute had PD Gupta sold the same
property back to Vidya Wati and had the sale deed revoked in his favour,
something may have been stated, but he tried to benefit from the property by
further reselling it, revealing PD Gupta's deception. As a result, the
accusations filed against him to prevent him from practising for a year are
correct and justified.
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