Mumbai, July 5 (IANS) Around 1.40 lakh lawyers from all over Maharashtra and Goa will join the two-day national strike of the 17-lakh strong legal fraternity July 11-12 to protest entry of foreign educational institutes and universities into the country, a top official said here Friday.
The lawyers, from the Bar Council of Maharashtra and Goa, along with 410 affiliated bar associations in the two states, will oppose the proposed Higher Education Research Bill, 2001, which would facilitate the entry of foreign academic bodies into the country, according to BCMG vice-president Ashish P. Deshmukh.
“The government aims to pass this bill in the ensuing monsoon session of parliament. The BCMG believes it would act as a hindrance for the country’s higher education sector, including law education, and we are vehemently opposing it,” Deshmukh told IANS.
He explained that once foreign universities enter the country, they would act independently, have their own syllabus different from Indian standards which could create complex problems.
Deshmukh said the proposed bill would also alter the Advocates Act, 1961, rendering all national, state and local bar councils ineffective.
“In an independent country, it is necessary to have an independent bar and independent judiciary. This independence would be curbed with the new proposed bill, and hit the legal students and practitioners also badly,” Deshmukh pointed out.
He added that BCMG has appealed to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, Law Minister Salman Khurshid and others not to pass the bill in its present form.
Deshmukh said that unless the government heeded the legal community, lawyers all over India would launch a ‘jail-bharo’ agitation.