Recently, the Madras High Court had summoned seven lawyers to appear before it and explain their alleged involvement in multiple motor accident insurance claims for same accidents, after an expert body recommended action against them. Justice P N Prakash, before whom the cases of multiple claims of insurance came up for hearing, passed the interim order after perusing the report of the body headed by retired judge K Chandru.
The body, it is learnt, culled out from records names of the seven advocates and recommended immediate action against them for involvement in the fake Motor Claims Tribunal Original Petition (MCTOP) claim cases. Appointed by the court in July to inquire into the menace of multiple insurance claims for the same accident, the body had examined 353 cases, related to compensation claim totalling Rs 60.71 crore, and received responses from 150 advocates or claimants. It pointed out that after coming to know of the inquiry, around 70 such cases involving a total claim amount of Rs 8.90 crore have been either withdrawn or dismissed as not pressed.
The judge said though the expert body had suggested suspension of the seven advocates from practice, the court did not want to resort to such an extreme step nor did it want to refer the matter to the Bar Council without affording them an opportunity to explain their stance. Law is a noble profession and advocates should act as a bridge between their clients and the court in getting justice. They are not supposed to indulge in malpractices as people believe that courts are their last hope.