In ICAI Disciplinary Proceedings, power of attorney holder has no independent locus, he cannot insist on continuance as the attorney for the principal. Delhi High Court
ABCAUS Case Law Citation:
977 2016 (07) HC
Date/Month of Judgment : July 2016
Brief Facts of the Case:
In the present case, a complainant had filed a complaint of misconduct against four members chartered accountants with the Institute of Chartered Accountants of India (ICAI). The petitioner in the present case was appointed as a General Power of Attorney by the complainant to prosecute the complaints filed by him against four chartered accountants respondents before ICAI and its Disciplinary Committee.
The case of the petitioner was that he had appeared in the said complaints til 05.10.2015. However, after the hearing dated 05.10.2015, no notice or intimation of further hearing was received by him. When inquired by the petitioner, he was informed that the complainant had filed an affidavit with ICAI contending that the power of attorney on the basis of which the petitioner was prosecuting the said complaints was issued out of compulsion and was not valid.
Aggrieved by the said affidavit filed by the complainant, the petitioner filed the present writ petition seeking seeking that all the proceedings in the complaints held or conducted after 05.10.2015 be annulled and a direction be issued to ICAI and Disciplinary Committee to resume the proceedings afresh with the participation of the petitioner. The petitioner also sought stay of the operation of all the order passed after 05.10.2015 in those disciplinary proceedings.
The observations of the Court:
- Since the petitioner is not a party to the complaints, he cannot seek annulment or stay of orders passed therein.
- A power of attorney cannot insist on continuance as the attorney for the principal.
- If the principal does not desire the power of attorney to continue to represent the principal, the authorisation can always be revoked/terminated/withdrawn.
- The petitioner was a mere power of attorney holder. He has no independent locus in those proceedings.
- The prayers made by the petitioner raised apprehension that the petition was in fact a proxy petition filed to achieve a collateral hidden agenda.