Like many inconsistencies that are unanswered, one of the question that troubles me is whether justice should be marketed by professionals called lawyers. Today it is common knowledge that people with money have a higher probability of converting truth to lies and vice-versa. This has led to the notion that justice can be bought. Though some people may argue that is wrong to generalize but it stands to be the ground reality that fighting for justice is too expensive on all fronts; monetary, mental and physical.
The profession of lawyers is also one where a great deal of an asymmetry of information exists. Many a times, you do not have any options but to believe your lawyer as second opinions only add to your expenses. Justice since time immemorial was being administered by the Kings who ruled the state. It was but natural that in a democracy, the government should have administered justice instead of people buying justice through middlemen called lawyers.
Critics of my thought would strike back citing free legal assistance provided by various governments according to the Directives Principles of State Policy. My experience and understanding of government provided services are bad in general to an extent that I have come to believe that anything that comes for free particularly with a government tag comes with a dilution in quality. If my loved ones fall sick, I would think twice to admit them in a government hospital (AIIMS like institutes are exceptions). I would think twice before admitting my children to a government school (Navodayas and IIT like institutes are exceptions). Public prosecution and free legal aid are also fraught with such risks of not getting a quality service.
Now wait a minute, why am I targeting the lawyers only among all professions. Should health also not be provided by the State? Should shelter also not be provided by the State? Should education also not be provided by the State? When I put all these items on a priority list, I feel justice is something that is more a prerogative of a state that ought to be provided by the state and hence my attack on lawyers.
We could have a separate cadre of Indian Judicial Service, absorb all the existing lawyers into government occupation and bar private practice (Of course, this has to be supplemented by a monitoring mechanism). The law commission reports are also to be taken more seriously and over a period of time, people will be civilized and the notion that anyone can get away just by hiring a lawyer will go. Time bound delivery of justice will further discourage frivolous claims. Law universities and a career wide training program should be able to give India its officers meant to provide justice and ensure peace leading to a liberal and civilized Indian society that can no longer be exploited as a ‘lawyer’s paradise’.