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The Attorney-General for India

 The Attorney-General for India

The Attorney General of India is the country's chief law officer as well as the government's primary legal advisor. KK Venugopal is the present and 15th AGI, having taken office on June 30, 2017. The AGI is a legal post established by the Indian Constitution.

The office of Attorney General of India is addressed in Part V of Article 76 of the Indian Constitution. The Attorney General of India is the country’s highest legal officer and the chief role of them is to advise the union government on all legal matters as the government of India’s chief legal advisor. In the Supreme Court of India, the attorney general is also the primary lawyer for the Union Government. 

In theory, the Attorney General, like a State’s Advocate General, is not intended to be a political appointee, but this is not the case in practice.

Appointment of the AGI

The AGI is appointed by the President, who is qualified to be appointed as a Supreme Court Judge. On the advice of the government, the President appoints the Attorney General. The following requirements must be met to become an Attorney General of India-

He should be a citizen of India.

He must have served as a judge in the High Court of any Indian state for five years or as an advocate for ten years.

In the President’s opinion, he may also be an eminent jurist.

Term of office of Attorney General of India

The Attorney General of India does not have a defined term. It is not mentioned in the Constitution. Similarly, the mechanism and grounds for the removal of Attorney General are not mentioned in the Constitution. However, it is important to remember the following facts about the office of attorney general of India.

The President has the authority to remove him at any time.

He can only resign if he submits his resignation to the President.

He is generally removed when the Council of Ministers is dissolved or replaced, as he is appointed by the President on the suggestion of the Council of Ministers.

Functions of AGI

The Attorney General of India, as the country’s Chief Law Officer, is responsible for the following responsibilities:

He advises the Union government on whatever legal problems the President refers to him.

The President constantly refers him legal problems that he considers important, and the Attorney General must advise him on those as well.

Apart from what the President refers to, he also carries out the duties mentioned in the Indian Constitution.

Moreover, there are other duties that are assigned to him by the President of legal character. They are as followed-

The Attorney General must appear at the Supreme Court in any legal case involving the government of India. 

He is responsible for representing the Union Government if reference is made by the president to the Supreme Court under Article 143 of the Indian Constitution

He also appears in the High Court if the matter involves the Indian government.

Limitations on the Attorney General of India

There are a few restrictions placed on the Attorney General that he should bear in mind while doing his duties to avoid conflicts of duty:

He should not give advice or hold a brief against the Indian government.

In circumstances when he is called upon to appear for the Government of India, he should not advise or hold a brief.

Without the approval of the Indian government, he /she should not represent accused persons in criminal proceedings.

Without the authorization of the Indian government, he /she should not accept a position as a director of any firm or corporation.

Other Rights of the Attorney General of India

The AGI also has the right to say and contribute in the proceedings of Houses of Parliament or their joint sittings, as well as any committee of Parliament to which s/he may be appointed.

When the Attorney General attends the Parliamentary proceedings, he/she does not have the right to take part in voting.

He/she has the same powers as a Member of Parliament in terms of immunities and privileges.

He/she is not regarded as a government employee.

He/she can also practise law privately because he is not forbidden from doing so.

Attorney General is a member of the Union Executive. He is the country’s top law enforcement official. Moreover, he /she is also eligible to serve in any Indian Territory court.

Current Attorney General of India

The current attorney general of India is KK Venugopal and he was appointed by the President Ram Nath Kovind. In 2017, K K Venugopal was appointed as India’s 15th Attorney General. He took over from Mukul Rohatgi, who served as AG from 2014 to 2017.

First Attorney General of India

The first Attorney General of India was MC Setalvad and he was appointed in the year 1950.

Conclusion

The attorney general of India is part of the executive of the Union and he / she is the supreme legal officer of the country. Numerous respectful attorney generals have motioned their arguments before the court, which caused the reason for the passing of landmark judgments, which are used as the precedents in our common law system.