why you do require to have a professional degree to undertake architecture work

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The Supreme Court on Tuesday ruled that unlike doctors and lawyers who need to get registered under relevant laws to practise, a person does not require to have a professional degree and be registered under the Architects Act to undertake work related to architecture and its cognate activities.

A bench of Justices D Y Chandrachud and Ajay Rastogi said the profession of architecture involves a wide range of activities including design, supervision and construction of buildings and a person cannot be denied to carry the work for not being registered with the Council of Architecture, which is the regulatory body for the profession. “It is evident that the legislature did not intend to create a prohibition on the practice of architecture and associated activities by unregistered individuals. As opposed to the case of physicians or surgeons under the Indian Medical Council Act or advocates under the Advocates Act, the legislature consciously chose to employ a less stringent measure in the case of architects, merely prohibiting unregistered individuals from using the title of architect,” the bench said.

Expounding various provisions of the Act, the bench said the law prohibits a person from using the title ‘architect’ if one is not qualified and not registered under the Act but there is no prohibition from carrying out work of construction and other activities associated with the profession.

“The legislature chose to define an architect as an individual registered under the Architects Act and not as an individual practising architecture or any cognate activities. Thus, the legislature limited the regulatory regime created by the Act to the first class of individuals. In protecting the public from the risk of the second class, untrained individuals, the legislature had two options: first it could bar this second class of individuals from engaging in the profession altogether (as it had done with doctors and advocates) or alternatively it could prevent this second class of individuals from calling themselves architects,” the bench said.

“The Statement of Objects and Reasons makes it clear that the legislature chose the second option and in fact went to great lengths to clarify that choice. The legislature stated that with the passing of the legislation, it shall be unlawful for an unregistered individual to designate himself as an architect,” it added.