Lawyers’ protest demanding reopening of Courts completes days-92


Jammu, Jan 15: The Agitation of Lawyers practicing in Jammu wing of J&K High Court and the Subordinate Courts completed 92 days today. The Lawyers held DHARNA in the Janipura Courts Complex. The lawyers Action Committee carrying ahead the agitation since 15 October 2020 in protest against continuation of suspension of normal functioning of High Court and Subordinate Courts since March end this year.
Today's protest Dharna was joined by advocates: H.C. Jalmeria (Convener of Action Committee), CS Gupta(Former Secretary Jammu Bar), BR Chandan, BR Sharma (Former Vice President Jammu Bar), Vinod Abrol, SP Bakshi, BR Chandan, Vijay Shar-ma, Rajinder Kumar Chan-yal, Sabodh Singh Jamwal, JP Sharma, Shah Mohd Choudhary, Ashok Misra, Kuldip Singh Parihar, Manohar Gupta, AS Azad, Bansi Lal Sharrma, Meharban Singh, BD Manhotra, Jatinder Singh, Kunal Chib, Mano-har Lal, Surjit Singh Ando-tra, SC Sharma, Parvinder Singh, SK Sharma, Meena-kshi Slathia, Vir Ranshor, Amit Gupta, Umesh Sharma, Rajeev Kumar Sharma, PK Puri, Dinesh Singh Jamwal, KK Sharma, MS Qureshi, Suraj Singh, Mulkh Raj, Mehrul Puri, Romesh Salhotra, Mehm-ood A Shaad, SZ Ahmed, Vinay Kumar, Gagandeep Singh Lucky, and others.
The protesting lawyers are anguished over further extension of restrictions on lawyers and public in High Court and of public in lower courts up to 31 Jan 2021. It lacks justification now when other fields of human activity including Govt. offices, business, politics and electioneering, marriage gatherings, conducting proceedings of parliament and assemblies, cinema halls, liquor bars, bus and air transport, farmers' protests etc. have become normal since long after lock down. Vaccine has also come. Even some High Courts like Patna, Delhi are resuming physical hearings. The virtual mode offered is no alternative to physical hearings in courts. Even Supreme Court has given observation of its inaptness. The citizens as well as lawyers are worst affected by the continued suspension of normal functioning of High Court and Subordinate Courts for about 10 months. The Judiciary, the most important institution of democratic India, is the protector of the rights of citizens guaranteed by Constitution and other laws. The citizens approach the judiciary seeking protection of their constitutional and statutory rights through lawyers who have the status of officers of courts. In the present situation the lawyers are disabled in performance of their professional duties. Effort to negate lawyers' role in dispensation of justice amounts to denial of these rights. This negates democracy resulting in arbitrariness and dictatorship. The approach to Judiciary should be available to citizens without any hindrance. Shifting of registration work to Revenue from Judicial officers has caused grave harassment to public due to long delays and lack of transparency. The closure of lawyers' facilities including Bar Halls, Library, Canteens etc. in courts is a brazen attack on the lawyers' independent existence and in discharge of their professional duties.
The J&K High Court is unreasonably sitting over the holding of elections to J&K State Bar Council despite Supreme Court Directions. The closure of Consumer Courts since Aug 2019 is denial of justice to the consumers in J&K. Remedies under Human Rights Act, RTI Act and Accountability Act are no more available. The contempt proceedings initiated against some young lawyers during previous agitation should not be prolonged in view of the continued restrictions on entry to courts thereafter by official orders. The concerned judicial and executive authorities should resolve the issues without delay.

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