Regular-article-logo Monday, 05 June 2023

Cuttack lawyers press HC to act against cops

Aggrieved lawyer says police cooked up charges against him, wants them to act on his assault case first

Lalmohan Patnaik Cuttack Published 23.10.18, 05:41 PM
Orissa High Court

Orissa High Court File picture

The ongoing police-lawyer brawl has taken a new turn with the victim advocate seeking Orissa High Court’s intervention against the case registered against him and direction for taking fast action on his FIR alleging brutal assault.

High court lawyers have been on indefinite strike since the day following the alleged assault on their colleague, Debi Prasad Pattnaik, near the fish market at Nuabazar on August 28. They have been demanding arrest of all the police personnel involved in the assault.


Chauliaganj police station had registered a case against Pattnaik under sections 279 (rash driving in public way), 294 (using obscene words in public), 323 (voluntarily causing hurt) and 337 (causing hurt by act endangering life or personal safety of others) of the Indian Penal Code. Conviction under these charges could result in imprisonment for three months to one year. Pattnaik’s petitions were moved when the high court’s vacation bench had its sitting on Monday.

The petition seeking quashing of the case registered against him alleged that the charges levelled in it were false. It also sought interim protection against arrest.

Another petition sought intervention against the slow pace of action on the FIR he had filed at Chauliaganj police station for the alleged assault on him by the police personnel. The petition alleged that investigation taken up on his complaint had so far been perfunctory in nature. It sought direction for expediting it and monitoring by the court.

Admitting the petitions, the vacation bench of Justice S.K. Mishra has posted them to October 29 for hearing, along with the police response.

Surprisingly, Justice Mishra has passed an interim order but prohibited communication of it to the press.

Earlier, two PILs had sought judicial probe into the police-lawyer brawl. The high court on October 12 posted the matter to October 29 for hearing, along with the report of the IG (crime branch). The division bench of Chief Justice K.S. Jhaveri and Justice K.R. Mohapatra fixed the date after more time was sought by the crime branch to conclude the investigation. IG (crime branch) Arun Kumar Bothra started probe on October 2.

Taking note of the rift between the police and members of the high court bar, the Supreme Court on September 27 directed the IG (crime branch) to probe into the matter. On the same day, the Supreme Court had restrained the Orissa High Court Bar Association from going on strike and directed it to resume the court work, so that no impediment was caused in the right of access to justice of any litigant. But, the association had defied the Supreme Court order and continued with the strike.

“We have continued with our agitation as three more erring policemen have not been arrested so far. Our members will hold a meeting on October 26 at 2pm to take a decision on future course of action,” association secretary Satyabrata Mohanty said.

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