Members of the district bar association on Thursday obstructed district judges’ vehicles in front of the court premises here, expressing anguish and resentment on Orissa High Court for not responding to the Centre’s letter over setting up of a high court bench in west Odisha.
The members alleged that the high court had been silent over the matter, leading to prolonged agitation in west Odisha.
The lawyers, led by bar association president Bijendriya Pradhan, appealed to the district judge M. Dash to apprise the state government and the Orissa High Court Chief Justice of the issue and sufferings of the litigants and common people because of the closure of the judicial courts and the district administration.
“Let the high court say yes or no to the bench proposal. Keeping silent on the issue will further complicated the situation,” association spokesperson Sureswar Mishra told
the district judge.
The striking lawyers rejected Dash’s appeal to allow functioning of the courts for the interest of the people in general and the litigants in particular.
The judges were forced to go back to their residences as the lawyers prevented them at Kacheri Chowk.
Functioning of various judicial courts and the district civil administration has been totally paralysed affecting judiciary and developmental work in the district as a result of the strike and dharna by the lawyers. While the judiciary system has been paralysed since September 5 , the district collectorate has remained closed since September 26.
The agitating lawyers also resorted to dharna in front of the main gate of the revenue divisional commissioner and obstructing the employees. The agitation resulted in closure of the entire revenue division.
Even office of the sub-collector, tehsil, planning, regional transport and the registration situated outside the collectorate compound remained closed because of the lawyers’ agitation. The district administration has written to the government on the issue of agitation of the lawyers’ strike and its effect on the administration and common people.
According to the decision of the Central Action Committee, the lawyers’ body in west Odisha, spearheading agitation for the establishment of a high court bench, has decided to continue their court boycott till November 15.