Resume work from Nov 16 or face the music: SC to agitating lawyers in Odisha

Bhubaneswar: The Supreme Court today criticized the lawyers who have been boycotting work for a permanent bench of Orissa High Court in the western part of the state.

A bench of Justices Sanjay Kishan Kaul and Abhay S. Oka directed the lawyers to resume work from Wednesday (November 16). The common people are facing difficulties to get justice from the judiciary due to the lawyers’ agitation in Odisha, observed the bench.

The SC would be forced to initiate contempt of court proceedings against the agitating lawyers and initiate process for suspension or cancellation of their licences if they did not resume work from Wednesday, the bench said.

The bench said it would urge the Bar Council of Odisha to cancel the registrations of the agitating lawyers if they failed to comply with the SC order.

The bench noted that 2,14, 176 working hours of the lower courts were lost due to the lawyers’ strike in Odisha.

Notably, the agitating lawyers claimed that the Centre has requested the Odisha government to send a comprehensive proposal for setting up of a permanent bench of the HC in the Western Odisha. However, the state government is yet to send the proposal, they alleged.

Earlier, in 2020, another SC bench headed by Justice Kaul had directed the Bar Council of India and the Odisha Bar Council to take appropriate action against advocates who had abstained from court work seeking a permanent bench of Orissa HC in the western part of the state.

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