Lawyers march to seek action over court violence

New Delhi, Feb 24 (IANS) More than 200 lawyers marched silently here on Wednesday to demand “strict action” against fellow lawyers who attacked journalists, lawyers and JNU teachers and students at the Patiala House Court here.

The march from the Supreme Court to the Bar Council of India (BCI) office was held under the banner of Lawyers for Democracy and Justice.

The lawyers demanded that the Bar Council should take proactive action to ensure that the democratic space, right to freedom of expression and right to access to justice was not curtailed in any manner.

“There was a sense of deep anguish over the incidents of assault in the Patiala House and the failure of the courts and police to ensure the safety of litigants, journalists and lawyers,” a statement said.

The lawyers’ body said the BCI should comprehensively investigate the matter, initiate disciplinary proceedings and impose strict punishment on the accused within two months.

They also demanded setting up a broad-based committee to lay down guidelines and devise mechanisms to prevent recurrence of the violence witnessed in the court on February 15 and 17.

The lawyers condemned the assault made in the name of “nationalism” and emphasised that any attempts to create divisions between different sections of society threatened the unity and integrity of the nation.

“The joint secretary of the Bar Council received a representation from the advocates and gave an assurance that our demands shall be put up before the BCI chairman and the council and all possible action taken,” the statement said.

“He said the Bar Council had already initiated action and constituted a committee to look into the conduct of errant lawyers.”

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