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Talks with HC Chief Justice fail,Thane lawyers launch ‘indefinite strike’

The lawyers of the Thane court on Wednesday decided to continue with the strike to protest against setting up of new courts in Bhiwandi as the talks between the members of the bar association and the Chief Justice of the Bombay High Court failed to resolve the issue.

Written by N Ganesh | Mumbai |
January 8, 2009 1:17:24 am

The lawyers of the Thane court on Wednesday decided to continue with the strike to protest against setting up of new courts in Bhiwandi as the talks between the members of the bar association and the Chief Justice of the Bombay High Court failed to resolve the issue.

The decision to go on with the strike was taken following casting of ballots by members of the bar association at the Thane court. “It was a decision in which 80 per cent of lawyers who were present have decided to continue with the strike,” said advocate Gajanan Chavan,president of the Thane district bar association.

The office-bearers of the bar association had decided to go in for a ballot on the issue as they did not want the decision to continue with the strike to be unilateral. Of the 1800 lawyers who are the members of the bar association,500 were present and 400 voted in favour of continuing with the strike. But,as many as 100 lawyers did not want to continue with the strike,instead,they wanted to resume the work. Previously the bar association had decided to ‘abstain from work’ only till January 12,2009,but with call for indefinite strike the lawyers are adopting a sterner stand.

“Chief Justice told us that nothing could be done about the court that has already been sanctioned in Bhiwandi. He assured us that the Thane District Bar Association would be consulted before setting up any more courts in Bhiwandi,” said Advocate Chavan. Previously,burden on the Thane court was reduced considerably as new courts were set up at Vashi,Vasai,Palghar and Kalyan. After the setting up of the new court at Bhiwandi,Thane district court premises housing the sessions court and civil court senior division would become district court for namesake as it will only serve to the needs of the people in the geographical limits of Thane city.

“In 80’s,Thane district court attracted about 2,800 civil suits in a year. After many years and bifurcations the figure has come down to 500. The number of lawyers joining Thane court are increasing day by day but the briefs are decreasing,” said a senior lawyer on the condition of anonymity.

Since ‘abstaining from work’ and ‘boycotting’ court are the violations of the Supreme Court order,lawyers found guilty of the violation may lose their licence to practise.

Moreover,on Wednesday,they have revealed that their stance is bolder by calling their protest ‘indefinite strike’.

This year the court has been fully operational only for two days ie; January 1 and 6. The agitatinig lawyers had taken a day’s break last Tuesday to facilitate talks with the Chief Justice of the Bombay High Court.

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