Advocate Vikram Singh Chauhan, who led the attacks on students and journalists Monday and on JNU student leader Kanhaiya Kumar Wednesday at the Patiala House Courts ignored summons from Delhi Police Thursday and showed up at the Karkardooma courts where he was felicitated by lawyers for his “stand against anti-nationals”.
Chauhan and two other lawyers had been asked to appear before police Thursday but they ignored the summons. Police Commissioner B S Bassi told The Indian Express: “We are waiting for Chauhan and two other lawyers to appear before us. If they do not appear tomorrow, then we will go for coercive action.” He said police may move court for warrants to arrest them.
The Bar Council of India (BCI) “apologised” for the violence at the Patiala House Courts and said licences of lawyers found guilty would be suspended for life.
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“I seek apology from mediapersons and Kanhaiya Kumar for such mishappenings and misconduct. Strong action will be taken against lawyers, if found guilty of indulging in violence at Patiala House Courts. The action includes suspension of licence for life.
We can remove the name of any advocate from the roll of Bar Council for life,” BCI chairman Manan Kumar Mishra said.
But the warning had no effect on lawyers who gathered in large numbers at the Karkardooma courts around 4 pm Thursday to felicitate Chauhan and even took out a candlelight march to protest “victimisation” of lawyers. Claiming that 1,000 lawyers had collected to honour him, Chauhan said: “The media has called me a hooligan which is clearly victimisation. Many lawyers supported me for the stand against anti-nationals. We staged a peaceful protest against all anti-nationals.” He said lawyers will continue to take this stand “until all anti-nationals are arrested”.
Lawyer Yashpal Singh, who had also participated in the attacks at the Patiala House Courts, said: “We took out a candlelight peace procession from Gate Number 3 of Karkardooma court. We stand against all anti-national activity on the JNU campus.”
The Shahdara Bar Association also rallied behind Chauhan. Advocate Mahesh Sharma, president of Shahdara Bar Association, said: “Chauhan is a member of the bar and there is nothing wrong in felicitating him. If someone stands up for the nation and protests against anti-nationals, particularly in a peaceful manner, we stand by him.” The Shahdara Bar Association said it did not agree with the Bar Council of India’s move on this matter. It is planning a march around 2 pm Friday.