While Gujarat High Court Advocates’ Association (GHAA) president Yatin Oza tendered another apology before the Gujarat High Court (HC) on August 11, in relation to the criminal contempt proceedings the HC had initiated after taking suo motu cognisance of a press conference, an intervening application was moved opposing the apology by bringing on record additional material to substantiate a case for contempt, on Thursday.
The Supreme Court, last week, had deferred Oza’s plea challenging the divestiture of his ‘senior advocate’ designation by the full court of HC, by two weeks. The apex court’s decision was based on the ground that it hoped the Gujarat HC would arrive at a final decision on the contempt proceedings initiated against Oza by then.
On Thursday, before a division bench of the HC headed by Justice Sonia Gokani, senior advocates Arvind Datar and Mihir Joshi, representing Oza, had made submissions with respect to Oza tendering his apology. However, permission was sought by an HC advocate and GHAA member, Amit Panchal, represented by senior advocate Mihir Thakore, “to intervene and bring on record additional material/ documents,” pertaining to Oza’s past behaviour. Following Gujarat HC’s suo motu cognisance of Oza being in criminal contempt of court in June, Panchal had earlier filed a public interest litigation (PIL) seeking the court’s direction in framing rules for “proper conduct and discipline” by lawyers .
The court directed that the copies of the application be shared with all parties. The matter has been posted for further hearing on August 17.
The Gujarat HC took a suo motu cognisance in June on a press conference held by Oza, taking serious objection to him raising his “accusing fingers… against the High Court, High Court Administration and the Registry by irresponsible, sensational and intemperate delivery in an interview,” which was live-streamed via Facebook.
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