Taking cognisance of the advocates' strike in Punjab, Haryana and Chandigarh on the request of the Punjab and Haryana high court bar association, the chief justice Arjan Kumar Sikri stayed the Chandigarh Police probe into the FIR registered against advocates on March 4 and directed the high court registrar vigilance to conduct a fact-finding enquiry.
The division bench comprising the chief justice and justice Rakesh Kumar Jain also issued notices of motion to the Chandigarh home secretary, inspector general of police, senior superintendent of police and the high court Bar association for filing their replies by March 11.
The court directed registrar vigilance Shekhar Kumar Dhawan to submit his report by March 11 "after hearing the parties, in particular head constable Ramesh Chand and advocate Rupinder Khosla." The court stated that after going through the FIR, it felt that an independent inquiry was needed.
The court observed that since the matter had wider implications involving the functioning of courts and the judicial system; and the issue was of vital public importance, therefore, the court was required to intervene in the interests of justice.
The court noticed that on February 26 an untoward incident had happened "which let to an altercation between a police official and some members of the Bar (high court Bar association)." It was on the cop's complaint that the police had registered the FIR on March 4 at Sector 3 police station Chandigarh, the court said.
"The Bar association passed a resolution on March 5, condemning the registration of the FIR. They have made a request for taking cognisance of the matter, as the Bar feels that the FIR was registered on a one-sided version of the police official and the version or viewpoint of the Bar members was not even inquired into or gone into," read the court order.