Gurgaon lawyers strike work for a separate high court
Hearings were rescheduled as lawyers did not show up, district bar council said that a separate high court for Haryana would benefit residentsgurgaon Updated: Feb 14, 2018 21:42 IST
The Gurgaon district court wore a deserted look on Wednesday, as city lawyers observed a token strike. The strike was in support of the Gurgaon district bar association and other bar associations of the state, demanding a separate high court for Haryana and equal representation of judges (50-50) for both states in the Punjab and Haryana high court bench. They have also demanded a separate bench for Haryana.
Around on 5,000 advocates in Gurgaon went on strike and did not attend proceedings. Since there were no proceedings on the day, the court will set fresh hearing dates in all pending cases.
However, people who travelled long distances to appear in court on the day, could only come away with word of a fresh date for hearing and voiced their misgivings over the strike.
“It would help if the court could inform us in advance in the event of a strike. I arrived with three other witnesses from Kurukshetra, but the hearing was rescheduled because of the strike,” Suresh Mor, a resident of Pipli in Kurukshetra, said.
Sudesh Kumar Yadav, president of Gurgaon district bar association, said that the strike by lawyers is aimed at benefitting their clients and the demands that they have put forward would only serve the best interests of their clients. “Once Haryana has a high court of its own, people will not have to travel all the way to Chandigarh in pursuit of justice. It will save them time, effort and hassle,” Yadav said.
Members of Gurgaon bar council said that even small states such as Manipur, Meghalaya and Tripura got separate high courts after an official announcement in 2013 and there’s no reason why Haryana can’t have its own.
“We have been demanding a separate high court for Haryana since 2013, but it hasn’t been met as yet. Currently, all cases pertaining to Haryana and Punjab are tried in a common court in Chandigarh,” Vinod Kataria, secretary, district bar association, Gurgaon, said.
He said that members of all district bar associations met chief minister Manohar Lal Khattar on several occasions in 2016 and raised their demand, but he said that a decision in the matter could only be taken by the judges of the Supreme Court, high court and the central government.
“We have knocked on all government doors, but are yet to receive any word of assurance on our demand. Currently, the ratio of judges assigned (from both states) to the Punjab and Haryana high court is 60:40. We are demanding an equal representation of judges from both states. This is a fair ask,” Kulbhushan Bhardwaj, former president, district bar association, Gurgaon, said.
The members also said that Haryana has more cases mired in litigations in the high court as compared to Punjab.
The lawyers said that since the high court is situated in the joint capital of Haryana and Punjab and is far off from remote corners of the state, people often have trouble making the distance to attend hearings.