Delhi lawyers observe strike to support Chennai colleagues

February 20th, 2009 - 9:22 pm ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, Feb 20 (IANS) Lawyers of five district courts in the capital observed a strike Friday in solidarity with their Chennai colleagues who were baton-charged during protests at the Madras High Court Thursday that turned violent.
“We are observing a complete strike in the five district courts of the capital to oppose the police atrocities on our colleagues in the Madras High Court premises,” said Jaiveer Singh Chauhan, secretary of the Delhi Bar Association.

“The policemen chased lawyers inside the court premises and carried out barbaric violence against them. Hundreds of lawyers and some judges sustained grievous injuries. It is an attack on the judiciary and the democratic set-up of the country. The violence at the hands of the police was unwarranted,” said Rajeev Khosla, president of the Association.

Pitched battles between lawyers and police personnel were witnessed in the Madras High Court premises for several hours Thursday that left several lawyers and policemen injured.

The incident was a fallout of what had happened in the court premises Tuesday when some lawyers hurled rotten eggs at Janata Party president Subramanian Swamy for his opposition to the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) in Sri Lanka.

Khosla said the act by the police was inhuman and condemnable and that the association hailed the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) probe ordered by the Madras High Court into the incident.

The Delhi Bar Association demanded action against the erring police officials and suitable compensation for the injured advocates.

Friday’s strike was the seventh strike in the capital courts in the last two months.

In Chennai, over 150 lawyers were arrested Friday for defying ban on assembly of more than five people at a time and taking out a procession to the secretariat. A total of 50 others were held across the state for Thursday’s clashes and causing public disturbance.

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