Nothing wrong in fighting terror cases: Madhya Pradesh bar council

September 30th, 2008 - 6:29 pm ICT by IANS  

Bhopal, Sep 30 (IANS) The Madhya Pradesh State Bar Council has disapproved the Bhopal Bar Association’s resolution not to take up legal cases of those alleged to be involved in anti-national activities, an official said. The council has dubbed the resolution as a violation of fundamental rights as enshrined in the Constitution.

State Bar Council secretary Rajendra Jain referred to a letter from Bar Council of India chairman S. Gopakumaran Nair, Nov 24, 2007, in which Nair appealed that the bar associations should not be carried away by emotions in such cases.

Nair, according to Jain, wrote the letter to various state bar councils across the country after bar associations in Uttar Pradesh decided not to defend the suspected terrorists or their associates following a bomb blast in Varanasi.

Madhya Pradesh High Court Bar Association senior vice-president Rakesh Pandey said the accused would get legal aid from the Legal Services Authority in case the bar associations resolved not to contest cases of suspected terrorists.

“Under provisions of Article 22(1) of the Constitution of India, the accused is given right to consult and to be defended by a legal practitioner of his or her choice. Hence any move by the bar associations can’t affect the right of the accused from securing legal advice,” Pandey said.

The Bhopal District Bar Association a fortnight ago took a pledge not to defend the alleged terrorists and Maoists charged with working against the country and resolved to take action against members who violate its directive not to plead such cases.

The Bar Association of Dhar, a town near Indore, in April 2008 declared that no local lawyers can defend those accused of terrorist acts.

Advocate Noor Mohammad of Ujjain then travelled to Dhar to defend an accused in a terrorism case but he was assaulted by a group of lawyers.

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