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Striking HC lawyers meet CM, lodge protest over benches

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OST Bureau

Bhubaneswar, Sep 28:

The Odisha High Court Bar Association today met chief minister Naveen Patnaik to register its protest against the proposal for the establishment of high court benches elsewhere in the state.

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The chief minister responded positively to the Bar Association’s demand for an increase the number of judges from 22 to 27 and assured the agitating lawyers that immediate steps will be taken in this regard to help faster delivery of justice to the common people .

However, Patnaik urged the Bar Association to call off their strike and allow the High Court to function normally. The Bar Association has aid it will take a call on this in its next meeting.

“The chief minister has assured us to consider our request for not establishing high court benches elsewhere in the state. The government will intimate its decision to us by Monday. He also assured us to increase the number of judges to 27,” said a member of the Bar Association.

The lawyers of Odisha High Court have boycotted courts since Thursday protesting the move of the state government to establish permanent benches in other parts of the state. After a general body meeting of the members, a unanimous resolution was passed by the Bar Association asking government functionaries to desist from making divisive and confusing statements.

It may be mentoned that the bar associations of various western Odisha districts have been demanding a permanent High Court bench while lawyers’ bodies in other parts of the state have also made similar demands.

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