Allahabad HC: Court Proceedings Cannot Come to Standstill Because of Striking Lawyers & Lethargic Litigants

Savvy Thakur

Published on: 29 November 2022 at 18:45 IST

The Allahabad High Court made the observation that the actions of strike lawyers and inactive litigants cannot stop the court proceedings.

The Single Judge, Justice Ajay Bhanot, noted that the fundamental rights of prisoners are violated when trials are delayed, especially for those who are in prison because lawyers are on strike.

“The striking actions of lawyers not only interfere with the administration of justice, but they also cause a fragrant violation of the fundamental rights of accused persons-prisoners’ right to a speedy trial” in such instances.”

“The court proceedings cannot come to a standstill owing to striking lawyers and lethargic litigants….Counsels cannot hold the judicial process to ransom by irresponsibly going on strike and bringing the work in the court to a standstill. Such conduct of the lawyers is in the teeth of law laid down by the Supreme Court,” 

The order was made in a case where the Additional Sessions Judge who was in charge of the trial had sent a report to the High Court saying that the trial could not go on for a few days because the lawyers were on strike.

After reading the report, the Court noticed that the strike actions appeared to be a regular occurrence rather than a one-time occurrence.

The Court ordered the Chairman of the Bar Council of Uttar Pradesh to personally appear and explain the measures they propose to prevent similar occurrences in the future as well as the course of action that will be taken in the present case, taking this in a negative light.

In addition, the Court instructed the Sessions Judge to forward the names of the concerned office bearers of the Bar Association, who had called and enacted the strikes and prevented lawyers and courts from carrying out their responsibilities as judges.

On December 12, the matter was listed for further hearing.

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