Allahabad High Court Highlights Uniqueness of Judicial System Amidst Lawyers’ Strikes

allahabad high court law insider

LI Network

Published on: 30 January, 2024 at 12:00 IST

The Allahabad High Court recently emphasized the distinct nature of the judicial system, asserting that Courts cannot be likened to industrial establishments susceptible to strikes.

In a recent case (Jang Bahadur Kushwaha v State), the Court, comprising Acting Chief Justice Manoj Kumar Gupta and Justice Kshitij Shailendra, addressed concerns regarding frequent disruptions in court proceedings, particularly in Tehsil Rasra of Ballia district.

The Court elucidated that while strikes might find justification in industrial settings through trade unions advocating labor demands, such actions are incompatible with the framework of legal proceedings.

“Lawyers’ strikes waste not only judicial time but also cause immense harm to social values and contribute to the backlog of cases,” the Court remarked, underscoring the adverse impact on the justice delivery system and litigants.

Furthermore, the Court emphasized the human aspect inherent in every case, especially considering the vulnerable segments of society often involved.

It warned against the potential repercussions of prolonged court closures, which could drive individuals towards illicit avenues for dispute resolution, thus eroding faith in the judicial process and the constitutional framework.

The Court addressed a plea, treated as a public interest litigation (PIL), urging swift action against those orchestrating strikes, notably at the Tehsil Bar Association, Ballia. Despite the conclusion of the strike in January 2023, the Court retained jurisdiction, seeking accountability from the Bar Council of Uttar Pradesh and highlighting instances where strikes were called for reasons unrelated to legal matters.

Notably, the Court cited the establishment of a Grievance Redressal Committee by the Allahabad High Court, intended to provide a platform for resolving legitimate grievances without resorting to strikes. It emphasized the professional obligation of advocates to uphold the dignity of the judicial system and maintain client confidence, as enshrined in pertinent regulations.

The Court directed the Uttar Pradesh Bar Council to furnish guidelines regarding the observance of condolences and other circumstances leading to lawyers abstaining from work, reflecting its commitment to mitigating disruptions while safeguarding the interests of litigants.

The matter is slated for further consideration on February 5, with Advocate Sunil Kumar Yadav representing the petitioner and Central Standing Counsel Ashok Kumar Tiwari appearing for the respondent authorities.

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