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Lawyers have no right to go on strike or give boycott call: HC


Madurai: The Madras High Court has said lawyers had no right to go on strike or give a call for boycott or even go on token strike.

“The protest, if any, can be by giving press statement, TV interviews etc that could be given outside court. Even carrying placards, wearing black bands, banners, going on dharna, procession should be done outside and away from the court,” a division bench of the Court’s Madurai bench, comprising Justice R.Sudhakar and Justice V.M.Velumani, said.

The bench has dismissed a petition filed by P Palanisamy, a Tiruchirappalli court employee, seeking a direction to quash disciplinary proceedings against him by a lower court on the ground that his lawyer did not appear for hearing due to a court boycott by lawyers on September 28.

The disciplinary proceedings of the Principal District Sessions Judge, Tiruchirappalli, had been confirmed by the Registrar General of the High Court.

The lawyer holding the ‘Vakalats’ on behalf of their clients should not boycott the court in pursuance to the call for strike or boycott. All lawyers must boldly refuse to abide by any call for strike or boycott, the judges said.

“The law is well settled. It is the duty of every advocate, who has accepted a brief, cannot refuse to attend the court because boycott call is given by bar association.”

“A protest on issue involving dignity, integrity, and independence of the Bar and Judiciary, provided it does not exceed one day, may be overlooked by courts,” the judges said, strongly speaking against boycott of courts.

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