CM assures talks on HC bench, appeals to withdraw stir

Bhubaneswar: Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik on Wednesday appealed the agitating lawyers to withdraw their ongoing strike demanding permanent High Court bench in western Odisha and assured for a discussion on the issue in October.
Making a formal statement in the Assembly, the CM said the State Government would hold talks with the Central Action Committee (CAC) of All Western Odisha Bar Association (AWOBA), which is spearheading the agitation, in the first week of October.
“I assure that as soon as the urban elections are over and the restrictions imposed by the model code of conduct are lifted, I will call the representatives of the CAC for a discussion in the first week of October, 2013 to address the very important issue,” Patnaik said.
Maintaining that the State Government had made a reference to the State Election Commission (SEC) seeking its clearance to hold discussions with the CAC, the CM said the SEC stated that having discussions at this stage will violate the model code of conduct which is currently in force for urban elections.
“We are again moving the SEC to allow the State Government to receive a delegation from the CAC to discuss and resolve the present stalemate,” he stated.
In his statement on the issue of Tuesday’s gruesome incident of rape and murder of a minor girl in Bhubaneswar, the CM urged that the case should be chargesheeted without delay to bring the accused to justice.
“I will also request the judiciary to take up the case on a fast track mode and complete the trial early,” Patnaik said.