Cuttack lawyers to strike work till Oct 7 over Bench issue

Cuttack: As normalcy returned in Western Odisha after 42 days of agitation by local lawyers demanding a permanent bench of the Odisha High Court in the region, advocates in Cuttack today said they will boycott court till October 7 against the government's move to set up Benches in the south and west regions.
Lawyers of Cuttack, which houses the principal Bench of the High Court, today resolved to step up their ongoing agitation against the state government's recommendation to set up the Benches elsewhere.
"The agitation will continue until Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik writes to the Union law minister recalling his October 28 recommendation," said Janmejaeya Katakia, the secretary of Orissa High Court Bar Association after an extraordinary general body meeting of the Association today.
Patnaik had recommended to the Union law minister for setting up high court Benches in western and southern Odisha.
At the meeting, the lawyers resolved to form two committees to spearhead the agitation. The committees would meet again on October 7 to chalk out further course of action and till then the lawyers would continue to boycott court activities, Katakia said.
He said a Steering Committee led by Jagannath Patnaik and Gangadhar Tripathy has been formed to coordinate the agitation by roping in local organizations like puja committees, peace committees and chambers of commerce. The steering committee would meet on October 3.
The Academic Committee headed by Nirmal Chandra Panigrahi and Sanjit Mohanty would take up grievances of Cuttack lawyers and inform the Union law minister, besides approaching the High Court in the form of writ, if need arose.
The High Court Bar Association invited the bar associations of various districts to send their representatives to attend the meeting on October 7.