Gauhati High Court Bar Association to petition Chief Justice of India, Union Law minister, demanding Justice Shreedhar Rao's removal
By Our Staff Reporter
Guwahati, August 17: The conflict between Gauhati High Court Chief Justice (acting) K Shreedhar Rao and its bar over various administration and judicial issues reached a flashpoint on Monday.
The Gauhati High Court Bas Association, in a resolution adopted after a two-hour strike, decided to boycott the Chief Justice's court - whether single or division with any other judge - indefinitely from Monday.
In fact, the bar association has also decided to send a committee to meet the Union Law Minister and Chief Justice of India, demanding removal of Rao.
"The conflict between the bar and the Chief Justice has been going on for quite some time. Firstly, the Chief Justice had arbitrarily transferred a number of PILs from the Aruchal bench to his court. He has appointed a particular lawyer as amicus curiae in the cases, which is not in keeping with the tradition of the court," said senior advocate Arup Borbora.
"Does he imply that the judges and lawyers in the Aruchal bench are not competent to handle the cases, or does he doubt their integrity?" fumed another advocate, adding that though the bar tried to iron out the differences through a dialogue, it did not materialize.
A full-bench of the court also endorsed the Chief Justice's decision to transfer the PILs from the Aruchal bench.
The bar is also peeved at the iction of the Chief Justice despite repeated reminders for revamping and preserving the old High Court building.
The association, at its extra-ordiry general meeting held today, also took exception to the "questioble" behavior of the Chief Justice against some lawyers, both inside and outside the court.
It was also alleged that the Acting Chief Justice had been attending the court only in the first half of the day since the last six months or so.
"We have decided to form a committee which will meet the Union Law minister and the Chief Justice of India, demanding Rao's removal or transfer. We will also write to the President of India," Borbora said.
Rao, an officer of the Kartaka Judicial Service, was sworn in as a judge of the Gauhati High Court in October, 2013. He is slated to retire in October this year.