The Allahabad High Court observed that strike by lawyers not only wastes judicial time but also adversely affect the justice system and lead to pendency of cases.

A PIL was filed to direct authorities to take action against lawyers and concerned office bearers of the Tehsil Bar Association, Rasara, who were responsible for calling a strike and disrupting the functioning of courts for a year.

A Division Bench of Acting Chief Justice Manoj Kumar Gupta and Justice Kshitij Shailendra observed, “If courts of law remain closed for long periods, people may take recourse to other means for redressal of their grievances, including those which may have no sanction of law, like approaching the criminals to settle their disputes, or either turning themselves into criminals and adopting all other polluted means for getting the work done. If this situation persists for a considerable period of time, the resultant effect on the society as well as individuals and the nation as a whole would be unassessable.

Advocate Sunil Kumar Yadav represented the petitioner, while C.S.C. Ashok Kumar Tiwari appeared for the respondent.

The Court observed, “The institution of justice and courts of law cannot be equated with industrial establishments where concept of Trade Unions is utilized to justify strikes by industrial labours owing to their demand from employers. Neither State Bar Council nor a Bar Association can be treated alike a Trade Union bargaining for their demands. They are well-equipped with all legal means to find out solutions to any problem.

Despite a statement made by the representatives of the Bar Council of Uttar Pradesh, claiming that the strike had ended, the Court directed the Bar Council to disclose actions taken regarding the strike.

The Court remarked, “Lawyers' strike waste not only judicial time but also cause immense loss and harm to all the social values and leads to rising pendency of cases, adversely affecting the system of justice delivery, bringing more and more hardships to the litigant(s) for whom the courts are meant. Abstainment from work for the whole day without any substantial cause also falls in the same category.

The Court directed the Bar Council of Uttar Pradesh to bring on record the guidelines framed by it in respect of the observance of condolences and other instances under which the lawyers abstain from work.

Cause Title: Jang Bahadur Kushwaha v. State Of U.P & Ors.

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