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Home > News > Report

Bihar: Lawyers to strike work to seek justice

Anand Mohan Sahay in Patna | November 14, 2007 10:16 IST

Thousands of lawyers in Bihar will go on strike on November 15 in protest against the killing of an additional public prosecutor last week.

The Bihar State Bar Council gave a strike call to lawyers practicing in the Patna High Court, district courts, sub divisional courts, central administrative tribunal and other judicial/administrative forums to abstain themselves from professional work, including court work.

"The killing of Additional Public Prosecutor Ramnaresh Sharma has shaken the confidence of people engaged in legal profession. Lawyers will strike to protest it," council chairman Rajendra Singh said.

Ramnaresh Sharma, who was the additional public prosecutor involved in five cases against Lok Janshakti Party Member of Parliament Surajbhan Singh in Begusarai district court, was shot dead by two unidentified criminals on November 8 at his residence.

Surajbhan was allegedly behind the lawyer's murder. A first information report was lodged a day after the murder against the LJP parliamentarian for his alleged involvement in the case.

Meanwhile, the state government has decided to provide security cover to all judges who are hearing important trials and to Public Prosecutors and Additional Public Prosecutors arguing in such cases.

The council had demanded protection for lawyers and insurance cover of Rs 50 lakh from the state government.

Earlier, 48 Public Prosecutors and Additional Public Prosecutors of Begusarai district civil court threatened to resign en masse in protest against Sharma's killing.

Meanwhile, Surajbhan Singh has denied his involvement and demanded a high level probe into the case. Surajbhan, a known 'bahubali' or muscleman in the state, faces several criminal charges, including that of murder, extortion, kidnapping and looting. Representing the Ballia parliamentary constituency in the state, Surajbhan is considered close to Union Steel Minister and LJP chief Ram Vilas Paswan.

Paswan had on Sunday demanded a CBI enquiry into Sharma's killing of Sharma while giving a clean chit to the parliamentarian saying his party would 'go to any extent' to ensure that Surajbhan is exonerated of all charges. However, Chief Minister Nitish Kumar turned down Paswan's demand and instead, ordered a high-level probe into the incident while announcing Rs 10 lakh ex-gratia payment to Sharma's family.