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PRESS RELEASE: 29-11-2011- Bar decided to observe strike on 01.12.2011

Bar decided to observe strike on 01.12.2011
Today on 29.11.2011, in the scheduled general body meeting of the Jammu and Kashmir High Court Bar Association Srinagar three issues on agenda of the meeting including withdrawal of AFSPA and the state Govt. proposal for amendment in Jammu and Kashmir Cr. P. C. and RPC for incorporation of provisions of AFSPA, transfer of registration powers from Judicial officers to revenue authorities and diversion of lawyers quota in higher judicial services to the promotion quota of in-service judicial officers were debated and discussed all seriousness and sensitivity. The senior lawyers including President M. A. Qayoom, General Secretary G. N. Shaheen, Senior Lawyer Z. A. Shah, Advocate Nazir Ahmad Ronga, Advocate Z. A. Qureshi, Advocate Abdul Ahad Rather, Advocate B. A. Sidiq, Advocate Sofiya, Joint Secretary Mohammad Ashraf Wani, Advocate Majid Jahengir and others observed that the amendment in the Cr.P.C. and RPC to create a protective cover for the armed forces in Jammu and Kashmir is virtually incorporation of the provisions of AFSPA and create permanent protection to the Armed Forces for their anti-human actions and Bar Association should resist such a move and educate the public at large and political parties should mobilize public opinion against this state adventure.
The members in the general body were unanimous in their opinion that Bar should oppose the Govt. move of transferring registration powers from Judicial officers to revenue authorities because the proposed move will breed corruption and other malpractices which will not be in the interests of general public. Besides the said Govt. move is against the interests of the lawyers community. It was observed that in judiciary there is some sought of securitization of the documents and checks and balance under the doctrine of judicial review. And in case the powers are given to the revenue authorities the registration of the documents will be as good a business in the hands of the revenue authorities as the issuance of revenue extracts from the Pathwaris. Therefore, it was unanimously decided to oppose this move at all levels.
With regard to the diversion of lawyers quota in the higher judicial services to the promotional quota of the in-service judicial officers is contrary to the recruitment rules and constitutional morality. The members of the Bar Association were unanimous in the opinion that the diversion has resulted in non presence of the members from the lawyers community in the judicial offices. The recruitment process should be at par with the normal recruitment process as is being undertaken by the PSC. In the meeting it was observed with all regrets the ratio in the judiciary of Kashmir persons has reduced to 25 % and the regional balance in the judiciary is a patent fact. It was decided in the meeting that the Bar Association will take all legal, constitutional and other measures to resist this diversion process. It was decided in the meeting that this issue will be taken up with the Chief Justice of J&K High Court at the earliest.
In view of the seriousness and sensitivity of the issues in the agenda the debate remain inconclusive and it was decided that one more general body will be conducted soon to obtain individual and collective opinion on these sensitive issues particularly on the issue of proposal of amendment in the Cr.P.C. for creating protective cover to the armed forces in the legal frame work of J&K State. It was decided that in the 1st instance as an immediate reaction against these three sensitive issues one day protest strike will be observed by the lawyers across the state of Kashmir on 01.12.2011. all the lawyers and District and Mufassil Bar Associations were conveyed a request to cooperate with the decision of the J&K High Court Bar association in observing a protest strike on 01.12.2011. The lawyers shall not appear before the courts on this day in protest against the Govt. policy. The meeting was adjourned to 10.12.2011 on which day the Bar Association is convening a seminar on Human Rights with special emphasis on the sensitive issue of enforcing of amendment in the Cr.P.C. for creating permanent role and protective cover to the armed forces on the polity of J&K.
All the lawyers have been requested to observe the strike in letter and spirit and in order to have larger consensus. The individual lawyers are requested to submit their view point on these issues accordingly.

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