Kolkata, Jan 10 (SocialNews.XYZ) The Calcutta High Court Bar Association seems to be divided over attending the bench of the court's Justice Rajasekhar Mantha.
After a group of Trinamool Congress-leaning lawyers on Monday boycotted and blocked the entry point of Justice Mantha's bench and protested over some of his recent verdicts, a section of the Calcutta High Court Bar Association, on Tuesday, moved a formal proposal for boycotting the bench.
This section of the association claimed that the decision to boycott Justice Mantha's bench was taken at a meeting of the association and the decision was taken to maintain peace within the Calcutta High Court premises.
However, the Calcutta High Court Bar Association president and senior counsel Arunava Ghosh and the association's vice president Kallol Mondal claimed that the formal proposal does not hold any ground since the decision was taken at a meeting which was conducted in absence of the president and vice-president of the association.
Legal brains from the Calcutta High Court feel that if the stalemate on this count continues then the fate of a number of 400 cases pending at the bench of Justice Mantha will become uncertain.
Seeking the attention of the Calcutta High Court's Chief Justice Prakash Srivastava, senior advocate and CPI(M) Rajya Sabha member Bikash Ranjan Bhattacharya claimed that boycotting a bench of a Calcutta High Court's judge in such a manner is equivalent to the contempt of court.
Advising Bhattacharya to move a petition in the lines, the Chief Justice questioned whether the Calcutta High Court Bar Association does not have any role in the matter. "The country's oldest high court surely has a legacy of its own. The association should take responsibility for that," the Chief Justice observed.
On Monday morning, several posters slamming Justice Mantha were pasted on the walls of the latter's residence and adjacent places at Jodhpur Park in South Kolkata. In the posters, it was alleged that Justice Mantha was acting in a biased manner in favour of Suvendu Adhikari.
Justice Mantha was also slammed for his recent verdict of removing the shield of cohesive action by Enforcement Directorate (ED) against Maneka Gambhir, the sister-in-law of Trinamool Congress's national general secretary and party MP, Abhishek Banerjee in the posters.
Last month Trinamool Congress's state general secretary and the party's spokesman in Kolkata Kunal Ghosh launched a scathing attack against Justice Mantha after the latter gave protection to the Leader of the Opposition Suvendu Adhikari against FIRs.