Tag Archives: Sambalpur collector

End of the long 17 days battle between collector and lawyer

The conflict between the Sambalpur lawyers and collector Mrinalini Darswal finally reached a solution on Friday as the collector expressed her sorrow at the April 23 incident and the lawyers agreed to resume work.

The lawyers and the collector met at the RDC’s office on Friday after all court work remained suspended in the district for 17 days. IN the presence of IG R P Koche and SP Nikhil Kanodia, the collector told the lawyers she was sorry for the incident. The lawyers also repented assaulting the collector and ransacking her residence. Presiding the meeting, Sambalpur RDC Kishore Chandra Barik appealed to both the parties not to take the issue further in any form and assured to begin the process of withdrawing criminal cases filed by the collector and DSR and the bar association in connection to the scuffle.

“We feel sorry for the incident. It was unfortunate. We agreed to call-off the agitation with immediate effect as we wanted to settle the issue amicably. The collector also expressed her sorrow for the incident. She also said she deeply regretted the incident. We will continue to raise our voice in various public issues where we feel unfairness and injustice,” president of Sambalpur district bar association Pramod Rath said. However, he said, as the president of the bar, he felt sorry for whatever happened on that day.

Collector Mrinalini Darswal said vandalism and criminal act could not be accepted in any way. It was really a regrettable incident and no one can take law in one’s hands. We are public servants and we work for the betterment of the society. “I am sorry for the incident and appealed to the lawyers not to take law in their hands in future,” Darswal said.

The collector, however, reaffirmed that lawyers manhandled her and threw chappals and bottles at her. They also ransacked her office. She said she was working normally since the incident. It was the lawyers who started agitating.

On the other hand, eminent citizens of the town heaved a sigh of relief as the lawyers and the collector brought an end to the episode. They appealed to both the parties for working sincerely in future. “It is a good sign that both the parties have agreed to conclude the chapter. This will create an example in future,” Khirod Prasad Mishra, an eminent citizen of the town, said.

Lawyers stir on against Sambalpur incident

Lawyers in Cuttack continued their ceasework even as those in Bhubaneswar joined them on Monday to express solidarity with their counterparts in Sambalpur in the wake of the collector-lawyers standoff on April 23.

Two separate fact-finding teams of advocates from Bhubaneswar and Cuttack left for Sambalpur to assess the situation. “A fact-finding committee of the high court bar association has gone to Sambalpur to investigate into incident. The team will return on Tuesday and submit its report. We will decide our future course of action after that,” said Piyush Mishra, secretary of high court bar association.

Bhubaneswar Bar Association secretary Chittaranjan Barisal said a five-member team of the Bar from the city had also left for Sambalpur. “Police action against the lawyers in Sambalpur was one-sided. Police arrested them without proper investigation while it took no action on the FIR filed by them against the Sambalpur collector. Our team will examine all aspects in Sambalpur on Tuesday,” Barisal said.

Lawyers of the HC, criminal court, tax court and other lower courts in Cuttack have been boycotting court proceedings since Friday, affecting judicial services across the state. The HC bar has been demanding immediate withdrawal of cases against Sambalpur lawyers and a judicial inquiry into the April 23 incident.

Coinciding with the visit of State Commission for Women chairperson Jyoti Panigrahi to Sambalpur, woman lawyers there demonstrated in front of the inspector general of police office demanding the arrest of collector Mrinalini Darswal.

Panigrahi said she would strive for an amicable solution to the current impasse. “I am hopeful for an early solution,” she said after meeting collector Mrinalini Darswal and the lawyers separately.

Sambalpur Collector-Lawyers scuffle: Bar Associations call for western Odisha bandh on May 8

Sambalpur Collector-Lawyers scuffleWestern Odisha Bar Associations  called for a western Odisha bandh on May 8 demanding arrest and transfer of Sambalpur collector Mrinalini Darswal for her alleged highhandedness.

The central action committee of the associations also demanded judicial inquiry into the confrontation between the collector and lawyers, which took place on April 23.

There was a conflict between the collector and the lawyers, in which the district collector was allegedly manhandled by the lawyers on April 23. Her residential office was also ransacked in the incident. The collector had lodged a complaint in this incident.
The lawyers had also lodged a complaint and alleged that the collector had used abusive language against the lawyers  fraternity.Police had arrested 18 lawyers in this incident.

On the other hand, government employees, who had resorted to cease work after the attack of the collector, have resumed their duty. The government employees have joined the duty wearing black badges.

18 lawyers arrested for collector ‘assault’

Police on Thursday morning arrested 18 lawyers of Sambalpur, including the president and the secretary of the bar association, for their involvement in the assault on Sambalpur collector Mrinalini Darswal on Monday.

They were granted bail later in the afternoon by the Judicial Magistrate. Police identified them as Pramod Rath (bar association president) Bijitendriya Pradhan (secretary), senior member Paresh Sharma, Barada Madhab Guru, Pradeep Bohidar, Sabbir Ahmed, Abhaya Nayak, Arabind Nayak, Rangeya Sarangi, Suraj Biswal, Rabi Pujari, Dilip Bishi, Dinesh Pandey, Mahendra Badhai, Saroj Beura, Chandrakant Mahanty, Rajib Sathpathy and Sanjib Sarangi.

“We have arrested 18 lawyers on Tuesday for their involvement in two incidents of assault on the Sambalpur collector and the district sub-registrar. While 16 lawyers were involved in the first incident, four were involved in the second incident. Two lawyers were present during both the attacks,” additional SP (Sambalpur) Dilip Kumar Deo said.

Members of the bar association staged a demonstration in front of the court room after the lawyers were arrested. The lawyers felt police took the step under pressure from the government. “When cases have been registered against both sides, police arrested only the advocates. This is totally unjustified,” senior lawyer Sureswar Mishra said.

Later, the arrested lawyers came in a procession from the residence of SDJM Malabika Bhuyan after being released on bail. “She was pleased to grant us bails in the afternoon,” president of the bar association Pramod Rath said.

According to senior lawyers of the Sambalpur bar, the SDJM took liberal attitude towards advocates while granting them bail as a case was already pending against the complainant of the case. “The lawyers are officers of the court. I know them personally. They are peace lovers. As revealed from the case record and mentioned by their lawyer, a case has been initiated against the collector too. So I am inclined to release them on bail,” a senior lawyer of Sambalpur said quoting the SDJM. The incident has triggered widespread tension among lawyers of the state. Several bar associations including those from the high court have decided to stage ‘cease work’ protesting against the arrest of the lawyers.