Lawyers of Mandi Bahauddin have urged their colleagues in Faisalabad, Sargodha, Gujranwala, Sahiwal and Dera Ismaeel Khan divisions to revitalise their movement for formation of High Court benches in their respective divisions.

The call was made at a meeting held with District Bar Association Vice President Sher Muhammad Gondal in the chair. The participants expressed their views in favour of the establishment of High Court benches in all the divisions like Multan, Bahawalpur and Rawalpindi and highlighted advantages for litigants.

DBA former president Aslam Faiz Advocate said that Faisalabad lawyers started the movement for the benches in January 2013 with protest strike and lawyers of other divisions joined the movement. “Viewing the tense situation, the High Court assured the lawyers that their demand would be accepted soon. The lawyers, then in the interest of their clients decided to work two days a week. Later, Punjab cabinet took notice of the situation and approved establishment of benches. In the meantime general elections approached and the lawyers were promised the benches establishment after general elections,” he detailed.

He said, “Now the movement has slowed down. Boycott is observed only on Saturday every week. During the year, clients had been suffering due to protest strikes and boycotts of courts,” he said and demanded that the lawyers’ leaders should reorganise to put more vigour in the movement or stop one day boycott of courts a week.”

Shabbir Ranjha Advocate said some top leaders in order to achieve their personnel interest had given in to the government. This was a disloyalty to lawyers’ community and the public, he added. He also criticised that the Lahore High Court Bar Association president for opposing the demand. He said lawyers should boycott the LHCBA’s upcoming elections as a protest against all the top leaders of lawyers who had opposed setting up of High Court benches at divisional level.

Other participants in their addresses endorsed the demand. Rasheed Gondal Advocate said the divisional benches were need of the hour to provide easy justice for the people at their doorsteps and save their time and money. Former DBA president Safdar Bosal opposed proposed closing of Passport Office Mandi Bahauddin, saying that its closure would be great injustice to the local people.