The lawyers across the state of Goa have decided to boycott the Lok Adalat in protest to the overnight shifting of district courts to ‘spaces’ at Patto Panaji.
The protest came in the backdrop of shifting of the lower courts including civil and criminal to privately owned building ‘spaces’ at Patto Plaza overnight. The lawyers also alleged that this move is done by the government to support one of the BJP-supporter builders who owns this premises.
There was an emergency meeting summoned by the lawyers association of Goa to work out the strategy to tackle this new situation. The meeting was attended by a good number of lawyers including some senior lawyers at the advocates room in the district sessions court. The vice president of the association Vishwesh Kamat highlighted the inconvenience facts to the litigants as well lawyers resulting out from the shifting of courts to the new premises. The major issue raised was the movement of the litigants and lawyers to the new court premises, since the courts are situated on the 3rd, 4th, 5th and 6th floor with the availability of just two lifts it would be highly inconvenient to the movement of more than 1000 people at any given day in the courts. Another issue is the parking facility and fees charged by the contractors According to which any litigant coming to the court will have to shell out the additional money for parking while lawyers who need to move at regular intervals will have a lot of hassle due to the problem of pay parking.
To show the protest on this issue the Lawyers from all over the Goa have decided to boycott the Lok Adalat which is scheduled to be held on Sunday the 13th December. There will be a conversation with the chief justice of Bombay high court on this issue on Saturday evening and based on the information made available from the reliable sources the chief justice of Bombay High Court has agreed to support the protesting lawyers by talking to the North Goa District and Sessions Judge Shri B P Deshpande over this issue and ask him not to pass any adverse order till 1st January 2016.
The North Goa District Advocates Association along with the Panjim Lawyers Forum has moved to the High Court of Bombay at Mumbai with the writ petition to get the stay on the further shifting. They have put across their points in the petition which claims that the lift is not sufficient to for 2000 people and the existence of a stinking unhygienic atmosphere.
The petition which was filed in the High Court of Bombay at Mumbai will come up for the hearing on Monday. The petition is demanding the stay of shifting the court to foul-smelling patto area and a waste of money by the government of Goa. Advocate Agni said that no advocate or their bar council was informed about the plan of shifting the courts to Patto area. “Government has spent an enormous amount of money for leasing two floors of a building ‘Sapces’ at Patto plaza instead of building the District Court Complex at Merces as per the plans,” said Agni.
According to the sources, Government along with the Bar had in 2007 narrowed down on the 49,800 SqMt of land at Merces to house the 22 courts after the objection to the site at Porvorim was raised. Since then there is no movement to build the new complex instead government decided to move to Patto private building by leasing out 4500 SQMt. in Spaces.
Source: Various Sources