Cuttack: The Orissa High Court on Monday resolved to confer concurrent jurisdiction in respect to the courts of all cadres of the districts, where the courts are not functioning, either fully or partially, upon the courts of their respective cadre of the adjacent districts where the functioning is normal.
The decision of the High Court to this effect came in response to a letter of the Supreme Court on December 6 last year, expressing serious concern over the continuous abstention of the lawyers from the courts in different parts of Odisha.
The apex court had requested the High Court to consider identifying the adjacent districts, where persons can seek redressal of their grievances and in which districts there is normal working and create concurrent jurisdiction in those districts and transfer adequate number of officers from the non-working districts to the working districts for the said purpose.
Acting on the request of the apex court, the High court had called for feasibility reports from the adjacent districts.
In the aforesaid matter, the apex court, in another order on January 10 this year, observed that the trials of the civil and criminal cases must go on and called upon the High Court to implement its earlier order dated December 6, 2019.
Notably, a division bench of the Supreme Court of Justice Sanjay Kishan Kaul and Justice KM Joseph, while hearing a matter in M/s PLR Projects Private Limited Vrs Mahanadi Coalfields Limited (MCL) and others in Transfer Petition(s) (Civil) No(s) 2419 on December 6 last year, had observed: “We are of the view that such selective working is clearly in breach of the duties of an advocate as also breach of directions of this court and thus we expect the State Bar Council and the Bar Council of India to take appropriate action and place the same before us within two weeks. It is between the Bar Councils to find out the advocates responsible for the situation. At least, the office-bearers are responsible.”