Hyderabad High Court chief justice meets CJI, protest continues

New Delhi/Hyderabad: Acting Chief Justice of Andhra Pradesh and Telangana's common high court, Justice Dilip Bhosale on Saturday met Chief Justice T.S. Thakur in New Delhi even as lawyers and judicial officers in Telangana intensified their protest. Justice Bhosale is believed to have apprised Chief Justice Thakur of the situation in Telangana in the wake of ongoing protest by lawyers and judges of subordinate courts over appointment of Andhra origin judges. The meeting also assumed significance in view of the increasing demand for bifurcation of High Court of Judicature at Hyderabad, which is currently serving both Telugu states. The functioning of courts across the state remained paralysed due to boycott of courts by lawyers and the protest by judges and other judicial staff, who are on mass leave. The judges are protesting the suspension of nine of their colleagues by the high court this week. The high court took the action after the judges took out a rally to Raj Bhavan and submitted en masse resignations. The acting chief justice's meeting with Thakur came a day before the lawyers' meeting with the latter to demand immediate bifurcation of the high court. The lawyers had also been demanding recall of the acting chief justice for what they call injustice done to Telangana by allotting Andhra origin judges to subordinate courts. According to the agitating lawyers, out of 335 judicial officers allotted to Telangana, about 130 are natives of Andhra Pradesh. Meanwhile, Telangana Chief Minister K. Chandrasekhar Rao on Saturday met E. S. L. Narasimhan, the joint governor of both the states and discussed the situation in the wake of continuing protest. Union Labour Minister Bandaru Dattatreya also called on Narasimhan and called for revoking suspension of judges. The minister later told reporters that the governor promised to discuss the issue with the chief justice. Dattatreya said the central government had no role in bifurcation of the high court. He urged the governor to discuss the issue with the chief ministers of both the states and resolve it. The central minister said Andhra Pradesh should take the initiative for setting up its own high court. Union Minister for Law Sadananda Gowda has already stated that it was for Andhra Pradesh to provide the infrastructure for the high court and for the chief justice to initiate the process.