Srinagar: The J&K High Court on Tuesday directed the government to come up with a clear stand regarding release of amount as financial aid to lawyers on the patterns of already issued guidelines in the previous financial year, when similar type of lockdown/ restrictions were imposed on account of Covid-19 pandemic.
Justice Ali Mohammad Magrey passed these directions while hearing the plea of Abu Bakr Pandit, a lawyer, who had sought a direction from the court to the government to grant immediate financial assistance to the tune of Rs 25,000/- to each advocate(s) who had earlier received the financial assistance and was doing practice within Jammu and Kashmir.
The petitioner lawyer also sought further direction from the court to formulate a medical and life insurance policy for the welfare of the advocates and their family members practicing before the High Court and District Court(s) within Jammu and Kashmir region.
The court earlier on consideration of the matter had passed an order dated 5 May, 2021, wherein a notice was issued to the respondents for filing their response.
Today when the matter came up for hearing before the court, it was learnt that the “response was not filed”.
The court directed Additional Advocate General (AAG) B A Dar, representing the government, to ensure filing of reply by or before the next date of hearing.
The court said, “Government shall come up with clear stand qua release of amount as financial aid to the lawyers on the patterns of already issued guidelines in the previous financial year, when similar type of lockdown/ restrictions were imposed on account of Covid-19 Pandemic.”
Earlier, the petitioner had submitted before court that since the pandemic started, many advocates became infected and some were also hospitalised, and to bear the medical expenses they approached various members of the Bar for financial aid as there was no assistance by the respondents.
“It will not be out of place to mention here that the Advocates are called the officers of the court and the courts should come forward for the welfare of the Advocates and their family members,” the petitioner had said.