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[COVID-19 Lockdown] SCAORA Secretary writes to CJI SA Bobde for directions to permit commute of lawyers residing in NCR areas to Delhi

"Lawyers from across the Delhi borders who need access to their files kept in the presently sealed Supreme Court Chambers are precluded from even applying for due permission to retrieve such files", the letter states.

Shruti Mahajan

The Secretary of Supreme Court Advocates on Record Association (SCAORA), Joseph Aristotle S has written a letter to CJI SA Bobde seeking permission for the movement of lawyers living in Noida, Gurugram, Faridabad Ghaziabad and other NCR cities to Delhi amid the COVID-19 lockdown.

After the nation-wide lockdown entered its third phase on May 4, offices in Delhi have been permitted to function at one-third of their strength.

Despite this relaxation, many lawyers are unable to avail the benefit of the same on account of sealed borders and commute restrictions between various NCR cities, the letter highlights.

"These members of the Bar are not being permitted by the authorities to commute across the borders, thereby denying them such benefit as also their source of livelihood."
The letter states.

Various lawyers do not have access to the files and material in their chambers in Delhi, given that they reside outside the boundary of the Delhi city limits and reside in other NCR cities. This is acting as an obstacle for these lawyers, who are unable to discharge their duties towards their clients. The letter goes to add,

"Lawyers from across the Delhi borders who need access to their files kept in the presently sealed Supreme Court Chambers are precluded from even applying for due permission to retrieve such files."

Therefore, the Court's intervention may be required in order to issue appropriate orders and directions to the concerned authority so that these lawyers are permitted to commute within the NCR region and across State borders, subject to production of valid identification cards, the letter says.

A similar request was made by the Delhi High Court Bar Association (DHCBA) to the Chief Justice of Delhi High Court, Justice DN Patel, on Monday, May 4.

In its letter addressed to the Chief Justice, DHCBA has stated that a large number of advocates practising in Delhi reside in areas outside the city borders in Noida, Ghaziabad, Gurgaon, Faridabad etc. Therefore, appropriate order to resolve the issue has been sought by the DHCBA.

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