The Punjab and Haryana High Court Bar Association has decided to observe a no-work day on Tuesday to protest the alleged custodial torture endured by a lawyer at the hands of the Punjab Police’s Crime Investigation Agency (CIA).
The Executive Committee of the Bar Association, in a statement, said that it “strongly condemns the torturous, inhumane and barbarous acts committed by the erring police officials of the District Police Sri Muktsar Sahib” against the lawyer.
Last week, the lawyer had complained before the Chief Judicial Magistrate (CJM) at Sri Muktsar Sahib that he was beaten up by the CIA Staff officials and also subjected to sexual abuse.
The CJM, in turn, directed the Station House Office of Police Station in Sri Muktsar Sahib to initiate an investigation against the police officials after registering a case against them.
In compliance with the CJM's order, the police on Monday night registered a first information report (FIR) under Sections 377 (unnatural offences), 323 (hurt), 342 (wrongful confinement), 506 (criminal intimidation), and 149 (unlawful assembly) of the India Penal Code against six police officials.
Senior Superintendent of Police Sri Muktsar Sahib also suspended two police officials.
This morning, The Bar Association also announced that it would file a petition before the High Court to transfer the investigation outside Punjab and for the suspension of the remaining police officials.
"Future course of action will be intimated till then the work will remain suspended," the Association said, in its statement.
Meanwhile, the Bar Council of Punjab and Haryana also asked the Bar Associations in Punjab, Haryana, and Chandigarh to “indefinitely abstain” from work with effect from Tuesday in solidarity with the lawyer, who is a member of the Bar Association of Sri Muktsar Sahib.
The Bar Council has demanded the transfer of the investigation to an independent agency in Haryana or Chandigarh and for the cancellation of the FIR against the lawyer with immediate effect.
The Bar Council also called for an FIR to be registered against the accused police officials and for the SSP at Sri Muktsar Sahib to be immediately suspended.
The High Court Bar Association had earlier written to the Punjab Chief Minister with a similar demand for the suspension of the SSP.