The Delhi High Court Women Lawyers Forum (DHCWLF) has condemned the resolution of the Coordination Committee of All District Court Bar Associations of Delhi to abstain from work for a day to protest the conviction of lawyer Rajiv Khosla in a 1994 assault case..The conduct of the Committee post the judgment highlights the “appalling conditions in which women lawyers work,” the Forum has stated in a letter to the President of the Delhi High Court Bar Association (DHCBA)..The letter by the DHC Women Lawyers Forum stated that it would seem unlikely that any woman lawyer who has faced harassment or assault will ever want to report the ordeal since the Bar always openly sides with accused men.“The silence of other Bar Associations is significant and leads to the irresistible and sad conclusion that the bar does not treat gender issues, hooliganism, intimidation and contempt of courts as worthy principles to stand up for and call out, unless it is to suppress the voices of marginalized lawyers. It also indicates their approval and support for bullying of women lawyers and attempts to overreach the rule of law and independence of the Judiciary,” the letter stated..The Coordination Committee had last week passed a resolution to abstain from work in light of Khosla's conviction. Chief Metropolitan Magistrate at Tis Hazari Court Gajender Singh Nagar had held Khosla guilty of offences under Section 323 (voluntarily causing hurt) and 506 (criminal intimidation) of the Indian Penal Code more than 27 years after lawyer Sujata Kohli filed a complaint against him. Kohli had accused Khosla of pulling her hair inside court premises, twisting her arms and dragging her, while also hurling abuses and threats at her.The Committee stated in its resolution that the judgment passed by the Delhi court convicting Khosla was biased and against all the cardinal principles of criminal jurisprudence. It thus resolved to boycott the court of the concerned judge, indefinitely..The Forum has expressed its disappointment with the boycott call since in this case, even the complainant is a lawyer but an impression is being given that the Bar is siding up with a male lawyer against a woman lawyer.The letter also pointed to two "tragic obvious facts:""a) The misogyny of the bar (the bench differs in degrees and shades of subtle and not so much). Many if not most women lawyers have suffered in varying degrees the oppressive patriarchy and sexual harassment within the legal profession. Sujata Kohli had the courage to initiate legal process and fight her cause over 27 years. We applaud her.b) The conduct of the Bar Association subsequent to the judgment in fact makes good the case itself which is about harassment, bullying and intimidation. This should be an embarrassment to every lawyer.".The letter added that while the Bar has a right to condemn and protest dishonest, mala fide and obnoxious judgments, the Bar leaders cannot have immunity from rule of law. “Indeed the rot in the system began before this case but if not dealt with now, will exponentially denigrate and deteriorate what was supposed to be a noble profession working to build an elegant dignified institution with exemplary standards and safe work environment,” read the letter.The letter also condemned the decision by the Committee to set up a panel to scrutinise the judgment and other orders passed by the Chief Metropolitan Magistrate. “This is nothing but an act of intimidation/contempt against the trial court,” the letter said.