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14 Lawyers Arrested For 'Vandalism' On District Court Premises In Odisha's Sambalpur

A total of 14 lawyers have been arrested in Odisha’s Sambalpur for their alleged involvement in vandalism on the premises of the district court, police said on Tuesday. 

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Sambalpur Superintendent of Police B Gangadhar said three cases were filed at Town Police station in connection with the incident, which that took place on Monday during protests over demand for establishment of an Orissa High Court bench in the district. 

“So far, we have arrested 14 lawyers for vandalism at the district judge’s chamber. Nine of them were forwarded to the court and subsequently remanded to judicial custody,” he said.

Others involved in the incident will be arrested after analysing the footage from CCTVs installed near the judge’s chamber, Gangadhar said.

The SP also said that Section 144 of CrPC has been clamped at the protest site in Kacheri Chhak to maintain law and order, and action will be taken if anyone enters the 200-metre radius of the prohibited area.

The Supreme Court had on Monday asked the Odisha government to apprise it as to what steps it is going to take to ensure there is no disruption of court proceedings in the state, where members of bar associations in some districts are agitating.

A bench of Justices S K Kaul and A S Oka also pulled up the state police for not taking action against the protesters, who allegedly ransacked one of the district court premises. 

The Bar Council of India has already suspended the ‘license of practice’ of 29 agitating lawyers for a period of 18 months.

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