Kerala lawyers, courts on confrontational course

Thiruvananthapuram: Lawyers in Kerala are on a confrontation course with the judiciary, going to the extent of passing a resolution against an order of the High Court, setting a new procedure for the payment of compensation to motor accident victims.

The High Court order asked for the transfer of compensation paid in motor accident cases directly to the bank account of the victims, instead of routing it through the advocates. The order followed complaints that a major portion of the compensation paid by insurance companies was pocketed by middlemen and the advocates.

The Thiruvananthapuram Bar Association took objection to the order, claiming that this was against the interests of the advocates and a resolution passed by the association called for a boycott of all motor accident claim adalats.

The association also decided to appraise the High Court Chief Justice and the District Judge about the decision and explain the circumstances that led to the stern stand.  It is perhaps for the first time that the Bar Association has taken such a stand with regard to an order of the High Court.

State Law Minister A K Balan described the developing confrontation between  the judiciary and the advocates as dangerous and called for restraint by all concerned.

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