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Shiromani Akali Dal (Amritsar) files
Complaint Against Advocates

Amritsar Sahib (KP) - Prof. Jagmohan Singh, the General Secretary of Shromani Akali Dal (Amritsar) sent a formal written complaint to the Bar Council of Punjab and Haryana against two advocates Arvind Thakur and Amar Singh Chahal accusing them of humiliating and embarrassing the sister of Balwant Singh who is currently lodged in Burail Jail, Chandigarh for his role in the assassination of former CM Beant Sinh. The text of the written complaint is as follows: 

The Chairperson Bar Council of Punjab & Haryana District Courts Complex (New Wing) Top Floor Sector-17, Chandigarh-160087  

Dear Sir, 

Waheguru Ji Ka Khalsa, Waheguru Ji Ki Fateh! 

I write to you to file a formal complaint against two advocates, namely Mr. Arvind Thakur and S. Amar Singh Chahal, practising in the District courts, Chandigarh. It is within your jurisdiction to entertain and try this complaint and entrust it to the concerned Disciplinary Committee.  

2. I am filing this case as my sentiments have been deeply hurt and gross injustice done to the concerned parties, by the grossly malicious and fictitious utterances of the two lawyers in the cases of Sikh youth undergoing trial in the Special Court inside the precincts of the Model Burail Jail, Chandigarh.  This has marred my reputation as a responsible activist. The role and media bash of the lawyers is professional misconduct, unprofessional conduct and in total violation of the code of conduct of lawyers as laid down by the Advocates Act, 1961.  As I have demonstrated here, Mr. Arvind Thakur, Advocate, rushes to the media more frequently than the police.  These lawyers had not acted within the legally permissible norms. 

3. As the General Secretary and Spokesperson of the Shiromani Akali Dal (Amritsar), it is my duty and responsibility to act upon news items of gross injustices to Sikhs, from time to time.  Recently, on 9th August, 2006, there appeared a news item in most newspapers of Punjab, (copies of which are attached as annexures to this complaint) that Kamaldeep Kaur, the sister of Balwant Singh -lodged in Burail Jail, Chandigarh, was severely humiliated and insulted by the jail staff when she went to the Burail prison to tie Rakhi to her brother.  Reading the news story, I was livid with anger.   

4. On that day, that is 9th August, 2006, I had scheduled a press conference of my party in Ludhiana for a different reason. As this case was also very painful and disgusting, and knowing fully well that nowadays sensational journalism is increasing, I attempted to verify the details from the lawyers concerned.  I was unable to obtain the phone number of Mr. Arvind Thakur, who works with Mr. Amar Singh Chahal, under his active guidance and support.  So I called up Mr. Amar Singh Chahal to verify the veracity of the incident as reported in the media.  I told the learned lawyer that I will be condemning the incident in no uncertain terms and would like to know the truth. He confirmed the incident and acting in good faith, I strongly condemned the incident in the course of my press meet.  Fortunately for me and for the young lady in question, my media comments were reported in an innocuous manner in one newspaper. 

5. I have since learnt from the lady herself and from all other sources in Chandigarh that no such incident, as reported, took place at all.  The lawyer, Mr. Arvind Thakur had blown this up in the media, without realising the damage that he was doing to the reputation and personality of the said lady. Before I could retract my comments, the lady herself clarified the position and accused the lawyers of overstating facts for their petty publicity gains. This non-professional role of the lawyers has deeply upset me.  

6. I would like to say here, that Mr. Arvind Thakur had done a similar thing earlier too.  On July 13, 2005, he had intentionally and deliberately alleged to the press that the Delhi police had thrusted cigarettes and other intoxicants into the mouth of Jagtar Singh Hawara and that he was forced to spit on the photographs of Sikhs Gurus. 

7. While the first part of the allegation was to some extent correct, the second one was simply a figment of imagination of Mr. Arvind Thakur, Advocate.  I and all others who reacted to these two incidents were deeply pained to know that the impugned incidents were totally false and concocted.  

8. We would like to know as to under what circumstances have these lawyers given these statements and who has been prompting them to do so? Are they double crossing their clients or are they seeking cheap publicity to bolster their public images?  While we appreciate the role of the lawyers who take up difficult cases against the state, no civil society can condone malicious behaviour and scurrilous comments against any individual and more so against a young lady.   The lawyers have so far not retracted from their blatant lies. 

9. My party and I request you to kindly treat this as a formal complaint.  I undertake to comply with any formality that may be required to comply with and register this complaint and I may be directed accordingly. The Shiromani Akali Dal (Amritsar) seeks a high-level inquiry by an impartial disciplinary committee and action against the two lawyers for their unprofessional misconduct and unwarranted actions in the media under appropriate provisions of law. 

With regards
Prof. Jagmohan Singh

General Secretary & Spokesperson

Shiromani Akali Dal (Amritsar) 

28 August 2006  

Copy to:  
1. Chairperson,
Bar Council of India
21, Rose Avenue, Institutional Area
New Delhi-110002

for information and necessary follow-up. 

2. Mr. Arvind Thakur, Advocate
District Courts, Chandigarh

3. Mr. Amar Singh Chahal, Advocate
District Courts, Chandigarh

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Copyright Balbir Singh Sooch, Chief and Spokesperson, Sikh Vichar Manch, Ludhana, Punjab (India)