Judicial work came to a standstill here as lawyers began a four-day strike to press for their demands of deportation of illegally settled immigrants from Jammu and handing over the Kathua rape-and-murder case to CBI.
The strike call was given by the Jammu High Court Bar Association, whose members also staged a noisy demonstration within the high court complex at Janipur this morning.
Dozens of lawyers assembled at the complex and staged a sit-in protest, raising slogans in support of their demands.
The lawyers were demanding eviction of Rohingya and Bangladeshi immigrants from Jammu and handing over the Asifa rape-and-murder case to the CBI.
Body of eight-year-old Asifa was recovered from Rassana forest on January 17, a week after she went missing while grazing horses in the forest area.
The state government has rejected the demand for a CBI probe into the incident, saying the investigation carried out by the crime branch was almost complete.
The crime branch, which took over the case on January 23, has arrested six persons, including two special police officers and a policeman, while the main conspirator, a former revenue official, surrendered on March 20, a day after his son was arrested by the sleuths from outside the state.
The lawyers also chanted anti-Pakistan slogans over frequent ceasefire violations.
They also alleged that the state government was "deliberately creating a hostile situation in an attempt to create wedge and disturb the harmonious atmosphere and character of the Jammu region.
The protesters also came down heavily on the government for its handling of tribal affairs and supported the demand of district status by the residents of Nowshera, Sunderbani and Kalakote in Rajouri district.
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