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Madurai lawyers' fast enters seventh day

Staff Reporter

They demand firm statement from Union Ministers

MADURAI: Six lawyers, who are on a fast-unto-death inside the Madras High Court Bench buildings here since June 9 demanding speedy implementation of Tamil as the official language of the court, refused to give it up on Tuesday despite talks held with two senior judges, who flew in from Chennai, and Union Minister of Chemicals and Fertilizers M.K. Alagiri separately.

G.G. Bhagath Singh, M. Rajendran, P.A.K. Raja, P. Natarajan, E. Ezhilarasu and A. Bharathi sought a firm assurance from the Centre.

Office-bearers of all Bar Associations here met the Union Minister at his residence in the morning and urged him to take necessary steps towards obtaining the Presidential assent.

Later, secretary of the Madurai Bar Association, A.K. Ramasamy, told the lawyers on fast that the Minister had promised to find a solution within 15 days.

This did not satisfy the lawyers and they continued to demand a firm statement either from the Union Home Minister or the Law Minister.

The Judges, F.M. Ibrahim Kalifulla and D. Murugesan, held talks with the office-bearers in the afternoon and listed the steps taken by the High Court so far in the issue.

In the meantime, leaders of various outfits and political parties, including All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (AIADMK), Marumalarchi Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam, Desiya Murpokku Dravida Kazhagam and Communist Party of India (Marxist), met the lawyers on fast and expressed their support towards the cause for which they were struggling.

AIADMK backs lawyers

Special Correspondent from Chennai writes:

A team of AIADMK leaders, led by party's treasurer O. Panneerselvam, on Tuesday expressed solidarity with the advocates.

In a statement here, AIADMK general secretary Jayalalithaa wondered why Chief Minister M. Karunanidhi was remaining silent without doing anything to fulfil the demand of the advocates.

She said Tamil was allowed in lower courts in the State when MGR was the Chief Minister.

“I will find a solution to the demand of the advocates when the AIADMK captures power in 2011,” she added.

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