Supreme Court Bar Association (SCBA) and pro-BNP lawyers demanded immediate resignation of Chief Justice ABM Khairul Haque for sworning in two reportedly controversial judges on November 4.
The SCBA, as per its earlier resolution, hoisted black flag in the apex court premises, protesting their oath. It also decided to boycott benches of the two judges.
Chief Justice ABM Khairul Haque sworn in four newly appointed judges including the two-- M Khasruzzaman and Ruhul Quddus Babu-- at about 11:10 am amid agitation of the pro-BNP lawyers, greetings of the pro-Awami League lawyers and scuffle among the lawyers and police, sources said.
Two of the four additional judges-- Farid Ahmed and Nazrul Islam Talukder-- were appointed in the past week while other two along with other 15 judges were appointed on April 11.
On April 18, then CJ Mohammad Fazlul Karim refrained from administering oath of the two judges. The sitting CJ Khairul Haque replaced Fazlul Karim on September 30.
Protesting the sworn in and demanding resignation of CJ Khairul Haque, the pro-BNP lawyers chanted slogans saying "Why a killer is justice? We don't agree and will never do so."
The pro-AL lawyers also chanted slogans welcoming the Chief Justice.
The Attorney General congratulated the CJ saying that he upheld the Constitution administering oath to the two judges.
The SCBA would further chalk out tough programme on Sunday, its Secretary Barrister Badruddoza Badol said told reporters.
The time 10:30 am was somewhat secretly scheduled for administering oath to the judges at the judges' lounge of the SC.
According to sources, members of the law enforcers and intelligence wings were deployed before 9:30 am in the Supreme Court premises, tightening security of the apex court.
Administering their oath delayed around 40 minutes for protesting of the pro-BNP lawyers.
The SCBA received a notice issued by the Registrar's office of the SC on November 11 on the matter at 9:30 am yesterday. After that, situation in the apex court heated up drastically.
Sources said, the SCBA leaders including its president Khandker Mahbub Hossain and the pro-BNP lawyers including Barrister Moudud Ahmed agitated in front of the CJ's room.
They agitated from 9:30 am in the SC premises and took place in front of the CJ's room, blocking entrance of the judges' lounge.
Later, the pro-AL lawyers agitating reached the place and answered the pro-BNP lawyers with counter-slogans.
The pro-BNP lawyers were engaged in scuffle with police when they tried to remove them from the spot, according to sources.
At around 11:00 am, some armed police went to the spot and assist CJ ABM Khairul Haque to reach the judges' lounge.
AG Mahbubey Alam said the government should identify the agitators through searching video footages and take punitive measures against them as per a HC judgment that prohibited such activities in the SC.
The last CJ Fazlul Karim violated the Constitution through not administering oath to the two judges, appointed by the President while sitting CJ ABM Khairul Haque upheld the Constitution.
He said, "Nobody whether he is the President, the Prime Minister or the Chief Justice is above the Constitution."
However, SCBA president Khandker Mahbubd Hossain image of the apex court would be tarnished with administering oath to the advocates, one of them was prime accused in a murder case and other was involved in vandalism of the SC on November 30, 2006.
After appointments of the two persons, Khandker Mahbubd repeatedly urged the CJ not to administer their oath to keep the apex clean from controversial persons.
After administering oath to the four judges, CJ ABM Khairul Haque reconstituted benches of the HC setting them in the benches.