The Madras High Court Bench here is expected to return to normality from Monday after a flurry of agitations, including a fast observed by six advocates since June 9 and court boycott by other lawyers since June 11 demanding the use of Tamil, affected proceedings for nearly three weeks.

The six advocates have given up their fast and the Bar Associations here decided to resume work from Monday, thanks to an oral statement made by Chief Justice M. Yusuf Eqbal in the Principal Seat of the High Court in Chennai on June 21 that the judges were not against lawyers arguing in Tamil.

According to highly placed court officials, the High Court judges began to give a serious thought to the issue ever since the Principal Secretary to Government, Home Department, wrote a letter to the Registrar General of the High Court on October 16, 2006, seeking the court's opinion on the use of Tamil.

The then Chief Justice, A.P. Shah, convened a Full Court meeting and circulated a 17-page note prepared by Justice K. Chandru.

The note delved into the subject right from the 18{+t}{+h} Century when English (considered the language of the people) replaced Latin and French (languages of the upper class) in the law courts of England.

It also contained notifications issued by the Governors of Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh in 1950 and 1969 respectively permitting the use of Hindi in the proceedings of their High Courts. These notifications were issued with the prior consent of the President as required under Article 348 (2) of the Constitution.