The All India Lawyers’ Union (AILU) has accused the police of registering a case on fabricated charges against a lawyer appearing for the accused in the Shukkoor murder case.

The Taliparamba police on February 28 had registered a case against Nicholas Joseph, advocate, and C.P. Saleem, a merchant, on a complaint by a prosecution witness, P.P. Abu, in the Shukkoor murder case that he had been forced to sign papers that were used as his affidavit contradicting his earlier statement.

Abu and Muhammad Sabir, two witnesses who, according to the charge sheet, had heard a Communist Party of India (Marxist) functionary at the Taliparamba Cooperative Hospital on February 20 last year directing party workers over phone in the presence of CPI(M) leaders P. Jayarajan and Democratic Youth Federation of India State unit secretary T.V. Rajesh, MLA, that IUML workers, including Abdul Shukkoor, captured at Keezhara, be ‘handled.’

Addressing a press meet on Friday, AILU district president M. Sharafudheen and secretary B.P. Saseendran said the case against Mr. Joseph was on the complaint lodged by Abu with the district police chief that the affidavit submitted in connection with his pending petition in the munsif court at Taliparamba was not proper evidence. Mr. Joseph appearing for the accused in the Shukkoor murder case, was charged under IPC Section 195-A (giving false evidence before a court), they said adding that the police had registered the case with non-bailable charges without examining whether an affidavit filed in connection with a civil petition could be treated as an offence under IPC 195-A.

The case was registered on the basis of an implausible complaint, they said adding that the police action amounted to a threat to discharging of official duties of lawyers. The police action would be fought legally. The AILU district leaders said a protest meeting would be held at the Stadium Corner here at 5 p.m. on February 2.

Meanwhile, Mr. Joseph moved the High Court for anticipatory bail. The court posted the hearing of the case for March 4. According to the complaint of Abu, he had been coerced by Saleem into entering a car on January 29 last and taken to a hotel at Taliparamba where Mr. Joseph had forced him to sign 20-odd papers that were later used for filing false affidavit in the munsif court contradicting his witness statement in the Shukkoor case.