Early Life, Education and Advocacy1
Justice Prashant Kumar Mishra was born on 29-08-1964 at Raigarh (in erstwhile Madhya Pradesh and now a district in Chhattisgarh). His educational qualifications include B.Sc. and LL. B Degrees from Guru Ghasidas University, Bilaspur (Chhattisgarh).
Justice Mishra enrolled as an Advocate on 04-09-1987 and started his practice in District Court at Raigarh, High Court of Madhya Pradesh at Jabalpur and High Court of Chhattisgarh at Bilaspur. During his advocacy, Justice Mishra dealt with Civil, Criminal and Writ branches of law.
Justice Mishra was designated as Senior Advocate by High Court of Chhattisgarh in January 2005. He served as Additional Advocate General for the State of Chhattisgarh from 26-06-2004 to 31-08-2007 and thereafter as Advocate General from 01-09-2007 till his elevation as Judge.
Furthermore, Justice Prashant Kumar Mishra had been Chairman of Chhattisgarh State Bar Council and was appointed/co-opted Member of the Rule Making Committee of High Court of Chhattisgarh.
Justice Mishra had also been Chancellor’s Nominee in the Executive Council of Guru Ghasidas University, Bilaspur and was later associated with Hidayatullah National Law University, Raipur (Chhattisgarh) as its Ex-Officio Member in the Executive Council.
After 20 years of advocacy, Justice Mishra was elevated as Judge of High Court of Chhattisgarh on 10-12-20092. Justice Mishra was also appointed as Acting Chief Justice of High Court of Chhattisgarh from 01-06-2021 to 11-10-2021.
*Did you Know? Justice Mishra ranked at serial number 21 in the All-India Seniority List of Judges of the High Courts3.
Thereafter he was transferred to Andhra Pradesh High Court where Justice Mishra was appointed as Chief Justice and assumed charge of the Chief Justice's office on 13-10-2021.
Considering Justice Mishra's 13 years' tenure as a Judge and his significant experience in diverse fields of law, the Supreme Court Collegium found Justice Prashant Mishra to be worthy for elevation to the Supreme Court. Therefore, the Collegium recommended his name, which was expressly approved by the Law Ministry4.
*Did you Know? Justice Prashant Kumar Mishra was recommended for elevation to the Supreme Court by the Collegium on 16-05-2023 and in what can be considered as a record, the recommendation was approved by the President within two days, i.e., on 18-05-2023.
On 19-05-2023, the Supreme Court of India formally inducted Justice Prashant Kumar Mishra, as he took the oath of office administered by Dr. Justice D.Y. Chandrachud, Chief Justice of India.
Notable Judgments of Justice Prashant Kumar Mishra
Supreme Court of India
Dying Declaration cannot be the sole basis of conviction; Supreme Court reproduces 11 factors to determine its weightage
In appeal titled Irfan v. State of U.P., 2023 SCC OnLine SC 1060, filed by the convict against the judgment and order passed by the Allahabad High Court, wherein the Court affirmed the conviction order and sentence of death passed by the Sessions judge for the offences punishable under Sections 302, 436 and 326-A of the Penal Code, 1860 (‘IPC’), the full bench of BR Gavai, JB Pardiwala* and Prashant Kumar Mishra, JJ. while setting aside the conviction order, has held that dying declaration while carrying a presumption of being true must be wholly reliable and inspire confidence. Where there is any suspicion over the veracity of the same or the evidence on record shows that the dying declaration is not true it will only be considered as a piece of evidence but cannot be the basis for conviction alone.
Executing Court cannot hold execution decree inexecutable, merely because decree-holder lost possession to an encroacher
In an appeal titled Ved Kumari v. MCD, 2023 SCC OnLine SC 1065, which was filed against judgment and orders dated 7-04-2916 and 4-11-2016 passed by the Delhi High Court affirming the order passed by Executing Court holding that the decree for possession of immoveable property was not executable against the judgment-debtor, Division Bench of B.V. Nagarathna and Prashant Kumar Mishra*, JJ. reiterated that the Executing Court could not hold execution decree as inexecutable merely for the reason that the decree-holder lost possession of decretal land to a third party or encroacher, and that it must adjudicate resistance to delivery of possession as per Order XXI Rules 97 to 101 of Civil Procedure Code, 1908 (‘CPC’).
Supreme Court decides taxability of interest income on Bank FDs of Clubs; Illuminates Ratio Decidendi
In a batch of Special Leave Petitions titled Secundrabad Club v. CIT, 2023 SCC OnLine SC 1004, arising against Andhra Pradesh and Madras High Court pertaining to Secunderabad Club, Madras Gymkhana Club, Madras Cricket Club, The Coimbatore Cosmopolitan Club, Madras Club, Wellington Gymkhana Club and Coonoor Club, wherein, the High Courts have uniformly held that the interest earned on the bank deposits made by the clubs is liable to be taxed in the hands of the clubs, restricting the principle of mutuality, the Division Bench of B.V. Nagarathna* and Prashant Kumar Mishra, JJ. held that the decision in Bangalore Club v. CIT, (2013) 5 SCC 509 was to be construed as a precedent and therefore, income earned on fixed deposits by the said Clubs fell within the meaning of Section 2(24) of Income Tax Act, 1961.
‘Courts cannot lose sight of serious accusations against an accused while granting bail'; SC sets aside cryptic and casual bail order
In Rohit Bishnoi v. State of Rajasthan, 2023 SCC OnLine SC 870, filed against the Order of Rajasthan High Court wherein bail was granted to the accused persons for offences punishable under Section 302 read with Section 34 of the Penal Code, 1860 (‘IPC') and Section 3 read with Sections 25 and 27 of the Arms Act, 1959, the Division Bench of B.V. Nagarathna* and Prashant Kumar Mishra, JJ., found that the High Court not right in granting bail to the accused persons and viewed that the High Court had lost sight of the vital aspects of the case.
Judicial Body like NGT cannot simply accept Expert Committee recommendations without complying with Principles of Natural Justice
While hearing a batch of civil appeals titled Singrauli Super Thermal Power Station v. Ashwani Kumar Dubey, 2023 SCC OnLine SC 824, against the Judgment and order of the National Green Tribunal (‘NGT'), wherein the NGT had directed remedial measures for flying ashes and public health issues in several Thermal Power Plants (‘TPPs'), the Division Bench of B.V. Nagarathna and Prashant Kumar Mishra, JJ., allowed the appeals and set aside the impugned order of the NGT for non-compliance with the principles of natural justice.
Andhra Pradesh High Court
[Development of Amravati Capital City] Andhra Pradesh HC issues directions to construct and develop Amaravati capital city and region within 6 months
The Full Bench of the High Court in Rajadhani Rythu Parirakshnana Samithi v. State of A.P., 2022 SCC OnLine AP 490, issued a series of directions for the State authorities vis-à-vis creation of new capital city of Amravati
Direction given to not to alienate/mortgage or create any third- party interest on the land pooled, except for the construction of capital city or development of capital region.
Develop the reconstituted plots belonging to landowners in Amaravati capital region by providing approach roads, drinking water, electricity connection to each plot, drainage etc. to enable the same to be fit for habitation in the Amaravati Capital city.
To deliver/handover the developed reconstituted plots in Amaravati capital region, on ground, to the land holders who surrendered their land as promised by the State.
Judges are required to discharge their duties without fear or favour by virtue of the oath administered to them
The Full Bench of the High Court comprising of Prashant Kumar Mishra, C.J. and M. Satyanarayana Murthy and D.V.S.S. Somayajulu, JJ., in State of A.P. v. Rajadhani Rythu Parirakshana Samithi, 2022 SCC OnLine AP 485, while hearing the application seeking that either Justices Satyanarayana Murthy and D.V.S.S. Somayajulu recuse themselves from hearing certain writ petitions or prove their qualifications, dismissed the application observing that if a Judge is recused to hear the matter, it is nothing but violating the oath of the office administered in terms of constitutional mandate.
Whether Pan Masala and Gutka containing tobacco are “food” within the meaning of the FSSA, 2006? Andhra Pradesh HC answers
The Division Bench of the Court comprising of Prashant Kumar Mishra, C.J. and D.V.S.S. Somayajulu, J., in Dwarapudi Sivarama Reddy v. Union of India, 2023 SCC OnLine AP 444, noted that the Food Safety and Standard Act, 2006 being a general Act, provides that it is an Act to consolidate the laws relating to food and to establish the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India for laying down science based standards for articles of food and to regulate their manufacture, storage, distribution, sale and import, to ensure availability of safe and wholesome food for human consumption and for matters connected therewith or incidental thereto. Thus, the FSSA, 2006 deals with food as defined under Section 3(j) of the said Act, whereas Tobacco and Tobacco products are covered under the COPTA, 2003.
[Doctrine of Separability] Andhra Pradesh HC discusses the enforceability of arbitration clause embedded in an unstamped charter party/agreement
A Division Bench of Prashant Kumar Mishra, CJ and M Satyanarayan Murthy, J., in VR Commodities Pvt. Ltd. v. Norivic Shipping Asia Pte. Ltd., 2022 SCC OnLine AP 1001, discussed the doctrine of separability vis-à-vis an arbitration clause. The Judges pointed out that The doctrine of separability treats an agreement to arbitrate contained within a contract as an independent agreement that is deemed to be separable from the main contract. The doctrine preserves the validity and enforceability of the arbitration clause in a contract, even when the primary contract is found to be invalid and unenforceable, providing autonomy to the arbitration clause. The UNCITRAL Model law on International Commercial Arbitration, 1985, Article 16, integrates the doctrine of separability as an arbitration clause which forms part of a contract shall be treated as an agreement independent of the other terms of the contract.
Chhattisgarh High Court
[COVID Vaccination] | Redistribution of unused Antyodaya or other category vaccines at the end of the day: Chhattisgarh HC agrees to hear the matter
A Division Bench of Prashant Kumar Mishra and Parth Prateem Sahu JJ., in Suo Moto WP (PIL) v. State of Chhattisgarh, 2021 SCC OnLine Chh 1110, laid down allotment of vaccines in percentage to the ‘Antyodaya Group', the persons belonging to the ‘Below Poverty Line' and the persons belonging to the ‘Above Poverty Line'. The present issue has come up before the Court regarding that the vaccine allotted to a particular category like Front Line Worker or Antyodaya or BPL (Below Poverty Line) remained unused in a particular vaccination center at the end of the day and the previous orders under the same PIL no. does not provide as to how the unused vaccines would be redistributed on the following day or any other day. Also the vaccine quantity allocated to Antyodaya category persons remains unused and at the same time persons belonging to other category and willing to be vaccinated returned without being vaccinated at the end of the day.
Judicial separation not to be granted mechanically in applications for divorce by mutual consent; Serious dispute not pre-requisite for seeking divorce by mutual consent: Chhattisgarh HC
A Division Bench of Prashant Kumar Mishra and N.K. Chandravanshi, JJ., in Sandhya Sen v. Sanjay Sen, 2021 SCC OnLine Chh 1888, reversed a decree of judicial separation passed by the trial court, and instead passed a decree of divorce by mutual consent as originally prayed for the parties. The High Court said that the provisions contained in Section 13-B does not provide for existence of a ground like the ones contained in Section 13 for grant of divorce by mutual consent. There need not be a serious dispute between a married couple for seeking a divorce by mutual consent.
Wife attempts suicide; consistently behaves abnormally. Is this mental cruelty and a ground for husband to obtain divorce? Chhattisgarh HC elucidates
The Division Bench of Prashant Kumar Mishra and N.K. Chandravanshi, JJ., in Rajeshwar Prasad Kaushal v. Gayatri Kaushal, 2021 SCC OnLine Chh 799, while finding error in trial court's decision held that wife attempting to commit suicide and consistently showing abnormality in her behaviour by pressing neck of daughter and husband, jumping to neighbour's roof will amount to mental cruelty forming ground for dissolution of marriage.
Can an application for anticipatory bail under S. 438 CrPC be filed directly before the High Court? Chhattisgarh HC answers
A Division Bench of Prashant Kumar Mishra and Gautam Chourdiya, JJ., in Hare Ram Sharma v. State of Chhattisgarh, 2020 SCC OnLine Chh 639, observed that, Application for anticipatory bail under Section 438 Criminal Procedure Code, 1973 should ordinarily be filed before the Sessions Court at the first instance. Such an application can be filed directly before the High Court when there exist exceptional, rare or unusual reasons.
Prospective accused is neither necessary nor a proper party in a writ petition seeking direction for registration of FIR and investigation into cognizable offence: Chhattisgarh HC
A Full Bench of Prashant Kumar Mishra, Rajendra Chandra Singh Samant and Gautam Chourdiya, JJ., in Dhananjay Kumar v. State of Chhattisgarh, 2020 SCC OnLine Chh 4, held that the prospective accused is neither necessary nor a proper party in a writ petition seeking direction for registration of FIR and investigation into a cognizable offence. The Court was answering the question formulated by the Single Judge.
Chhattisgarh HC allows Inter-country adoption of a surrendered child to prospective adoptive parents in Italy in accordance with JJ Act and Adoption Regulations
A Division Bench of Prashant Kumar Mishra and Vimla Singh Kapoor, JJ., in Sarbjanik Vikas Vahini v. Baruffaldi Enrico Baruffaldi Danilo, 2019 SCC OnLine Chh 43, allowed an appeal filed against the order of the Family Court whereby it had rejected the appellant's application under Section 59 (7) of the Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Act, 2015 thereby refusing to allow inter-country adoption of a “surrendered child”, aged about 1 year and 7 months.