Justice Aniruddha Bose Retires

“What is non-existent in the eye of the law cannot be revived retrospectively. Life cannot be breathed into the stillborn charge memorandum”.

: Justice Aniruddha Bose1

Farewells are a solemn affair, but they are probably the perfect occasion to reminisce and cherish the uniqueness and the legacy that has been created by an individual. In the legal fraternity, a Judge’s retirement carries quite a sentiment for both the Bar and the Bench. Of course, once you enter the field of law, the journey never really ends. But a Judge isn’t there only to judge. A judge has a constitutionally mandated superpower to interpret the law and this interpretation has the force of law. Which is why, when a Judge retires, it feels like a loss of guidance and wisdom.

On 10-04-2024, the Supreme Court bids adieu to one such paragon of wisdom- Justice Aniruddha Bose, who retires after a 5-year tenure as Judge of the Supreme Court.

Born on 11-04-1959 in Kolkata (then Calcutta), Justice Aniruddha Bose passed his Higher Secondary Examination from St. Lawrence High School, Kolkata in 1976 and did his B. Com from St. Xavier’s College, Kolkata and Law from Surendranath College of Law in Kolkata as well2.

As Justice Aniruddha Bose prepares to hang his robes, it is only appropriate that we take look at the journey of Justice Bose’s career in law and the various important Supreme Court and High Court decisions rendered by him.

Stepping into the Legal Echelons

Having obtained his degree in Law from Surendranath College of Law in Kolkata, Justice Aniruddha Bose enrolled with the Bar Council of West Bengal as an advocate in October 1985 and started practicing in the Original and Appellate side of Calcutta High Court in Constitutional and Civil matters, with special emphasis on Intellectual Property Law cases3.

The High Courts

After a tenure of roughly 19 years as an advocate in the Calcutta High Court, Justice Aniruddha Bose was elevated to the High Court Bench as a Permanent Judge in 2004. He continued to serve the Calcutta High Court till early 20184.

He was also in the running for the post of Chief Justice of Delhi High Court, however, on 04-08-2018, upon recommendation by the Supreme Court Collegium, Justice Bose was appointed as the Chief Justice of Jharkhand High Court by the then President of India, Shri Ramnath Kovind on 11-08-20185.

Journey towards becoming Supreme Court Judge

In a Resolution, the Supreme Court Collegium comprising of Ranjan Gogoi, C.J., and S.A. Bobde, N.V. Ramana, Arun Mishra and R.F. Nariman, JJ., reiterated their recommendation (dt. 12-04-2019) to elevate Justice Aniruddha Bose as a Judge of the Supreme Court. Consequently, Justice Bose was appointed as a Supreme Court Judge on 24-05-2019 by President of India, Ramnath Kovind6.

Notable Judgments that Justice Aniruddha Bose has been a part of

Supreme Court of India: [2019- 2024]

*Did You Know? In his 5-year tenure as Supreme Court Judge, Justice Aniruddha Bose has been part of over 500+ Supreme Court judgments and has authored almost 60 judgments.7

Notable 5-Judge Bench and Constitution Bench Cases

Supreme Court Constitution Bench holds Jallikattu, Kambala and bull -cart racing, legal

The 5-Judge Constitution Bench of Supreme Court comprising of KM Joseph, Ajay Rastogi, Aniruddha Bose*, Hrishikesh Roy and CT Ravikumar, JJ., in Animal Welfare Board of India v. Union of India, (2023) 9 SCC 322, upheld the Constitutional validity of the State amendments made to the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Act, 1960 (‘PCA Act’) by the Tamil Nadu, Karnataka and Maharashtra and allowed the conduct of animal sports like Jallikattu, Kambala and bull-cart racing in these respective States.

An Independent Election Commission of India as envisioned by Supreme Court’s Constitution Bench

The 5-judge Constitution Bench of K.M. Joseph*, Ajay Rastogi**, Aniruddha Bose, Hrishikesh Roy and C.T. Ravikumar, JJ., in Anoop Baranwal v. Union of India, 2023 SCC OnLine SC 216 settled the dispute revolving around appointment of members of the Election Commission of India (ECI) and held that the Chief Election Commissioner and Election Commissioners shall appointed by the President on the advice of a 3-member committee consisting of:

  • the Prime Minister of India;

  • the leader of opposition in Lok Sabha or in case, there is no such Leader, the Leader of the largest Party in the Opposition in the Lok Sabha having the largest numerical strength;

  • and the Chief Justice of India

The Court made clear that this norm will continue to hold good till a law is made by Parliament.

Single Judge vs Division Bench: SC’s 5-Judge Bench stays Calcutta HC’s Single Bench order defying Division Bench stay on CBI Probe in Fake Caste Certificates Case

Taking suo motu cognizance, the 5-Judge Bench comprising Dr. DY Chandrachud, CJI Sanjiv Khanna, B.R. Gavai, Surya Kant and Aniruddha Bose, JJ., in In Re: Orders of Calcutta High Court dated 24.01.2024 and 25.01.2024 and ancillary issues8, stayed the order in which the Single Judge Bench of the Calcutta High Court directed the handover of papers related to the case of alleged issuance of fake caste certificates to the CBI, despite the stay order of a division bench

WhatsApp v Right to Privacy: Supreme Court directs WhatsApp to publicize its May 2021 undertaking

In Karmanya Singh Sareen v. Union of India9, the Constitution bench of K.M. Joseph, Ajay Rastogi, Aniruddha Bose, Hrishikesh Roy, C.T. Ravikumar J.J., heard a matter pertaining to privacy policy of WhatsApp. The bench on 01-02-2023 directed WhatsApp to widely publicise its stand that its users in India do not have to accept its 2021 privacy policy in order to use the mobile application. It further stated that WhatsApp’s functionality would remain unaffected till the Data Protection bill comes into existence.

The issue arose in May 2021 when WhatsApp revised its privacy policy applicable to Indian users which allegedly undermined Article 21 of the Constitution. The policy controlled the access to the most personal information of the users and WhatsApp was allowed to use the same in every fashion, giving the Indian users stark choice to either exit the ubiquitous WhatsApp infrastructure that facilitates daily life or to surrender personal information to a group of private companies whose avowed object was to monetize the same without any supervision.

Explained| Supreme Court’s order modifying guidelines given in 2018 Euthanasia Judgment

In Common Cause (A Regd. Society) v. Union of India, 2023 SCC OnLine SC 99, filed for seeking clarification of the judgment reported in Common Cause v. Union of India, (2018) 5 SCC 1, a 5-Judge Constitution Bench of K.M Joseph*, Ajay Rastogi, Aniruddha Bose, Hrishikesh Roy, CT Ravikumar, JJ. viewed that the directions contained in paragraphs 198 to 199 (2018 Judgment) require to be modified/ deleted. Thus, it made the necessary amendments.

Unstamped Arbitration Agreements are not valid in law

In N.N. Global Mercantile Pvt. Ltd. v. Indo Unique Flame Ltd., 2023 SCC OnLine SC 495, which was an appeal against a full bench judgment in N.N. Global Mercantile (P) Ltd. v. Indo Unique Flame Ltd., (2021) 4 SCC 379 prima, primarily challenging the non-admissibility of an unstamped arbitration agreement and judicial Court’s intervention in matters of arbitration, the 5-Judge Bench comprising of K.M. Joseph*, Ajay Rastogi, Aniruddha Bose, Hrishikesh Roy and C.T. Ravikumar*, JJ. by a 3:2 majority, held that unstamped arbitration agreements are not valid in law. While KM Joseph, Aniruddha Bose and C.T Ravikumar, JJ. formed the majority, Ajay Rastogi and Hrishikesh Roy, JJ. dissented and opined that unstamped arbitration agreements are valid at the pre-referral stage.

States, and not MCI, have power to make reservation for in-service candidates in Post Graduate Medical Course

The 5-judge Constitution bench of Arun Mishra, Indira Banerjee, Vineet Saran, MR Shah and Aniruddha Bose, JJ., in T.N. Medical Officers Assn. v. Union of India, (2021) 6 SCC 568 held that the Medical Council of India has no power to make any reservation for in-service candidates in Post Graduate Medical Course in States and that only States are allowed to grant the benefit of reservation of seats to in-service doctors in the National Eligibility cum Entrance Test (NEET) postgraduate degree courses.

Andhra Pradesh’s 100% reservation for Scheduled Tribe candidates for the post of teachers without rhyme or reason

The 5-judge bench of Arun Mishra, Indira Banerjee, Vineet Saran, MR Shah and Aniruddha Bose, JJ., held in Chebrolu Leela Prasad Rao v. State of Andhra Pradesh, 2020 SCC OnLine SC 383, the Government Office Ms. No.3 dated 10.1.2000 issued by the erstwhile State of Andhra Pradesh providing 100% reservation to the Scheduled Tribe candidates (out of whom 33.1/3% shall be women) for the post of teachers in the schools in the scheduled areas in Andhra Pradesh, unconstitutional, as there was no rhyme or reason with the State Government to resort to 100% reservation.

Decriminalisation of Adultery| Applicability of 2018 Joseph Shine judgment to defence personnels: SC reserves judgment

The Constitution Bench comprising of K.M. Joseph, Ajay Rastogi, Aniruddha Bose, Hrishikesh Roy and C.T. Ravikumar J.J., reserved its judgment in Joseph Shine v. Union of India, 2023 SCC OnLine SC 149, on the issue pertaining to an application filed by the Department of Military Affairs seeking clarification of the Constitution Bench judgment in Joseph Shine v. Union of India, (2019) 3 SCC 39.

Sub-classification of Scheduled Castes| 5-judge bench calls for revision of E.V. Chinnaiah decision

After noticing that a 5-Judge Bench in E.V. Chinnaiah v. State of A.P., (2005) 1 SCC 394, is required to be revisited, the 5-judge bench of Arun Mishra, Indira Banerjee, Vineet Saran, MR Shah and Aniruddha Bose, JJ., in State of Punjab v. Davinder Singh, 2020 SCC OnLine SC 677, referred the matter to a larger bench. While doing so, the Court observed: “Reservation was not contemplated for all the time by the framers of the Constitution.  On the one hand, there is no exclusion of those who have come up, on the other hand, if sub-classification is denied, it would defeat right to equality by treating unequal as equal”.

In January 2024, Supreme Court’s 7-Judge Bench began its hearing on Validity of Sub-classification among Reserved Categories.

Other Notable Supreme Court Decisions

Supreme Court grants bail to Shoma Sen in Bhima Koregaon Elgar Parishad case

In Shoma Kanti Sen v State of Maharashtra10, filed by former professor of Nagpur University and Bhima Koregaon-accused Shoma Sen, against the order passed by Bombay High Court, wherein the Court directed Shoma Sen to approach the Special Court trying her case for bail, the division bench of Aniruddha Bose and Augustine George Masih, JJ. has granted her bail and held that the restriction for grant of bail as per Section 43D(5) of the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, 1967 (‘UAPA’) would not apply in her case.

Supreme Court’s split verdict on S. 17A of PC Act and its application in Chandrababu Naidu’s plea in Skill Development Scam

In Nara Chandrababu Naidu v. State of Andhra Pradesh11, which was an appeal against Andhra Pradesh High Court’s decision, whereby, former Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister and leader of Telugu Desam Party, Nara Chandrababu Naidu’s petition under Section 482 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973 (‘CrPC’) to quash the First Information Report (FIR) against him in Skill Development Scam was dismissed, the Division Bench of Aniruddha Bose and Bela M. Trivedi, JJ. delivered a spilt verdict on the interpretation and application of Section 17-A of the Prevention of Corruption Act, 1988, therefore, the matter was placed before the Chief Justice of India to take an appropriate decision to constitute a larger Bench.

Justice Aniruddha Bose said that Section 17A of PC Act does not distinguish between the alleged commission of offence prior to 26-07-2018 or post thereof. Thus, he observed that the time of applicability of Section 17A or taking prior approval, is the starting point of enquiry, inquiry, or investigation and not the time of commission of the alleged offence. He said that when Naidu was arrayed as an accused in the FIR through Memo dated 08-09-2021, the Amendment Act, which inserted Section 17A to the PC Act and deleted Section 13(1)(c) and (d), had become operational. However, at the time of the alleged commission of offence, Section 13(1)(c) and (d) were part of the PC Act. Further, he said that the protection or mandate of Section17A would extend, if enquiry, or inquiry, or investigation on the part of the prosecution is triggered off after 26-07-2018.

Rs. 2 Crores compensation for a bad haircut? Maybe! But not in absence of material supporting claim of loss suffered; Supreme Court asks NCDRC to decide matter afresh

In ITC Ltd v. Aashna Roy, 2023 SCC OnLine SC 108, where a woman, a model by profession, sought Rs. 3 Crores compensation for receiving a ‘bad haircut’, the bench of Aniruddha Bose and Vikram Nath*, JJ has held that though there may be deficiency in service, but NCDRC’s award of Rs. 2 Crores as compensation, that too, in the absence of any material to support the loss suffered by her in terms of modelling assignments that she had lost or the emoluments received by her for per past assignments, would be extremely excessive and disproportionate.

SC rejects Adani Power’s plea for Late Payment Surcharge of Rs. 1376.35 Crores from JVVNL

In a miscellaneous application by Adani Power Rajasthan Limited (APRL) titled Jaipur Vidyut Vitran Nigam Ltd. v. Adani Power Rajasthan Ltd., 2024 SCC OnLine SC 313, wherein Adani Power sought payment of Rs. 1376.35 crore towards Late Payment Surcharge (‘LPS’) from Jaipur Vidyut Vitran Nigam Ltd. and two other distribution companies (‘Rajasthan Discoms’), the Division Bench of Aniruddha Bose and Sanjay Kumar, JJ. dismissed the application and imposed costs of Rs. 50000/-. The Court said that a post disposal application for modification and clarification of the order of disposal shall lie only in rare cases, where the order passed by the Court is executory in nature and the directions of the Court may become impossible to be implemented because of subsequent events or developments.

Supreme Court grants interim protection from arrest to SHUATS VC in alleged forceful conversion to Christianity case; Stays Allahabad HC order

In Special Leave to Appeal titled Rajendra Bihari Lal v. State of Uttar Pradesh12, against the Allahabad High Court Order, whereby a First Information Report (‘FIR’) lodged against 7 accused persons, the Vice Chancellor (Dr.) Rajendra Bihari Lal (Baba ji), Director Vinod Bihari Lal and five other officials of the Sam Higginbottom University of Agriculture Technology and Science (‘SHUATS’) for persuading a woman to adopt Christianity by offering her a job and other allurement was refused to quash, the vacation Bench of Aniruddha Bose and K.V. Viswanathan, JJ. allowed the application and granted interim protection to the accused persons against the arrest.

‘Irretrievable break down of marriage’ not a straight-jacket formula for divorce under Article 142

In Nirmal Singh Panesar v. Paramjit Kaur Panesar, 2023 SCC OnLine SC 1297, while considering the question that “Should the irretrievable breakdown of marriage necessarily result in the dissolution of marriage in exercise of powers under Article 142 of the Constitution of India, when such is not a ground for divorce under the Hindu Marriage Act 1955?”, the Division Bench of Aniruddha Bose and Bela M. Trivedi*, JJ. refused to grant divorce due to irretrievable breakdown of marriage to do complete justice to the aged couple. The Court clarified that “In contemporary society, it may not constitute to be stigma, but here we are concerned with the respondent’s own sentiment.”

Explained | Supreme Court verdict on claim of maternity benefits beyond the duration of contractual employment

In Dr. Kavita Yadav v Ministry of Health and Family Welfare Department, 2023 SCC OnLine SC 1067, which was an appeal by a pathology doctor against the judgment and order of the Delhi High Court, wherein the Court upheld the Central Administrative Tribunal’s order rejecting her claim of maternity benefits beyond the duration of her employment, the full bench of Aniruddha Bose, Sanjay Kumar and S.V.N. Bhatti, JJ. while setting aside the impugned judgment and order, directed the employer to extend maternity benefits as would have been available to the appellant in terms of Sections 5 and 8 of the Maternity Benefits Act, 1961 (‘MB Act’) , after deducting therefrom any sum that may already have been paid to the appellant under the same head or for such purpose. Further, it held that maternity benefits could survive or go beyond the duration of employment of the employee.

Supreme Court rules B.Ed. Graduates ineligible for primary school teaching

In Devesh Sharma v. Union of India, 2023 SCC OnLine SC 985, filed against the judgment passed by the Rajasthan High Court, wherein the Court has quashed the Notification dated 28-06-2018 holding B.Ed. candidates to be unqualified for the posts of primary school teachers (Level-1), the division bench of Aniruddha Bose and Sudhanshu Dhulia, JJ. while upholding the impugned judgment, and setting aside the notification dated 28-06-2018, held that the decision of the NCTE to include B.Ed. as a qualification for teachers in a primary school seems arbitrary, unreasonable and has no nexus with the object sought to be achieved by the Right to Education Act, 2009 (‘RTE Act’) , which is to give to children not only free and compulsory but also ‘quality’ education. “Right to education not only includes free and compulsory, but also quality education”.

Revision of pay| VRS Employees or those who were terminated or dismissed cannot claim parity with those who retired on superannuation

In Maharashtra State Financial Corporation Ex-Employees’ Association v. State of Maharashtra, 2023 SCC OnLine SC 100 where the ex-employees of Maharashtra State Financial Corporation (MSFC) had challenged decision denying the benefit of revision of pay scales, as recommended by the Fifth Pay Commission, to the employees who had retired or died during the period of 01-01-2006 to 29-03-2010, the bench of Aniruddha Bose and S. Ravindra Bhat*, JJ., held that while the exclusion of the employees who retired on achieving their date of superannuation, is violative of Art. 14 of the Constitution, the benefit cannot be extended to the VRS employees or the employees who were terminated or dismissed as they cannot claim parity with others who retired upon achieving the age of superannuation.

28 years later, Supreme Court sets aside death penalty of man, after finding him juvenile during the commission of multiple murders

In Narayan Chetanram Chaudhary v. State of Maharashtra, 2023 SCC OnLine SC 340, filed under Section 9(2) of the Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Act, 2015 requesting the Court to hold that the applicant/convict for committing offences under Sections 302, 342, 397, 449 read with 120-B and 34 of the Penal Code, 1860 (‘IPC’) was a juvenile on the date of commission of the offence, the full bench of KM Joseph, Aniruddha Bose* and Hrishikesh Roy, JJ., declared that the date of birth of the convict as reflected in the certificate issued by his school is to be accepted for determining his age at the time of commission of the offence of which he has been convicted. Going by that certificate, his age at the time of commission of offence was 12 years and 6 months. Thus, he was a juvenile on the date of commission of offence for which he had been convicted, in terms of the provisions of the JJ Act. Further, said that this shall be deemed to be the true age of ‘Niranaram’, who was tried and convicted as ‘Narayan’.

Can a Magistrate taking cognizance of an offence on the basis of a police report in terms of Section 190(1)(b) of CrPC, issue summons to any person not arraigned as an accused?

The division bench of Vineet Saran and Aniruddha Bose JJ., in Nahar Singh v. State of U.P., (2022) 5 SCC 295, deliberated on the issue that whether a Magistrate taking cognizance of an offence on the basis of a police report in terms of Section 190(1)(b) of The Criminal Procedure Code, 1973, can issue summons to any person not arraigned as an accused in the police report and whose name also does not feature in column (2) of such report. They held that for summoning persons upon taking cognizance of an offence, the Magistrate must examine the materials available before him for concluding that apart from those sent up by the police some other persons are involved in the offence. These materials need not remain confined to the police report, charge sheet or the F.I.R. A statement made under Section 164 of CrPC could also be considered for such purpose.

Requirements of S. 63 of 1925 Act, cannot be fulfilled merely upon showing of mechanical compliance

While considering the issues surrounding the determination of genuineness of a will as per S. 63 of Succession Act, 1925 and the evidence of meeting the requirements of S. 63 r/w S. 68 of the Evidence Act; the Division Bench of L. Nageswara Rao and Aniruddha Bose JJ., in State of Haryana v. Harnam Singh, (2022) 2 SCC 238, held that the aforementioned evidence must inspire confidence and be credible. Requirements of S. 63 of 1925 Act, cannot be fulfilled merely upon showing of mechanical or technical compliance with the stipulations specified therein.

Cruelty and Dowry Death: Can conviction under Section 304-B IPC sustain without any charges under Section 498A IPC?

In Gurmeet Singh v. State of Punjab, (2021) 6 SCC 108, where it was argued by the accused that without any charges under Section 498A, IPC a conviction under Section 304-B, IPC cannot be sustained, the 3-judge bench of NV Ramana, CJ., and Surya Kant and Aniruddha Bose, JJ., rejected the contention and has explained,

“Although cruelty is a common thread existing in both the offences, however the ingredients of each offence are distinct and must be proved separately by the prosecution. If a case is made out, there can be a conviction under both the sections.”

Judges need to be extra careful while conducting criminal trials relating to dowry deaths

In Satbir Singh v. State of Haryana, (2021) 6 SCC 1, the bench of NV Ramana, CJ and Aniruddha Bose, J., held that judges need to be extra careful while conducting criminal trials relating to Section 304-B, IPC. The Court went on to summarise the law under Section 304-B, IPC read with Section 113-B, Evidence Act and the guidelines to be followed by the Courts while conducting trials in such cases.

The Court noticed that, often, Trial Courts record the statement of an accused under Section 313, CrPC in a very casual and cursory manner, without specifically questioning the accused as to his defense.

Life cannot be breathed into the stillborn charge memorandum; Where prior approval is the rule the defect cannot be cured by post-facto approval

The Division Bench of L. Nageswara Rao and Aniruddha Bose, JJ., in Sunny Abraham v. Union of India, 2021 SCC OnLine SC 1284, held that not having approval of the Finance Minister at the time of issue of charge memorandum for carrying departmental enquiry would render it defective, not capable of being validated retrospectively by post-facto approval.

“Life cannot be breathed into the stillborn charge memorandum”.

Mutation entry doesn’t confer any right, title or interest in favour of person and the objective is only for fiscal purpose

Reiterating a well-settled position of law that, Mutation Entry does not confer any right, title or interest in favour of the person and it is only recorded for the fiscal purpose, Division Bench of M.R. Shah and Aniruddha Bose, JJ., in Jitendra Singh v. State of M.P., 2021 SCC OnLine SC 802 upheld the decision of the Madhya Pradesh High Court.  Aggrieved and dissatisfied with the impugned decision passed by the Madhya Pradesh High Court by which the High Court allowed the petition and quashed the decision by Additional Commissioner, Rewa Division directing to mutate the name of the petitioner in the revenue records, which was sought to be mutated on the basis of the will, the original respondent 6 preferred the present special leave petition.

Chairman of party who entered into arbitration, can he be categorised as eligible under Arbitration and Conciliation Act?

Expressing on the aspect of independence and impartiality of the arbitrators, Division Bench of M.R. Shah and Aniruddha Bose, JJ., in Jaipur Zila Dugdh Utpadak Sahkari Sangh Limited v. Ajay Sales & Suppliers, 2021 SCC OnLine SC 730, held that, though the word ‘Chairman’ is not mentioned explicitly in Seventh Schedule, at the same time, it would fall under clause 1, clause 2, clause 5, and clause 12 of the Seventh Schedule, hence will be ineligible for the purpose of the arbitration.

The above schedule is to be read with Section 12(5) of the Arbitration and Conciliation Act.

Supreme Court on preferring an appeal before NCLAT beyond a period of 30 days

The Bench of M.R. Shah and Aniruddha Bose, JJ., in National Spot Exchange Limited v. Anil Kohli, 2021 SCC OnLine SC 716 observed that,

“Appellate Tribunal has jurisdiction or power to condone the delay not exceeding 15 days from the completion of 30 days, the statutory period of limitation.”

Aggrieved and dissatisfied with impugned order passed by the National Company Law Appellate Tribunal by which NCLAT refused to condone delay of 44 days in preferring the appeal against the order passed by the National Company Law Tribunal rejecting the claim of the appellant. Appellant has preferred the present appeal. Read more

Husband and Wife consumed pesticide after a quarrel, wife died but husband survived. Will allegation of abetment of suicide on husband survive?

The Division Bench of M.R. Shah and Aniruddha Bose, JJ., in Velladurai v. State, 2021 SCC OnLine SC 715, noted that, abetment by a person is when a person instigates another to do something. Instigation can be inferred where the accused had, by his acts or omission created such circumstances that the deceased was left with no other option except to commit suicide.

If public transportation has to survive and compete with private players, they have to improve system and their working culture

While addressing the matter in Northern Western Railway v. Sanjay Shukla, 2021 SCC OnLine SC 1036 where a passenger suffered loss and agony due to delay in the arrival of train, M.R Shah and Aniruddha Bose, JJ., observed that,

“These are the days of competition and accountability. If public transportation has to survive and compete with private players, they have to improve the system and their working culture”. Read more

Economic criterion cannot be sole basis of identifying ‘creamy layer’ amongst backward classes

A Division Bench of L. Nageswara Rao and Aniruddha Bose, JJ., in Pichra Warg Kalyan Mahasabha Haryana v. State of Haryana, 2021 SCC OnLine SC 635 quashed the notification dated 17-8-2016 issued by State Government of Haryana, which specified economic criterion as the sole basis of identification of ‘creamy layer’ (socially advanced sections) among backward classes for excluding them from the purview of benefit of reservation in State services and admission to educational institutions. The Supreme Court reiterated that the basis of exclusion of ‘creamy layer’ cannot be merely economic. Read more

It is not for the employee to insist transfer or deny it at a particular place; SC holds transfer isn’t a right of employee but discretion of employer

In a landmark decision, the Division Bench of M.R. Shah and Aniruddha Bose, JJ., in Namrata Verma v. State of U.P., 2021 SCC OnLine SC 3337, held that an employee has no right to insist/deny his transfer at a particular place. The Bench was addressing the case of a Lecturer (Psychology) at Rajkiya Mahavidyalaya, Gajraula, District Amroha; who had made representation for her transfer to Rajkiya Post Graduate College, Noida, Gautam Buddha Nagar. The said representation had been rejected by the Additional Chief Secretary Higher Education, Uttar Pradesh. The petitioner contended before the Court that she had been working at Amroha for the last 4 years and therefore, under the Government policy she was entitled to a transfer.

Shaheen Bagh Protests| Democracy and dissent go hand in hand but public spaces cannot be occupied indefinitely for expressing dissent

The 3-judge bench of SK Kaul, Aniruddha Bose and Krishna Murari, JJ., in Amit Sahni v. Commissioner of Police, (2020) 10 SCC 439 related to Shaheen Bagh protests matter, held that while there exists the right to peaceful protest against a legislation, public ways and public spaces cannot be occupied in such a manner and that too indefinitely. The Court noticed that the Constitutional scheme comes with the right to protest and express dissent, but with an obligation towards certain duties. These rights, in cohesion, enable every citizen to assemble peacefully and protest against the actions or inactions of the State. The same must be respected and encouraged by the State, for the strength of a democracy such as India’s lies in the same.

Is issuance of blank cheque and signed blank stamp paper sufficient to attract presumption under S. 139 of NI Act?

The 3-Judge Bench comprising of N.V. Ramana, Surya Kant and Aniruddha Bose, JJ., in Kalamani Tex v. P. Balasubramanian, (2021) 5 SCC 283, held that upheld the judgement of High Court of Judicature at Madras, whereby the order of acquittal of the Judicial Magistrate was reversed and the appellants had been convicted under Section 138 of the NIA, 1881. The Bench observed-

“Once the appellant 2 had admitted his signatures on the cheque and the Deed, the trial Court ought to have presumed that the cheque was issued as consideration for a legally enforceable debt.” Read more

When can members of a group be held individually guilty for an offence? Supreme Court explains applicability of Sections 34 and 149 of IPC

Explaining the difference between Sections 34 and 149 of the IPC, the 3-judge bench of NV Ramana, Surya Kant and Aniruddha Bose, JJ., in Rohtas v. State of Haryana, 2020 SCC OnLine SC 1014 held that

“Although both Section 34 and 149 of the IPC are modes for apportioning vicarious liability on the individual members of a group, there exist a few important differences between these two provisions. Whereas Section 34 requires active participation and a prior meeting of minds, Section 149 IPC assigns liability merely by membership of the unlawful assembly. In reality, such ‘common intention’ is usually indirectly inferred from conduct of the individuals and only seldom it is done through direct evidence.”

Najeeb KA, accused of chopping off Kerala professor’s palm over “objectionable” question, gets bail

The 3-judge bench of NV Ramana, Surya Kant and Anirudhha Bose, JJ., in Union of India v. K.A. Najeeb, (2021) 3 SCC 713 refused to interfere with the bail granted by Kerala High Court to KA Najeeb arrested under the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, 1967 but has imposed the conditions. He shall also refrain from participating in any activity which might enrage communal sentiments.

SC gives a go ahead to enforcement of Malaysian arbitral award in Government versus Vedanta; says it doesn’t contravene public policy of India

The 3-judge bench of SA Nazeer, Indu Malhotra and Aniruddha Bose, JJ., in Government of India v. Vedanta Limited, (2020) 10 SCC 1, dismissed Central Government’s plea against enforcement of a 2011 foreign award passed in favour of Vedanta Limited in a dispute arising out of a contract for exploring and developing the petroleum resources in the Ravva Gas and Oil Fields. The Court held, “the enforcement of the foreign award does not contravene the public policy of India, or that it is contrary to the basic notions of justice.”

Withdrawal of GHCAA President Yatin Oza’s senior designation| SC decides to wait for Gujarat High Court’s order

The 3-judge bench of SK Kaul, Aniruddha Bose and Krishna Murari, JJ., in Yatin Narendra Oza v. High Court of Gujarat, 2020 SCC OnLine SC 724 observed that the Court would wait for the order of the Gujarat High Court before passing any orders in the issue relating to withdrawal of senior Designation of advocate Narendra Oza. Oza, who is also the President of the Gujarat High Court Advocates’ Association, was stripped off his Senior Advocate designation. This was done after Advocate Oza had levelled charges of corruption against the registry of the Gujarat High Court. Read More

Treating ‘loss of love and affection’ as a separate head not justified when compensation for ‘loss of consortium’ already awarded

The 3-judge bench of SA Nazeer, Indu Malhotra and Aniruddha Bose, JJ., in United India Insurance Co. Ltd. v. Satinder Kaur, 2020 SCC OnLine SC 410 were hearing an issue relating to determination of compensation in a motor vehicle accident case. Taking note of the fact that several Tribunals and High Courts have been awarding compensation for loss of consortium and loss of love and affection, the bench directed the Tribunals and High Courts to award compensation for loss of consortium, which is a legitimate conventional head.

“There is no justification to award compensation towards loss of love and affection as a separate head.”

Calcutta High Court [2004 – 2018]

Madan Das v. Lt. Governor, 2011 SCC OnLine Cal 2374

The 7 Judge Bench of the High Court comprising of Jainarayan Patel, C.J. and Bhaskar Bhattacharya, Pinaki Chandra Ghose, Kalyan Jyoti Sengupta, Indira Banerjee, Aniruddha Bose and Sambuddha Chakrabarti, JJ., held that unless special circumstances mentioned in Rule 5 of Order 47, CPC subsist, a Judge who delivered the original judgment or order sought to be reviewed, alone can take up the Application for review as well.

Sony Kabushiki Kaisha v. Mahaluxmi Textile Mills, 2009 SCC OnLine Cal 531

The Bench of S.S. Nijjar, C.J. and Indira Banerjee and Aniruddha Bose, JJ., in this trademark infringement suit, made significant observations as to the necessity and importance of the trademark. It was noted that the key function of a trademark is to indicate the source or origin of goods and services. The tort of passing off is committed if the offending trader applies an established trade mark in such manner so as to cause confusion or deception in the mind of the consumers as regards the source or origin of the goods and the mind of purchasers are directed to the firm whose identity is already linked with the trademark in the market -place.

Union of India v. Pam Development Pvt. Ltd, 2005 SCC OnLine Cal 299

The Division bench of Aloke Chakrabarti and Aniruddha Bose, JJ., held, the Chief Justice, under S. 11(6) of Arbitration and Conciliation Act, 1996, is not strictly bound to appoint an arbitrator who must have a qualification as agreed upon between the parties, thus, even if the arbitrator does not have the qualification, his appointment would not be rendered invalid.

Jharkhand High Court [2018- 2019]

Hit Narayan Jha v. The State of Jharkhand, 2018 SCC OnLine Jhar 1371

The bench of Aniruddha Bose, C.J. and Chandrashekhar, J., set aside the dismissal from service on the charge of taking illegal gratification. It was observed that the writ Court would not interfere with the orders passed by the departmental authority unless it has been passed in breach of the Discipline and Service Rules or in avoidance of the rules of natural justice.

State of Jharkhand v. HSS Integrated SDN, 2019 SCC OnLine Jhar 172

This was a contractual dispute between the State and the opposite parties in relation to a consultancy agreement over construction of six-lane Divided Carriageway of certain parts of Ranchi Ring Road. An Arbitral Tribunal was constituted which found that termination of the contract was illegal and invalid. The bench of Aniruddha Bose, C.J. and Ratnaker Bhengra, J., while hearing the challenge to the Tribunal’s Award, held that there was no involvement of any grave violation of public policy by the Arbitral Tribunal in passing the award. The facts narrated in the award do not project any gross misuse of jurisdiction which could shock the conscience of the Court.

Bidding Adieu to a Bhadralok

Did you Know? Justice Aniruddha Bose is a voracious reader with an abiding interest in literature, history, politics, linguistics, and the impact of theological philosophies on various world cultures and societies over the centuries.13

20 years of being a Judge! How can one comprehend the wealth of wisdom that was distributed by the esteemed Judge in such a long duration? It is priceless for sure!

In his 20-year tenure as a Judge (including his Judgeship at the Supreme Court), Justice Aniruddha Bose was a part of over 3500 decisions14 focussing on varied subjects such as intellectual property law, criminal law; constitutional law; property law to name a few.

In the Supreme Court, Justice Aniruddha Bose has been an integral part of several landmark 5-Judge Bench/ Constitution Bench decisions such as legality of Jallikattu, Composition of an independent Election Commission of India etc. Furthermore, Justice Bose has been an integral part of the Supreme Court Collegium which has been tasked with the duty of recommending appointment of Judges for Supreme Court and High Courts.

While bidding farewell to Justice Aniruddha Bose, the Chief Justice of India, Dr Justice DY Chandrachud reminisced that, “Justice Aniruddha Bose is a classical Bengali ‘Bhadrolok’ (gentleman). His disposition is that of a good listener and a true intellectual who never gets overtly judgmental15.

There is no doubt that Justice Aniruddha Bose’s absence would leave a void in the Bench and his wisdom shall surely be missed by the members of the Bar. As Justice Aniruddha Bose retires, we wish him the very best for his future endeavours especially now that he is about to take up the mantle of Director of the National Judicial Academy in Bhopal16, thus ushering in a new era of imparting his wisdom, knowledge and insights to the legal fraternity and shaping up the minds of new Judges.

1. Sunny Abraham v. Union of India, 2021 SCC OnLine SC 1284

2. Justice Aniruddha Bose | Supreme Court of India | India (sci.gov.in)

3. Calcutta High Court – Judges

4. Supra

5. High Court of Jharkhand, India (jharkhandhighcourt.nic.in)

6. Justice Aniruddha Bose | Supreme Court of India | India (sci.gov.in)

7. https://www.scconline.com

8. SMW (C) No(s).1/2024

9. SLP (C) 804 of 2017

10. Special leave petition No. 4999 of 2023

11. Special Leave to Appeal (Criminal) No.12289 of 2023

12. Special Leave to Appeal (Criminal) No. 16557/2023

13. CJI Chandrachud Bids Farewell To Justice Aniruddha Bose (ndtv.com)

14. SCC Online <www.scconline.com>, Coram Only feature

15. CJI Chandrachud Bids Farewell To Justice Aniruddha Bose (ndtv.com)

16. Supra

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