Appointments & TransfersNews

Appointment of Chief Justice of Allahabad High Court

President appoints Shri Sanjay Yadav, Judge of the Allahabad High Court, to be the Chief Justice of the Allahabad High Court with effect from the date he assumes charge of his office.

Background

Shri Justice Sanjay Yadav, M.A., LL.B, was enrolled as an Advocate on 25-08-1986. He practiced at Jabalpur for 20 years in Civil, Constitutional, Labour and Service matters and has specialized in Labour and Service matters. He worked as Government Advocate from March 1999 to October 2005. He was Deputy Advocate General with effect from October 2005. He was appointed as an Additional Judge of the Madhya Pradesh High Court on March 2, 2007, and as a Permanent Judge on January 15, 2010. Later, he was transferred to Allahabad High Court. He was appointed as Acting Chief Justice of Allahabad High Court w.e.f. 14-4-2021.


Ministry of Law and Justice

[Notification dt. 10-06-2021]

Appointments & TransfersNews

Justice Prashant Kumar Mishra, senior-most Judge of Chhattisgarh High Court, has been appointed as the Chief Justice of the Chhattisgarh High Court by the President in exercise of the powers conferred by Article 223 of the Constitution of India. Justice Mishra will assume this position on 1st June, 2021 on the retirement of  Justice Parappillil Ramakrishnan Nair Ramachandra Menon.

Justice Mishra was born on 29th August, 1964 in Raigarh, Chhattisgarh. He enrolled as an Advocate on September 4, 1987 and practiced in the District Court and the High Courts of Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh in Civil, Constitutional, Revenue and Criminal Matters. His field of specialization was Constitutional and Civil matters. He has also served as Additional Advocate General and Advocate General for the State of Chhattisgarh. He was appointed as an Additional Judge of the Chhattisgarh High Court on December 10, 2009 and as a Permanent Judge November 28, 2014.

Appointments & TransfersNews

The Supreme Court Collegium has recommended the appointment of Justice Sanjay Yadav as the Chief Justice of Allahabad High Court on 20th May, 2021. Justice Sanjay Yadav had been serving as the Acting Chief Justice after former Chief Justice Govind Mathur demitted office on April 14th, 2021.

Born on June 26, 1959, Justice Yadav enrolled as an Advocate on August 25, 1986. Thereafter, he practised on Civil, Revenue and Constitutional sides in the High Court of Madhya Pradesh at Jabalpur. Subsequently, he was appointed Deputy Advocate General of Madhya Pradesh. 

On March 2, 2007 he was elevated as Judge of the High Court of Madhya Pradesh and Permanent Judge on January 15, 2010. He was appointed as Acting Chief Justice of the Madhya Pradesh High Court with effect from October 06, 2019 till November 02,2019 and from September 30, 2020 till January 02, 2021. On January 08, 2021 he was transferred to Allahabad High Court. 

Appointments & TransfersNews

Order of Appointment 

President appoints Justice Rajesh Bindal, Senior-Most Judge of Calcutta High Court to perform the duties of the office of the Chief Justice of that High Court with effect from 29-04-2021 consequent upon the retirement of Justice Thottathil Bhaskaran Nair Radhakrishnan, Chief Justice of Calcutta High Court.


Ministry of Law and Justice

Notification dt. 27-04-2021]

Appointments & TransfersNews

President appoints Justice Puligoru Venkata Sanjay Kumar, Judge of the Punjab and Haryana High Court, to be the Chief Justice of Manipur High Court.

NOTIFICATION


Ministry of Law and Justice

[Notification dt. 12-02-2021]

Hot Off The PressNews

In a case of a death in judicial custody, the National Human Rights Commission, India has set aside the conclusion of an Additional Chief Metropolitan Magistrate of Ahmedabad that it was natural.

On the basis of the material on record, NHRC has held that the Under Trial Prisoner died due to the negligence and torture by the jail officials of Sabarmati Central Prison, Ahmedabad on 29-05-2017 and that the Judicial Enquiry Report is shady in nature and hence, cannot be relied upon.

Further, expressing serious concern over the order of the concerned judicial officer, the Commission has directed its registry to bring the matter to the notice of the Chief Justice of the Gujarat High Court for consideration of taking necessary action on the presence of such Judicial Officers.

The Commission has noted in its proceedings in the matter under case no Case No.487/6/1/2017-JCD that “it is very surprising & shocking to know that though 22 ante mortem injuries over the body of the deceased were clearly reflected in post mortem report, but still enquiry magistrate i.e. ACMM, Ahmedabad, Gujarat had stated that no injury was found to be present on the deceased. The Chief Justice of Gujarat High Court has to seriously consider the presence of such Judicial Officers in public domain.”

The NHRC has also issued a notice to the Chief Secretary, Govt. of Gujarat, to show cause why not an interim relief of Rs 3 Lakh should not be recommended to be paid to the Next of the Kin, NoK of the deceased Under Trial Prisoner, as his human rights were violated by the delinquent Jail officials, Director General of Police, Gujarat has been asked to submit a detailed report in the matter along with criminal case registered and progress in the matter. The response is expected within four weeks.

The Commission, as per its standing guidelines, had registered the case on the basis of an intimation from Supdt. Central Prison Ahmedabad Gujarat on 31.05.2017 regarding the death of UTP Ashok @ Lalit on 29.05.2017.

On the directions of the Commission, its Investigation Division informed that the victim under trial prisoner was in the custody of Sabarmati Central Prison, Ahmedabad since 27.05.2017. He was arrested in case no. 5261/15 u/s 66(1)(b), 65(a) Prohibition Act by PS Maghaninagar. Within two days on 29/5/2017, he fell ill and was sent to the Civil Hospital, Ahmedabad for treatment where he died on the same day at 16.38 hrs.

The postmortem was done by a panel of four doctors, which revealed 22 ante-mortem injuries from head to toe on the person of the deceased. The cause of death was kept preserved. Later, after viscera & HPE, the FCOD was given as death due to shock and hemorrhage as a result of injuries sustained over the body. However, in the magisterial enquiry the ACMM, Ahmedabad, Gujarat concluded that the health screening report, as well as inquest report, revealed that no injury was present on the person of the deceased. During the magisterial enquiry, the family members did not complain of anything and based on the statements of doctors & jail officials, so he concluded that there was no direct or indirect evidence that the deceased was physically or mentally tortured or ill-treated during custody and without any evidence.

The Commission noted that the Under Trial Prisoner was normal at the time of entry into the jail and died within two days of his entry into the jail. The strong scientific & biological forensic evidence cannot be undermined as far as the cause of death is concerned. This is also a fact that he was in jail for the past two days before his death in the hospital. Hence, there is no point in accepting that his death was natural. This is a clear case of unnatural death in the judicial custody of Sabarmati Central Jail & hence State is vicariously responsible for the same. Further, the Commission held that the statements of the family members of the victim after his death bear no relevance as the victim was in jail and the family members may not have met after the injuries, when he was alive.


National Human Rights Commission

[Press Release dt. 08-01-2021]

Appointments & TransfersNews

President of India appointed Justice Sudhanshu Dhulia, Judge of the Uttarakhand High Court, as Chief Justice of the Gauhati High Court.

Justice Sudhanshu Dhulia was enrolled as an Advocate on July 07, 1986, and practiced in the Allahabad and Uttarakhand High Courts in Civil, Constitutional, Service, and Labour matters and has specialized in Service and Constitutional matters. He was appointed as Permanent Judge of the Uttarakhand High Court on November 1, 2008.


Ministry of Law and Justice

[Press Release dt. 07-01-2020]

Appointments & TransfersNews

President transfers Justice Mohammad Rafiq, Chief Justice of the Orissa High Court, as Chief Justice of the Madhya Pradesh High Court and to direct him to assume charge of the office of the Chief Justice of the Madhya Pradesh High Court.

ORDER


Ministry of Law and Justice

Appointments & TransfersNews

Appointment Orders

President is pleased to appoint Justice Sanjib Banerjee, Judge of the Calcutta High Court, to be the Chief Justice of the Madras High Court with effect from the date he assumes charge of his office.


President is pleased to appoint Justice Hima Kohli, Judge of the Delhi High Court, to be the Chief Justice of High Court for the State of Telangana with effect from the date she assumes charge of her office.


President is pleased to appoint Dr Justice S. Muralidhar, Judge of the Punjab and Haryana High Court, to be the Chief Justice of the Orissa High Court with effect from the date he assumes charge of his office.


Ministry of Law and Justice

COVID 19Hot Off The PressNews

“Conducting pan-India examinations in the midst of the novel pandemic would be equivalent to turning a blind eye to the interests and genuine concerns of the student fraternity, besides putting the country at a far greater risk by making this a potential reason for a possible community spread.”

A final year student has written to the Chief Justice of India Justice SA Bobde asking him to take suo-moto cognizance in the issue involving the conduct of final year examinations as directed by the University Grant Commission. The letter attempts to bring into the attention of the Court, the concern over the safety of millions of final year students and their families, invigilators, evaluators, transport authorities, support staff and several other key stakeholders, either directly or indirectly, involved in the examination process.

The letter written by Anshritha Rai, a final year student of ILS Law College, Pune, states that though the UGC has provided universities the option to conduct exams in either an offline (pen and paper) or online or blended (offline ­+ online) mode, no matter which mode is adopted, there are a myriad number of practical, technological and institutional difficulties that are sure to be encountered.

“Online mode of examinations, however, neglects socio-economic diversity and inequality of internet access. Likewise, holding physical examinations has its own glaring set of shortcomings.”

It further highlights that a large section of students reside either indifferent parts of India or in other countries. Mandating terminal semester examinations would compel these students to travel inter-state amid the virus, share rooms with other students, make arrangements for food and undergo quarantine before appearing for examinations.

“More worryingly, students and all others connected with the conduct of such exams could be potential carriers of the virus thereby posing a serious health hazard to all those that they come in contact with in the process of reaching exam centres.”

The letter also mentions that soon after the UGC Guidelines were released, the Maharashtra Government unequivocally reiterated its inability to hold final year examinations in a letter addressed to the Ministry of Human Resource Development. Moreover, UGC itself has cancelled all intermediate examinations. UGC’s guidelines, which mandatorily require final year students to appear for examinations by September end, is arbitrary and in blatant disregard of the fundamental rights guaranteed by our Constitution.

“It is highly regretful that an arbitrary distinction is being drawn between intermediate and final year students. If this exercise were to be carried out, the lives of all final year students pan India would be put in grave peril. This is evinced by the recent Karnataka SSLC exam fiasco where 32 students tested positive.”

Stating that the crisis has the potential for reforming our education system, the student states,

“The unabated focus on mandating university exams and sticking to traditional patterns is indicative of the flaws in our higher education system. Our strict examination-oriented culture has frequently come under fire for failing to develop practical skills and critical reasoning. Credibility and intellectual prowess has little to or has no connection with examination grades.”


Read the full text of the letter here

Read the details of UGC’s revised guidelines on conduct of final year exams here

COVID 19Hot Off The PressNews

A final year law student from Indore has written a letter to the Chief Justice of the Madhya Pradesh High Court raising concern over the consequential threat on the lives of millions of students by the order of University Grants Commission regarding compulsory conduct of final term examination. The letter also seeks to draw the attention of the Chief Justice towards the impassive levying of fee by the colleges and universities even in the times of great crisis not only in Indian economy but also in the global market.

Avni Jain, a final year law student of Department of Law, PIMR, Indore, through her letter, brought to the Court’s notice that despite of the announcement by the Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister that the final year students shall be marked according to their highest performance in the previous year examination, the University Grants Commission, on 6th July 2020, ordered the compulsory conduct of final year examination by the end of September, 2020 in offline (pen & paper)/ online/ blended (online + offline) mode. She termed this Notification to be in violation of Article 21 and said forcing students to give offline exams is in absolute violation of fundamental right to life enshrined under Article 21 of Indian Constitution.

Regarding offline exams, Avni states in the letter,

“If the college or university conducts online exams the students are exposed to the myriads of problems which might arise in an online examination like unstable internet connection, crashing of computers and laptops, electricity power cuts etc. Further giving online exams would be impossible for students who do not have personal computers or laptops. These are some serious issues which must be taken into account before asking students to sit for online examination.”

The letter also highlights the concern over the conduct of ‘special exams’ and states that the said order is highly uncertain as no one knows when this pandemic ends and when would it become feasible for universities to conduct these special exams.UGC in its order has provided that the final year students who are unable to appear in the examination “may be given opportunity to appear in the special examination which may be conducted by university as and when feasible”.

“By reason of these uncertainties students are unable to plan further course of action as without a degree students are unable to get the jobs, they wouldn’t get admission for higher studies, they wouldn’t be able to sit in competitive exams and eventually it’ll make students to lose their entire academic year. These facts are causing massive impact on mental condition of students.”

The letter further draws the attention towards the practice of impassive levying of fee by the various colleges and universities even in the times of great crisis not only in Indian economy but also in the global market.

“It is pertinent to mention here that in view of the Covid 19 induced lockdown, several parents have undergone substantial pay cuts and even layoffs. It is extremely difficult for a large section of the students to even pay their tuition fee, still several colleges in Madhya Pradesh without any empathy towards student community are charging them for the expenses which never incurred due to lockdown like – Infrastructure/development fee, library fee, Internet fee, Co-curricular activities fee, other fee and so on.”

The letter goes on to state that if the college conducts online exams then students are required to buy own computers/laptops and pay for personal internet connection. Therefore charging thousands of rupees in the name of examination form fee is not justifiable and is arbitrary and unreasonable.


Read the full text of the letter here.

Read the details of UGC’s revised guidelines on conduct of final year exams here

Know thy Judge

The day marks as the death anniversary of former Chief Justice of India, Hon’ble Mr. Justice Y.V. Chandrachud who was born in Poona on 12-07-1920. He graduated with History and Economics in 1940 from the Elphinstone College, Bombay and had obtained his law degree in 1942 from ILS Law College, Pune. He enrolled as an advocate in High Court of Bombay in 1943. He was a part time professor of law in Government Law College, Bombay, from 1949 to 1952. He was appointed Judge, High Court Bombay, on 19-03-1961 and Judge, Supreme Court, on 28-08-1972. He was appointed the Chief Justice of India on 22-02-1978 and he was the longest serving CJI in India’s history at 7 years and 4 months and retired on 11-07-1985.

His son, Hon’ble Dr. Justice D.Y. Chandrachud who is currently acting as Judge, Supreme Court recalls that he was alert till his last breath and even after retirement in 1985, he was actively involved in mediation and arbitration. He has several times mentioned as to how his father had a special place for criminal law in his heart and how the former CJI’s verdicts served a reformative role rather than only serve the “penological purpose.”

A true jurist, he was known to be a liberal judge and for his path breaking judgments.

His landmark judgments include:

  • Minerva Mills Ltd. v. Union of India [(1980) 3 SCC 625] where he had laid down how a balance between fundamental rights and directive principles had to be achieved.
  • Gurbaksh Singh Sibbia v. State of Punjab [(1980) 2 SCC 565] clearly showed his empathy for criminal law where he had laid down the law of anticipatory bail. He had held that anticipatory bail must be left to judges who have the experience to take a wise decision.
  • Mohd. Ahmed Khan v. Shah Bano Begum [(1985) 2 SCC 556] where he had ruled that  divorced Muslim women were entitled to claim maintenance from husbands under the Civil Procedure Code, which overrides the Muslim Personal Law.
  • Olga Tellis v. Bombay Municipal Corpn.  [(1985) 3 SCC 545] where he had extended Article 21 (Right to Life) of the Constitution to slum dwellers, ruling that they had the right to a roof over their heads.
  • While looking at the famous judgments no one can turn a blind eye towards the case of A.D.M. Jalbalpur v. Shivakant Shukla [(1976) 2 SCC 521] famously known as the ‘Habeas Corpus case’ which had famous for the wrong reasons, where he along with Justice P.N. Bhagwati, had decided that the right to life itself could be suspended during an emergency. He went on to bec­ome chief justice and later apologized for the decision. Justice Bhagwati also publicly repented for the same.

Did you know? In the recent privacy judgment, K.S. Puttaswamy v. Union of India, [(2017) 10 SCC 1] his son, Hon’ble Dr. Justice D.Y. Chandrachud found occasion to correct a historical wrong and held that the ADM Jabalpur decision was seriously flawed and ruled against it.


Suchita Shukla, Legal Editor has put this story together

Hot Off The PressNews

A final year student has written to the Chief Justice of Bombay High Court raising concerns over the guidelines issued by UGC on July 6, 2020 which allowed the Universities/ Institutions to conduct terminal semester(s)/final year examinations by the end of September, 2020 in offline/online/blended mode.

The letter written by Anshritha Rai raises concerns of the safety of millions of final year students and their families, invigilators, evaluators, transport authorities, support staff and several other key stakeholders, either directly or indirectly, involved in the examination process.

Highlighting the plight of the large section of students that reside either in different parts of India or in other countries, the letter reads,

“UGC has provided universities the option to conduct exams in either an offline (pen and paper) or online or blended (offline ­+ online) mode. Online mode of examinations, however, neglects socio-economic diversity and inequality of internet access. Likewise, holding physical examinations has its own glaring set of shortcomings. Whether the offline or online or blended mode is adopted, there are a myriad number of practical, technological and institutional difficulties that are sure to be encountered.”

The letter also highlights that the cases in India are rising exponentially and as on date, there are easily over 7,60,000 cases. As per AIIMS data, India could witness a peak in COVID-19 cases as late as in mid-November. 

It further states that soon after the UGC Guidelines were released, the Maharashtra Government unequivocally reiterated its inability to hold final year examinations in a letter addressed to the Ministry of Human Resource Development. Moreover, UGC itself has cancelled all intermediate examinations. UGC’s guidelines, which mandatorily require final year students to appear for examinations by September end, is arbitrary and in blatant disregard of the fundamental rights guaranteed by our Constitution.

“It is highly regretful that an arbitrary distinction is being drawn between intermediate and final year students. If this exercise were to be carried out, the lives of all final year students pan India would be put in grave peril. This is evinced by the recent Karnataka SSLC exam fiasco where 32 students tested positive.”

Rai, in her letter, also states that there is a need for reforming the education system. She states,

“The unabated focus on mandating university exams and sticking to traditional patterns is indicative of the flaws in our higher education system. Our strict examination-oriented culture has frequently come under fire for failing to develop practical skills and critical reasoning. Credibility and intellectual prowess has little to no connection with examination grades.”

By way of this letter, the student has requested the Chief Justice to resolve the issue of terminal examinations and to bring much needed clarity about the evaluation method.


Read the full text of the letter here

Read the details of UGC’s revised guidelines on conduct of final year exams here

Appointments & TransfersNews

President appoints Justice Bhushan Pradyumna Dharmadhikari, Judge of the Bombay High Court, to be the Chief Justice of the Bombay High Court with effect from the date he assumes charge of his office.


Ministry of Law and Justice

[Notification dt. 18-03-2020]

Appointments & TransfersNews

Supreme Court Collegium has recommended elevation of Justice B.P. Dharmadhikari, Acting Chief Justice, Bombay High Court as Chief Justice of that High Court.


Supreme Court of India

[Collegium Statement dt. 24-02-2020]

Appointments & TransfersNews

The Supreme Court Collegium in its meeting held on 15-10-2019 has decided to recommend elevation of Judges of High Courts as Chief Justices of the High Courts, as mentioned below:

S. No. Name of the Judge Present High Court Elevation as Chief Justice of
1. Mohammad Rafiq Rajasthan High Court Meghalaya High Court
2. Dr Ravi Ranjan (PHC: Patna) Punjab & Haryana High Court Jharkhand High Court

Supreme Court of India

Appointments & TransfersNews

President is pleased to appoint Justice Ravi Shanker Jha, Judge of the Madhya Pradesh High Court, to be the Chief Justice of the Punjab and Haryana High Court with effect from the date he assumes charge of his office.


Ministry of Law and Justice

[Notification dt. 03-10-2019]

Appointments & TransfersNews

President is pleased to appoint Justice Arup Kumar Goswami, Judge of the Gauhati High Court, to be the Chief Justice of the Sikkim High Court with effect from the date he assumes charge of his office.


Ministry of Law and Justice 

[Notification dt. 03-10-2019]

Appointments & TransfersNews

President is pleased to appoint Justice Ajai Lamba, Judge of the Allahabad High Court, to be the Chief Justice of the Gauhati High Court with effect from the date he assumes charge of his office.


Ministry of Law and Justice

[Notification dt. 03-10-2019]

Appointments & TransfersNews

President is pleased to appoint Smt. Justice Meenakshi Madan Rai, senior-most Judge of the Sikkim High Court, to perform the duties of the office of the Chief Justice of the Sikkim High Court with effect from 17th September, 2019 consequent upon the retirement of Shri Justice Vijai Kumar Bist, Chief Justice of the Sikkim High Court.


Ministry of Law and Justice

[Notification dt. 13-09-2019]