Justice Sharad Arvind Bobde takes oath as 47th CJI

Justice Bobde took oath at a brief ceremony held at the Durbar Hall of Rashtrapati Bhawan. Justice Bobde had said that he would prefer a conservative approach on the issue of disclosing the Collegium's entire deliberations on rejection of names fo...

Sharad Arvind Bobde takes oath as the 47th Chief Justice of India
NEW DELHI: Justice SA Bobde, the senior-most judge in the Supreme Court hierarchy after former CJI Ranjan Gogoi, was on Monday sworn in as the 47th Chief Justice of India by President Ram Nath Kovind at a function in Rashtrapati Bhavan. CJI Bobde will hold office till April 23, 2021.

Among the first decisions CJI Bobde took in open court soon after was to grant an urgent mentioning made by senior advocate Kapil Sibal for a hearing on a bail plea filed by former finance minister P Chidambaram.

“My bail has been rejected by the high court. My client has been in custody for over 90 days,” he told the CJI. “Either tomorrow or day after,” was all the CJI said. In his argument, Chidambaram said that the high court on November 15, 2019, wrongly denied him bail in the ED case related to the INX

Media issue.

The CBI has accused Chidambaram of alleged clearing the deal in return for a quid pro quo to his son Karti Chidambaram through a host of shell companies. A different bench of the top court, headed by Justice R. Banumathi, had earlier granted him bail in the CBI case. But he remains in custody in the ED case.

The CJI sat on the dais in the jampacked court with visiting dignitaries such as the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Bhutan and Jamaica. The court room was unusually crowded with friends and well-wishers of the CJI. Lawyers trooped in from courts all over Delhi to have a peek at the new CJI presiding over his court. He was sitting along Justices SR Gavai and Surya Kant on Monday.

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CJI Bobde, during his stint, had been party to many historic rulings. Among them is a judgement, in which by a majority, the court had ruled that any appeal to the voter on the basis of his religion, or that of the candidate’s religion, would amount to a corrupt electoral practice. He was also party to a judgement which had banned crackers in the wake of pollution in the city, which was later diluted to make way for green, or environmentally less demanding crackers.

He was also party to the Aadhaar ruling which upheld a citizen’s right to privacy without invalidating the scheme itself. He was part of a bench which upheld a ban on a book which hurt the religious feelings of the followers of Lord Basavaswara.

In run-up to assuming office, Justice Bobde had reiterated his commitment to delivering justice and hastening the process by using modern management and technical tools.
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