Meet Justice Bobde, next CJI who is on Ayodhya Bench and other key cases

Sharad Arvind Bobde | Illustration: Ajay Mohanty

Justice Sharad Arvind Bobde, who was on Tuesday appointed as the 47th Chief Justice of India, has heard several key cases and is currently part of a 5-judge Constitution bench which will soon deliver its judgement in the politically sensitive Ram Janmabhoomi-Babri Masjid title dispute case.

Hailing from a family of lawyers from Maharashtra, he was part of a nine-judge Bench of the Supreme Court which in August 2017 declared the right to privacy as a fundamental right of an individual.

Justice Bobde, the second senior-most judge in the apex court, will succeed incumbent Ranjan Gogoi who will demit office on November 17. The 63-year-old judge will have a tenure of over 17 months as the CJI and is due to retire on April 23, 2021.

The Constitution bench which also includes Justice Gogoi is expected to deliver the keenly awaited Ayodhya verdict by November 15.

Justice Bobde, son of eminent senior advocate Arvind Shriniwas Bobde, has been chosen following the rule of seniority and his name was recommended by Justice Gogoi in a letter to the Centre.

His Warrant of Appointment was signed by President Ram Nath Kovind following which the Law Ministry issued a notification on Tuesday naming the judge as the next head of the Indian judiciary.

A nine-judge bench of the apex court headed by the then CJI J S Khehar and which included Justice Bobde had held unanimously that the right to privacy was a constitutionally protected right in India.

Justice Bobde also headed a three-member in-house committee which gave a clean chit recently to CJI Gogoi on a sexual harassment complaint against him by a former apex court staffer. The committee also included Justices Indira Banerjee and Indu Malhotra.

Justice Bobde was part of the three-judge bench which in 2015 clarified that no citizen of India without an Aadhaar card can be denied basic services and government services.

Recently, a two-judge bench headed by Justice Bobde directed the Committee of Administrators (CoA) headed by former Comptroller and Auditor General(CAG) Vinod Rai, appointed by it for the purpose of running the BCCI administration, to demit office paving the way for elected members to run the affairs of the cricket board.

Born on April 24, 1956 at Nagpur in Maharashtra, Justice Bobde completed Bachelor of Arts and LLB degrees from Nagpur University.

He was enrolled as an advocate of the Bar Council of Maharashtra in 1978.

Justice Bobde practised law at the Nagpur Bench of the Bombay High Court with appearances at Bombay before the Principal Seat and before the Supreme Court for over 21 years.

He was designated as senior advocate in 1998.

Justice Bobde was elevated to Bombay High Court on March 29, 2000, as Additional Judge and sworn in as Chief Justice of Madhya Pradesh High Court on October 16, 2012.

He was elevated as a judge of the Supreme Court on April 12, 2013.



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