Justice Lalit takes oath as 49th Chief Justice of India
Justice UU Lalit was on Saturday sworn in as the 49th Chief Justice of India (CJI). President Droupadi Murmu administered oath of office to Justice Lalit. The ceremony was attended by Vice President Jagdeep Dhankhar, Prime Minister Narendra Modi, and several union ministers besides people from the legal fraternity. His predecessor, Justice NV Ramana, was also present on the occasion.
Why does this story matter?
- His appointment follows the recommendations of the outgoing CJI NV Ramana.
- Several major issues, including Constitution bench proceedings, are anticipated to come before the Supreme Court during Justice Lalit's tenure as CJI.
- Notably, he was part of numerous groundbreaking decisions, including one that declared the practice of instant 'triple talaq' among Muslims unlawful and unconstitutional.
Justice Lalit's priorities as CJI
According to reports, Justice Lalit has already established priorities for his tenure as CJI. On the eve of farewell to Ramana, Lalit emphasized three areas in which he wishes to work which include ensuring that at least one constitution bench operates in the Supreme Court (SC) throughout the year. Other important areas are scheduling cases for hearing before the SC and highlighting urgent concerns.
His pledge to ease the work and proceedings at SC
"I must assure you that we will strive hard to make the listing as simple, as clear and as transparent as possible," Justice Lalit said while speaking at a function organized by the Supreme Court Bar Association (SCBA) to bid farewell to his predecessor.
Watch the video of the oath taking ceremony
His term will be of less than three months
Justice Lalit has a limited term and will be in office until November 8, 2022. CJI Ramana retired on August 26 following which Justice Lalit took over the charge. To recall, the incumbent CJI recommended his name as the successor as per the traditions after receiving official communication from the Ministry of Law and Justice.
Justice Lalit only second CJI chosen directly from the Bar
Justice Lalit became the second Chief Justice of the Supreme Court—after Justice SM Sikri—chosen directly from the Bar. Born in 1957, he enrolled as an advocate in 1983 and practiced at the Bombay HC until 1985. Prior to his appointment as an SC judge in 2014, he served as the Special Public Prosecutor for the Central Bureau of Investigation.