Full House at Supreme Court: Four new judges sworn in

Full House at Supreme Court: Four new judges sworn in

Bar & Bench

Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi today administered the oath of office to four new judges appointed to the Supreme Court.

In a ceremony held this morning, Justices BR GavaiSurya Kant, Aniruddha Bose and AS Bopanna were sworn into office. Their appointments had been cleared by the Central Government on Wednesday.

With this, the Supreme Court will finally sit at its full strength of 31 judges. The Supreme Court will continue sitting at its full strength for the next three months, until the retirement of Justice AM Sapre on August 27, 2019.

Justice BR Gavai had been serving as a judge of Bombay High Court prior to his present appointment as a Supreme Court judge. Justice Gavai was born on November 24, 1960. He enrolled at the Bar on March 16, 1985, and practised at the Bombay High Court, predominantly at the Nagpur Bench. He served as Assistant Government Pleader, Additional Public Prosecutor and subsequently Public Prosecutor. He was appointed additional judge of the Bombay High Court on November 14, 2003.

Justice Surya Kant was the Chief Justice of Himachal Pradesh High Court prior to his elevation to the Supreme Court. Justice Kant hails from the Punjab & Haryana High Court. He started practicing law at the District Courts, Hisar in 1984 and shifted to Chandigarh in 1985 to practice at the High Court. He was designated as Senior Advocate in March 2001. He also held the office of Advocate General, Haryana till his elevation as a permanent judge to the Punjab and Haryana High Court on January 09, 2004.

The names of Justices Gavai and Surya Kant were recommended for elevation to the Supreme Court by the Collegium earlier this month.

Justices Bose and Bopanna were the Chief Justices of the Jharkhand High Court and the Gauhati High Court respectively prior to their elevation to the Supreme Court. Justice Bose stood at the all India seniority of Sl no. 12 in the combined seniority list of all India High Court judges, while Justice Bopanna stood at Sl no. 36.

Justice Aniruddha Bose was born in 1959 and enrolled as an advocate in 1985. His areas of practice included  Constitutional and Civil matters, with special emphasis on Intellectual Property Law. He was elevated to the Calcutta High Court in January 2004. In 2018, he was recommended to be appointed as the Chief Justice of the Delhi High Court. However, his name was returned by the Central government on the ground that he has no experience as Chief Justice to handle the affairs of a prominent High Court like Delhi. He was appointed the Chief Justice of the Jharkhand High Court instead in August 2018.

Justice AS Bopanna was born in 1959. Following his enrolment in 1984, Justice Bopanna’s areas of legal practice included Civil, Constitutional, Company, Service and Labour matters. He has also served as the Central Government’s standing counsel between 1999 and 2005. He was appointed as an Additional Judge of the Karnataka High Court in January 2006, and was made permanent in March 2007. In October 2016, he was elevated as Chief Justice of the Gauhati High Court.

The Collegium had recommended that Justices Bose and Bopanna be elevated to the Supreme Court in April this year. The Centre had initially returned this proposal, but the Collegium later reiterated the same.

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