Outgoing Uttarakhand High Court Chief Justice RS Chauhan said on Thursday that the judiciary cannot be docile or meek, and that the Constitution has bestowed it with the role of a guardian of the people..Judges are watchdogs of the State and upholders of the rule of law and democracy, he added..Justice Chauhan was speaking at his farewell organised by the Uttarakhand High Court. He is set to retire today. While addressing his colleagues at the Bench and the members of the Bar, he said that judges cannot act as knights in shining armour, but have to be bold and upright, courageous and independent. Quoting former US President Theodore Roosevelt, Justice Chauhan said that judges must speak softly but carry a big stick, and that stick is the Constitution.“We should be guided by its mandate, its philosophy. We should be inspired by its streams and its Preamble. The Preamble contains our ten commandments. To deviate from its commandments is to commit a jurisprudential cardinal sin. To dilute them is to betray the faith of the people, to make them subservient to a misplaced notion of governance is to abdicate our constitutional role. We are baptized by the laws; we are dedicated to its care. By our words or deeds, we cannot commit a judicial sacrilege,” he said.“The vision of the judge has to be holistic not myopic, the spirit of the judge must be liberal not conservative, the mind of the judge has to be flexible not rigid. The viscosity of judicial thought should be like water, it cannot be like a rock, crystallized by prejudices and biases,” he added..Justice Chauhan enrolled as an advocate in November 1983 and was elevated as a judge of the Rajasthan High Court in June 2005. In March 2015, he was transferred to the Karnataka High Court and then, in November 2018, to the High Court of Andhra Pradesh. Justice Chauhan was then appointed Acting Chief Justice of the Telangana High Court in April 2019 and its Chief Justice in June the same year.However, he was abruptly transferred to the Uttarakhand High Court as its Chief Justice in January 2021.Addressing his abrupt transfer, Justice Chauhan said, “Before I could complete my task in Telangana, I was transferred to the beautiful land of Uttarakhand. Due to the sudden transfer, people may have been perplexed, but I saw it as a divine plan. It is my great fortune that God brought me to Uttarakhand.”.During his tenure at the Uttarakhand High Court, Justice Chauhan had passed several orders criticising the government for its handling of the COVID-19 pandemic, especially the hosting of the Kumbh Mela in Haridwar.In one of the hearings, Justice Chauhan had said that the hosting of the Kumbh amidst a raging pandemic had made Uttarakhand a laughing stock.He passed several orders on prison reforms in the State of Uttarakhand. While hearing a case related to a complete ban on meat in Haridwar city, he commented that a society is judged by how it treats its minorities.