The Supreme Court today bid farewell to Justice Madan Lokur. Justice Lokur retires on December 30. However, today was his last working day as the Supreme Court closes today for winter holidays..As is the tradition, the Supreme Court Bar Association (SCBA) organised a farewell in the lawns. In a departure from the usual timing of 4 pm, the farewell function was held today at 1 pm..The function was attended by Chief Justice of India, Ranjan Gogoi, Attorney General KK Venugopal, SCBA President Rakesh Kumar Khanna, and other Supreme Court judges..Justice Lokur thanked various people who helped in his journey, particularly during his initial days as a lawyer and then as a judge..“If I was able to achieve something it was because I was standing on the shoulders of giants”, Justice Lokur said quoting Isaac Newton..He concluded his address by stressing the importance of the independence of the Bar..“It is very important to maintain the independence and integrity not only of the judiciary but also of the Bar; Bar has to remain independent and cannot be subordinate to the Bench or to any other authority or institution”, he said..CJI Ranjan Gogoi who spoke on occasion revealed an interesting fact – that he has known Justice Madan Lokur for close to half a century..They had stayed in opposite rooms during college days way back in 1971, said Gogoi J. stating that it is an emotional moment for him..“An emotional moment for me. My association with Madan Lokur J. is close to half a century..In 1971, we stayed in rooms opposite each other. He later went on to do law, while I pursued post-graduation.”.Thereafter, when the two became judges, the association continued..“I feel like my right arm is being taken away”, said Gogoi..Calling Lokur J. a pro-citizen and pro-victim judge, Gogoi J. listed his contributions in fields of prison reforms, environmental matters etc..“He has shown liberal attitude when dealing with cases of underprivileged. It is not necessary to spell out all his judgments. He is, no doubt a pro-citizen, pro-victim judge”, said Gogoi J..Attorney General KK Venugopal began his speech by stating that he has been at the receiving end of Justice Madan Lokur’s philosophy and has debated with him fiercely on many occasions..“But at the end of every debate, I have left with more respect for him. His heart and empathy are in the right place, integrity unquestioned”, said Venugopal..Venugopal then proceeded to shower praises on Justice Lokur stating that Lokur J. joins the line of great judges like Justice PN Bhagwati and Justice Krishna Iyer..“He was a sensitive, intelligent compassionate judge whose heart bled for the common man”, the AG said..SCBA President Rakesh Kumar Khanna and Vice President Jitendra Mohan Sharma also spoke on the occasion..Justice Lokur enrolled as an advocate in July 1977 and practised in the Delhi High Court and the Supreme Court. He became an Advocate-on-Record in the Supreme Court in 1981 and was designated Senior Advocate in 1997. He was appointed Additional Solicitor General in 1998 and continued in that post till he was appointed an Additional Judge of the Delhi High Court in February 1999..He was made permanent judge in July 1999. Subsequently, he became the Chief Justice of Gauhati High Court and then Andhra Pradesh High Court before being elevated to the Supreme Court..He was appointed as judge of the Supreme Court on June 4, 2012.