A Look At The 5 Newly Appointed Supreme Court Judges
The five new judges appointed to the Supreme Court were sworn in on Friday by Chief Justice of India Justice JS Khehar. With these new appointments, the total strength of Supreme Court judges has risen to 28, still three short of the total sanctioned strength of 31.
Four of the new appointees were High Court Chief Justices while one was a justice in the Karnataka High Court.
Here’s a look at their profiles in detail:
Justice Sanjay Kishan Kaul
After completing his LLB from Campus Law Centre, Delhi University, Justice Kaul started practice at the Delhi High Court and the Supreme Court. Before being elevated as a permanent High Court judge in 2003, Justice Kaul served as an advocate on record of the Supreme Court from 1987 to 1999 and was designated as senior advocate in 1999. Justice Kaul has also served as the Chief Justice of the Punjab and Haryana High Court, and was serving as the Chief Justice of the Madras High Court before being elevated to the apex court.
Justice Kaul has penned some liberal judgements upholding the freedom of speech and expression. In 2008, it was Justice Kaul who quashed the case of obscenity against painter MF Hussain and then later in 2016 against acclaimed writer Perumal Murugan.
In the Perumal Murugan judgement, this is what the bench headed by Justice Kaul had said, ”It is a matter of concern that as an evolving society, our tolerance level seems to be on the decline. Any contra view or social thinking is met at times with threats or violent behaviour. Our greatest problem today is fundamentalism which is the triumph of the letter over the spirit.‘’
Justice Naveen Sinha
Grandson of the first Advocate General of Bihar, Babu Baldev Sahay, Justice Naveen Sinha began practicing in the Patna High Court after completing his LLB from Campus Law Centre, Delhi University. Appointed as a judge of the Patna high court on February 11, 2004, Justice Sinha was transferred to the Chhattisgarh High Court in July 2014. He became the acting Chief Justice of Chhattisgarh High Court in October 2014 and was confirmed as its Chief Justice in April 2015. He took over as the Chief Justice of the Rajasthan High Court in May, 2016.
Justice Sinha is credited with championing computerisation of the Patna, Chhattisgarh and Rajasthan High Courts. It was under him that the Chhattisgarh High Court introduced electronic payment facility, becoming the second court in the country to do so.
Justice Mohan M Shantangoudar
After enrolling as an advocate in 1980, Justice Shantanagoudar started his independent practice in 1984 practicing in civil, criminal and constitutional matters. Justice Shatanangoudar also served as the State Public Prosecutor of Karnataka from 1999 to 2002 and was then appointed as Permanent Judge of the Karnataka High Court. He was serving as the Chief Justice of the Kerala High Court before his elevation to the Supreme Court.
Justice Deepak Gupta
Born in a family of lawyers, Justice Deepak Gupta started his practice in 1978 after completing his LLB from Campus Law Centre, University of Delhi. He was elevated as the Judge of the Himachal Pradesh High Court and also headed the green bench in the Himachal Pradesh High Court. Later, he was transferred as Chief Justice of the Tripura High Court in 2013 and he was serving as the Chief Justice of the Chattisgarh High Court before being elevated to the Supreme Court.
Justice S Abdul Nazeer
Justice Nazeer’s appointment is a rarity as he is elevated to the Supreme Court with out first serving as Chief Justice of any High Court. Justice Nazeer enrolled as an advocate in 1983 and practised in the Karnataka High Court. He was appointed as the permanent judge of the Karnataka High Court in 2004 and was serving in the same position before being elevated to the Supreme Court.