CJI Lalit takes final bow with contentment, says was able to fulfill promises to a certain extent
Chief Justice of India (CJI) U.U. Lalit said on Monday that he was taking the final bow before this court with contentment, as he was able to fulfill the promises to a certain extent, which he had made on August 27 this year, after taking over as 49th CJI of the country.
Speaking at the farewell function organised for him by the Supreme Court Bar Association (SCBA), Justice Lalit said that he was able to achieve, to a certain extent, streamlining of cases, listing of regular cases, ease in mentioning and having at least one Constitution Benches sitting on a regular basis.
As per the outgoing CJI, during his 74-day tenure, the Supreme Court managed to dispose of around 10,000 cases, besides dismissing 13,000 cases, which were lying in defects. The fresh filing of cases stood at 8700, he added.
Though CJI Lalit is set to demit office on Tuesday, Monday was his last working day since the Court is shut tomorrow on account of Guru Nanak Jayanti.
Recalling his family history, Justice Lalit said his grandmother was a doctor. However, nobody wore a white coat in the family after her, but decided to take up the legal profession and wore black coats.
He said he was fortunate to have many friends in the Apex Court, adding that each person sitting in the court had some association with him.
Calling Soli Sorabjee a great source of inspiration for him, the CJI noted that this journey of about 37 years in this court was made easier with everybody’s support and blessings of elders.
Justice Lalit concluded by saying that this court gave him everything, adding that all associations he had in the court, turned out fruitful for him.
Dr. Justice D.Y. Chandrachud, the CJI designate, also spoke on the occasion. He recalled the long association between the families of Lalits and Chandrachuds.
As per Justice Chandrachud, CJI Lalit’s father had worked as a junior in the Mumbai chamber of his father, Justice Y.V. Chandrchud.
The CJI-designate recalled practicing with Justice Lalit in the Supreme Court and said he learnt the nuances of the profession from him.
As per Justice Chandrachud, he found Justice Lalit collaborative, consultative and compassionate.
He said the large gathering showering praises on Justice Lalit were not just accolades, but was also a proof of the work he did to uplift the institution.
The CJI-designate concluded by saying that as a successor, he had ‘very big shoes’ to fill in.
Supreme Court Bar Association (SCBA) Vice-President Pradeep Rai said Justice Lalit has been one of the most successful third-generation lawyers, who motivated the Bar with his hard work, dedication and strong values.
Calling the outgoing CJI his elder brother, Rai said he was yet to accept the fact that Justice Lalit will no longer be part of this courtroom.
Speaking on the recent statement of Law and Justice Minister Kiren Rijiju over the judiciary overstepping its boundaries and entering the executive domain, Rai said the Minister was his old friend. He knew him for over two decades now.
‘Politicians make statements, but the honourable judges do not have a medium to say something or make statements. When it comes to such issues, the Bar will not remain silent. The Collegium system is working absolutely fine,’ Rai said.
‘If there is any suggestion, where the Collegium system can work without any influence or interference from the government, we will definitely work on it,’ he added.