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‘Will make it a no-stress court’: Justice DY Chandrachud sworn in as 50th CJI

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Justice Dhananjay Y Chandrachud on 9 November took oath as the 50th Chief Justice of India. President Droupadi Murmu administered the oath of office to Justice Chandrachud. 

“Serving common people is my priority. Please look forward. I will work for all the citizens of the country. Be it in technology or be it in registry…or be it in judicial reforms, I will take care of citizens in every aspect,” said Justice Chandrachud in his brief interaction with journalists as he took a round of the apex court premises.

Justice Chandrachud is the son of 16th CJI YV Chandrachud. 

Justice DY Chandrachud, often called DYC in the legal circles, was involved in many landmark verdicts. Justice Chandrachud, known for giving law a human face, began his first day as the CJI garlanding the Mahatma Gandhi statue in the Supreme Court premises.

Justice Chandrachud, who was accompanied by his wife Kalpana Das, said heading the Indian judiciary was a “great opportunity and responsibility”.

In response to a query as to how he will ensure trust of people in judiciary, he said, “I will ensure trust of citizens not only through words but through my work”.

Justice Chandrachud, who succeeded Justice UU Lalit, will be the CJI until 10 November 2024, a day before he completes 65 years. Justice Lalit had a short tenure of 74 days.

Justice Chandrachud, who had dubbed dissent the “safety valve of democracy” during an earlier court hearing, is the son of the longest serving CJI Y V Chandrachud, who held the top judicial post from February 22, 1978, to July 11, 1985. This is the first instance of a father and son occupying the highest seat of justice.

Justice Dhananjay Y Chandrachud, who was part of several Constitution benches and landmark verdicts of the Supreme Court, was on Wednesday sworn in as the 50th Chief Justice of India, stepping into the shoes of his father 44 years after he became the country’s top judge.

President Droupadi Murmu administered the oath of office to Justice Chandrachud, the senior most judge of the Supreme court who was involved in historic judgements like on the Ayodhya issue that paved the way for the construction of a Ram Temple at the disputed site in Uttar Pradesh and Right to Privacy, at a brief ceremony at the Rashtrapati Bhavan. Justice Chandrachud took the oath in English and in the name of God.

Justice Chandrachud, often referred to as DYC in legal circles and who is known for giving law a human face, began his first day as the CJI garlanding the Mahatma Gandhi statue in the Supreme Court premises.

He entered the CJI’s courtroom around 12.10 PM for hearing the matters listed for the day.

“Apologies for keeping the members of the Bar wait for so long. I will try to make it a no-stress court for everyone,” he said after settling on the CJI’s chair.

Counted as a judge who enriched the ‘verdict docket’ of the apex court, Justice Chandrachud, who has played a pivotal role in digitisation of the judiciary, is viewed as sharp, articulate and forward looking.

Expected to advance judicial frontiers, he was a member of benches that delivered judgements on decriminalising part of Section 377 of the IPC that criminalises consensual unnatural sex between consenting adults and on allowing entry of women of all ages into the Sabarimala temple in Kerala.

Justice Chandrachud, born on November 11, 1959 and considered a Delhi University product who studied in St Stephen’s College and the Campus Law Centre before going to Harvard, was elevated to the top court on 13 May 2016.

He was also part of an important verdict expanding the scope of the Medical Termination of Pregnancy Act and the corresponding rules to include unmarried women for abortion between 20-24 weeks of pregnancy.

Known as a doer, he presided over a bench that worked five hours beyond regular working hours on 30 September this year to hear 75 cases to clear the board before the onset of the Dussehra vacation.

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