New Delhi: Justice Jagdish Singh Khehar is all set to be the next Chief Justice of India.
Incumbent CJI TSThakur on Tuesday recommended Justice Khehar's name for the top post. Justice Thakur will demit office on January 3.
Here are some interesting facts about the CJI-designate:
- Justice Khehar headed the five judges' Constitution bench which struck down the National Judicial Appointment Commission (NJAC) as unconstitutional holding that it intruded upon the independence of judiciary.
- Justice Khehar, 64, will be the first Chief Justice from the Sikh community and will hold the tenure for over seven months till August 27, 2017.
- Khehar also presided over the five judges' constitution bench that had quashed the then Arunachal Pradesh Governor Jyoti Prasad Rajkhowa's decision to prepone the assembly session from January 2016 to December as it directed restoration of ousted Chief Minister Nabam Tuki's government.
- He was also a part of the bench which sent Sahara chief Subrata Roy to Tihar jail.
- Justice Khehar also headed a bench which recently gave a significant verdict holding that the principal of 'equal pay for equal work' has to be made applicable to those engaged as daily wagers, casual and contractual employees who perform the same duties as the regulars.
- During the NJAC hearing, Justice Khehar had responded to the tirade from Attorney General Mukul Rohatgi by saying that the judiciary was working within its "lakshmanrekha".
"Judiciary is mandated to shield all persons, citizens and non-citizens alike, against discrimination and abuse of State power. Liberty, equality and dignity of citizen have flourished substantially in India due to the pro-active role of judiciary in the country," he had said.
- Justice Khehar was also a part of the five-judge bench which answered the Presidential Reference whether all natural resources have to be alienated through auction. Writing a separate judgement, he had opined that no part of natural resource can be dissipated as a matter of largesse, charity, donation or endowment for private exploitation.
- A LL.B and LL.M degree holder from Punjab University, Justice Khehar was also the Chairman of the Rajya Sabha appointed Inquiry Committee for investigating the grounds on which the removal of Justice PD Dinakaran, Chief Justice of the Karnataka High Court, was sought for alleged corruption.
- Before being elevated as a judge of the Punjab and Haryana High Court at Chandigarh on February 8, 1999, Justice Khehgar had practised before it as well as the Himachal Pradesh High Court and the Supreme Court. He was twiuce appointed as the acting Chief Justice of Punjab and Haryana High Court from August 2, 2008, and again from November 17, 2009.
- He was elevated as Chief Justice of Uttrakhand High Court on November 29, 2009. Later he was transferred as Chief Justice of Karnataka High Court.
- Justice Khehar was elevated as judge of the Supreme Court on September 13, 2011.