Justice R.M. Lodha to be next CJI

He banned over-the-counter sale of acid at retail outlets

Updated - May 19, 2016 12:24 pm IST

Published - March 29, 2014 12:21 am IST - NEW DELHI:

Justice R.M. Lodha, the seniormost judge of the Supreme Court, has been recommended to be the 41st Chief Justice of India to succeed CJI P. Sathasivam, who retires on April 26.

The Union Law Ministry has received a communication from the CJI, recommending Justice Lodha’s name. Ministry sources told The Hindu that the recommendation would be processed and the notification for appointment issued within a fortnight.

Justice Lodha became judge of the Rajasthan High Court on January 31, 1994. He was transferred to the Bombay High Court on February 16, 1994, where he served for 13 years. In February 2007, he was re-transferred to the Rajasthan High Court. He became Chief Justice of the Patna High Court in May 2008 and was elevated to the Supreme Court in December 2008.

During the past five years in the apex court, he has passed several landmark judgments. He banned over-the-counter sale of acid at retail outlets and ordered a compensation of Rs. 3 lakh to each acid attack victim. He held that approval of the Central Government was not necessary under Section 6A of the Delhi Special Police Establishment Act (which governs the CBI) for probe and prosecution of senior level officials in a matter where the inquiry/investigation into the crime under the Prevention of Corruption Act is being monitored by the court.

Justice Lodha headed the three-member panel which inquired into the allegations of a law intern against the former Supreme Court judge, A.K. Ganguly. The committee held that the statement of the intern, both written and oral, prima facie disclosed an act of “unwelcome behaviour.”

The report resulted in Justice Ganguly resigning as Chairperson of the West Bengal State Human Rights Commission.

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