Outgoing CJI Dipak Misra’s key verdicts: Read here
Chief Justice of India Dipak Misra on Monday held court for the last time along with his successor Ranjan Gogoi. He is formally retiring today but being a national holiday of Gandhi Jayanti, Monday was his last working day. Notably, Dipak Misra assumed office on 28 August 2017.
However, the 13-month tenure of outgoing CJI Dipak Misra was eventful with some key verdicts, two unusual midnight hearings, clash with the government and an unprecedented press conference by four senior judges of the Supreme Court.
Let’s read out the ‘Key Verdicts’ of outgoing CJI Dipak Misra
Online FIR Mandatory
The first key verdict from the bench of Supreme Court headed by CJI Dipak Misra came in the form of making Online FIR mandatory to make working of police transparent and accountable to the public. CJI Dipak Misra-led SC ordered all the states to make all FIRs online within 24 hours of its registration. The bench held that uploading the FIR online would help the affected parties to move the courts for redress with suitable pleas.
CJI Dipak Misra-headed bench made national anthem optional in cinema halls.
Right To Reputation
CJI Dipak Misra-headed bench also upheld the 156-year-old defamation law. During the hearing, he said, “The right to reputation is a constituent of Article 21 of the Constitution. It is an individual’s fundamental right.”
Decriminalization of Gay Sex
The Supreme Court headed by CJI Dipak Misra decriminalized Gay Sex by declaring Section 377 of the IPC ‘unconstitutional’.
Adultery Not An Offence
Under CJI Dipak Misra’s leadership, SC struck down Section 497 for violating fundamental right to equality.
Aadhaar Made Conditional
CJI Dipak Misra-headed bench held the constitutionality of Aadhaar but ruled that the UIDAI project could not be made mandatory for any social welfare scheme and availing rights. However, Justice Dipak Misra bench ruled that the government notification for mandatory Aadhaar-PAN linking was valid.
The SC also said that the Aadhaar card would not be mandatory in private companies anymore and further directed private companies, including banks and mobile companies to not to ask for Aadhaar details.
Supreme Court Goes Live
Last but not the least.. One of the key judgements of Justice Dipak Misra-headed bench was live streaming of the proceedings of the Supreme Court. The decision was taken to bring transparency and accountability to the judicial process and was a step to be taken in public interest.
Sabarimala Temple Open To All Women
CJI Dipak Misra-led bench declared the 1965-rule of the Kerala government that legally barred women from entering the Sabarimala Temple ‘unconstitutional’. During the hearing, he said that women of all age are allowed to under the Constitution to enter Sabarimala Temple.
Right To Privacy
Last year, CJI Dipak Misra also declared the ‘Right to Privacy’ a fundamental right.
Two Midnight Hearings
During his 13-month tenure, Justice Dipak Misra was involved in two post-midnight hearings in the Supreme Court. Firstly, a petition was moved by a group of lawyer-activists seeking stay on the execution order of 1993-Mumbai bomb blast convict Yaqub Memon in July 2015. The SC heard the matter but refused to order stay on hanging.
While the second midnight hearing was held this year under the leadership of CJI Dipak Misra in Supreme Court, after Karnataka Governor Vajubhai Vala invited BS Yeddyurappa of the BJP to form government despite the party having fallen short of majority and the JDS and the Congress announcing alliance. The Congress leaders moved the Supreme Court, which, however, did not order a stay on the swearing-in of Yeddyurappa.
Two big controversies were held in the tenure of CJI Dipak Misra. The one instance was filing of petitions in SC linking Justice Dipak Misra with the Medical Council of India scam.
While the other was issues related with allocation of cases. In January this year, Retired Justice Jasti Chelameswar along with three other senior judges including the CJI-designate Justice Ranjan Gogoi held a press conference and expressed unhappiness with the manner in which cases were being allocated to different benches in the Supreme Court.
However, Justice Dipak Misra did not make any comment on the press conference. Importantly, as Dipak Misra is retired, CJI-designate Justice Ranjan Gogoi will take charge of the Supreme Court.