Justice Uday Umesh Lalit is chosen to serve as the 49th Chief Justice of the nation: A warrant of appointment for Justice Uday Umesh Lalit was signed by President Droupadi Murmu on Wednesday, making him the 49th Chief Justice of India (CJI). He would be the second member of the Indian judicial branch to be promoted directly to the Supreme Court bench from the Bar.
The first attorney to be promoted directly to the top court bench was Justice S M Sikri, who was appointed the 13th Chief Justice of India in January 1971.
On August 27, a day after Justice N V Ramana, the current Chief Justice of India, resigns from the position, Justice Uday Umesh Lalit will take over.
After serving as the CJI for less than three months, Justice Lalit will step down on November 8 of this year. Judges of the Supreme Court can retire at age 65.
Prior to being nominated as a Supreme Court judge on August 13, 2014, Justice Lalit was a senior attorney. Justice Uday Umesh Lalit has participated in several landmark decisions, including the one that declared the instant “triple talaq” divorce practise among Muslims to be unlawful and unconstitutional.
He withdrew from the highly charged Ram Janmabhoomi-Babri Masjid property ownership dispute in Ayodhya in January 2019.
In the Ayodhya case, Justice Lalit, a member of the five-judge Constitution bench presided over by the then-CJI Ranjan Gogoi, “indicated his disinclination to engage in the hearing any further.”
Senior attorney Rajeev Dhavan informed the Constitution bench that Justice Lalit had represented former Uttar Pradesh chief minister Kalyan Singh in a same dispute in 1997 while representing a Muslim party.
The August 2017 ruling by a five-judge Constitution bench, which by a 3:2 majority ruled the practise of divorce through instant “triple talaq” as “void,” “illegal,” and “unconstitutional,” was one of the landmark decisions in which Justice Lalit participated.
Justices Kurian Joseph, R F Nariman, and Lalit disagreed with the practise, believing it to be unconstitutional, despite the fact that then Chief Justice J S Khehar and Justice S Abdul Nazeer supported delaying the decision for six months and requesting that the government enact legislation to that effect. Since then, the judges Khehar, Joseph, and Nariman have retired.
Recently, a bench led by Justice Lalit convened to hear cases at 9.30 am, one hour earlier than the Supreme Court’s regular working time.
“I think the optimal time for us to meet is nine in the morning. I’ve always argued that if our kids can go for school at seven in the morning, why can’t we arrive at nine? “Judge Uday Umesh Lalit had noted
One of the most valuable shrines in Kerala, the historical Sree Padmanabhaswamy Temple, was ruled to be under the management of the former royal family of Travancore by a court led by Justice Lalit, who also held that the rule of “heritability must get attached to a right of Shebait” (servitor) of the temple.
The Kerala High Court’s 2011 decision ordering the state government to establish a trust to take control of the management and assets of the temple was overturned by the bench after the legal heirs of Uthradam Thirunal Marthanda Varma, the younger brother of the previous ruler, Sree Chithira Thirunal Balarama Varma, filed an appeal.
In another significant decision, a bench presided over by Justice Lalit determined that touching a child’s private parts or engaging in any physical act with the intent to commit sexual assault in violation of section 7 of the Protection of Children from Sexual Offenses (POCSO) Act because the sexual intent, not skin-to-skin contact, is the key component.
The Bombay High Court’s contentious “skin-to-skin” rulings in two POCSO Act cases were overturned by the bench, which claimed the high court erred in concluding there was no offence because there was no direct “skin-to-skin” contact with sexual intent.
The high court had ruled that the POCSO Act did not constitute a sexual assault if the accused and victim did not have actual skin-to-skin contact.
The National Legal Services Authority (NALSA), whose executive chairwoman also happens to be Justice Lalit, recently announced that it will create a “legal aid” system for the poor and marginalised in all districts along the lines of the office of public prosecutors. He was speaking at this location’s inaugural All India District Legal Services Authorities Meet.
Justice Uday Umesh Lalit , who was born on November 9th, 1957, registered as an attorney in June 1983 and worked at the Bombay High Court till December 1985.
In January 1986, he moved his practise to Delhi, and the Supreme Court named him a senior advocate in April 2004.
For the CBI’s trial in the 2G spectrum allocation case, he was chosen as the special public prosecutor.