Justice Dipankar Dutta was on Tuesday evening sworn in as Chief Justice of the Bombay High Court by Maharashtra Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari at Raj Bhavan.
Calcutta HC judge Justice Dutta, who arrived in Mumbai late Monday, took the oath of office before a select gathering.
Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray, Leader of Opposition in the Legislative Assembly Devendra Fadnavis, Legislative Assembly Speaker Nana Patole, Minister of Tourism, Protocol and Environment Aaditya Thackeray, family members of Justice Dutta, judges of the Bombay High Court, Advocate General Ashutosh Kumbhakoni, Additional Solicitor General Anil Singh, Director General of Police Subodh Jaiswal and Commissioner of Police Parambir Singh were present at the ceremony.
After the President appointed him Chief Justice of the Bombay High Court, Justice Dutta made a 2,000-km, three-day road journey starting April 25, to reach Mumbai and take up his new assignment, as there was no other way to get here amid the lockdown.
Justice Dutta opted for the road journey to assume office without any delay, sources said.
The April 23 notification of Justice Dutta’s appointment came after the Supreme Court collegium on April 19 recommended his elevation as Chief Justice of the Bombay High Court.
Justice Dutta was born in February 1965. He obtained his LLB degree from University of Calcutta in 1989. He enrolled as an advocate the same year and practised in the Supreme Court and HCs, dealing with constitutional and civil cases.
Justice Dutta has served as the junior standing counsel for West Bengal between May 2002 and January 2004, and as a counsel for the Union government since 1998. He was elevated as a permanent judge of the Calcutta HC on June 22, 2006.
The outgoing Bombay HC Chief Justice, Bhushan P Dharmadhikari, who was sworn in on March 20, served his last day in office on Monday, April 27. A major part of his tenure consisted of the nationwide lockdown period and consequent videoconference hearings on urgent matters conducted by the HC.
Justice Dharmadhikari, who has served as a Bombay HC judge for nearly 16 years, attained his retirement age of 62 on April 28. He was appointed as acting CJ on February 24 after former CJ Pradeep Nandrajog’s retirement.
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