Justice Sharad Arvind Bobde was sworn-in as the 47th Chief Justice of India on Monday, with President Ram Nath Kovind administering him oath of office at a brief ceremony in the Durbar Hall of Rashtrapati Bhavan.
Justice Bobde succeeds Justice Ranjan Gogoi, who stepped down as CJI on Sunday after remaining in office for over 13 months.
CJI Bobde was appointed a judge of the Supreme Court in April 2013. He will remain CJI for a little over 17 months — until April 23, 2021.
Justice Bobde brought his family, including his 93-year-old mother, who came on a stretcher, for the swearing-in ceremony. Immediately after taking oath, he sought the blessings of his mother by touching her feet.
Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu, Prime Minister Narendra Modi and several senior ministers were present at the oath-taking ceremony. Former Vice President Hamid Ansari and former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh were also present, besides former CJIs Justices Gogoi, R M Lodha, T S Thakur and J S Khehar.
After taking over, CJI Bobde held court where the representatives of the Supreme Court Bar conveyed their greetings.
Also on the dais in court 1 on Monday were Chief Justice of Jamaica, Justice Bryan Sykes, and senior-most judge of Bhutan’s Supreme Court, Justice Kuenlay Tshering.
Coming from a family of lawyers, the CJI was born on April 24, 1956, in Nagpur, Maharashtra. His father, Arvind Shriniwas Bobde, was an eminent senior advocate.
Justice Bobde was part of the five-judge Constitution bench that rendered the unanimous verdict to put the curtains down on the Ayodhya land dispute, pending in courts since 1950. He was also part of a nine-judge bench that held unanimously in August 2017 that the Right to Privacy was a constitutionally protected fundamental right.
He was part of the three-judge bench which, in 2015, clarified that no Indian citizen can be denied basic services for not possessing Aadhaar card.
CJI Bobde completed BA and LLB degrees from Nagpur University and was enrolled as an advocate of the Bar Council of Maharashtra in 1978. He practised law at the Nagpur Bench of Bombay High Court and was elevated to the Bombay High Court on March 29, 2000, as additional judge. He became Chief Justice of Madhya Pradesh High Court on October 16, 2012.
(With PTI inputs)