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India Condoles Demise of Former Chief Justice of India, RC Lahoti

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Staff Writer, TLR

Published on July 14, 2023, 17:41:00

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RC Lahoti, Chief Justice, Former Chief Justice

Ramesh Chandra Lahoti, the former Chief Justice of India (CJI), expired on Wednesday at a hospital in New Delhi, according to family sources. He was 81 years old when he passed away. 

About Justice Ramesh Chandra Lahoti

Justice Lahoti was born on November 1, 1940, in the city of Guna in Madhya Pradesh. He registered as a lawyer in the year1962. He was appointed as a District and Sessions Judge in April 1977, after being recruited directly from the Bar to the state's higher judicial service. In May 1978 however, he resigned from the office and went back to practicing law.

On May 3, 1988, he was appointed as an additional judge of the Madhya Pradesh High Court, and on August 4, 1989, he was appointed as a permanent judge. In February 1994, he was then transferred to the Delhi High Court.

Following his transfer to the Delhi High Court, Justice Lahoti was appointed to the Supreme Court of India on December 9, 1998. Soon after, he was appointed as the 35th Chief Justice of India on June 1, 2004.

Shortly after taking up the post of the CJI of India, Justice Lahoti announced his retirement from the post on November 1, 2005.

Dr. Manmohan Singh, India's former Prime Minister honoured Justice Lahoti with the National Law Day Award in 2006 for his outstanding contribution to the administration of justice. 

Condolences pour in

Justice Lahoti was known as the fearless stalwart in the Indian Judiciary.

NV Ramana, the current Chief Justice of India (CJI), said that Justice Lahoti will be remembered as the bold and independent judge till his last breath.

A minute of silence was observed in Courtroom 1 of the Supreme Court in honour of the late former Chief Justice of India.

Eminent Corporate Lawyer & Public Policy Expert, Hemant Batra reminisced about his association with Justice Lahoti and said that he was neither a typical chief Justice nor an ordinary human being.

“He was truly a blessed soul. A paradigm and embodiment of integrity, intelligence, simplicity, humility and clarity of thoughts,” is an excerpt from Hemant Batra’s short memoir about Justice Lahoti.

On a nostalgic recount, Hemant Batra addressed Late Justice Lahoti and said, "I will always have this special bond with you, Sir. You put me on the path of spirituality or should I say, you brought me face to face with the reality of our existence. I will forever be indebted for showing me this path of wisdom."

The Prime Minister of India, Narendra Modi said that Justice Lahoti will be known for his contributions to the judiciary and for laying emphasis on providing prompt and swift justice to the underprivileged.

Kiren Rijiju, the Union Minister of Law and Justice, expressed his condolences on Justice Lahoti's passing. He tweeted “Saddened to hear the passing away of Shri RC Lahoti, former Chief Justice of India. He rose from a humble background and reached the highest position of our country's judiciary because of his ability, knowledge, and wisdom. I extend my heartfelt condolences to his family.”

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