President Ram Nath Kovind has nominated Former Chief Justice of India, Ranjan Gogoi, to the Rajya Sabha.
The Ministry of Home Affairs, in a gazetted notification, said: “In exercise of the power conferred by sub-clause (a) of clause (1) of Article 80 of the constitution of India, read with clause 3 of that article, the president is pleased to nominate Shri Ranjan Gogoi to the council of states to fill the vacancy caused due to the retirement of one of the retired member”.
Former CJI Ranjan Gogoi, the 46th Chief Justice of India, who was credited for many landmark verdicts on diverse topics like the decades-old politically and religiously sensitive Ayodhya land dispute, had retired as the chief justice of India last year on November 17.
In the last week of his tenure, Gogoi passed a slew of key landmark judgments pertaining to government matters, religion, politics, and the applicability of the law to his own office. He etched his name in the annals history when a five-judge bench headed by him on November 9, 2019, brought an end to the Ayodhya land dispute, which dates back to even before the Supreme Court came into existence in 1950.
The CJI also headed a bench which, by a majority 3-2 verdict, referred to a larger seven-judge bench the pleas seeking review of the apex court’s historic 2018 judgement allowing women and girls of all ages to enter Kerala’s Sabarimala temple.
Justice Gogoi’s name will also be remembered for heading a bench which gave a clean chit to the Modi government twice — first on the writ petition and then on the pleas seeking review of the December 14, 2018 verdict, in the Rafale fighter jet deal with French firm Dassault Aviation. It also censured Congress leader Rahul Gandhi for wrongfully attributing the “Chowkidar chor hai” remark against Prime Minister Narendra Modi to the top court.
The Supreme Court Bench of CJI Gogoi has also reserved its judgement on pleas challenging the constitutional validity of the Finance Act, 2017 on the ground that it was passed by Parliament as a Money Bill.
On November 13, a five-judge constitution bench, headed by Gogoi, wherein a 3:2 majority verdict, the apex court referred the broader question of whether all provisions of the Finance Act 2017 could be construed as being part of Money Bill and hence didn’t need Rajya Sabha’s approval. The Supreme Court held that a larger bench should look into the correctness of the Aadhaar judgment since the Aadhaar Act was also passed as a Money Bill.
Justice Gogoi, who was sworn on October 3, 2018, as the 46th CJI, had the tenure of a little over 13 months. On his last date at office, Gogoi circulated a parting note to journalists covering the Supreme Court, refusing one-on-one interviews. He said, “bitter truth must remain in memory.”