Who is Chief Justice Jagdish Singh Khehar? Educational Qualification, Age, Wife, Sons, Bio
Chief Justice of India Justice Jagdish Singh Khehar has been involved in many high profile cases over his judicial career spanning several decades. In the twilight days of his stint as the Chief Justice of India, Justice Jagdish Singh Khehar has been involved in two very important cases including triple talaq and the right to privacy and that too in a matter of merely a few days.
There is no denying that Justice Jagdish Singh Khehar has won millions and millions of new admirers in the last one week alone. His judgment on triple talaq is being praised by Muslims across the country, who say that the Chief Justice despite obvious pressure from different quarters said that the practice of triple talaq was part of the Muslim jurisprudence that has been practiced in the country and thus was protected under right to freedom of religion.
He and the lone Muslim judge of the Supreme Court bench, Justice S Abdul Nazeer gave this judgment, while the three justices said that the practice was against Qur’an and was not a fundamental part of Islam. Besides, the five justices said that Muslim Personal law was part of the freedom of religion and no one has the right to temper with it.
If that was not enough, today’s judgment has won him many more admirers. The Supreme Court justices have given reason to masses to rejoice. While delivering the verdict, Supreme Court bench said, “The right to privacy is protected as an intrinsic part of the right to life and personal liberty under Article 21 and as a part of the freedoms guaranteed by Part III of the Constitution. Decisions subsequent to Kharak Singh which enunciated the above (line) lay down the correct position in law”.
It must be kept in mind that while there were as many as six different judgments by the nine judges, all of them were unanimous that the right to privacy was a fundamental right. Besides the Chief Justice Jagdish Singh Khehar, the other judges in the bench included Justices J. Chelameswar, S.A. Bobde, R.K. Agrawal, Rohinton F. Nariman, A.M. Sapre, D.Y. Chandrachud, S.K. Kaul and S. Abdul Nazeer. They were ruling on petitions filed by retired Karnataka High Court judge Justice K.S. Puttaswamy and others against the union government on the issue.
64-year old Chief Justice of India was born on August 28, 1952 in Kenya. After graduating in science from Government College, Chandigarh in 1974, he was awarded the LL.B degree by the Panjab University, Chandigarh in 1977, he then acquired the LL. M. qualification from the same University in 1979.
Chief Justice, who is set to retire later this month, started practicing as an advocate in 1979 and practiced mainly in the Punjab and Haryana High Court, Chandigarh, Himachal Pradesh High Court, Shimla and the Supreme Court of India, New Delhi. He was appointed as Additional Advocate General, Punjab, in January 1992, and then as Senior Standing Counsel, Union Territory, Chandigarh. His Lordship was designated as Senior Advocate in February, 1995. He remained standing counsel for Universities of the area, Corporate Bodies and a large number of companies and cooperative organizations.
Justice Jagdish Singh Khehar was appointed to the Bench of High Court of Punjab and Haryana, at Chandigarh, on February 8, 1999. He was appointed as Acting Chief Justice of the Punjab and Haryana High Court twice i.e., with effect from August 02, 2008, and again, with effect from November 17, 2009. Later he was elevated as Chief Justice of the High Court of Uttarakhand, at Nainital, on November 29, 2009 and thereafter he was transferred as Chief Justice of High Court of Karnataka, where he assumed his office on August 8, 2010. On appointment as Judge of the Supreme Court of India, he assumed office as Judge, Supreme Court on September 13, 2011. He was appointed as The Chief Justice of India on 04.01.2017.
Justice J.S. Khehar led the five-judge Constitution Bench in Supreme Court Advocates on Record Association v. Union of India [2016(5) SCC 1]. By enabling the collegium system to continue, Justice J. S. Khehar, quashed the NJAC Act and also declared 99th Amendment to the Constitution unconstitutional. The majority concluded this judgment:
While delivering the judgment Justice J.S. Khehar said, “While adjudicating upon the merits of the submissions advanced at the hands of the learned counsel for the rival parties, I have arrived at the conclusion, that clauses (a) and (b) of Article 124A(1) do not provide an adequate representation, to the judicial component in the NJAC, clauses (a) and (b) of Article 124A(1) are insufficient to preserve the primacy of the judiciary, in the matter of selection and appointment of Judges, to the higher judiciary (as also transfer of Chief Justices and Judges, from one High Court to another). The same are accordingly, violative of the principle of “independence of the judiciary”.
In another significant judgment, Justice J S Khehar in State of Punjab vs. Jagjit Singh (Decided on 26 October 2016) gave an important verdict holding that the principal of ‘equal pay for equal work’ has to be made applicable to those engaged as daily wagers, casual and contractual employees who perform the same duties as the regulars.
He is married to Madhupreet Kaur Khehar and the two have three sons including Barinder Singh Khehar, Tarunveer Singh Khehar, Karanveer Singh Khehar