President Ram Nath Kovind administered the oath of office to Justice Dipak Misra who was sworn in as the 45th Chief Justice of India.
Misra, whose career as an advocate began in 1977, will hold office as the Chief Justice until his retirement on October 2, 2018.
He is known for leading the Supreme Court bench on the landmark judgement confirming death penalty to the four convicts in the Nirbhaya gang-rape case. According to The Hindu, he had stated in his verdict,
The accused found an object for enjoyment in her… for their gross, sadistic and beastly pleasures… for the devilish manner in which they played with her dignity and identity is humanly inconceivable.
He is succeeding JS Khehar, who retired on Sunday. Justice Misra has also issued other historical judgments including making national anthem mandatory before movies in theaters.
It was a bench headed by him that rejected Yakub Memon’s last-minute mercy petition. Memon, who was convicted in the 1993 Mumbai blasts that killed 257 people, had given the last-minute appeal in July 2015 on the day before he was to be hanged. According to Live Law, Misra had said,
Stay of death warrant would be a travesty of justice. The plea is dismissed…
Apart from filling up judicial vacancies, he is will hear important cases that made headlines, including the Cauvery water issue, Babri-Masjid dispute, women being given the right to enter Sabarimala in Kerala, among other issues.
Popularly known as a pro-citizen judge, he has also been the chairman of National Legal Services Authority, where he introduced several measures to make justice accessible to all.
Justice Misra is the one who made it mandatory for the states and union territories to upload the FIR on their websites within 24 hours of preparing it. This has made it possible for the accused and victim to get a copy of the FIR without much hassle which helps in filing the appropriate plea in the court.
He is the third Chief Justice of India from Odisha, after Justice Ranganath Mishra and Justice Gopal Ballav Pattanaik.