Who are the longest serving Chief justices of India?
This great country which is full of diversity, races, castes, religion, corruption, etc. being a symbol of Justice in such a country is not easy. The responsibility of such a person is unthinkable of.
Thus, here we present the nine longest serving Chief Justices of India with a bit about their life. They have been ranked as per the number of days they spent in the office of the much respected Chief Justice of India.
- Yeshwant Vishnu Chandrachud (Y.V. Chandrachud)
Justice Y.V. Chandrachud was the 16th Chief Justice of Inida and was born on 12th July 1920 in Pune in the State of Maharashtra. He did his early education from Nutan Marathi Vidhyalaya, Poona and did his graduation from the Elphinstone College, Bombay and got his LLB degree from University of Bombay.
He was appointed Judge of the Bombay High Court on 19th March, 1961 and later became of the Supreme Court on 28th August, 1972. He subsequently became the Chief Justice of India under the Janta Party rule on 22nd February, 1978. He was the longest serving Chief Justice of India and served till 11th July, 1985 for a tenure of 2696 days.
He was also called Iron Hands because he had a habit of not letting go anything of his hands. He had presided over many important cases such as the Minerva Mills case, Kissa Kursi Ka case and The Shah Bano Case.
- Bhuvaneshwar Prasad Sinha
Born on 1st February, 1899, Justice Bhuvaneshwar Prasad Sinha was the 6th Chief Justice of India. He was from Bhojpur, Bihar. He did his basic education from Arrah Zila School, his graduation from Patna College and then got his LLB degree from Patna Law College.
He served as the Judge of the Patna High Court from 1943-51 and then he became the Chief Justice of the Nagpur High Court and served there from 1951-54. He was later appointed as a Judge of the Supreme Court of India on December 1954. He later became the Chief Justice of India and served for a tenure which lasted 1583 days from 1st October 1959 to 31st January 1964.
- Ajit Nath Ray
Born on 29th January, 1912, Hon’ble Justice Ajit Nath Ray was the 14th Chief Justice of Indiha. He was the grandson of late Dr. Debendra Nath Ray. He did his early schooling from Ripon School, Calcutta. He also studied from Presidency College (Calcutta), Oriel College (Oxford) and Hindu College. He practiced at the High Court of Calcutta.
He was called on to serve as a Judge of the Supreme Court on 1st August, 1969 and later became the Chief justice on 26th April, 1973. His appointment had been under scrutiny as he was selected as the Chief Justice by looking down over his three senior Judges without any adequate reason. His appointment was seen as one of the blackest days in the history of Indian Judiciary. He served as the Chief Justice for 1372 days starting from 26th April 1973 to 27th January 1977.
- Sudhi Ranjan Das
Justice Sudhi Ranjan Das was born on 1st October 1894 and was the 5th Chief Justice of India. He studied in Shanti niketan was one of the pupils of Rabindra Nath Tagore. He then graduated from Bangabarsi College (Calcutta) and then got his LLB degree from University College London. He was called to the Bar Gray’s Inn in London.
He later practiced in the Calcutta High Court and later became the Additional judge in 1942 and then he became the Judge in 1944. He became the Chief Justice of Punjab High Court and served in this post from 19th January 1949 to 19th January 1950. He then became a Judge of the Supreme Court on 20th January 1950.
He later became the Acting Chief Justice of India and later became the Chief Justice on 31st January 1956. He served in this capacity for 1337 days until he finally retired on 30th September 1959.
- Konakuppakatil Gopinathan Balakrishnan
Justice K.G. Balakrishanan was born on 12th May 1945 in Kaduthuruthy and was the 37th Chief justice of India. He completed his basic education from Government High School, Ernakulam. He the graduated from Maharaja’s College at Ernakulam and then got his LLB degree from Government Law College, Ernakulam. He then practiced as an advocate in the Kerala High Court and then was later appointed as the Munsif in the Kerala Judicial Services. He resigned from the post and resumed his career as an advocate.
Later he became the Judge of the High Court of Kerala. He was then transferred to Gujarat High Court and later assumed the charge of Chief Justice. He was then transferred to the Madras High Court where also he assumed the Chief Justice of the Madras high Court. He was then elevated as the Judge of Supreme Court of India. He later became the Chief Justice of India on 14th January 2007 and served in this capacity for 1214 days till he retired on 12th May 2010.
- Mohammad Hidyatullah
Born on 17th December 1905 in Lucknow to a well known family he did his primary education at the Government High School of Raipur in 1922. He attended Morris College and also went to Trinity College and studied law there. He was called to the Bar from Lincoln’s Inn when he was just 25 years old.
He later started practicing in India and then he became the Chief Justice of Nagpur High Court in 1954 and then he became the Chief Justice of Madhya Pradesh High Court. He then became a Judge of the Supreme Court and later on he was appointed as the 11th Chief Justice of India. He served at this position for 1025 days starting from 25th February 1968 to 16th December 1970.
He was also the 6th Vice-President of India and later Acting President India.
- Raghunandan Swarup Pathak
Justice R.S. Pathak was born on 25th November 1924 to a former Vice-President of India Gopal Swarup Pathak. He did his primary education from St. Joseph’s High School, Allahabad. He graduated from Ewing Christian College, Allahabad. He got himself enrolled as an advocate of Allahabad High Court on November 8, 1948.
On 1 October 1961 he was appointed as the Additional Judge of the Allahabad High Court and later on 23rd July 1963 he was appointed as a Judge of the Allahabad High Court. He then became the Chief Justice of the Himachal Pradesh High Court on 18th March 1972. He was then chosen as a Judge of the Supreme Court on 20th February 1978. He then took over as the Chief Justice of India and served this office for 940 days starting from 21st December 1986 to 18th June 1989. He is one of the three Judges to have been selected as a judge to the International Court of Justice.
- Aziz Mushabber Ahmadi
A.M. Ahmadi was born on 25th March 1932 in Surat, Gujarat. He got his LLB degree and joined the Bar in the year 1954. And later he was appointed as a Judge to the City Civil & Sessions Court of Ahmedabad in 1964. During this tenure he was also appointed as the Secretary to Government of Gujarat, Legal Department in June, 1974.
He was then appointed Judge of the Gujarat High Court on 2nd February 1976. He worked under various departments and took many appointments during this tenure. He then got appointed as a Judge of the Supreme Court in December 1988 and also worked as President of the Supreme Court Legal Aid Committee in 1989. He then served as the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court on 25th October 1994 and had this position for 881 days until he retired on 24th March 1997.
- Sarosh Homi Kapadia
S.H. Kapadia, the 38th Chief Justice of India was born on 29th September 1947 in Mumbai. He graduated from Government Law College, Mumbai which is one of the oldest Law Colleges in Asia. He started his career as a Class IV employee. He first worked as a clerk in a lawyer’s office and in Gagrat & Co. (a law firm). He also worked under Feroze Damania. He later joined as an advocate in the Bombay High Court on 10th September 1974.
He was then appointed as the Additional judge of the Bombay High Court on 8th October 1991 and on 23rd March 1993 became the permanent Judge of the High Court. He later became the Chief Justice of the Uttarakhand High Court. On 18th December 2003, he was appointed as a Judge of the Supreme Court. He was appointed as a Chief Justice by the then President Pratibha Patil on 12th May 2010. He served as the Chief Justice of India for 870 days till he retired on 28th September 2012.