On his last day at work, Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi sat in court no. 1 for 4 minutes with his successor SA Bobde by his side, issued notices in all ten cases presented before him and penned a note where he spoke of the judiciary’s need to ‘maintain silence while exercising their freedom’.
After a hectic week where he decided landmark cases such as the Ayodhya title dispute, Rafale defence deal, entry of women into Sabarimala tempole and bringing CJI in RTI Act ambit, the Chief Justice retires on November 17.
In the note he released on Friday, 64-year-old Gogoi while mentioning that some bar members ‘push the boundaries of freedom’, said the bench required its judges to remain silent. ”This is not to say that judges do not speak… but do so only out of functional necessity, and no more,” said Gogoi, who took over as the CJI on October 3, 2018.
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Stressing on probity in judiciary, Gogoi added that the idea of going to the Press never endeared itself as a choice to him. “I chose to belong to an institution whose strength lay in public confidence and trust,” he added.
The explanatory note was in response to various media requests for interviews on his last day in office. While explaining why he could not meet the requests, the CJI had a word of praise for the Press recalling how they behaved with ‘maturity and character’ even during trying times.
Supreme Court Bar Association (SCBA) president Rakesh Khanna bid Chief Justice Gogoi adieu and wished him a happy retired life. He expressed gratitude on behalf of the Bar and thanked him for increasing the number of judges in the apex court.