Sunday, January 14, 2007

ormakkal undayirrkkanam

Balakrishnan sworn in as CJI
Press Trust of India

Sunday, January 14, 2007 (New Delhi):

Justice K G Balakrishnan was sworn in as the 37th Chief Justice of
India on Sunday. He is the first Dalit to assume the post.

President A P J Abdul Kalam administered the oath of office and
secrecy to Balakrishnan (61).

Balakrishnan succeeds Chief Justice Y K Sabharwal and will have a
tenure of three years and four months.

"He's getting a good position and I am very happy about it. When he
was studying, he faced some difficulties but now that he has achieved
this, I am very happy," said Sarada, Justice Balakrishnan's mother.

Known informally as "Bala" among his colleagues, Konakuppakattil
Gopinathan Balakrishnan will retire on May 12, 2010.

Long innings

Before joining the apex court on June 8, 2000 as a senior judge,
Balakrishnan was Chief Justice of the Gujarat High Court and then the
Madras High Court.

Coming from a humble background, Balakrishnan was born in the village
of Thalayolaparambu at Kottayam in Kerala on May 12, 1945.

After graduating in law from the Maharaja Law College in Ernakulam, he
was enrolled as an advocate on March 16, 1968 in the Kerala Bar
Council at Kochi, and practised on the civil and criminal side.

On January 10, 1973, he was appointed munsif in the Kerala judicial
service and promoted as assistant sessions judge on July 23, 1982.

After serving as deputy registrar (judicial) in the Kerala High Court,
he was appointed an additional judge on September 26, 1985 and became
a permanent judge on July 11, 1986.

Balakrishnan was appointed Chief Justice of the Gujarat High Court on
July 16, 1998. He became Chief Justice of the Madras High Court on
September 9, 1999, before being elevated as a judge in the apex court.
(With PTI input)

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