Chief Justice of India UU Lalit has recommended the name of Justice DY Chandrachud as his successor, news agency ANI reported on Tuesday. Justice Chandrachud is the senior-most judge after the current CJI. By convention, the outgoing chief justice recommends the name of the senior-most judge for the highest post in the judiciary.
The CJI’s recommendation comes just days after Union Law Minister Kiren Rijiju wrote to Justice Lalit asking him to recommend his successor. “As per the MoP (Memorandum of Procedure) on the appointment of Chief Justice of India and Supreme Court Judges, today the Hon’ble Minister of Law and Justice sent a letter to the Hon’ble Chief Justice of India for sending his recommendations for appointment of his successor,” the law ministry said on October 7.
As per the memorandum of procedure, the appointment to the office of the CJI should be of the senior-most Judge of the Supreme Court “considered fit to hold the office”.
After receipt of the recommendation, the Union Law Minister will put up the recommendation to the Prime Minister who will advise the President on the matter of appointment.
Chief Justice Lalit, who took charge as CJI on August 27, will retire on November 8 this year. After him, Justice Chandrachud is likely to become the 50th CJI.
Former chief justice of Allahabad High Court, Chandrachud became a judge in the apex court in May 2016. He has been part of some key benches that delivered landmark judgments like Ayodhya Ramjanmbhumi and Sabarimala. The Ayodhya verdict was unanimous and Chandrachud was part of the five-judge bench headed by then CJI Ranjan Gogoi.
Chandrachud is also known for dissent in some key cases like Aadhar. In September 2018, the SC upheld the constitutional validity of the Act by a 4-1 majority. Justice Chandrachud penned the sole dissent and noted flaws in the proposed system.