Justice DY Chandrachud Education, Career, Life & Landmarks

5 minute read
Justice DY Chandrachud Education, Career, Life & Landmarks

Known for some of the most significant cases such as the constitutional and administrative law, the rights of HIV+ workers, religious and linguistic minority rights, and labour and industrial laws, Justice DY Chandrachud is going to become the 50th Chief Justice of India. The reformist approach is clearly visible in his judgments. This is the reason why many are anticipating for Justice DY Chandrachud to assume the office as a Chief justice of India. Let’s explore the life and career of the iconic judge of the Indian judiciary who has delivered more than 220 judgements including landmark judgments on privacy, euthanasia, decriminalisation of homosexuality, and more.

 About Justice DY Chandrachud

Justice Dhananjaya Yeshwant Chandrachud, the son of YV Chandrachud, India’s longest-serving Chief Justice, was born in 1959. He earned his LLB from Delhi University and moved on to Harvard Law School to pursue his LLM. On May 13, 2016, then-President Pranab Mukherjee appointed DY Chandrachud to the Supreme Court of India as a judge. He will serve in the White House until 2024. From October 31, 2013, until his elevation to the Supreme Court, Justice Chandrachud served as Chief Justice of the Allahabad High Court. From March 29, 2000, he served as a judge in the Bombay High Court. The Maharashtra Judicial Academy has also nominated Justice Chandrachud as its director. At the Supreme Court of India and the Bombay High Court, Justice DY Chandrachud practiced law.

He was also a visiting professor of Comparative Constitutional Law at the University of Mumbai and the Oklahoma University School of Law in the United States, in addition to practicing law. He’s also presented talks at Harvard Law School, Yale Law School, Australian National University, and the University of Witwatersrand in South Africa. Justice DY Chandrachud has also spoken at conferences hosted by UN agencies such as the United Nations High Commission on Human Rights, the International Labour Organization, and the United Nations Environment Programme, as well as the World Bank and Asian Development Bank.

Quick Facts about DY Chandrachud

Birthdate 11 November 1959
Age  62
Parents  Father: Yeshwant Vishnu ChandrachudMother: Prabha
Alma Mater Delhi University, BA LLBHarvard University, LLM, SJD
Additional Solicitor General of India 1998 – 2000
Judge of the Bombay High Court 29 March 2000 – 30 October 2013 
45th Chief Justice of the Allahabad High Court 31 October 2013 – 12 May 2016 
Judge of Supreme Court of India (Currently Sitting Judge) 13 May 2016 

Justice DY Chandrachud will assume the office of CJI from November 2022 – 2024.

Personal Life of Justice DY Chandrachud

Justice DY Chandrachud or Dhananjaya Y. Chandrachud was born on 11 November 1959. He was born to his father, Justice YV Chandrachud who was the longest-serving Chief Justice of India and his mother, Prabha who was a classical musician. He is married to Smt. Kalpana Das and the couple have two sons, Abhinav Chandrachud and Chintan Chandrachud.

Timeline of Justice DY Chandrachud Education

  • Justice DY Chandrachud attended the Cathedral and John Connon School located in Mumbai and St. Columba’s School in Delhi.
  • In 1979, he graduated from St.Stephen’s College, Delhi with an honours degree in Economics and Mathematics.
  • In 1982, he further went to the Faculty of Law at Delhi University and obtained a bachelor’s degree in law.
  • In 1983, to pursue LLM, he obtained a degree of Master’s in Law from Harvard Law School, Cambridge, Massachusetts.
  • In 1986, he finally obtained a Doctorate of Juridical Science from Harvard.

Justice DY Chandrachud was offered the prestigious Inlaks Scholarship, awarded to Indian students pursuing graduate studies abroad. He was also awarded with the Joseph H. Beale Prize at Harvard.

A Look into His Career 

While he was studying law at Delhi University in 1982, he worked as a junior advocate to assist lawyers and judges. His work included drafting some briefs for Fali Nariman who is a Padma Bhushan and Padma Vibhushan.

After completing his graduation from Harvard, he worked at an American multinational law firm called Sullivan and Cromwell, New York, United States. 

Further, after his return to India, he practised law at the Supreme Court of India and the Bombay High Court and was then designated as a Senior Advocate by the Bombay High Court in June of 1998. In the same year, he was promoted as an Additional Solicitor General of India.

In the year 2000, he was appointed as a judge at the Bombay High Court by Kocheril Raman Narayanan. On 31 October 2013, he was appointed as the  Chief Justice of the Allahabad High Court by the then President of India, Pranab Mukherjee. On 13 May 2016, Justice DY Chandrachud was appointed as a judge of the Supreme Court of India.

On 21 April 2021, Justice Dhananjaya Y. Chandrachud became a part of the Collegium of the Supreme Court of India. He is one of the five senior-most judges of the Supreme Court of India who are responsible for the appointment of Judges in the Supreme Court of India and all the High Courts. 

Justice DY Chandrachud is all set to become the 50th Chief Justice of India for 2 years and 2 days from 9 November 2022 to 10 November 2024.

Contribution of Justice DY Chandrachud in Landmark Judgements

During the tenure of Justice Dhananjaya Y. Chandrachud at the Supreme Court of India, he has delivered judgments on the following:

  • Indian constitutional law
  • Comparative constitutional law
  • Human rights
  • Gender justice
  • Public interest litigation
  • Commercial law
  • Criminal law

Some of his notable judgments are given below.

  • The judgment by a 9 judge bench of the Supreme Court of India, which declared that the Right to Privacy is a fundamental right. Justice DY Chandrachud grounded the right to privacy in dignity, liberty, autonomy, bodily and mental integrity, self-determination and across a spectrum of protected rights.
  • The Judgment of ADM Jabalpur vs Shivakant Sukla case (Habeas Corpus case) was a case in which he overruled the lead opinion, which was written by his father – former Chief Justice of India YV Chandrachud.
Justice YV Chandrachud (R) and Justice DY Chandrachud
Source: Economic Times
  • His observations on homosexuality played a vital role in the landmark judgment of the Supreme Court declaring Section 377 of the Indian Penal Code unconstitutional which decriminalized section 377 of IPC.
  • In the 5 judge bench which bombed down a 158 years old Adultery law under Section 497 of IPC, he authored a concurring judgment declaring the provision of the Indian Penal Code, which concerned the adultery law in India unconstitutional and again overruled the decision of his father, former Chief Justice of India YV Chandrachud.

Justice DY Chandrachud is a notable personality of the Indian justice system and he is set to take the reins with the post of CJI. Keep reading Leverage Edu Blogs for more such inspiration stories of famous personalities in the world.

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