Former Telangana HC CJ Hima Kohli among nine SC judges sworn in

Justice Hima Kohli was one among the nine judges recommended by the Supreme Court collegium for the elevation to the apex court.

By Newsmeter Network  Published on  31 Aug 2021 7:50 AM GMT
Former Telangana HC CJ Hima Kohli among nine SC judges sworn in

New Delhi: Former Chief Justice of Telangana High Court Hima Kohli on Tuesday took oath as a judge of the Supreme Court of India. Justice Hima Kohli was one among the nine judges recommended by the Supreme Court collegium for the elevation to the apex court.

This is the first time in the history of India's highest court that nine judges have been sworn in at one time. The new judges include Justice Abhay Oka, former Chief Justice of Karnataka High Court, Justice Vikram Nath, former Chief Justice of Gujarat High Court, Justice Jitendra Kumar Maheshwari, former Chief Justice of Sikkim and Andhra Pradesh High Court, and Justice Hima Kohli (former Chief Justice of Telangana High Court.

Justice BV Nagarathna, former Karnataka High Court judge was also sworn in. The other new judges include Justice CT Ravikumar, former Kerala High Court judge, Justice MM Sundresh, former Madras High Court judge, Justice Bela M Trivedi, former Gujarat High Court judge, and Justice PS Narasimha, senior advocate and former Additional Solicitor General.

Before being elevated as the Chief Justice of the Telangana High Court, Justice Hima Kohli served as a judge of the Delhi High Court. Incidentally, Justice Kohli is the first woman to hold the office of the Chief Justice of the Telangana High Court.

Justice Hima Kohli was due to retire at the end of August. However, with her name being recommended for appointment as a judge to the Supreme Court, Justice Kohli will demit office as Supreme Court judge in 2025. At present, the retirement age is 65 years for Supreme Court judges and 62 years for high court judges.

In her brief tenure for just over seven months as Chief Justice of the Telangana High Court, Justice Hima Kohli has left an indelible mark. Justice Kohli will be remembered for coming to the rescue of the people during the COVID crisis.

Initially, the state was reluctant to impose a lockdown despite a surge in COVID cases. However, the government was forced to impose a complete lockdown after Justice Kohli issued a stern warning. Thanks to the timely intervention of Justice Kohli, the damage was controlled to some extent.

Justice Kohli recently asked the government to refrain from cutting 1300 trees that form part of the Eco-Sensitive Zone of KBR National Park. Telangana government was planning to undertake Strategic Road Development Plan to construct flyovers around KBR Park.

Born on 2 September 1959 in Delhi, Justice Kohli went to St. Thomas School, New Delhi, and graduated in history (hons.) from St. Stephens' College, University of Delhi. After completing her post-graduation in history, she enrolled for an LLB course at the Law Faculty, Campus Law Centre, University of Delhi. She completed the law course in 1984 and enrolled as an advocate with the Bar Council of Delhi the same year.

From 1999-2004, she served as the standing counsel and legal advisor of the New Delhi Municiapl Council in the High Court of Delhi. Justice Kohli was appointed the additional standing counsel (civil) for the government of national capital territory of Delhi in the Delhi High Court in December 2004. She has represented the government of Delhi in several important public interest litigations.

Justice Kohli was the legal advisor to the public grievances commission, the Delhi Pollution Control Committee, the National Agricultural Co-operative Marketing Federation of India, the National Co-operative Development Corporation, and other private organisations and banks. She was a member of the Delhi High Court Legal Services Committee, a statutory body constituted under the Legal Services Authority Act.

She was appointed as an additional judge of the Delhi High Court on 29 May 2006 and took oath as a permanent Judge on 29 August 2007. She was appointed a member of the general council of the West Bengal National University of Judicial Sciences, Kolkata, from 11 August 2017. Justice Kohli was also nominated as a member of the editorial committee of 'Nyaya Deep', the official journal published by National Legal Services Authority, from 7 May 2019.

CJ Kohli was appointed as the chairperson of the Committee of the Delhi Judicial Academy from 11 March 2020. She was also the chairperson of a high-powered committee constituted by the government of NCT of Delhi on 26 March this year in terms of the order dated 23 March 2020 passed by the Supreme Court of India for decongestion of jails in all states and Union territories in view of the COVID-19 pandemic.

She was appointed the executive chairperson of the Delhi State Legal Services Authority from 20 May 2020 and the chairperson of the Delhi High Court Middle Income Group Legal Aid Society from 29 June. From 30 June this year, she was appointed a member of the governing council of the National Law University.

And is also a member of the administrative and general supervision committee of the High Court and the chairperson of the Delhi High Court building and maintenance committee, mediation and conciliation committee, and the family courts committee.

Apart from performing her official duties as a judge, she takes a keen interest in promoting mediation as an alternative dispute resolution forum, in highlighting the role of the judiciary in the preservation of the ecology and environment, and the role of family courts in resolving family disputes. She has participated in and presented papers at several national and international symposiums and conferences on these subjects.

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