With the lifting of the nationwide lockdown a week away at the least and air and rail passenger services under a continued shut down, two judges took to the road to cover more than 2000 kms each to reach their destination for taking oath as the Chief Justice of High Courts in separate corners of the country.
The two judges are Hon’ble Justice Dipankar Datta and Hon’ble Justice Biswanath Somadder.
Justice Dipankar Datta, senior Judge of Calcutta High Court started his journey from his residence at Kolkatta, by car, to take the charge as Chief Justice of Bombay High Court. It will be a journey of 45 to 50 hours approximately. Justice Datta a ken driver will be sharing the wheel with his son on the road from the Kolkatta to Mumbai. It is rare in the history for a judge in India to ride more than 2000 km by road to join his office.
Justice Biswanath Somadder, who has been elevated as the Chief Justice of Meghalaya High Court, is driving to Shillong via Kolkata. He started his journey along with his wife and son on Friday evening. Justice Somadder, had served at the Calcutta High Court before he transferred to Allahabad High Court and now set his journey to Meghalaya High Court to take oath as the Chief Justice.
On Thursday, President Ram Nath Kovind elevated Justice Dipankar Datta, senior judge of Calcutta High Court as the Chief Justice of Bombay High Court and appointed Justice Biswanath Somadder of Allahabad High Court as the Chief Justice of Meghalaya High Court.
Justice Dipankar Datta enrolled as an Advocate on November 16, 1989. He practised mainly in the High Court at Calcutta, as well as in the Supreme Court of India and other High Courts in Constitutional and Civil matters. He was the Junior Standing Counsel for the State of West Bengal from May 16, 2002 to January 16, 2004. He was Counsel for the Union of India since 1998. He appeared for a number of educational authorities and institutions including the University of Calcutta, W.B. School Service Commission and W.B. Board of Secondary Education. He was Guest Lecturer on Constitutional Law of India in the University College of Law, University of Calcutta, from 1996-97 to 1999-2000. He was elevated to the Bench of the High Court at Calcutta as a permanent Judge on June 22, 2006. On 23rd April, 2020, he has been appointed as the Chief Justice of Bombay High Court and he is expected to assume his charge on 28th April, 2020.
Justice Biswanath Somadder Passed B.A. and LL.B. Examination from the University of Calcutta. Did a Certificate Course on “Office Automation Tools” under the Computer Education Programme of Regional Computer Centre, Calcutta. He was enrolled as an Advocate on July 21, 1989. He practised in the High Court at Calcutta as well as the Supreme Court of India. He also appeared before CESTAT, Eastern Regional Bench. He also practised in Constitutional (Customs & Central Excise, FERA, Telecommunication, Education, Service & Income Tax), Arbitration, Company, Revenue, Civil and Criminal matters. He is specialised in Revenue, Arbitration and Constitutional Laws. Earlier he was Senior Counsel for the Central Government in the High Court at Calcutta. He was also the Honorary Joint Secretary of the Bar Library Club of Calcutta High Court, till just prior to his elevation. Justice Somadder was elevated to the Bench of the High Court at Calcutta as a permanent Judge on June 22, 2006. He became the Acting Chief Justice of Calcutta High Court from 1st January 2019 and retained the post till 3rd April 2019. After which he assumed Charge as Judge of the Allahabad High Court on 17th October 2019. On 23rd April 2020, he has been appointed as the Chief Justice of Meghalaya High Court.