HTLS 2023: CJI Chandrachud opens up on judges' retirement age; has message for Team India in Cricket World Cup
At HTLS 2023, DY Chandrachud shared his perspective on retirement age of judges, highlighting the difference in Indian model compared to American Supreme Court.
Chief Justice of India DY Chandrachud said the retirement age of judges is for Parliament to decide, but it is important that judges must retire. Speaking on Day 5 and the final day of the 21st edition of Hindustan Times Leadership Summit 2023 on Saturday, Justice Chandrachud shared his perspective on the retirement age of judges, highlighting the difference in the Indian model compared to the American Supreme Court. While the American system has no age of retirement for judges, in India, judges do retire, he said.
In a conversation with Utkarsh Anand, national legal editor of Hindustan Times, Justice Chandrachud said, “The retirement age of judges is for Parliament to decide. American Supreme Court provides judges have no age of retirement. We follow a different model. It is important that judges must retire. It is too much of a responsibility for human beings. Judges are human beings...you must pass on the mantle to succeeding generations as issues change. Source of change and transformation of legal principles develops that way.”
Pointing out challenges judges have to face, the CJI said, “Judges of the Supreme Court here decide 200 cases in a week. The real challenge of a judge is to balance competing requirements. On one hand huge inflow of work and the need to create mental space to decide seminal issues. That's the challenge before a contemporary judge.
Justice Chandrachud said the legislature can enact a fresh law to cure a deficiency in a judgment but it cannot directly overrule it. He said judges don't think about how the society would respond when they decide cases and that is the difference between the elected arm of the government and the judiciary.
"There is a dividing line between what the legislature can do, and what the legislature can't do when there is a judgment of the court. If a judgment decides a particular issue and it points out a deficiency in law, it is always open for the legislature to enact a fresh law to cure the deficiency," the CJI said.
"What the legislature cannot do is to say that we think the judgment is wrong and therefore we overrule the judgment. The judgment of a court cannot be directly overruled by the legislature," the CJI said.
He also said judges are guided by constitutional morality and not public morality while adjudicating cases.
"We have disposed of at least 72,000 cases this year and there's still a month and a half to go," Chandrachud said.
CJI Chandrachud's message for Team India in ICC World Cup
When asked about his message for Team India playing the ongoing Cricket World Cup, CJI Chandrachud extended best wishes to the Rohit Sharma-led squad, saying they inspire him.
“I saw the Indian cricket team lift the last World Cup in 2011.... I wish them the best. I admire this team's commitment to physical and mental fitness and ability to maintain equilibrium. This dedication and inspiration extends not only to the men's team but also to the women's team,” he said.