Indian Judiciary Mourns the Passing of Legal Luminary Fali S Nariman at 95

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  • Eminent jurist and senior advocate Fali S Nariman, revered as the “Bhishma Pitaamah” of the Indian judiciary, passed away at the age of 95.
  • Nariman, a Padma Vibhushan recipient, played a pivotal role in landmark judgments that propelled the Supreme Court to new heights.
  • Beyond his legal prowess, Nariman was a prolific author, addressing critical issues in works such as “Before the Memory Fades” and “India’s Legal System: Can it be Saved?”
  • Born in Rangoon in 1929, he began his legal career in the Bombay high court before ascending to the Supreme Court, where he practiced law for over seven decades.
  • In the wake of Nariman’s passing, the legal fraternity mourns the loss of a luminary whose influence transcended generations.

Eminent jurist and senior advocate Fali S Nariman, revered as the “Bhishma Pitaamah” of the Indian judiciary, passed away at the age of 95. His demise marks the end of an era in Indian legal history, leaving behind a legacy that reshaped the contours of jurisprudence.

Nariman, a Padma Vibhushan recipient, played a pivotal role in landmark judgments that propelled the Supreme Court to new heights. His unparalleled oratory skills and sharp advocacy positioned him at the forefront of numerous Constitution bench cases, where he contributed significantly to the interpretation and evolution of constitutional provisions.

Among the notable cases he was involved in were the Golak Nath case, which affirmed the power of judicial review over constitutional amendments, the TMA Pai case, advocating for minority rights to establish educational institutions, and the SP Gupta and NJAC case, championing the independence of the judiciary in judicial appointments.

Beyond his legal prowess, Nariman was a prolific author, addressing critical issues in works such as “Before the Memory Fades” and “India’s Legal System: Can it be Saved?” Born in Rangoon in 1929, he began his legal career in the Bombay High Court before ascending to the Supreme Court, where he practiced law for over seven decades.

Nariman’s commitment to principle was unwavering, as evidenced by his resignation from the position of additional solicitor-general following the imposition of the Emergency in 1975. His son, Justice Rohinton F Nariman, also made significant contributions to the legal fraternity.

Tributes poured in from across the legal spectrum, with senior advocate Abhishek Manu Singhvi hailing Nariman as a living legend. Solicitor-general Tushar Mehta described him as a towering figure of intellect and wisdom, whose contributions enriched jurisprudence. Mehta emphasized that Nariman’s legacy would endure, immortalizing him as a beacon of righteousness and integrity.

In the wake of Nariman’s passing, the legal fraternity mourns the loss of a luminary whose influence transcended generations. While his physical presence may be gone, his indelible mark on Indian jurisprudence ensures that his memory will endure as an inspiration for future generations of legal minds. Fali S Nariman’s legacy serves as a testament to the enduring power of principles and the profound impact of unwavering dedication to justice.

 

(With inputs from agencies)

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