In a prestigious ceremony held on May 20 at Panjab University, former Chief Justice of India (CJI) Ranjan Gogoi was honored with the esteemed degree of 'Doctor of Laws'. The Syndicate of Panjab University, based on the recommendations of a High-Powered Committee comprising Vice Chancellors and Chancellors from various universities, bestowed this honorary degree upon Justice Gogoi, recognizing his significant contributions to the legal field and society at large.
The momentous occasion took place during the university's 70th Annual Convocation, where the Vice-President of India, Jagdeep Dhankhar, had the honor of conferring the 'Doctor of Laws' (Honoris Causa) degree upon Justice Ranjan Gogoi. The ceremony was attended by distinguished guests, faculty members, students, and their families, who gathered to celebrate this remarkable achievement.
The decision to confer the honorary degree upon Justice Gogoi was made after careful consideration of his illustrious career and outstanding service. The award letter highlights that Sh. Ranjan Gogoi served as the Forty-Sixth Chief Justice of India from October 3, 2018, to November 17, 2019, following his tenure as an Honorable Judge of the Apex Court from April 2012 to October 2018. Notably, he holds the distinction of being the first Chief Justice of India from the North-East region. Additionally, he is the third Supreme Court Judge to serve in the Rajya Sabha and the first to be nominated.
Justice Gogoi's legal journey began when he was elevated to the bench in the Guwahati High Court in 2001, where he served until 2010. Subsequently, in 2010, he was sworn in as a Judge of the Punjab and Haryana High Court, where he eventually became the Chief Justice from 2011 to 2012. Throughout his tenure in the Supreme Court, he delivered over 603 judgments, including at least 25 Constitution Bench Decisions, thereby shaping the legal landscape of the country.
Some of the significant and historic decisions delivered by Justice Gogoi include the update of the National Register of Citizens (NRC) for Assam, the legality of the CBI director's reinstatement, the resolution of the Rafale purchase dispute, and the landmark Ram Janmabhoomi case. Furthermore, in 2018, he established the Centre for Research and Planning (CRP) to enhance the Supreme Court's knowledge infrastructure. The CRP has recently been envisioned as a valuable resource to assist the Collegium in matters related to the appointment of judges to the higher judiciary. Justice Ranjan Gogoi has also authored his autobiography, titled "Justice for the Judge: An Autobiography."
In addition to the honorary degree conferred upon Justice Gogoi, the convocation ceremony witnessed the presentation of gold medals to approximately 500 top-performing undergraduate and postgraduate students. These exceptional students represented diverse fields of study, including science, pharmaceutical science, arts, education, languages, law, engineering and technology, business management and commerce, design, and fine arts.
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