An Independent Colonial Judiciary’, a book outlining the history of the Bombay High Court during the British Raj from 1862 to 1947, was released by Chief Justice Mohit Shah at a function here.
Authored by advocate Abhinav Chandrachud, the book is a first of its kind publication which examines the background and lives of 83 judges who served at the Bombay High Court during the colonial era.
It also unravels the complex changes which took place in Indian society, legal profession, law and legal culture during that period.
The book was released by Bombay HC Chief Justice Mohit Shah here last week. The guests-of-honour included former judges of Supreme Court, Justice Sujata Manohar and Justice B N Srikrishna and Maharashtra’s former Advocate General Darius Khambata.
In 2012, the Bombay High Court celebrated 150th year of its existence. As one of three High Courts first set up in colonial India in 1862, it functioned as a court of original and appellate jurisdiction during the British Raj for over 80 years, occupying the topmost rung of the judicial hierarchy in the all-important Bombay Presidency.
Yet, remarkably little is known of how the court functioned during the colonial era.
Examining the backgrounds and lives of the 83 judges ? British and Indians ? who served at the Bombay High Court during the colonial era, and by exploring the court’s colonial past, the book attempts to understand why British colonial institutions like the Bombay HC flourished even after India became independent.
The author, Abhinav Chandrachud, practices as an advocate at the Bombay High Court. He is also the author of ‘The Informal Constitution: Unwritten Criteria in Selecting Judges for the Supreme Court of India’.
He is the son of Allahabad High Court Chief Justice Dr Dhananjay Chandrachud and grandson of former Chief Justice of India Y V Chandrachud.