Justice Gopal Ballav Pattanaik
|32nd Chief Justice of India|
8 November 2002 – 18 December 2002
|Appointed by||A. P. J. Abdul Kalam|
|Preceded by||Bhupinder Nath Kirpal|
|Succeeded by||V. N. Khare|
|Born||19 December 1937|
Cuttack, Odisha, India.
|Children||Amar, Rinku, Anjan (Grandchildren: Aaryaman, Ayushman, Devansh)|
|Parents||Rashbehari Pattnaik and Bidulata Dei|
|Alma mater||Ewing Christian College, Allahabad University|
Madhusudan Law College
|Awards||Utkal Ratna 2021|
Justice Gopal Ballav Pattanaik (born 19 December 1937) is an Indian lawyer and later a jurist who served over a period of 19 years in the bench of the Odisha High Court as a permanent Judge, as Chief Justice of the Patna High Court, Judge of the Supreme Court of India and as the 32nd  Chief Justice of India.
Pattanaik grew up in Cuttack, Odisha, where he would later study at Ravenshaw College and later graduating in science from Ewing Christian College, Allahabad University. He then went on to earn his degree in Law from Madhusudan Law College, Utkal University in Odisha.
In 2002, Pattanaik was appointed as Chief Justice of India by the President Shri A. P. J. Abdul Kalam.
Early life and education
He studied at the Ravenshaw College in Cuttack and graduated in Science from the Ewing Christian College, Allahabad University and earned his degree in Law from Madhusudan Law College, Utkal University in Odisha.
In 1962, he enrolled as an advocate in the Orissa High Court, where he practiced in civil, criminal, constitutional and corporate cases. He also appeared before the Supreme Court of India. As a first generation of lawyer, his legal career started in the chambers of late lawyer Bimal Pal and Barrister Birendra Mohan Patnaik. Justice Souri Prasad Mahapatra was instrumental in encouraging him to take up the legal profession.
In 1971, he was appointed to the Standing Counsel for the state Government of Orissa. In 1974 he became an Additional Government Advocate and subsequently the Govt Advocate of the state. In 1983, he was elevated to the bench of the Orissa High Court as a permanent judge. In 1995, he was appointed the Chief Justice of Patna High Court. After a short stint in the Patna High Court, he was elevated as a Judge of the Supreme Court of India. He went on to occupy the highest judicial post in the country as the 32nd Chief Justice of India on 8 November 2002.
When Patnaik took over as the Chief Justice of India, it appeared that he would not be able to achieve much in the administration of the judiciary, in view of his short tenure. However, he began a momentous chapter in the history of Indian judiciary by putting into practice the 'in-house procedure' evolved in 1997 to deal with allegations of misconduct against members of the higher judiciary.
Some of the far reaching and well published judgements of Patnaik include:-
- the Narmada Dam Project.
- Denying the central government of India the ability to grant permission to Hindu organisations to perform ceremonies at the disputed Babri masjid site in Ayodhya.
- Contempt of court case against Booker Prize winner Arundhati Roy.
- Acquittal of several persons belonging to the minority community in cases relating to the Bombay riots.
- The constitutional reference on the minority educational institutions.
- In a landmark judgement in the Daniel Latifi v. Union of India, 2001 (7) SCC 740, heading the Constitutional Bench of the Supreme Court in this case, Patnaik held that liability of Muslim husband to his divorced wife arising under Section 3(1) (a) of the Act to pay maintenance is not confined to iddat period. This judgement was a landmark one uplifting the rights of Muslim women in India to maintenance from their divorced husband
Pattanaik was a member of the Indo British and Indo-U.S. judicial exchange programme. He visited UK and the United States and participated in joint workshops and seminars with the judges of the House of Lords in Britain and the U.S Supreme Court, respectively.
Pattnaik is a former Chairperson of the National Judicial Academy of India, Executive Chairman of the National Legal Services Authority of India ( NALSA) and Former President of the Association of Retired Judges of Supreme Court and High Courts of India.
For several years he was the Chairman of the selection committee for the prestigious literary award for Indian literature,the “Saraswati Samman”.
A a keen sports enthusiast, he passionately followed the game of cricket.
Awards and Honours
He was conferred with an honorary doctorate in law LLD by the Utkal University. In 2021 Pattanaik has been selected to be the recipient of the prestigious Utkal Ratna award for his lifetime achievement in the field of Law and Justice.
He now resides in New Delhi with his wife Meera and is active as an arbitrator in India and overseas. He has 3 children Amar, Anjan, and Rinku. He has 3 Grandchildren: Aaryaman Patnaik, Ayushman Patnaik and Devansh Patnaik.
- A. P. Bhardwaj (2016). Legal Awareness and Legal Reasoning For the CLAT and LL.B. Entrance Examinations. Pearson India. pp. 1–. ISBN 978-93-325-7559-2.
- Ganesh Kumar (September 2010). Modern General Knowledge. Upkar Prakashan. pp. 142–. ISBN 978-81-7482-180-5.
- S. C. Bhatt (2005). Land and People of Indian States and Union Territories: In 36 Volumes. India. Gyan Publishing House. pp. 465–. ISBN 978-81-7835-393-7.
- "Justice Pattanaik sworn-in as new CJI". Express India. 8 November 2002. Retrieved 4 July 2012.
- "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 14 November 2016. Retrieved 29 August 2017.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
- [dead link]
- https://www.thehindu.com/thehindu/2002/11/09/[dead link]stories/2002110903541300.htm[dead link]
- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PvjxNlmccvk&ab_channel=WildFilmsIndia Golden Jubilee Celebrations of the Supreme Court of India
- Supreme Court of India - virtual tour