After serving more than two years as the Chief Justice of the Allahabad High Court, Justice Govind Mathur retired on Tuesday. A virtual event Ceremony was organized by the Allahabad High Court Bar Association to bid him a farewell.
During the Farewell Speech, CJ Mathur exclaimed,
“Friends, to have a most civilized India, it is our constitutional responsibility to strengthen the judiciary. Our constitution provides a strong foundation to have an independent judiciary. To have independent judiciary Judges must remain free of every influence except law. It is not only for Judges but the Lawyers, who are the second pillar of the edifice of justice delivery system, must exhibit apposite judicial character.”
He also quoted the words of Justice Faisal Arab, “take away justice and you take away civilized behavior from the society”.
CJ Mathur began his farewell address with an emotional goodbye to his constitutional adjudicating authority. He further regretted that he couldn’t come to the court on his last 5 working days as he had tested positive for Covid-19. “On being tested COVID19 positive, unfortunately, I lost my precious last five working days, I am attending this ceremony too from my residence. I am not having the opportunity to sit in Court on my last working day. What can be more unfortunate than this?” he said downheartedly. But he gathered himself by saying that time keeps clicking and life goes on. One phase of life ends and new begins.
While speaking about his experience of Allahabad High Court he said that he had Judge at Allahabad High Court for more than 3 years. He was fortunate enough to be appointed as Justice and later on Chief Justice of the Allahabad High Court. “From the day first I noticed great warmth and affection for me among the Judges and members of the Bar at Allahabad as well as Lucknow. In this warmth, I find Allahabad as my home, but the truth is that I have to go to my motherland on completing my tenure as a Judge” he said. While praising Allahabad High Court he said that Allahabad High Court had great traditions and it will always keep the flag of Indian Judiciary High.
While addressing the issue of the huge pendency of cases before the Allahabad High Court he said that the huge amount of workload on the Allahabad HC should also be taken into consideration. Allahabad has a very vast Jurisdiction and it deals with a variety of litigation. But despite such a big workload, the disposal rate of Allahabad High Court is higher than any other Court in India.
CJ Mathur also thanked the Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh, Sri Yogi Adityanath for providing every help needed to build a good infrastructure for the Allahabad High Court. He specifically thanked the UP government for the establishment of the National Law School (NLU) at Prayagraj. He further proudly announced that all the courts of the Allahabad High Court were e-courts and were complete in all regards for every kind of virtual adjudication of disputes.
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While showing gratitude towards his fellow justices at the Allahabad High Court he said,
“In my tenure as Chief Justice I received valuable support from all the Judges. It is usually said that it’s impossible for the Chief Justice of Allahabad High Court to know his all Judges by name. I think this is not a correct version of facts. The Judges of this Court have extended great support to me; therefore, I can introduce each and every Judge of this Court by name. Every Judge is an asset for the institution”
During his speech, CJ Mathur mentioned that he shared his Birthday with Bharat Ratna Dr. Bhimrao Ambedkar. In this regard, he further stated that he had first seen the picture of Babasaheb Ambedkar when he was a kid and it was then told to him that Dr. Ambedkar was God of Gareeb. Since that day, CJ Mathur states that Babasaheb Ambedkar his “God of Gareeb” for him he always cherished his ideals.
At the end of the speech, CJ Mathur thanked all the Judges, Officers of the Registry, and all other staff of the Allahabad High Court for helping to efficiently carry out the functions of Allahabad High Court even in the Lockdown Period.
He did not forget to mention the names of his drivers, domestic servants, and security PSOs. He thanked them for providing him service with excellence and absolute commitment.
He ended his speech by saying “An important chapter of my life is going to be closed. My purest regards and thanks to Justice Anil Deo Singh, Former Chief Justice, Rajasthan High Court, who find me a person fit to be recommended for appointment as Judge, Rajasthan High Court. In the last 17 years, I tried to perform my duties to the best of my ability, knowledge, and judgment, without fear and favor, affection, or ill will. In short, I tried to live up to the solemn oath, that I took on 2nd September 2004, 21st November 2017, and 14th November 2018. Whether I failed or succeeded, is for all of you to judge. I bowhead with reverence. I submit myself to your judgment”
Story by Harshwardhan Pawar – Intern