CJI Chandrachud Surprises Court by Sitting on Stool to Check Comfort for Young Lawyers

In an unprecedented move that left everyone in the Supreme Court courtroom astonished, Chief Justice of India (CJI) Justice D.Y. Chandrachud demonstrated an extraordinary act of consideration and humility. During the third day of hearings by a nine-judge Constitution bench on the powers of the state to tax and regulate industrial alcohol, CJI Chandrachud, who presided over the bench, unexpectedly halted the proceedings which were underway with Solicitor General Tushar Mehta presenting arguments on behalf of the central government.

Addressing Mehta, CJI Chandrachud remarked, “Your young junior lawyers stand every day holding laptops. I have instructed the court master to place a stool behind you so that they too can sit.” Following Mehta’s acknowledgment of the observation, Justice Chandrachud urged other lawyers in the courtroom not related to the case to vacate their seats for the young lawyers.

The courtroom witnessed a remarkable scene post-lunch when CJI Chandrachud chose not to return to his chair but instead sat among the young lawyers on stools arranged by the court registry during the break, following his instructions. This gesture was to personally ensure the comfort and adequacy of the seating arrangements for the young professionals. CJI Chandrachud also wanted to make sure that the placement of stools did not hinder Solicitor General Mehta’s ability to conduct the case.

This unexpected action by the Chief Justice drew widespread admiration and surprise from all present in the courtroom, including the judges and lawyers. Solicitor General Tushar Mehta lauded CJI Chandrachud’s generosity, stating, “The CJI is a symbol of generosity. His action today is not only unprecedented but should serve as an example for all courts to follow.” Mehta praised the thoughtfulness of the highest judicial authority towards the young lawyers’ discomfort, describing it as commendable and worthy of respect. Overwhelmed by CJI Chandrachud’s empathy, Mehta expressed his gratitude, saying, “I am overwhelmed. Today, all young lawyers are at a loss for words to express their thanks for his kindness.”

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CJI Chandrachud’s humble gesture reflects not only his empathetic leadership but also sets a remarkable precedent for judicial conduct, emphasizing the importance of respect and consideration for all members of the legal fraternity, regardless of their rank or seniority.

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