Feel like baby again: Justice Joseph on his first SC appearance

New Delhi: In his first public appearance after becoming a Supreme Court judge, Justice K M Joseph said that at the age of 60-plus he felt “like a baby again.”

He became the junior most judge of the top court and added he knew of his own “limitations.”

“At the age of 60 plus, I have become a baby again as I am the 25th judge of Supreme Court. I am rather conscious of my own limitations to be elevated to the highest court. It is indeed a big honour,” Justice Joseph said in a short speech during a felicitation ceremony organised by the Supreme Court Bar Association (SCBA).

Justice Joseph, while making it clear that he won’t make any promises, said, “I won’t be able to venture to make any promise but all I can do is, I hope and pray that I’ll be true to the oath of office, which I have taken and which will go a long way in dispensing justice.”

Recalling his short stint at apex court as a lawyer, he said that he has a very thin memory and expressed gratitude to bar members.

Justice Vineet Saran, who was also felicitated by SCBA, said that he too will not make any promises but will do his “best not to disappoint all of you.”

“Role of lawyers is more important than that of judges, that is what I want to say and I am sure with the cooperation which we get from the Bar, we definitely do justice and do the best we can,” he said.

Justice Indira Banerjee, who was elevated to the apex court along with Justices Saran and Joseph, said she would try her level best to live up to the oath of office which she has taken.

“At least three of us here have been judging for a very long time. For me, it has been about sixteen-and-a-half years and yet this jump to the Supreme Court is of much importance as this is the final court, and after this, the litigants have no other remedy,” she said.

Justice Indu Malhotra, who was the first woman advocate to be elevated as a judge of the apex directly from the bar, said, “It is actually a very emotional moment for me as I have spent the last 35 years of my life as a member of the Bar. I was in the court every single working day of the last 35 years. I did not take a single day off for any other reason.”

She said that she is honoured to be part of the justice dispensation system and “it is a great responsibility because this is the last court from where a litigant has no recourse.”

Chief Justice Dipak Misra and SCBA president Vikas Singh congratulated all the four judges for assuming their office.