New Delhi | Jagran News Desk: The Supreme Court Collegium, headed by Chief Justice NV Ramana, on Monday approved the appointment of senior advocate Saurabh Kirpal as a judge of the Delhi High Court. In a statement, the top court said that the resolution for Kirpal's elevation was passed on Monday following the Collegium meeting that was held on November 11.

"The Supreme Court Collegium in its meeting held on 11th November, 2021 has approved the proposal for elevation of Saurabh Kirpal, Advocate, as Judge in the Delhi High Court," the Supreme Court statement read, as reported by news agency IANS.

It is noteworthy to mention that Kirpal's elevation was deferred thrice by the apex court in the past.

Who is Saurabh Kirpal?

Saurabh Kirpal is the son of Bhupinder Nath Kirpal, who served as the 31st Chief Justice of India from May 6, 2002, to November 7, 2002. He completed his graduation in physics from St Stephens of the Delhi University (DU). Later, he studied law at Oxford University and completed the masters in the same from the University of Cambridge.

He has also worked with the United Nations (UN) at Geneva in Switzerland and has been practicing in India for more than two decades. Kirpal - who has a specialisation in civil, commercial and constitutional law - has represented several high profile people in several cases, including Navtej Johar and Ritu Dalmia.

Kirpal is one of those rare people in India who have openly spoken about LGBTQ rights. He has also written a book - S*x and the Supreme Court - in which he has talked about s*xuality, gender and law. His partner is Nicolas Germain Bachmann, a Swiss Human Rights activist who works in the Swiss embassy.

Kirpal's name for elevation was first recommended on October 13, 2017, but it was deferred by the Supreme Court Collegium. In September 2018, the Collegium once again deferred his name for a recommendation. Later in January 2019, the Collegium, which included then Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi, once again deferred his name.

Later, Kirpal, who is gay, had claimed that his s*xual orientation might be the reason why the Supreme Court Collegium had not taken a decision regarding his elevation.

"This is all mired in a cloud of innuendo. The problem is that the collegium system is opaque and because it is opaque, I cannot say what is the reason and what is there in the mind of judges," he had said while speaking to ThePrint.

"There was some kind of an Intelligence Bureau report, which I don’t have access to but only read about in the media, that there was some problem with my partner. So, this (non-elevation) has probably got to do with my s*xuality," he added.

Posted By: Aalok Sensharma