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Supreme Court gets possibly first ever judge from an IP law firm (who’s also super progressive about video)

Justice Bose
Justice Bose

The Supreme Court has today confirmed the elevation of ex-Calcutta high court judge and, since August 2018, Jharkhand high-court chief justice Aniruddha Bose, alongside justices AS Bopanna, BR Gavai and Surya Kant, according to NDTV and others.

Out of those four as well as nearly all Supreme Court judges present and future, Justice Bose is in the unusual position of having worked in a law firm before, perhaps giving him a slightly different outlook than some of his fellow judges.

Bose qualified as a lawyer in 1985 after passing his LLB from Surendranath College of Law Calcutta. He then practised on the original side and appellate side of the Calcutta high court, with “a special emphasis on intellectual property law”, according to his high court website profile.

However, it is not recorded anywhere online, that until his elevation to the Calcutta high court in 2004, Bose had been with Kolkata intellectual property (IP) firm DP Ahuja & Co.

When contacted for comment earlier this month, DP Ahuja & Co confirmed in a statement:

Justice Aniruddha Bose was associated with our firm for several years.

This association continued till his elevation as a Judge of the Calcutta High Court.

The firm clarified that he was not a partner at the firm, but declined to confirm when exactly he had joined the firm or what his exact role had been.

DP Ahuja was established in 1971 and has over 128 “members”, according to its website, though it declined to confirm further details.

We have also previously covered Bose for creating history in 2015 by outfitting Calcutta high court room 24 with a video camera and microphone, after having been requested to do so by advocate Deepak Khosla (famously a major proponent of video recording in courts).

In 2014, the Times of India had reported that he had allowed live video conferencing to allow a petitioner to appear before his court from the USA.

Bose is not the only Supreme Court judge to have worked at a law firm before, however: the late and great Chief Justice of India (CJI) SH Kapadia, had begun his career at Gagrat & Co as a law clerk.

And current Supreme Court Justice DY Chandrachud had worked at US legal giant Sullivan & Cromwell for a while after graduating from Harvard Law School.

Thanks for the kind reader who had shared with us this little-known factoid.

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