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Late Mr Justice V.S. Deshpande

Cite as : (1992) 3 SCC (Jour) 3

We are sad to learn of the demise of jurist-judge, Mr Justice V.S. Deshpande on July 11, 1992 owing to cardiac arrest. He was 74.

Justice Deshpande had a deep and abiding academic interest in legal publications and encouraged personally and through his reviews every effort at creativity and fresh thinking. The academic world is poorer by his departure and we have lost a close friend and well-wisher.

Born on June 27, 1918, at Jalgaon, Justice Deshpande was educated at Holkar College, Indore, Canning College, Lucknow and the University College of Law, Nagpur, where he scored first class first in his LL.B. in 1939. He did his M.A. (History) in 1940 and LL.M. from the Nagpur University followed by another LL.M. from Stanford University, U.S.A. at the Seminar of Asian Government Lawyers Conference held there in 1957-58. At 23, he had joined the State Judiciary and was appointed at Bhandara. On selection by the Federal Public Service Commission to the Indian Foreign Service he served as Secretary to the Indian High Commissioner at Karachi in 1948-49 and then from 1949 to 1953 worked as Additional District and Sessions Judge. He then moved to the Ministry of Law and was Legal Adviser to the Indian High Commissioner at London from 1961 to 1964 and Joint Secretary to the Government of India in the Ministry of Law from 1964 to 1968. He was appointed Judge, Delhi High Court in 1968 and ten years later became its Chief Justice. He retired on June 27, 1980.

All along he cultivated his academic interests and engaged in legal writings. His book Judicial Review of Legislation (1975) is a notable example of his perceptive thinking. Soon after retirement, he was Dean of the Law Faculty, Punjab University from 1981 to 1983 and from June 1984 the Executive Chairman of the Indian Law Institute. The Journal of ILI records his incisive and thought-provoking views on various issues in his many articles and book reviews.

The Editorial Board, publishers and staff of SCC pay their reverence and offer heartfelt condolences to his family and friends.

May his soul rest in peace.

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