A commemorative postage stamp on Mehar Chand Mahajan, 3rd Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of India :
Issued by India
Issued on Dec 31, 2017
Issued for : Department of Posts is pleased to release a Commemorative Postage Stamp on Justice Mehr Chand Mahajan.
Stamp/FDC/Brochure : Sh. Sankha Samanta
Cancellation Cachet : Smt. Nenu Gupta
Type : Stamp, Mint Condition
Colour : Multi Colour
Denomination : 500 Paise
Stamps Printed : 604500
Printing Process : Wet Offset
Printer : Security Printing Press, Hyderabad
Name : Mehr Chand Mahajan
Born on 23 Dec, 1889 at Tika Nagrota, Kangra district, Punjab, British India [now Himachal Pradesh, India]
Died on 1967
- Mehr Chand Mahajan was the third Chief Justice of India. His contributions for both on and off the Bench, will always remain a philosophical stimulus for the legal fraternity. Law Reports are a testimony of his work as a judge. He authored many famous decisions and landmark cases. Justice Mahajan made his name as an accomplished lawyer, a respected judge, and an influential politician.
- Justice Mehr Chand Mahajan was born in a small village called Tika Nagrota in the Kangra district of Himachal Pradesh in 1889. His father, Lala Brij Lal, was an advocate, who later established a reputed legal practice at Dharamsala. After completing middle school, he went to study in the Government College, Lahore, graduating in 1910. He enrolled in M.Sc. Chemistry, but switched to law following persuasion from his father. He earned an L.L.B. degree in 1912 from the Punjab University, Lahore and started his legal practice at Dharamsala. Soon, he shifted to Gurdaspur. It was at Gurdaspur, that he attained recognition as a lawyer. He thereafter, moved to the Lahore High Court. Within a few years, he became a leading advocate at Lahore, where he argued many important cases and was President, High Court Bar Association, Lahore from 1938-43. Mehr Chand Mahajan was appointed judge of Punjab High Court in September 1943. As a permanent judge, he superseded two sitting judges, one of whom was an Englishman, on the recommendation of the then Chief Justice, Sir Trevor Harries.
- Maharaja Hari Singh, the ruler of Jammu and Kashmir (in May 1947), sent Maharani Tara Devi and his son, Dr. Karan Singh, to meet Justice Mahajan, to offer him the post of Prime Minister. Justice Mahajan’s name was proposed by Sardar Patel – the then Home Minister of India. Before the offer could fructify, Justice Mahajan was made a member of the Radcliffe Commission as an Indian National Congress nominee. As a member of the Commission, he made a momentous contribution, by persuading Lord Mountbatten, to award Gurdaspur (initially awarded to Pakistan), to India. Justice Mahajan’s suggestion, that River Ravi should be made the boundary, dividing India and Pakistan was also accepted. Only, because Gurdaspur is a part of India, it became possible for India to make a road and rail link, connecting Jammu & Kashmir, with the rest of the country.
- After the Radcliffe award, Justice Mahajan who was Judge of the High Court of East Punjab joined the post of Prime Minister of Jammu & Kashmir, in September 1947. Justice Mahajan’s role in persuading Maharaja Hari Singh, to take the decision regarding the accession of Jammu & Kashmir with India, cannot be forgotten.
- On 1st October 1948 Sh. Mahajan took the oath of office as a Judge of the Federal Court later known as the Supreme Court when the Constitution of India came into force on 26th January 1950. Justice Mehr Chand Mahajan took over as the third Chief Justice of India on January 4, 1954.
- His three famous writings were titled “Preserving Unity of India”, “How to Increase Food Production”, and “Kashmir’s Accession to India”.
- A nationalist to the core, he was a person with strong convictions. He propagated his belief with determination. Though a pre-eminent Judge and Jurist, he was also an administrator of exceptional merit.
- Text : Based on the material received from proponent.