COVID TIMES .. No way but the highway for two new chief justices of HCs

NEW DELHI: Shutdown of the nation means hard struggle even for the high and mighty in India. Two judges were on the road this past weekend, in different routes, and each of them covering over 2,000km, to reach their destinations. One is set to take charge as chief justice of the Mumbai high court, and is traveling by road from Kolkata. He is Justice Dipankar Datta, a judge of the Kolkata high court.
Justice Dipankar Datta is accompanied by his son, and the two will alternate their hands on the wheel though the long highway from east to west.
Allahabad high court judge Justice Biswanath Somadder, elevated as the Chief Justice of Meghalaya high court, is driving to Shillong via Kolkata. “Justice Somadder, who had served at the Calcutta high court before being transferred to Allahabad, set out on the journey from the north Indian city along with wife on Friday evening in an official car,” a PTI report said on Sunday.
Flight and rail services remain suspended across India for the past over four weeks, as part of the government steps to check the spread of Covid-19. Hence the travel by road for the judges, which too is allowed only under special circumstances. Moreover, the roads remaining deserted in these times of lockdown, travel is generally risky.
Justice Datta left for Mumbai from Kolkata on Saturday morning and plans to reach the country’s financial capital by Monday afternoon with overnight breaks on the way, the report said.
President Ram Nath Kovind had elevated Justice Dipankar Datta, senior judge of calcutta high court, as the chief justice of Bombay high court, and appointed Justice Biswanath Somadder of Allahabad high court as chief justice of Meghalaya high court.
Both Justice Datta and Justice Somadder had been elevated as permanent judges of the Calcutta high court on June 22, 2006.He had a chauffeur by his side, who took charge of the wheels from time to time. The judge reached Kolkata on Saturday afternoon, and left for Shillong in the evening, after a few hours of rest at his Salt Lake residence here. He was scheduled to reach the Meghalaya capital on Sunday afternoon, the report said. IHN-NN

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