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Chief Justice Chandrachud Links Private And Public Life In Lecture On Constitutional Imperatives

Chief Justice Chandrachud underscores the interconnectedness of private and public life, challenging historical biases in Indian courts and urging action against inequalities within households and workplace discrimination.

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Supreme Court judge Justice DY Chandrachud
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Chief Justice of India D Y Chandrachud emphasized the interconnectedness of private and public life in his address during the Justice E S Venkataramaiah Centennial Memorial Lecture organized by the National Law School of India University, Bengaluru. The Chief Justice discussed the constitutional imperative of the state in navigating discrimination in both public and private spaces, as reported by PTI.

He acknowledged the historical tendency of Indian courts to prioritize the institution of marriage over individual rights, viewing the preservation of institutions as more critical. Justice Chandrachud highlighted the perception that the private sphere, particularly the privacy of homes, was considered an intimate sanctuary immune from constitutional principles.

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While recognizing the validity of safeguarding private lives, the Chief Justice questioned the potential harm in limiting the law's reach to the household. He pointed out the inherent risk of inequality within households, citing instances where financial decisions favoring male education over female education perpetuate subtle forms of inequality.

Justice Chandrachud argued against turning a blind eye to hierarchies and prejudices within private spaces, emphasizing that privacy should not serve as a shield for rights infringement away from legal scrutiny. He stressed the importance of understanding privacy as a protection against excessive intrusion rather than a barrier against the reach of the law and due process.

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Addressing gender discrimination, the Chief Justice highlighted the need to bridge the gender pay gap and address intersectional discrimination faced by Indian women in the workplace. He called for advocacy that goes beyond gender-sensitive policies to include initiatives recognizing and rectifying the unique challenges faced by women.

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