President Ram Nath Kovind on Tuesday formally appointed Justice Arun Kumar Mishra as the chairman of the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC).
Justice Mishra’s name was recommended by a high powered selection panel consisting of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Home Minister Amit Shah, Deputy Chairman of the Rajya Sabha, Harivansh, Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla and the Leader of the Opposition in the Rajya Sabha, Mallikarjun Kharge.
Mr. Kharge had registered his dissent after the Committee didn’t accept his suggestion to appoint a member from either Dalit, Adivasi or Minorities. He had argued that most complaints at NHRC are about challenges faced these against socially disadvantaged groups and there should be at least one representative of these communities in the Commission if not the Chairman.
When the Committee decided to go ahead with the already shortlisted names, he recorded his dissent in writing.
Though three former Chief Justices of India (CJIs) were among shortlisted candidates, Justice Mishra was finally chosen to head the national human rights body.
Known to be an outspoken judge, Justice Mishra had once courted controversy in February 2020 when he had praised Mr Modi at an international conference.
He had described Prime Minister Modi as “an “internationally acclaimed visionary who could think globally and act locally”.