IOS Pays Tribute to Former CJI AM Ahmadi

Former Union Minister of External Affairs, Govt. of India, Mr Salman Khurshid, emphasized how the death of Justice A.M. Ahmadi has caused a big vacuum today. As a man of ideals and a judge of exceptional intellectual abilities, Justice A.M. Ahmadi was a persona extraordinaire.

IOS Pays Tribute to Former CJI AM Ahmadi
IOS Pays Tribute to Former CJI AM Ahmadi

New Delhi, March 11, 2023: A condolence meeting was held by the Institute of Objective Studies (IOS) in New Delhi to pay homage to Justice A.M. Ahmadi, Former Chief Justice of India, who passed away on 2 March 2023.

Justice A.M. Ahmadi had an illustrious career as a legal luminary. He became the 26th Chief Justice of India on 25 October 1994 and continued to serve in that prestigious position until his retirement on 24 March 1997. As India's Chief Justice, Justice A.M. Ahmadi authored 232 judgments besides being part of 811 benches.

Prominent figures from different walks of life paid homage to the departed soul on this occasion.

Justice Manju Goel, Former Judge of Delhi High Court, paid homage to the departed soul and said it was difficult for her to express her emotions and feelings about Justice A.M. Ahmadi. "She worked under him for nearly six years and remained the direct witness of enthusiasm and fresh ideas in the legal system that she would always receive from such a renowned legal expert.

She further emphasized how Justice A.M. Ahmadi would always be critical support for the Mahila Courts concept. He would advocate gender education, women's rights and much more. She further said that Justice A.M. Ahmadi was an exceptional mentor of hers in the Supreme Court, and she prays for his soul to rest in peace.

Former Union Minister of External Affairs, Govt. of India, Mr Salman Khurshid, emphasized how the death of Justice A.M. Ahmadi has caused a big vacuum today. As a man of ideals and a judge of exceptional intellectual abilities, Justice A.M. Ahmadi was a persona extraordinaire.

He also shared his experience of how Justice A.M. Ahmadi would listen to him—a junior lawyer with such patience that he became an inspiration for his legal practice in future. Expressing his feelings further, Mr Khurshid mentioned his regular meetings with Justice A.M. Ahmadi to discuss several community issues of prime concern.

Although he was fragile due to age-related health complications, our meetings would start with discussing some books. That is why I always consider him the door of knowledge and enlightenment, said Mr Khurshid.

Legal Scholar, Author and Former Chairman, National Commission of Minorities, Professor (Dr.) Tahir Mahmood spoke about his deep relationship with Justice A.M. Ahmadi. In his tribute, he said that our relationship was utterly personal as he would always patronize me like an elder brother and thus remained affectionate to me. He further mentioned how Justice A.M. Ahmadi would join my family besides being a judge and a jurist. His sad demise profoundly saddens me, he said in his tribute.

Professor Akhtarul Wasey, Former Vice-Chancellor of Maulana Azad University, Jodhpur, said on this occasion that it is a general phenomenon that people are born, live and die—and so are they forgotten. But some people leave an impact in life and thereafter become the leaflets of history. Justice A.M. Ahmadi was undoubtedly one of those whose towering personality will always keep him alive.

Expressing his deep-rooted commitment and feeling, Professor Akhtarul Wasey mentioned that he received Lifetime Achievement Award from IOS through Justice A.M. Ahmadi's hand, which will remain a proud moment for him forever.

Professor Akhtarul Wasey further emphasized how even after attaining such a vital position, Justice A.M. Ahmadi would always patronize IOS and the community as a think tank.

Professor Akhtarul Wasey spoke of the common trend that high-class people usually ignore their communities once they reach an elevated position. As a community thinker, Justice A.M. Ahmadi was a distinguished personality and a moral support system for the community and the country. In his death, we have lost a personality who was a metaphor for justice and a law luminary. Through the IOS platform, he pays his homage to Justice A.M. Ahmadi from himself and on behalf of the entire Indian Muslim community.

Professor Z.M. Khan, Secretary General, IOS, spoke on this occasion that Justice A.M. Ahmadi was a friend, philosopher and guide to IOS and us all. "He was a great hope for us. He believed that if the country has challenging environments or numerous issues, the judiciary gets equally affected like the total governance system effects somehow or the other.

He would always seek awareness for the common masses to get their rights. He often told the Chairman, IOS Dr Manzoor Alam, "should you use me or misuse me but do something better and extraordinary." And Dr Manzoor Alam reciprocated that his guidance and patronage would suffice. Professor Z.M. Khan mourned that "as a community leader and well-wisher of IOS, Justice A.M. Ahmadi was always a driving force and morale booster."

Prominent businessman, entrepreneur, Rajya Sabha MP, and politician from Katihar, Bihar, Mr Ahmad Ashfaque Karim, paid his tribute and homage to Justice A.M. Ahmadi by recalling some of his exemplary contributions. He thanked Dr Manzoor Alam and IOS for organizing this tribute programme to Justice A.M. Ahmadi.

He highlighted spending some memorable time with Justice A.M. Ahmadi. He emphasized that Katihar Medical College & Al-Karim University would not have seen the light of the day without Justice A.M. Ahmadi's visionary judgments, whose justices paved the way for several other institutions to establish in the country.

Mr Ahmad Ashfaque Karim said that starting from a small position to becoming the country's Chief Justice, Justice A.M. Ahmadi was Chancellor of Aligarh Muslim University (AMU) post-retirement. His illustrated life is an example for every one of us. He once came to Patna on our request to grace an education conference. History will remember him forever. His honest judgments will be remembered forever," he concluded.

Vice President of All India Milli Council, Maulana Anisur Rahman Qasmi, spoke on this occasion that "he had the opportunity to meet Justice A.M. Ahmadi several times. He was a man of principles. His judgements were extraordinary, and he would always encourage the Indian masses through his historic judgments to focus on their rights. He believed we should be together to raise our voice for human rights."

Likewise, journalist Suhail Anjum mentioned that he wrote an obituary on Justice A.M. Ahmadi, the day he died. Several newspapers carried it and people appreciated that he kept all the readers informed through a short obituary. He recalled one of his sweet memories with Justice A.M. Ahmadi: during Hajj 2006, he spent 3 days with him and learnt important facets of his life.

Mr Suhail Anjum further highlighted that people often considered Justice A.M. Ahmadi a Qadiani firqa, but he was a Bohra Muslim. As a legal luminary, Justice A.M. Ahmadi was indeed a Qutub Minar of the community, although he happened to be of average physical height.

Mr Huzefa Ahmadi, Senior Advocate, Supreme Court of India and son of Late Justice A.M. Ahmadi, said, "it was challenging to speak as he has missed feelings. His father, Justice A.M. Ahmadi, had a meaningful and fulfilling life. I will remember him forever for the two facets of his life—a fine judge with amazing determination and extreme firmness. His stand, especially for minorities in India, irrespective of all communities, was firm, making him stand out.

"He was a family man and would always have time for the family—for us. He also had a great sense of humour and had a peaceful end while dying in sleep." He mentioned.

Likewise, Ms Tasneem Ahmadi, Senior Advocate and daughter of Late Justice A.M. Ahmadi, was bereaved that her father was tall and strong and would always stand by his principles.

Senior Lawyer Mr Tarique Siddique spoke about his short meeting with Justice A.M. Ahmadi, and his nervousness meeting such a personality. Justice A.M. Ahmadi made that meeting of theirs comfortable as if an ordinary man. He would often inspire me to be a promising lawyer.

Professor M. Afzal Wani, Vice-Chairman, IOS, New Delhi, conducted the programme and spoke on many facets of Justice A.M. Ahmadi's life. He briefly informed about IOS as an institution. It does research activities in national and international vital issues connected with human dignity and respect for humanity and international law and constitutional and overall making an effort that the whole world cooperates to live together.

Many legal luminaries, including Supreme Court judges, have delivered lectures through the IOS platform. Likewise, many international academicians and famous global leaders from across the globe have graced the IOS platform.

Azeez Mubashhshir Ahmadi, or Justice A.M. Ahmadi as he was recalled popularly, patronized IOS for decades for its activities and contributions. The IOS conferred Justice A.M. Ahmadi the 1st Lifetime Achievement Award.

A short film on the life sketch of Justice A.M. Ahmadi was also screened on this occasion. IOS has also published a book on Justice A.M. Ahmadi named Flow of Thoughts.

"The Justice A.M. Ahmadi Committee for Legal Education in India played a notable role in the preparation, training and nourishing of the best lawyers and judges in the country. A sharp and excellent intellectual, the period of Justice A.M. Ahmadi remained a turning point for India and the globe due to the fall of the USSR. There was too much conflict when he took charge as India's Chief Justice, said Professor M. Afzal Wani in his concluding remarks.

He further said that India needs to reflect on the personality of Justice A.M. Ahmadi. He was a visionary, and we are bound to fulfil his ideals are translated through our efforts. He used to work extensively on education and community uplift. His life was a revolution for education and primarily legal education. He was always keen on research and advised people to read the constituent assembly debates for social empowerment. The weaker and underprivileged people should read it more to avail maximum benefits from low, Justice A.M. Ahmadi would augur.

Justice A.M. Ahmadi was conferred several international recognitions and honorary degrees. He was a Member of the American Inns of Court (May 1995). He received an Honorary Master Bencher of the Honourable Society of Middle Temple, London (November 1996) and a Degree of Doctor of Laws (Honoris Causa) conferred by the University of Leicester, England (July 1998).

The programme concluded with a mass prayer led by Maulana Abdullah Tarique for Justice A.M. Ahmadi.

Professor Haseena Hashia delivered concluding remarks to end the condolence meeting. Maulana Adnan Hussain Nadvi recited Quran’s verses and explained their meaning.