New Delhi: Former chief justice of India HL Dattu on Monday took over as the National Human Rights Commission’s seventh chairperson, an official release said.

Having an illustrious judicial career which included being a judge in the Karnataka High Court, chief justice of the Kerala and Chhattisgarh High Courts till he was elevated to Supreme Court in December 2008 and became CJI on September 28, 2014, he has been associated with several significant judgments of the apex court.

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On the bench that expanded the Indian jurisprudence on death sentence cases by commuting the capital punishment to terror convict Devinder Pal Singh Bhullar to life term over mental illness and an inordinate delay in deciding his mercy plea by the government, he had also pronounced a landmark verdict in ruling that “bail is the rule and jail an exception” while granting bail to five big corporate leaders in the 2G spectrum allocation case.

Giving the verdict along with Justice GS Singhvi, he had said: “The courts owe more than verbal respect to the principle that punishment begins after conviction, and that every man is deemed to be innocent until duly tried and duly found guilty.”

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