Aravind Kumar is an Indian lawyer who has served as the Chief Justice of the Gujarat High Court and a justice of the Karnataka High Court. On 10 February 2023, Law Minister Kiren Rijiju announced his elevation to the post of a judge in the Supreme Court of India.
Aravind Kumar was born on Saturday, 14 July 1962 (age 60 years; as of 2022) in Karnataka, India. His zodiac sign is Cancer. After earning a degree in the field of law, Aravind Kumar began practising as an advocate in various constitutional courts in Karnataka.
There is not much information about his family.
Aravind Kumar follows Hinduism.
Aravind Kumar enrolled at the Karnataka State Bar Council as a lawyer in 1987 following which he began appearing before civil courts, magistrate courts, appellate tribunals and the High Court in Karnataka. In 1999, he was appointed as an additional standing counsel to the Government of India at the Karnataka High Court. In 2002, he became a member of the Regional Direct Taxes Advisory Committee. In 2005, the Government of India appointed him as the additional solicitor general of India. Thereafter, the Union government appointed him as the standing counsel for the Income Tax Department. Aravind Kumar was appointed by the Karnataka High Court as an additional judge on 26 June 2009. He became a permanent judge of the Karnataka High Court on 7 December 2012. In 2017, he was a part of the bench that presided over B. S. Yediyurappa’s petition seeking the dismissal of the corruption cases filed against him by the Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) in 2007 under the provisions of the IPC and Prevention of Corruption Act. During the second wave of the COVID pandemic, Aravind Kumar was appointed to a bench of Karnataka High Court judges for the redressal of cases related to the COVID pandemic. Aravind Kumar was transferred to the Gujarat High Court on 13 October 2021. There, he replaced Vikram Nath as the Chief Justice.
A photo of Aravind Kumar taken during his swearing-in ceremony as the Chief Justice of the Gujarat High Court
In January 2022, during the hearing of a contempt of court case, a journalist of a local Gujarati newspaper insisted that the court proceedings shall take place in Gujarati for which Aravind scolded the journalist and said that according to the constitution, the court proceedings shall take place in English and not in the regional language. He further said that if the journalist kept on insisting on his demands, he shall receive the judgement in Kannada. Talking about it, Aravind said,
This is high court. Not district court. Only in district court, local language is permissible. Here it is only English. We are not inclined to accept his submissions for reasons more than one. First, we will not permit the contemnor to address the court in the language which is not understood by this court (by the Chief Justice) and secondly, Article 348 of the Constitution mandates that the language of the high court would be English and as such the submission of the contemnor cannot be accepted.”
In January 2023, a bench led by Aravind Kumar sent a notice to the Gujarat Education Department to formulate policies to stop ragging in colleges. The notice was sent in response to a Suo Moto petition filed by the father of a medical student, studying in Vadodra, after he attempted suicide following extensive ragging by his seniors. In its notice, the court ordered,
A communication was addressed to one of us (the chief justice) by a sitting judge of this court highlighting the issue of ragging as a menace occurring in the state of Gujarat in institutions by enclosing a newspaper report. Considering the said menace as reported in the newspaper on January 3, 2023, it was of the view that the concerned departments should be called for steps taken to contain the same, while issuing notices returnable on January 30.”
Aravind Kumar has also served as a special public prosecutor for the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI). He became a judge of the Supreme Court of India on 10 February 2023 after the Government of India issued a notification. He will serve as the judge till his superannuation on 13 July 2026.
Aravind Kumar’s monthly salary as a Supreme Court judge is Rs 2,50,000 + other allowances (w.e.f. 1 January 2016).
- In 2020, Aravind Kumar appeared on a legal talk show hosted by DD Chandana and talked about a variety of legal issues on the show.
A screenshot of Aravind Kumar in a legal show at DD Chandana
- Aravind Kumar believes in mediation. In an interview, he said that a lot of cases can be resolved quickly with the help of effective mediation through courts in India.