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Justice Iyer, 100

Legal luminary, V R Krishna Iyer, 100, was socially active until the very end.

The first politician to get into the Supreme Court, Iyer was elected to the Madras Legislative Assembly as an Independent candidate. He became a Minister in the first Communist government in Kerala and initiated a slew of jail reforms. In 1999, he was conferred the Padma Vibhushan.

As a judge he had many landmark judgments to his credit including the Shamser Singh case, which interpreted the powers of the Cabinet vis-à-vis the President and the Maneka Gandhi case that paved the way to expand the plain words of Article 21.  He was instrumental in laying the foundations for the induction of PILs,(Public Interest Litigations).His autobiography Wandering in Many Worlds”was heartwarming.  He, as President Mukherjee said, used law as an instrument of social engineering. 

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