Saturday, June 23, 2012
Mohammad Hidayatullah was the sixth Vice-President of India who was in this position from 31st August 1976 to 30th August 1984 who also served as the acting President of India from 20th July 1969 to 24th August 1969. He was the Chief Justice of India from 25th February 1968 to 16th December 1970.
He was born on 17th December 1905 in Lucknow in British India. He belonged to an upper class family of Khan Bahadur Hafiz Mohammed Wilayatullah. He studied at Government High School of Raipur and studied at Morris College in Nagpur and attended Trinity College at the University of Cambridge from 1927 to 1930. He was awarded Gold Medal for his performance in 1930. He got LL.D. from University of Phillippines and D. Litt from University of Bhopal and University of Kakatiya. He got a place of Barrister at Law in 1930. He married Shrimati Pushpa Shah and his son Arshad Hidayatullah is a Senior Counsel at Supreme Court of India.
He returned to India and started his career as an advocate of the High Court of Central Provinces and Berar at Nagpur on 19th July 1930. He was appointed as the Additional Judge of High Court on 24th June 1946. He was the youngest Chief Justice of High Court in 1954 when he was made as the Chief Justice of Nagpur High Court. He served in this position till 1956 and later appointed as the Chief Justice of Madhya Pradesh High Court in November 1956. He became the Justice of Supreme Court of India in December 1958. He became the first Muslim Chief Justice of India on 28th February 1968. He retired on 16th December 1970.
When the then President of India, Dr Zakir Hussain died on 3rd May 1969, the Vice President of India V V Giri was made as the acting President. However he resigned the post to take part in the president elections and Justice Mohammad Hidayatullah was made as the acting president for a short while. After his retirement he was elected as the Vice-President of India. He died on 18th September 1992.