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Remembering Fali S Nariman: Great Icon of Legal Excellence

Fali S. Nariman

Renowned jurist and senior advocate Nariman’s passing marks the end of an era in India’s legal landscape. At 95, Fali S Nariman breathed his last. He had battled many ailments. He left behind a legacy of great legal skill and principled advocacy. Let’s look at the life and contributions of this great jurist. We will explore his famous cases and lasting impact on Indian law.

Who was the Eminent jurist Fali S Nariman?

Fali S Nariman was born on January 10, 1929, in Myanmar to a Parsi family. He started his legal journey at the Bombay High Court in 1950. There, he followed a path marked by dedication, integrity, and a strong commitment to justice. Notably, Nariman took a principled stand during the Emergency. It led to his resignation as Additional Solicitor General of India from 1972 to 1975. His resignation reflected his steadfast adherence to ethical principles even in the face of adversity.

What are his recognition and Honors?

Nariman was an exceptional lawyer. His skill won widespread recognition. It led to his 1971 appointment as a senior advocate by the Supreme Court of India. He received prestigious honors for his contributions to the legal fraternity. These included the Padma Bhushan in 1991 and the Padma Vibhushan in 2007. These awards underscored his invaluable service to the nation and the legal profession.

Condolences and Tributes

The passing of Fali S. Nariman elicited an outpouring of condolences and tributes from across the spectrum of public life.

In a post on Twitter or X on Wednesday, PM Narendra Modi expressed deep grief. He called Nariman one of the best legal minds and intellectuals. Nariman dedicated his life to ensuring justice for all citizens.

India’s Chief Justice DY Chandrachud praised Nariman as a great intellect giant. This reflects the wide admiration for his contributions. He did this in a post on X. 

Senior attorney Abhishek Manu Singhvi called it “an end of an era” in a post on X on Wednesday.

A living legend who “wl (will) be in the hearts and minds of those in public life and the law forever.” Above all his many accomplishments, he never wavered from his moral convictions. He never hesitated to call a spade a spade. His intelligent son also had this trait,” he said on Twitter.

Legacy of Fali S. Nariman and its Enduring Impact on judiciary

Nariman’s legacy goes far beyond his great legal career. It includes a commitment to justice, integrity, and ethical conduct. He was President of the Bar Association of India from 1991 to 2010. His time as president showed his tireless advocacy for the rule of law and individual rights. Through his great career, Nariman left an indelible mark on Indian law. He inspired future lawyers to have high integrity and professionalism.

What are the Landmark Cases in which Fali S. Nariman represented?

Fali S Nariman had a distinguished career. He worked on several landmark cases. These cases shaped Indian law. These cases showcased his legal skill. They also showed his commitment to justice and ethics.

Here are some notable examples:

Fali S. Nariman landmark cases
Fali S Nariman showed his commitment to justice and ethics through these cases. Source: Internet

1. Bhopal Gas Disaster Case

Nariman represented Union Carbide in this tragic case, which resulted in one of the world’s worst industrial disasters. Despite settling outside of court, Fali S Nariman later said he regretted it. He acknowledged the deep human tragedy overshadowing the legal process.

2. J Jayalalitha’s Bail Case

In 2014, Nariman got bail for former Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J Jayalalitha. It had been denied at first. His adept legal maneuvering showed his skill. He can navigate complex legal matters with precision and efficacy.

3. Narmada Rehabilitation Case 

Nariman represented the Gujarat Government in this case. This exemplified his principled stance on ethics. He resigned from the case in protest. It was against the persecution of Christians. He reaffirmed his commitment to justice and human rights.

What are the fali s nariman books?

Fali S Nariman has authored several influential books throughout his illustrious career. These works delve into various aspects of law, justice, and constitutional principles. It reflects Nariman’s deep insights and expertise in the field of legal scholarship.

Some of Fali S. Nariman’s notable books include:

Before Memory Fades: An Autobiography

In this memoir, Fali S Nariman provides a candid account of his life journey. It spans his childhood in Myanmar to his great legal career in India. He offers readers a glimpse through vivid stories and personal reflections. They show the experiences and influences that shaped his remarkable path.

India’s Legal System: Can it be Saved?

Nariman critically examines the state of India’s legal system. In this he  addressed the challenges, shortcomings, and potential reforms. He draws on his vast experience. He offers keen views on issues like judicial independence, access to justice, and the role of lawyers in building a fairer society.

The State of the Nation

In “The State of the Nation”, Fali S Nariman explores key constitutional and governance issues facing India. It ranges from federalism and judicial activism to the protection of fundamental rights. He does this with careful analysis and clear writing. Nariman reveals the complexities of India’s politics and law. He offers useful ideas for policymakers and citizens.

India’s Constitution: Origins and Evolution

Fali S Nariman delves into the origins and evolution of India’s constitution. It tracing its historical antecedents and pivotal moments in the drafting and adoption process. He examines India’s constitutional principles with depth and precision. They underpin its democracy. Fali S Nariman also studies the challenges of interpreting and applying them. India is a society that is rapidly changing.

The State of the Judiciary: Reflections on the Past, Present and Future of the Indian Judiciary

Nariman provides a comprehensive assessment of the Indian judiciary. In this book, he reflects on its historical legacy, institutional strengths, and areas for improvement. He offers sharp analysis and case studies. They give valuable insights. They show how the judiciary works and why judicial reform is needed in India.

These books are a testament to Fali S. Nariman’s intellect, scholarly skill, and commitment. They show his dedication to justice and the rule of law in India.


In the passing of Fali S Nariman, India has lost not only a legal luminary but also a beacon of integrity, wisdom, and ethical conduct. His legacy will endure. It will do so through the precedents he set, the principles he upheld, and the many lives he touched. He touched them through his unwavering commitment to justice. As we reflect on his great life and contributions, let us honor his memory. We can do so by upholding justice, fairness, and ethics in our legal system and society. May his soul rest in peace. Thanks for reading this blog!


Q. What are fali s nariman’s advice to young lawyers?

Fali S. Nariman has imparted invaluable advice to young lawyers seeking to navigate the complexities of the legal field. Here are some of Fali S. Nariman’s key pieces of advice to aspiring lawyers:

  • Uphold Ethics and Integrity
  • Commit to Continuous Learning
  • Develop Strong Communication Skills
  • Cultivate Professional Relationships
  • Embrace Challenges and Persevere
  • Serve the Public Interest
  • Maintain Work-Life Balance

Q. What are the fali s nariman quotes?

Here are some famous quotes attributed to Fali S Nariman:

  1. “Lawyers must never be above the law; they are its servants. And, as such, they have a solemn duty to uphold the rule of law and ensure justice for all.”
  2. “Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere. As guardians of the law, it is our duty to fight against injustice and uphold the principles of fairness and equality.”
  3. “The law is not an instrument for the powerful to oppress the weak; it is a shield for the vulnerable and a sword against tyranny.”
  4. “The true measure of a society’s greatness is how it treats its weakest members. As advocates for justice, we must strive to uplift the marginalized and ensure equal access to legal rights and protections.”
  5. “Justice delayed is justice denied. It is incumbent upon us as legal practitioners to work tirelessly to expedite the delivery of justice and alleviate the suffering of those awaiting resolution.”

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