In a distressing news, India’s former Attorney General Soli Sorabjee & renowned journalist Rohit Sardana died of COVID-19. While Mr. Sorabjee was admitted to a private hospital in New Delhi before passing, Mr. Sardana suffered a heart attack a week after contracting the infectious virus. It is a day truly for mourning as the nation has lost two individuals who had the courage to champion the grim realities most people can’t face.

Life and times of Rohit Sardana

Mr. Sardana started his career as a copy-editor where he learned the art and craft of all that goes behind editing, anchoring, production and post-production. From 2004, he started working with Zee News, a prominent news platform that competes with other reputed platforms like Aaj Tak, ABP News and more. Mr. Sardana worked at Zee News at various profiles such as anchor, editor, news presenter. Later in his career, he also worked for Aaj Tak and ETV.

Perhaps one of the most significant show he will be remembered for was a debate show at Aaj Tak called ‘Dangal’. He also hosted a similar debate program at Zee News called ‘Taal Thok Ke’. Mr. Sardana was well known for highlighting issues that were often sidelined by other mainstream news media platforms.

After the news of his death, the entire news media fraternity erupted on Twitter expressing their shock and grief.

Former Indian Attorney General Soli Sorabjee succumbs to COVID-19

India’s former Attorney General and renowned lawyer Soli Sorabjee died of COVID-19 on Friday in New Delhi. The Padma Vibhushan winner was 91 years old and was admitted to a private hospital in the national capital. After his demise, condolences have been pouring from all the directions with the Prime Minister Narendra Modi, President Ram Nath Kovind, Defence Minister Raj Nath Singh, Union Home Minister Amit Shah and others sharing their grief.

The apex court paid tribute to Mr. Sorabjee. The bench of newly appointed Chief Justice of India N.V. Ramana and Justice A.S. Bopanna before the commencement of daily court proceedings said, “Shri Soli J Sorabjee served the office of Attorney General of India twice with great distinction His body of work, spread over nearly seven decades, in defending the fundamental rights and human rights is of international repute. He will be remembered as a legend who added strength to the pillars of democracy. I pay my deep respect to the departed soul. Condolences to the family, friends and fans.”

After the news of his demise broke, several prominent diplomats and esteemed journalists took to Twitter to share their grief and pay condolences to him.

The life and times of Mr. Soli Sorabjee (1930-2021)

Born to a Parsi family in Mumbai in 1930, Mr. Sorabjee studied at the the Government Law College, Mumbai and started his career in 1953. Mr. Sorabjee started to take the first few steps of his humongous career by assisting Indian jurist Nani Palkhivala. He sharpened his judicial acumen during the Kesavananda Bharati case when he was assisting Palkhivala who argued against the government. The case saw the basic structure of Indian Constitution evolved.

Later, in 1971, he was given the position of senior counsel by the apex court. From 1977-80 he served as the Solicitor General of India and then from 1989-90 and 98-04 he served as India’s Attorney General.

In 1977, Mr. Sorabjee played a contributing part in the Prakash Singh case where Supreme Court asked the Centre to appoint a National Pollice Commission, a landmark rule which then paved way for other reforms in police policies.

In 1984, he also was part of the Citizen’s Justice Committee for the anti-Sikh riots case and chose to work pro bono (for free) for the victims of the riots. A decade later, he represented the petitioner in the S.R. Bommai case that nudged the top court to deliver a verdict that stated that a President’s power to dismiss a state govt is not absolute and remains vulnerable for a judicial review.

Known for being a champion of human rights, he was rightfully chosen by UN as a special reporter for Nigeria. Later, he was a significant member of UN and also the member of the United Nation Sub Commission on the Promotion and Protection of Human Rights. From 1998-04 he was the Chairman of the said commission.