Soli Sorabjee, Senior Advocate and former Attorney General, passes away

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Updated: April 30, 2021 9:50 AM

Senior Advocate and former Attorney General of India Soli Sorabjee passed away today.

Soli Sorabjee Passed awaySoli Sorabjee was former Attorney General of India. (PTI)

Senior Advocate, veteran jurist and former Attorney General of India Soli Sorabjee passed away today. He had COVID-19 infection and was under treatment. He served as the Attorney General for India twice – between 1989-90 and 1998 to 2004.

Sorabjee was awarded Padma Vibhushan in March 2002 for his efforts toward defending the freedom of expression and the protection of human rights. Born in 1930, Soli Sorabjee enrolled at the bar in 1953 and was designated Senior Advocate in 1971 by the Bombay High Court.

His full name was Soli Jehangir Sorabjee. He was a eminent human rights advocate. In 1997, the United Nations had appointed him Special Rapporteur for Nigeria to report on the human rights situation in the country. He also served as a member and Chairman of the UN-Sub Commission on the Promotion and Protection of Human Rights between 1998 and 2004. Soli Sorabjee had served as a member of the Permanent Court of Arbitration at The Hague from 2000 to 2006.

Sorabjee had always favoured good reforms and ideas. He had favoured the idea of ‘One Nation-One Poll’ saying that the idea deserves a try. He had also said that slogans which are critical of the government are not anti-national and do not amount to sedition.

Notably, Soli Sorabjee had termed the decision taken by the Central government to scrap Article 370 in Jammu and Kashmir as unwise. “I don’t think there is anything revolutionary here. It’s a political decision, even though it is not a wise decision,” he had said.

Political leaders expressed their grief over his demise. “The gentle giant Soli Sorabjee passed away this morning. Always ready to lend a helping hand Soli Sir leaves behind countless admirers & many memories. My condolences to the family in this hour of grief,” said Smriti Irani in a tweet.

Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman said, “Saddened to hear that former Attorney General Shri Soli Sorabjee is no more. His legal acumen is well known and appreciated. His articulation was infused with subtlety and was always polite. A graceful presence in any discussion. A great human being.”

Congress leader Abhishek Singhvi said, “My neighbour-common wall—Soli #Sorabjee-passes away. Went 2max late nite a week ago with #covid but per wife #Zena was stable &ok, only fidgety at being alone. Happy 2get their house fumigated at Zena rqst. Suddenly, heart stopped last nite & cld nt be revived. Long association.”

Shiv Sena leader and Rajya Sabha MP Priyanka Chaturvedi said, “The bad news just doesn’t end. One of the most eminent names in the legal fraternity is no more. Heartfelt condolences to Shri Soli Sorabjee’s family, friends and loved ones.”

Sorabjee was 91-year-old.

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