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H.M. Seervai

H.M Seervai, a scion of the famous Wadia Master Builders, was born in Bombay on 5th December 1906. He was educated in the Bharda New High School, Bombay and joined the Elphinstone College, Bombay, in 1922, graduating in 1926 with a first class degree in Philosophy. In 1932 he was appointed for a term as Lecturer in English at Elphinstone College.

     Having graduated in Law, he started practice on the Original Side of the Bombay High Court in 1932 and joined the Chamber of Sir Jamshedji Kanga, who was Advocate General from 1923-1935. Seervai was appointed Advocate General of Maharashtra in 1957, a post he held with distinction for 17 years.

     In 1967 he published Constitutional Law of India, A Critical Commentary (now in its 4th edition) which was acclaimed as a classic and won for him the award of Padma Vibhushan in 1972, and led in 1981 to his being elected a Corresponding Fellow if the British Academy. In March 1994 he received from the International Bar Associationa Living Legends of Law Award of Recognition.

            Seervai’s interest in civil liberties found expression in his book, Emergency, Future Safeguards and the Habeas Corpus Case (1978). He took up the cause of civil liberties as President of the People’s Union for Civil Liberties and often spoke on public platforms in their cause.