B. N. Srikrishna

Bellur Narayanaswamy Srikrishna (born 21 May 1941) is an Indian jurist and a retired judge of the Supreme Court of India.[1] From 1993–98, he headed the "Srikrishna Commission" that investigated causes and apportioned blame for the Bombay riots of 1992–93.[2] He is currently the chairman of the Financial Sector Legislative Reforms Commission (FSLRC).[3] and also works as an independent arbitrator.[4]


Bellur Srikrishna
Judge, Supreme Court of India
In office
3 October 2002 – 21 May 2006
Nominated byCollegium of judges headed by CJI Bhupinder Nath Kirpal
Appointed byPresident A. P. J. Abdul Kalam
Chief Justice, Kerala High Court
In office
6 September 2001 – 1 October 2002
Personal details
Born (1941-05-21) 21 May 1941 (age 79)
Bangalore, Kingdom of Mysore

Early lifeEdit

Srikrishna was born in Bangalore, to B. Narayanaswamy and Sharadamma. Narayanaswamy was a lawyer in Bombay High Court. Srikrishna was brought up in Bombay (now Mumbai) and graduated with a bachelor's degree in Science from the Elphinstone College of the University of Bombay, received an LL.B. from the Government Law College, Mumbai, an LL.M. from the University of Bombay, and stood second in the university. He holds an MA in Sanskrit from the University of Mysore, a diploma in Urdu and a postgraduate diploma in Indian Aesthetics from the University of Bombay. He knows ten languages including his mother tongue Kannada.[5]


In 1967, Srikrishna entered private practice in the Bombay High Court,[6] specialising in labour and industrial law. He was counsel for a number of large corporations. Besides appearing in the High Court, he also argued cases in the Supreme Court of India and was designated as a Senior Advocate in 1987.[citation needed]

Srikrishna was appointed as an additional judge of the Bombay High Court in 1990 and as a permanent judge in 1991. In 1993, he assumed charge of the Commission of Inquiry into the riots that took place in Bombay in 1992–93. The "Srikrishna Commission", as it became known, submitted its report in 1998, and generated widespread interest in India and abroad. In September 2001, Srikrishna was appointed as the Chief Justice of the Kerala High Court and on 3 October 2002, was appointed as a judge of the Supreme Court of India. On 21 May 2006, as per rules, on reaching the age of superannuation of sixty-five years, he retired from the Supreme Court.[citation needed]

He is leading the effort to draft new data privacy-laws for India that will regulate how tech giants from US and elsewhere will operate in the country. Srikrishna plans to navigate a "middle path" between the laissez-faire US approach and the stringent GDPR just imposed in Europe.

Mumbai Riots 1992 caseEdit

The Bombay Riots usually refers to the riots in Mumbai, in December 1992 and January 1993, in which around 900 people died. The riots were mainly due to escalations of hostilities after large scale protests (which were initially peaceful, but eventually turned violent) by Muslims in reaction to the 1992 Babri Masjid Demolition By Hindu Karsevaks in Ayodhya. Srikrishna, then a relatively junior judge of the Bombay High Court, accepted the uphill task of investigating the causes of the riots, something that many of his colleagues had turned down.[citation needed] For five years, until 1998, he examined victims, witnesses, and alleged perpetrators. Detractors came initially from left-secular quarters who were wary of a judge who was a devout and practising Hindu.[7] The commission was disbanded by the Shiv Sena-led government in January 1996 and on public opposition was later reconssions[clarification needed] of Inquiry Act. As an Inquiry is not a court of law (even if it conducts proceedings like one) and the report of an inquiry is not binding on governments, Srikrishna's recommendations cannot be directly enforced. To this date, the recommendations of the Commission have neither been accepted nor acted upon by the Government of Maharashtra.

The Sixth Central Pay commissionEdit

The Sixth central pay commission [8] was set up by Union Cabinet of India on 5 October 2006.Justice Srikrishna to head 6th pay panel– Rediff.com Business The commission, was headed by Srikrishna.[9]

Report on Madras High Court RiotsEdit

Srikrishna headed a one-man commission to inquire about the 19 February 2009 Madras High Court incidents. He submitted an interim report on 4 March 2009 with his findings to the Supreme Court of India.[citation needed]

He is interested in refugee law and human rights issues, and besides being a member of the International Association of Refugee Law Judges, has presented papers on the subject. He was invited by the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees to Geneva for a seminar on New Forms of Persecution in 2000, and on the Justiciability of Economic, Social and Cultural rights to New Delhi in 2001.[citation needed]

His study of Indian Philosophy & Jurisprudence, has also published a number of articles on the subject, including an article on "Conflict and Harmony: The Genesis of Legal and Social Systems", which is published in the journal, History of Science and Philosophy of Science.[10] He is on the Editorial Board of the Journal of the Indian Law Institute.

He is a Life Member of the National Institute of Personnel Management, is also associated with the Western Region Committee of the Employers Federation of India, the Industrial Relations Research Association (USA), and the International Bar Association (UK).

Committee for separate TelanganaEdit

A five-member committee was constituted, with Srikrishna as the chairman on 3 February 2010.[11] The committee submitted its report 30 December 2010.[12] Other members of the committee were:

  • Vinod Duggal – former Union Home Secretary
  • Ravindar Kaur – professor at IIT Delhi
  • Abusaleh Sharif – is a senior research fellow at the New Delhi Office of International Food Policy Research Institute
  • Ranbir Singh - Vice-Chancellor, National Law University

Committee to study issues related to data protectionEdit

In August 2017, the Union Ministry of Electronics & Information Technology (MEITY) constituted an Expert Committee to study and identify key data protection issues and recommend methods to address them. The ten-member committee was headed by Supreme Court Judge (retired) Justice B N Srikrishna and included members from government, academia, and industries. The committee also had the mandate to propose a draft bill for data protection.[13][14]

The Committee released its Report and proposed Personal Data Protection Bill 2018 (India) in July, 2018. The Draft was open for comments from the public till October 10, 2018.[15]

Personal lifeEdit

Srikrishna is a connoisseur of art, culture, drama, and classical music, in general, and Carnatic music in particular. He tries to find time to pursue what he says is his "real passion" — Indian classical music and culture. He is married to Purnima[16] and has two daughters.[citation needed]Sushma and Sowmya.

Cultural activitiesEdit

Mumbai has several cultural centers, and Srikrishna takes part during his free time. Srikrishna was the invited speaker, at the 2017 Golden Jubilee lecture at The Mysore association, Mumbai [17]


  • Book on riot survivors released by Srikrishna in Mumbai, 2012,[18]
  • A Heritage of Judging: The Bombay High Court through One Hundred and Fifty Years.[19] (Co-author)
  • Skinning a Cat[20]
  • Indian judges.[21]
  • Foreword of Gujarat Files, self-published by Rana Ayyub.



  1. ^ "Justice Srikrishna to probe lawyers-police clash in Madras HC". The Hindu. Chennai, India. 26 February 2009. Archived from the original on 7 November 2012. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  2. ^ "Justice Srikrishna to head 6th pay panel". Rediff. Retrieved 12 January 2019. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  3. ^ "Govt constitutes Financial Sector Legislative Reforms Commission". The Hindu. Chennai, India. 24 March 2011.
  4. ^ "Srikrishna, Bellur N : CV" (PDF). Siac.org.sg. Retrieved 12 January 2019. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  5. ^ "'I can never resist the temptation of defying something'". Telegraphindia.com. Retrieved 12 January 2019. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  6. ^ "Breaking News, Latest India News, Today Headlines, Election 2019 News, Today Live News". The Indian Express. Retrieved 12 January 2019. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  7. ^ Mehta, Suketu (2004). Maximum City: Bombay Lost and Found. Alfred A Knopf. p. 81. ISBN 0-375-40372-8.
  8. ^ "Exclusive chat with Justice BN Srikrishna". Ndtv.com. Retrieved 12 January 2019. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  9. ^ "Report of the sixth pay commission" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 7 September 2012.
  10. ^ Sengupta, Pradip Kumar (12 January 2019). "History of Science and Philosophy of Science: A Philosophical Perspective of the Logic of Ideas in Science". Longman. Retrieved 12 January 2019 – via Google Books. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  11. ^ "Hindustan Times - Archive News". Hindustantimes.com/. Retrieved 12 January 2019. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  12. ^ "News18.com: CNN-News18 Breaking News India, Latest News Headlines, Live News Updates". Ibnlive.in.com. Archived from the original on 9 January 2011. Retrieved 12 January 2019. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  13. ^ Agarwal, Surabhi (1 August 2017). "Justice BN Srikrishna to head Committee for data protection framework". The Economic Times. Retrieved 12 January 2019. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  14. ^ "Justice Krishna to head expert group on Data Protection Framework for India". Pib.nic.in. Retrieved 12 January 2019. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  15. ^ "Feedback on Draft Personal Data Protection Bill".
  16. ^ "Mount Meru," As Symbolised In The Vidyashankara Temple, Sringeri - Dr Mrs Purnima Srikrishna- 27th Nov 2013 Archived 16 September 2016 at the Wayback Machine
  17. ^ "Log In or Sign Up to View" (PDF). Lookaside.fbsbx.com. Retrieved 12 January 2019. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  18. ^ "Network of Women in Media, India(NWMI) - Book on riot survivors released by Justice Srikrishna in Mumbai, 2012". Nwmindia.org. Retrieved 12 January 2019. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  19. ^ "BigBookShop.com: A Heritage of Judging by Shri D Y Chandrachud, Goolam E Vahanvati, B N Srikrishna, Avinash Rana, Fali Nariman, Soli Sorabjee, Iqbal Chagla, Darius G Khambata, Rohinton F Nariman, Behram A Palkhivala, Sujata Manohar". Bigbookshop.com. Retrieved 12 January 2019. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  20. ^ "Eastern Book Company—Practical Lawyer". Ebc-india.com. Retrieved 12 January 2019. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  21. ^ "Online Shopping India - Buy Mobiles, Electronics, Appliances, Clothing and More Online at Flipkart.com". Flipkart.com. Retrieved 12 January 2019. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)
  22. ^ https://www.facebook.com/naradanewslive. "On 2nd anniversary would Amit Shah find time to read 'Gujarat Files, Anatomy of a Cover Up'". Naradanews.com. Retrieved 12 January 2019. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)

Further readingEdit

  • Draupadi Rohera, "The sacred space of Justice Srikrishna", Sunday Times (Times of India) (16 August 1998) (discussing Justice Srikrishna's Hindu beliefs and his work with the commission).
  • Mehta, Suketu. Maximum City: Bombay Lost and Found, (2004), Part I Ch. II. ISBN 0-375-40372-8.

External linksEdit