Rajeev Dhavan is a senior advocate of the Supreme Court and a human right activist. Born in August, 1946, Dhawan is a respected name in Indian legal circle.
Rajeev Dhavan studied law at Allahabad University, then at the University of Cambridge and London University.
He started practice effectively in 1992. After his arguments in the Mandal (1992) and Babri Masjid (1994) cases, he was designated as a Senior Advocate by the Supreme Court in 1995.
Dhavan used to say: “winning a few odd cases does not make you a marketable lawyer. You still end up eating your chappatis in the lawn”. His initial interest was in public interest law.
Dhavan is the lead counsel for the Muslims in the Ayodhya dispute case and represented the Sunni Central Waqf Board which has got one-third of the disputed land under a 2010 Allahabad High Court ruling.
Some reports say that Dhawan had a series of tiffs with various judges at the Supreme Court. In 2013, while the hearing of the high-profile 2G scam case was on, Dhavan had hit out at Justice GS Singhvi for refusing to hear a case and recusing from the matter.
Dhawan reportedly didn’t like bench’s decision of deferring the case. In 2014, he reportedly had a tiff with the Bench of Justice KS Radhakrishnan and JS Khehar resulting in strong observations against his conduct.
Dhavan called it quits on December 11, 2017 after what he described as a “humiliating end” to the Delhi government-Centre dispute case following heated exchanges between him and the CJI.
Representing the Muslim parties in the Supreme Court in the Ayodhya case, Dhavan had a complete meltdown as Senior advocate Vikas Singh, who represented the Hindu Mahasabha, sought to place on record the book ‘Ayodhya Revisited’ by former IPS Kishore Kunal.
In a complete meltdown, Dhawan started tearing off papers and maps handed over to him by the Hindu Mahasabha as he strongly opposed the party in the Supreme Court.