S. Abdul Nazeer

 “Religion is a matter of faith, and not of logic. It is not open to a court to accept an egalitarian approach, over a practice which constitutes an integral part of religion. The Constitution allows the followers of every religion, to follow their beliefs and religious traditions. The Constitution assures believers of all faiths, that their way of life, is guaranteed, and would not be subjected to any challenge, even though they may seem to others (-and even rationalists, practicing the same faith) unacceptable, in today’s world and age,{During Triple Talaq case}


Justice S Abdul Nazeer, being a judge of Supreme court, is a former Judge of Karnataka High Court. Justice Nazeer is the third judge to be directly elevated to the Supreme Court without serving as the Chief Justice of a High Court.

Notable Judgements


  1. M Siddiq v. Mahant Suresh Das

Justice Nazeer was a part of the three judge bench hearing an appeal to the Ayodhya title dispute. He dissented and stated that a Constitution Bench must review the court’s previous decision stating a mosque as not an essential feature of Islam.


  1. Shayara Bano v. Union of India

Justice Nazeer was the only Muslim on the multi-faith bench deciding the constitutional validity of Triple Talaq. Justice Nazeer along with the then Chief Justice Khehar dissented to upheld the constitutionality of Triple Talaq and concluded that the Parliament, and not the Supreme Court, held the authority to strike it down. Accordingly, they directed the Parliament to draft a law on Triple Talaq and proposed placing an injunction on it for six months, until the Parliament’s decision.

  1. Justice K. S. Puttaswamy v. Union of India

Justice Nazeer was a part of the nine judge Supreme Court bench that unanimously declared privacy as a fundamental right. The bench held that privacy is integral to the right to life with dignity under Article 21 of the Constitution.


Justice Nazeer studied law in Sri Dharmasthala Manjunatheshwara Law College, Mangalore. He litigated for 20 years in the Karnataka High Court. After taking his law degree, Nazeer enrolled as an Advocate on 1983 and practiced at the Karnataka High Court in Bengaluru. In May 2003, he was appointed as an Additional Judge of the Karnataka High Court and was later appointed a Permanent Judge of the same High Court. In February 2017, while serving as a judge of the Karnataka High Court, Nazeer was elevated to the Supreme Court of India. 

In the Supreme Court, Abdul Nazeer was the only Muslim judge in a multi-faith bench which heard the controversial Triple Talaq case in 2017. Though Justice Nazeer and one other judge upheld the validity of the practise of Triple Talaq (Talaq-e-Biddat) based on that fact that it is permissible under Muslim Sharia Law, it was barred by the bench by 3:2 majority and asked the Central government to bring legislation in six months to govern marriage and divorce in the Muslim community. The court said till the government formulates a law regarding triple talaq, there would be an injunction on husbands pronouncing triple talaq on their wives.