Judge (Dr.) Nagendra Singh
Nagendra Singh with Queen Beatrix at the Congress of the International Association of Lawyers (UIA) in Hague, 1985.
President of the International Court of Justice
In office
Preceded byTaslim Elias
Succeeded byJosé Ruda
4th Chief Election Commissioner of India
In office
1 October 1972 – 6 February 1973
Preceded bySP Sen Verma
Succeeded byT. Swaminathan,
Personal details
Born(1914-03-18)18 March 1914
Dungarpur, Rajasthan
Died11 December 1988(1988-12-11) (aged 74)
The Hague, Netherlands
RelativesLaxman Singh, [Virbhadhra Singh] (brother)
Alma materMayo College
St. John's College, Cambridge

Prince Sri Nagendra Singh (18 March 1914 – 11 December 1988) was an Indian lawyer and administrator who served as President of the International Court of Justice from 1985 to 1988.[1] He was one of the four judges from India to have been Judges of the International Court of Justice in The Hague, the others being B. N. Rau (1952–1953) First Indian Judge at ICJ, R. S. Pathak (1989–1991) the 18th Chief Justice of India, and Dalveer Bhandari (2012–), former Justice of the Supreme Court of India.[2]

Early life

Nagendra Singh was born on 18 March 1914 in the State of the Kingdom of Dungarpur, to King Vijay Singh I and his wife Queen Davendra; his elder brother was Laxman Singh I, the last monarch of Dungarpur.[3] Before joining the Civil Service he was educated at St John's College, Cambridge.[4]


He joined the Indian Civil Service and served as Regional Commissioner for the Eastern States, a member of the Constituent Assembly of India, joint secretary for India's Defense Ministry, Director-General of Transport, and special secretary in the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting.[5]

Between 1966 and 1972 Singh was secretary to the President of India,[5] then from 1 October 1972 to 6 February 1973 he was Chief Election Commissioner of India.[6] In 1966, 1969, and 1975, he was appointed a representative of India in the United Nations Assembly and served on the United Nations International Law Commission on a part-time basis from 1967 to 1972. He was also elected as secretary of the International Bar Association. In 1973, he moved to The Hague to become a judge of the International Court of Justice and was its president between February 1985 and February 1988, when he retired.[5] He continued to live at the Hague and died there in December 1988.


Singh was awarded the Kama award in 1938, and in 1973 he received the Padma Vibhushan from the Government of India.[7]


[8] [9] [10]

  1. ^ "Nagendra Singh, Judge At the World Court, 74". The New York Times, 13 December 1988.
  2. ^ "Former CJI Pathak dead". The Indian Express. 19 November 2007. Retrieved 3 March 2013.
  3. ^ "Wayback Machine has not archived that URL". u.whatiledjeffte.pro. Retrieved 6 September 2020.[dead link]
  4. ^ "Dr Manmohan Singh Scholarships". St John's College, University of Cambridge. Retrieved 13 January 2019.
  5. ^ a b c "ICJ Communiqué" (PDF). International Court of Justice. 13 December 1988.
  6. ^ List of former CEC of India Archived 2008-11-21 at the Wayback Machine Election Commission of India Official website.
  7. ^ "Previous Awardees". Padma Awards, Government of India. Retrieved 4 November 2022.
  8. ^ Carl Landauer, Passage from India: Nagendra Singh’s India and international law. Indian Journal of International Law 56, 265–305 (2016). https://doi.org/10.1007/s40901-017-0057-4
  9. ^ Prabhakar Singh, Indian Princely States and the 19th-century Transformation of the Law of Nations, Journal of International Dispute Settlement, Volume 11, Issue 3, (2020)pp. 365–387, https://doi.org/10.1093/jnlids/idaa012.
  10. ^ [United Nations Security Council Resolution 627]