The Supreme Court Collegium, headed by Chief Justice of India (CJI) N V Ramana, has recommended 68 names, including 44 advocates and 24 judicial officers, for appointment as judges in 12 high courts of the country.
The three-member Collegium, which includes Justices U U Lalit and Justice A M Khanwilkar, in its meetings held on August 25 and September 1, considered as many as 112 candidates for elevation as judges in high courts.
“Among those 68 cleared for twelve high courts, 44 are from the Bar and 24 are from the judicial service,” they said.
The recommendation comes at a time that the high courts are facing a sever crunch of judges. Sixty-eight judges, if cleared by the Centre, will be appointed in high courts at Allahabad, Rajasthan, Calcutta, Jharkhand, Jammu and Kashmir, Madras, Madhya Pradesh, Karnataka, Punjab and Haryana, Kerala, Chhattisgarh and Assam.
The Collegium has recommended 10 women candidate to judgeship in various high courts. Among them, Marli Vankung becomes the first woman judicial officer from Mizoram whose name has been sent to the Centre for judgeship in the Gauhati High Court, as reported by PTI.
Apart from the new names that have been recommended for appointment as high court judges, the Supreme Court Collegium also reiterated its recommendation for elevation of nine lawyers and three judicial officers as judges of various high courts. These names had earlier been sent back after the Centre had raised objection.
These 12 names had been pending for several months, and some had been recommended as far back as 2019. One of the names recommended for J&K High court had been sent initially in October 2019, but had been sent back by the government. Additionally, the Centre had returned the files of some recommended names in August this year.
According to the Memorandum of Procedure that has been followed so far, the Center is obliged to accept recommendations which have been reiterated by the Supreme Court.
9 JUDGES TAKE OATH TO SC
Earlier this week, nine judges, including three women, took the oath of office to the Supreme Court. This was the first time in the history of the Supreme Court that nine judges took oath in one go.
With the swearing-in of the nine new judges, the strength of the Supreme Court rose to 33, including the CJI, out of the sanctioned strength of 34.