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SC judge strength below 2009 level; no school has met since the last 6 months | India News


NEW DELHI: The Supreme Court is facing something of a crisis, as its current number of judges has fallen below the numbers sanctioned more than a decade ago and the situation could worsen in the future without urgent action to be taken. part of the College of five members led by the Chief. Justice SA Bobde to fill vacancies.
The number of SC sanctioned judges increased from 26 to 31, including the CJI, in 2009, but its current number is 30 judges. With five more retirements – Judge Indu Malhotra (March 13), CJI Bobde (April 23), Judges Ashok Bhushan (July 4), RF Nariman (August 12) and Navin Sinha (August 18) – scheduled for the In the next six months, the force could be depleted below the 1988 level, when it was increased from 18 to 26. The number of SC judges increased from 31 to 34 in 2019.
Following the retirement of Judge Arun Mishra on September 2 of last year, there has been a five-member Collegium meeting that includes CJI Bobde, Judges NV Ramana, RF Nariman, UU Lalit and AM Khanwilkar to select individuals from among the chief justices, judges or attorneys for appointment as a South Carolina Judge. The last to be appointed a SC judge was Judge Hrishikesh Roy on September 23, 2019, almost 18 months ago.
SC sources told TOI that “since August, there has been no meeting of the Collegium. No names have been informally discussed among the judges. The circulation of names that are supposedly under consideration by the Collegium is mere speculation.”
The Collegium is working to bring more female judges into the CS, which once had four of them. However, with Judge Malhotra’s scheduled retirement on March 13, Judge Indira Banerjee would be the only judge in SC.
If the SC Collegium at its meeting addresses this issue, those who would be in the area of ​​consideration are Justice Hima Kohli, Chief Justice of Telangana HC, Justice Sanju Panda of Orissa HC and Justice BV Nagarathna of Karnataka HC.
Judge Kohli was appointed as a judge to the Delhi HC on May 29, 2006, Judge Panda in 2007, and Judge Nagarathna, daughter of former CJI ES Venkataramiah, was appointed to the Karnataka HC on February 18, 2008. The Magistrate Kohli ranks highest among women judges in India. Judge Nagarathna, the third oldest judge, is ranked 33rd on the seniority list of HC judges across India.
Judges Kohli and Nagarathna face the same handicap: too many of their HC parents are acting judges in the SC. Both Delhi and Karnataka already have three judges each in SC. The elevation of Justices Kohli and Nagarathna could violate the informal understanding of a balanced representation of the states in the CS to serve regional aspirations.
However, sources from SC said that both could be considered for appointment as SC judges and if it happens then Judge Nagarathna could become the first female CJI as she is now 59 years old. However, if another male judge, younger for her, is previously elevated, then she could lose the opportunity to head the judiciary after Judge Surya Kant, who is retiring in February 2027 after more than a year as CJI.

Times of India