Sunday, September 19, 2021

Justice Nagarathna to be the first woman CJI

  • Justice Hima Kohli’s is one of the three names for CJI
  • Maheswari, former AP CJ, to be elevated to SC

New Delhi: Justice BV Nagarathna of Karnataka High Court could become the first woman chief justice of India in 2027. The Supreme Court Collegium which met on Tuesday under the leadership of CJI NV Ramana had recommended three women judges for elevation to the position of CJI besides recommending nine judges of high courts to be elevated to SC.  The other two woman judges recommended for the top position in the top court are Justice Hima Kohli, chief justice of Telangana High Court and Justice Bela Trivedi of Gujarat HC.

Justice Nagarathna was appointed as an additional Judge of the High Court of Karnataka in 2008 and elevated as a permanent judge about ten years ago. She would be the CJI for only a month although she would be making history by becoming the first woman CJI. Her father Justice ES Venkataramaiah was the Chief Justice of India between June 1989 and December 1989. Appointment of Justice Nagarathna would be fulfilling a long standing demand for a woman Chief Justice of India. CJI Ramana said earlier that it is time for a woman to head judiciary. Besides Ramana, the other judges in the Collegium that recommended the names of the woman judges were Justices UU Lalit, AM Khanwilkar, DY Chandrachud and L. Nageswara Rao.

“The time had come for India to have a woman CJI. We have the interest of women in our minds and we are implementing it best. There is no attitude change in us. The only thing is we have to get good candidates” said Justice SA Babde before he demitted office of CJI in April.

The nine high court judges recommended to be elevated to the apex court include  Justice JK Maheswari, now Chief Justice of Sikkim court, earlier CJ of AP HC, Justice Abhay Shreeniwas Oka of Karnataka HC, Justice Vikram Nath of Gujarat HC, Justice CT Ravi Kumar, the second senior most judge in Kerala HC and Justice Sunderesh, the third senior most judge in Madras HC. Senior advocate and former Additional Solicitor General PS Narasimha was also recommended to be elevated a judge of SC. He was amicus curiae in case involving BCCI whose ruckus was resolved by his skills of negotiation. Narasimhan also argued for Hindu outfit in Ayodhya case in Supreme Court.

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