After an unprecedented 22-month long impasse, CJI NV Ramana led Supreme Court Collegium has finally recommended 9 names to the Centre government for the appointment of judges in the apex court. The nine recommendations include 3 women judges which raise speculations about the country getting its first woman CJI in 2027.
Collegium Consensus After Justice RF Nariman’s Retirement
The recommendations came after the retirement of Justice Rohintan Fali Nariman who was firm in his stand that no consensus can be given unless the two most senior judges in the all-India seniority list were recommended first. The two judges included Karnataka High Court Chief Justice Abhay Oka and Tripura High Court Chief Justice Akil Kureshi.
The five member SC collegium comprises CJI NV Ramana, Justice UU Lalit, Justice AM Khanwilkar, Justice DY Chandrachud and Justice L Nageswara Rao.
Women judges Recommended For Elevation
- Karnataka High Court judge, Justice BV Nagarathna
- Chief Justice of Telangana High Court, Justice Hima Kohli (First Woman CJ of Telangana HC)
- Gujarat High Court judge, Justice Bela Trivedi
Former Additional Solicitor General and Senior Advocate P S Narasimha. If recommendation cleared, PS Narasimha will be the ninth lawyer to be appointed directly from the Bar to the Supreme Court. He will go on to become the Chief Justice of India.
Recommendation From High Court judges and Chief Justices:
- Chief Justice of Karnataka High Court, Justice AS Oka
- Chief Justice of Gujarat High Court, Justice Vikram Nath
- Chief Justice of Sikkim High Court, Justice JK Maheshwari
- Kerala High Court judge, Justice CT Ravikumar
- Madras High Court Judge, Justice MM Sundresh
First Woman CJI: Justice B. Venkataramiah Nagarathna
If the Centre government clears the recommendations, Justice B. Venkataramiah Nagarathna might create history in the Indian judiciary by becoming the first woman Chief Justice of India in 2027. No woman judge has made it into the list of 48 Chief Justices of India since it came into existence on January 26, 1950. But Justice Nagarathna could break the dreadlock.
Born on October 30, 1962, BV Nagarathna enrolled with the Bar Council of Karnataka in 1987. She is the daughter of former CJI ES Venkataramiah. After practising constitutional and commercial law in Bangalore, she was appointed as an additional judge of the Karnataka High Court in 2008 and then elevated as permanent judge on 17 February 2010.
She is ranked 33 in the seniority list of High Court judges in India and is expected to retire on 29 October 2024.
Judge Who Was Locked Down In Courtroom
Justice BV Nagarathna came into limelight in 2019 when she was unlawfully detained by a group of protesting lawyers and was locked in the courtroom along with another judge, Venkate Gopala Gowda and then the then-Chief Justice of the Karnataka High Court, P.D. Dinakaran. The lawyers called for a boycott of courts following the corruption allegations against PD Dinakaran.
“We cannot be cowed down like this. We have taken the oath of Constitution,” Justice Nagarathna expressed her disappointment over the incident.
Significant Observations By Justice BV Nagarathna
“India’s patriarchal society doesn’t know how to treat empowered women.”
“Nobody can study on a hungry stomach.”
“There may be illegitimate parents but there can never be illegitimate children.”
“While truthful dissemination of information is an essential requirement of any broadcasting channel, sensationalism in the form of ‘Breaking News’, ‘Flash News’ or in any other form must be curbed.”
“A temple is not a “commercial establishment” and hence, employees of a temple in Karnataka are not entitled to gratuity under Payments of Gratuity Act.”