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The Supreme Court Collegium who is entrusted with the task of recommending the names of all capable advocates for judgeships at the Apex Court, came up with a beautifully surprising development when it recommended the names of lady Senior Advocate Indu Malhotra along with the present Chief Justice of Uttarakhand High Court Justice K.M Joseph. This recommendation has become first of its type because it is for the first time that the Bar has recommended a Lady Advocate to be a future Supreme Court Judge.
The Collegium comprising of Chief Justice Dipak Misra, along with Justices Chelameswar, Ranjan Gogoi, Madan B Lokur and Kurian Joseph unanimously gave their respective consent on the recommendations on 10th January 2018.
If the recommendations are met with, then Advocate Indu Malhotra will be the seventh woman Judge of the country who shall enjoy the privilege as well as the responsibilities of being designated as a judge of the Top most court in the country, along with this, she will also have another feather to her hat, of being the first woman judge to be elevated directly from the Bar. From the time of independence, till today, only six women judges had the opportunity of being the judges of the Apex court.
It took almost 39 years after the institution of the Apex Court, to appoint the first female judge of the country. At present, Justice R. Banumati is the sole woman Judge in the Supreme Court who is in service since 29th October 2014. Advocate Indu Malhotra if elected, shall be a proud successor of Justice Fathima Beevi (the first woman judge of the Supreme Court, appointed in 1989), Justice Sujatha Manohar, Justice Ruma Pal, Justice Gyan Sudha Misra, Justice Ranjana Desai.
The second recommendation of the Collegium is as interesting and surprising as the first one because the Collegium itself had recommended the name Justice K.M Joseph for transfer from Uttarakhand High Court to the High Court of Andhra Pradesh & Telangana, when as Chief Justice of Uttarakhand High Court, Justice Joseph had pronounced a judgment quashing the President’s rule imposed in the State of Uttarakhand.
Having said that, the final decision on this transfer file is yet to be taken by the Central Government. And the final decision on the appointment of the Supreme Court Judges is yet in its process, but by recommending the name of a female advocate the Collegium has tried to encourage the concept of gender equality in terms of employment.
Written By : Shajeeda Tajdeen
Edited By : Rachit Mehrotra