The government has cleared the appointment of the Chief Justice of the Madras High Court, Indira Banerjee as a Supreme Court judge and she becomes the eight female judge to be working in the apex court ever. Banerjee also becomes the third current female judge at the Supreme Court alongside R Banumati and Indu Malhotra.
After clearing the recommendations of Supreme Court collegium to elevate Chief Justice of the Uttarakhand High Court, K M Joseph, the Central Government announced that they have also cleared elevation of a total of three justices for the apex court. That is, the appointment of Chief Justice of the Madras High Court Indira Banerjee and Chief Justice of the Orissa High Court Vineet Sharan has been attested by the government. All three judges will take their oath as Supreme Court judges on Monday, reinforcing and diversifying the Indian judiciary workforce.
With the new appointments, Indira Banerjee became the eight women ever to be appointed as a Supreme Court judge. Although the first women judge was inducted in 1989, elevation of Indira Banerjee marks history as this is the first time that the Supreme Court, which already has Justice R Banumathi and Justice Indu Malhotra as its judges, will now have three woman judges concurrently. Also, she is the second woman to head Madras High Court, after Justice Kanta Kumari Bhatnagar.
After the appointment of these three new judges, the number of judges will be 25 in the Supreme Court. However, the government and the collegium of the Supreme Court kept struggling for seven months to elevate Justice Joseph. The first recommendation was submitted in January but the government kept it pending for four months, only to send it a back for reconsideration. It was the second time that his name was sent back for second time and the Centre had no choice but to accept the recommendations.