The Supreme Court Women Lawyers Association has filed an application in Supreme Court seeking directions to consider outstanding women lawyers who practice in the High Court and Supreme Court for appointment as High Court Judge.
By this application, the Supreme Court Women Lawyers Association seeks to intervene in PLR Projects Pvt Ltd vs Mahanadi Coalfields Ltd & Ors, wherein the Apex Court is considering unfilled vacancies of judges in High Courts.
The Association has highlighted that female judges in the higher judiciary are abysmally low in the application. Only eight women judges have been appointed in the Supreme Court, and there has never been a woman CJI. Only one female judge is heading a High Court( Justice Hema Kohli is currently the Chief Justice of the High Court).
A reference is also made to Article 14 and 15(3) of the Constitution; it was stated that there should be adequate representation of women in the higher judiciary. The application also refers to Hon’ble Justice Indu Malhotra’s farewell speech wherein she stated that society would benefit if there is gender parity on the Bench. A reference was also made to AG Venugopal’s speech in which he stated that there is gender disparity in the Bench.
In this context, the Association requested the Apex Court to consider the suggestions made by them and elevate meritorious women lawyers to judges posts.
The Association also sought directions to the Union of India to incorporate in Memorandum of Procedures for judicial appointment provision to consider women judges to expedite the process to include women judges in the higher judiciary.