SC collegium OKs about 70 names for HC vacancies 

Express News Service

NEW DELHI:  In a record of its sorts, a three-member Supreme Court collegium led by Chief Justice of India N V Ramana recommended 68 names for appointments as judges to various high courts, 44 of whom are lawyers and 24 judicial officers.

The onus is now on the Centre to clear them expeditiously. It had shown rare alacrity in approving the appointment of nine judges to the Supreme Court days after a five-member collegium made that recommendation. 

According to the collegium resolutions uploaded on the official SC website, four advocates were recommended each for Kerala and Madras high courts, 13 lawyers and three judicial officers to Allahabad High Court, three judicial officers and three lawyers to the Rajasthan High Court, four judicial officers and two advocates to Calcutta High Court, one lawyer and five judicial officer to the Jharkhand High Court.

The collegium also reiterated its recommendations for appointing nine lawyers as judges at Rajasthan, Calcutta, J&K and Karnataka high courts, and three judicial officers to the Allahabad High Court. The collegium tried to balance the gender ratio by recommending at least 10 women as judges to various high courts. At present, in the 25 high courts, there is a vacancy of 465 judges. The highest vacancy is at the Allahabad High Court, which is functioning with just 50% judges at present. 

According to sources, the collegium also recommended a woman judicial officer belonging to Scheduled Tribe, Marli Vankung, as judge of the Gauhati High Court. She would be the first-ever high court judge from Mizoram if the Centre approves her candidature. However, the collegium resolution on this recommendation hasn’t been made public yet. The collegium sought further details about 16 candidates whose names were considered at its meetings.

112 names consideredIn meetings held on August 24 and September 1, the collegium considered 112 candidates forelevation to various high courts. Of them, 68 were recommended for appointments to 12 high courts