Over 75% of Appointments to High Courts in Last Five Years are From the General Category: Law Ministry Data
Out of the 650 High Court judges appointed in India between 2018-2023, 492 (75.69%) belonged to the general category. The data was revealed through information furnished by the Union Ministry of Law & Justice.
Answering questions raised by Rajya Sabha MP Dr John Brittas, Law Minister Arjun Ram Meghwal said that in the last five years, only 23 judges appointed to the high courts in the country belonged to the Scheduled Caste (SC) category. The corresponding figures for Schedules Tribes (ST) and Other Backward Classes (OBC) were 10 and 76, respectively. 36 of these judges were from minority communities.
Alarmingly, the percentages for SC, ST, and OBC are 3.54%, 1.54%, and 11.7%, respectively.
The Minister also revealed information concerning the representation of women in higher judiciary.
Of the 824 judges currently working in India's Supreme Court and its high courts, only 111 (13.5%) are women.
Punjab and Haryana High Court have the highest number of women judges at 15, while Bombay High Court has 11 women judges. Meghalaya, Tripura and Uttarakhand high courts feature zero women judges.
Out of 34 judges, the number of women judges in the Supreme Court is three.
Law Ministry said that "it has been requesting the Chief Justices of High Courts that while sending proposals for the appointment of Judges, due consideration be given to suitable candidates belonging to Scheduled Castes, Scheduled Tribes, Other Backward Classes, Minorities and Women to ensure social diversity in appointment of Judges in High Court."
Furthermore, the Law Ministry placed the onus of providing representation to all sections on the judiciary since judges are appointed through the Collegium system.
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