As CJI constitutes an all-women bench, what’s the status of women in law?

Source: The post is based on an article “As CJI constitutes an all-women bench, what’s the status of women in law?” published in Business Standard on 3rd December 2022. 

Syllabus: GS 2 – Social Justice 

Relevance: position of women in judiciary 

News: The proportion of women enrolling in LLB courses or in judiciary is very low which is an important issue that requires attention. 

What is the status of women in the judiciary? 

According to the data from All India Survey on Higher Education for 2019-20, only 33 per cent were women enrolled out of 400,000 LLB students. 

Moreover, India has not had a woman as a Chief Justice since Independence. The proportion of women in the Supreme Court is low at 12.5 per cent 

Recently, the Chief Justice of India DY Chandrachud has constituted an all-women bench which is only the third time in the history of SC where an all-women bench has been constituted. 

The position of women is better in lower judiciary but their proportion falls as we move to higher judiciary. 

As per the data, out of 19,288 judges employed in the subordinate courts, 6,765 (35 percent) were women and out of 6765, 55 percent women were employed as civil judges. 

However, in the high courts, only 13.2 per cent women occupied the position of judge. Further, there are state-wise disparities in the appointment of women judges in the lower judiciary and the high courts.  

As per the data, out of the 36 states and Union Territories, 17 had a smaller proportion of women in the lower judiciary than the national average. 

States with lesser number of women employed in the subordinate courts are –Gujarat (19.5%), Jharkhand (23%), Bihar (24.2%). 

States which are in a better position of women employed in the subordinate courts are – Telangana (52.8%), Andhra Pradesh (46.2%) and Punjab (45.8%). 

The data reveals that five states did not have a single woman judge whereas seven states have less than 10 per cent women in the judiciary. Only three states (Sikkim, Telangana and Delhi) had over a fourth of women judges in the high court. 

Further, the number of women has increased in the high courts but their representation has hardly changed.  

Therefore, these data highlight a grim picture of the women employed in the judiciary in India. So, there is a need to look into the issue and give proper representation and equal rights to women.  

 Source: Business Standard                               

 Source: Business Standard  

 Source: Business Standard 

Print Friendly and PDF