List of Contents
What is the News?
Chief Justice of India N.V. Ramana has backed 50% representation for women in the judiciary.
Women and Judiciary
Women constitute only about 30% of the subordinate judiciary.
In High Courts, women judges constitute 11.5%.
In the Supreme Court, we currently have four women Justices out of the sitting 33. That makes it just 12%.
Note: The Supreme Court has the highest ever number of women judges serving now. One of the women judges, Justice B.V. Nagarathna is set to be the first woman CJI in 2027.
Of the 1.7 million advocates, only 15% are women.
Only 2% of the elected representatives in the State Bar Councils are women.
Legally India website conducted a survey of 30 top Indian law firms by gender. It has been found that less than a third of the partners were women, and at less than a quarter of the firms, the gender ratio was greater than 40% female.
Senior Advocates in SC and HC: There are only 17 women senior advocates designated out of 430 in total in the Supreme Court. The count in the High Court is also disappointing. The Delhi High Court has designated 8 out of 229 senior advocates. Bombay High Court has 6 women out of 163.
Reasons for Low Women Representation in Judiciary
The reasons that stop women from entering the judiciary as a profession includes: Lack of infrastructure, gender stereotypes and social attitudes, “Clients’ preference for male advocates, the uncomfortable environment within courtrooms, crowded courtrooms and lack of washrooms for women.
|Must read: Issue of Gender Gap in Judiciary – Explained, Pointwise|
What steps should be taken?
The basic facilities in the courts, especially for women, need to be addressed immediately.
Government should form a separate entity — National Judicial Infrastructure Corporation — to introduce inclusive designs for court complexes and create a more welcoming environment for them.
There is a need to bring structural reforms in the legal profession. It is important to promote talented women and bring more women into the legal system.
Source: This post is based on the article “CJI voices support for 50% representation for women in judiciary” published in The Hindu on 27th September 2021.