Five new high court judges took oath as Supreme Court judges on Monday, increasing the apex court’s strength to 32 against the sanctioned strength of 34. The oath was administered by Chief Justice of India (CJI) DY Chandrachud at a ceremony held in the court’s auditorium in its new building complex.
The senior-most among the five new judges is Justice Pankaj Mithal, who has been serving as the Chief Justice of the Rajasthan High Court since October 14, 2022. Justice Mithal, who hails from the Allahabad High Court, was elevated as a permanent judge of the Allahabad High Court in 2008. He has previously served as the standing counsel for the Uttar Pradesh Avas Evam Vikas Parishad and Dr B R Ambedkar University, Agra.
Justice Sanjay Karol, who belonged to the Himachal Pradesh High Court, was the Chief Justice of the Patna High Court at the time of his elevation to the Supreme Court. A native of Kangra district, he has specialized in matters related to the Constitution, taxation, corporate, criminal, and civil cases.
Justice PV Sanjay Kumar, who originally belonged to the Telangana High Court, was the Chief Justice of the Manipur High Court when his name was cleared for elevation to the Supreme Court. He was a government pleader in the Andhra Pradesh High Court from 2000 to 2003 and assumed charge as a judge of the High Court of Punjab and Haryana in 2019.
Justice Ahsanuddin Amanullah, from the Patna High Court, was a government advocate in the Patna High Court and a standing counsel for the state government from 2006 to 2010 before his elevation as a judge in the same court in 2011. He was transferred to the Andhra Pradesh High Court in 2021 and transferred back to the Patna High Court in 2022.
Justice Manoj Misra, who hails from the Allahabad High Court, was elevated as a permanent judge of the Allahabad High Court in 2013. He enrolled as an advocate in 1988 and was elevated as an additional judge of the Allahabad High Court in 2011.
The appointment of these five new judges will go a long way in reducing the backlog of cases in the Supreme Court. With their diverse backgrounds and expertise, they are expected to bring new perspectives and make valuable contributions to the country’s judicial system.