Gender Disparity in Indian Judicial System

Indian judicial system is considered to be handicapped with gender disparity because of the following reasons:

  • Since 1950, the SC has had only eight female judges out of 239.
  • At present there are three female judges out of 27, this is considered as the highest concurrent representation women have ever had on the SC bench.
  • Even in the subordinate judiciary there is an abysmal 27.6 per cent female judges.
  • In 25 HC collegiums across the country, there are only five senior female judges whereas 19 of the collegiums have no female judge at all.
  • There has been only a single woman (Justice Ruma Pal) so far in the SC collegium.
  • Even though Justice R Banumathi is set to become the second later this year. At least until 2025, no female judge is going to occupy the CJI’s position.

These numbers suggest that the chances of female judges occupying decision-making positions, either as chief justices or as part of the HC and SC collegiums in significant numbers is very bleak. This deep-rooted systemic gender issues may act as barriers for women to enter and remain in the legal profession.

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