8 Women Supreme Court Judges Since Independence

Posted: August 10, 2018

Indira Banerjee was recently sworn-in as a Supreme Court judge. It is a historical moment as the Indian apex court for the first time has three sitting women judges at a time.

It is a fact that the presence of women in the Indian judiciary has not been substantial, with only a very few women making it to the top echelons. In all the decades post independence only 8 women have made it to the Supreme Court. Here is a brief look at all the eight women Supreme Court judges since the time of Indian independence.

Fathima Beevi

Born at Travancore in Kerala, she got her law degree from Government Law College, Thiruvananthapuram. She started her career at Kerala’s lower judiciary and became the first woman judge of the supreme court, also first muslim woman judge who was appointed in the year 1989.




Sujata V Manohar

Sujata V Manohar hailed from a legal family and began her career at the Bombay High Court. She handled commercial as well as family law cases. Eventually she became the first woman judge of the Bombay High Court, later transferred to Kerala High Court and finally was appointed as the Judge of Supreme Court in 1994.

Ruma Pal

Ruma Pal is the longest serving women judge at the Supreme Court from 2000 to 2006. She began her career at Calcutta High Court and became the judge there in 1990. She has written and edited articles and textbooks for the students of law. She later became the chancellor of Sikkim University.  

Gyan Sudha Mishra

Gyan Sudha Mishra became the Supreme Court judge in 2010. She has dealt with many cases and passed important judgements during her tenure. Some of them being former president Srinivasan and BCCI case, Aruna Shaunbaug case, Delhi uphaar tragedy case and the like.  

Ranjana Prakash Desai

Ranjana Prakash Desai is the daughter of a well known criminal lawyer S.G Samant. She has served at the Bombay High Court and was promoted to Supreme Court in 2014. Her notable judgements include ending Haj subsidy by 2022 and inclusion of ‘None of the Above’ (NOTA).  

R. Banumathi

Hailing from the Indian state of Tamil Nadu, R.Banumathi is the sixth women judge appointed to the Supreme Court in 2014. She has served at Tamil Nadu Higher Judicial Service, special task force at Chinnampathy, Madras High Court and Jharkhand High Court.

Indu Malhotra

Born in Bangalore, Indu Malhotra completed her Bachelor of Law from faculty of law, Delhi University. She has served as senior council at the Supreme Court for 30 years. Later she was elevated and appointed as the judge on 26th April 2018. She has published articles in various journals and has authored a commentary on the Law and Practice of Arbitration in India.

Indira Banerjee

Indira Banerjee began her career as an advocate at Calcutta High Court and was later transferred to Delhi High Court in 2016. She was the second woman chief justice at the Madras High Court before becoming the eighth women supreme court judge.     

All images courtesy www.wikipedia.org and www.barandbench.com 

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