The Union Law Ministry recently stated that the Central Government has been urging the interests of diverse representation to be considered when it comes to High Court appointments.
Law Minister RS Prasad made the statement in a letter responding to Rajya Sabha MP from the DMK, P Wilson who had earlier also written to the President of India to ensure more diversity when it comes to judicial appointments.
Responding to a speech made by Wilson on the issue in the Parliament, the Law Minster has pointed out that presently, Article 124 of the Constitution (under which Supreme Court appointments are made) does not provide for any caste-based, class-based or gender-based reservation.
Prasad goes on to note that presently there are three judges from minority communities, two women judges and one judge from the scheduled caste community on the Supreme Court bench.
As stated in the letter,
“At present, against the sanctioned strength of 34 judges, 30 judges including two womenjudges, three judges from minority communities and one judge from Schedule Caste community are in a position in the Supreme Court.”
The letter adds that the High Court collegium plays a predominant role when it comes to the appointment of judges. Therefore, the Centre has been urging the Judges and Chief Justices of High Courts to ensure more diversity in judicial appointments, states the letter.
“Since judges in the Supreme Court are appointed predominantly from amongst the Chief Justices/ Judges of the High Courts, Government has been requesting that due consideration be given to suitable candidates belonging to the Scheduled Castes, Scheduled Tribes, other Backward Classes, Minorities, and Women while making appointments to the High Courts.”