Supreme Court to have full sanctioned strength of judges by tomorrow

Anuj Cariappa

New Delhi, May 23: Four new judges of the Supreme Court will take oath of office on Friday, raising their number to 31, the full sanctioned strength.

As per a circular issued by the apex court, Justices B R Gavai, Surya Kant, Aniruddha Bose and A S Bopanna will be administered oath of office by Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi at 10.30 am on Friday in court number one of the Supreme Court.

The apex court will have its full strength of judges for the first time since 2008 when Parliament had increased the number of judges from 26 to 31.

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As of now, the apex court is functioning with 27 judges, including the CJI.

On Wednesday, President Ram Nath Kovind had issued warrants of appointment of Justices Gavai, Surya Kant, Bose and Bopanna as apex court judges.

The names of Justices Bose and Bopanna were earlier returned by the Centre to the Supreme Court collegium citing seniority and representation of regions as the reasons.

In its May 8 resolution, the five-member collegium had reiterated its recommendation to elevate Justices Bose and Bopanna, observing that nothing adverse has been found regarding their competence, conduct or integrity.

The collegium, headed by the CJI, had on May 8 also recommended the names of Justices Gavai and Surya Kant for elevation to the apex court.

Justice Gavai, who was a judge of the Bombay High Court, will become the CJI for a little over six months in 2025 and he will be the second Chief Justice of India belonging to the Scheduled Caste community after Justice (retd) K G Balakrishnan.

Justice Surya Kant, who is the incumbent chief justice of the Himachal Pradesh High Court, will succeed Justice Gavai as the CJI in November 2025 and he will remain in office till February 2027.

Justice Bose, who is the chief justice of Jharkhand High Court, is at number 12 in all-India seniority of high court judges.

Justice Bopanna, whose parent high court is Karnataka, is the Chief Justice of Gauhati High Court and is at number 36 in all-India seniority.

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