Indu Malhotra becomes first woman lawyer to be directly appointed as SC Judge

The Supreme Court's Collegium has recommended the names of senior advocate Indu Malhotra and Uttarakhand Chief Justice K M Joseph for appointment as judges to the apex court.

Malhotra will be the first woman lawyer to be directly appointed as Supreme Court judge. She is expected to join the apex court after the ministry of law approves the recommendation.

Malhotra was also the second woman to appointed senior advocate in 2007.  She was also the second woman lawyer to be appointed as senior advocate by the Supreme Court, three decades after the first, Justice Leila Seth, was designated.

Malhotra will be the seventh woman judge since independence to be appointed to the Supreme Court. Justice R Banumathi is the only woman among 25 judges in the top court. Justice M Fathima Beevi was the first woman to be appointed as a judge of the apex court in 1989.

As per the Hindu report, the five-judge Collegium comprising Chief Justice Dipak Mishra and Justices Chelameswar, Ranjan Gogoi, Madan B Lokur and Kurian Joseph, unanimously recommended the two names.

The Collegium led by Chief Justice of India is expected to recommend names for six vacancies at the top court. The recruitment for judges at the top court is done through collegium system where senior most judges recommend the names.

Justice K M Joseph hit the headlines when he delivered the judgment quashing President's rule in Uttarakhand which enabled Harish Rawat to be sworn-in as the chief minister.

The Supreme Court collegium had since recommended the Uttarakhand Chief Justice KM Joseph's transfer to the joint high court for Andhra Pradesh and Telangana in Hyderabad.

But the government did not clear the transfer. The high court at Hyderabad still does not have a full-time Chief Justice.