7 new Supreme Court judges, including 5 chief justices of higher courts, were appointed within a week.

This week, seven new judges were appointed to the Supreme Court, bringing the total number of judges to 34. Listed below are the new judges:

Justice Pankaj Mithal

When appointed to the Supreme Court, Justice Mithal was the 40th Chief Justice of the Rajasthan High Court. On July 7, 2006, he was initially assigned to the Allahabad High Court. A court led by Justice Mithal, a senior judge in the Allahabad High Court, took suo moto notice of the hasty cremation of the victim in the alleged Hathras gang rape crime in 2020. In the case captioned “In Re: Right to decent and dignified final rites/cremation,” the bench ordered the Additional Chief Secretary (Home) to establish a policy for the formulation of suitable guidelines to prevent such instances from occurring in the future. The SC Collegium recommended his appointment as Chief Justice of the Jammu & Kashmir and Ladakh High Court on December 4, 2020. In October 2022, he was transferred from his position as Chief Justice of the Rajasthan High Court.

Justice Sanjay Karol

Justice Karol was proposed for elevation to the Supreme Court while serving as Chief Justice of the Patna High Court. Born in Shimla, he began his legal career in 1986.

Justice Karol was a subordinate of the former minister of the Union, Arun Jaitley, and practised in Delhi. He was appointed Advocate General of Himachal Pradesh in 1998 and elevated to judge of the Himachal Pradesh High Court in 2007. In November of 2018, he was named chief justice of the Tripura High Court, then in November of 2019, he was transferred to the Patna High Court.

As the chief justice of the Patna High Court, Justice Karol invalidated the OBC and EBC quota in the Bihar municipal elections for disregarding the Supreme Court’s directives. The panel led by Justice Karol also instructed the state government to turn the Bihar Vidyapeeth campus into a museum honouring Dr. Rajendra Prasad.

Justice PV Sanjay Kumar

Justice PV Sanjay Kumar was proposed for appointment to the Supreme Court while serving as chief justice of the Manipur High Court. Justice Kumar, who was born in Hyderabad on August 14, 1963, graduated from Delhi University and joined the Bar Council of Andhra Pradesh in 1988. Between 1969 to 1982, his father P Ramachandra Reddy served as the Attorney General of Andhra Pradesh.

In 2008, Justice Kumar was elevated to judge of the AP High Court. When he was transferred to the Punjab and Haryana High Court, where he would rank thirteenth in seniority, he was the most senior judge on the Telangana High Court. The Telangana Bar protested the decision. In 2021, he was named Manipur High Court Chief Justice.

Justice Ahsanuddin Amanullah

Justice Ahsanuddin Amanullah was proposed for appointment to the Supreme Court while serving as a judge on the Patna High Court. In 1991, he was admitted to the Bar and began practising before the Patna High Court. He practised constitutional and service law before the Central Administrative Tribunal, Commercial Taxes Tribunal, Board of Revenue, district courts, consumer complaints redressal organisations, and a few arbitrations.

The Patna High Court elevated Justice Amanullah to the position of judge on June 20, 2011, and on October 10, 2021, he was transferred to the Andhra Pradesh High Court. He was transferred back to the Patna High Court on June 20, 2022.

Justice Manoj Misra

Justice Misra earned a bachelor’s degree from the University of Allahabad in 1988 and was admitted to the bar on December 12, 1988. He practised civil, revenue, criminal, and constitutional law at the Allahabad High Court, where on November 21, 2011, he was raised to the position of Additional Judge. He took his permanent judgeship oath on August 6, 2013. On February 6, 2023, ten years later, he was elevated to the Supreme Court.

Justice Misra ruled over numerous significant cases in the Allahabad High Court in 2022, including “Upendra v. State of U.P.” in which the court acquitted a man accused of raping and murdering a 75-year-old lady due to a lack of proper and scientific inquiry. In “Satya Prakash v.­ State of U.P.,” he overturned the life sentence of the convict on the grounds that the testimony of a single eyewitness is not reliable. He also presided over the Nithari case, also known as “Surendra Koli v. State Through C.B.I.,” in which he questioned the CBI as to why there was such a significant delay in providing responses or producing postmortem findings. “This cavalier attitude on the part of the CBI is inexcusable,” the court stated in the case.

Justice Rajesh Bindal

When he was considered for appointment to the Supreme Court, Justice Bindal was the chief justice of the Allahabad High Court. Justice Bindal, who was born in Ambala on 16 April 1961, studied law at Kurukshetra University and began his legal career in 1985.

As an attorney, he defended Haryana in the Satluj-Yamuna water dispute before the tribunal and the Supreme Court. On March 22, 2006, he was raised to judge of the High Court of Punjab and Haryana, where he represented the Income-Tax Department for the Haryana region.

In December 2020, he served briefly as the interim chief justice of the Jammu and Kashmir High Court before being named the acting chief justice of the Calcutta High Court on April 29, 2021, the day after the West Bengal Assembly elections concluded. In contrast, Justice Bindal’s decisions were scrutinised in the court battle between the TMC and the Centre following the election results.

In May, Justice Arindam Sinha, a senior judge of the Calcutta High Court, wrote an unprecedented letter to all judges of the high court, including Justice Bindal, questioning the acting Chief Justice’s intervention in the Narada sting case by transferring it to the HC and staying the bail granted to four TMC leaders by the CBI court. He was transferred as Chief Justice of the Allahabad High Court in September 2021.

Justice Aravind Kumar

Justice Aravind Kumar was proposed for appointment to the Supreme Court while serving as the 27th Chief Justice of the Gujarat High Court. In 2009, Justice Kumar was appointed to the Karnataka High Court as an additional judge. He was appointed Chief Justice of the Gujarat High Court in October 2021.

In October 2022, he took suo moto notice of the collapse of the Morbi bridge and harshly criticised the Morbi municipality and the state administration for incompetence and excessive favours offered to a private business for administering the bridge without a contract. A bench led by him also considered daily petitions challenging the constitutionality of the Gujarat Land Grabbing (Prohibition) Act and proposed various revisions to the statute for consideration by the state government.

On Justice Kumar’s recommendation, the Gujarat government, in collaboration with the Ahmedabad Municipal Corporation, established “signal schools” to give basic educational facilities to children engaged in begging, where buses were converted into classrooms.

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