Today, four new Supreme Court judges were administered their oaths by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi. For the first time, the top court is going to get its full complement of 31 in the last five years. In the year of 2008, the parliament gave permission to increase the number of judges which stood at 27 including the Chief Justice.
The four new judges are Surya Kant, BR Gavai, AS Bopanna and Aniruddha Bose. Regarding the seniority issue, the Centre previously expressed its concern over the nomination of Justice Aniruddha Bose of the Jharkhand High Court and Justice AS Bopanna of the Gauhati High Court.
In 2018 the same question raised over the nomination of Justice KM Joseph. Later the government was compelled to accept his ion when the collegium reasserted its choice and Justice Joseph took oath in August.
According to a resolution signed by top Supreme Court judges, the collegium had decided to elevate Justices Bose and Bopanna on the basis of merit, seniority, and representation to high courts.
“While recommending these names, the collegium has taken into consideration, apart from their merit and integrity, the combined seniority on the all-India basis of Chief Justices and senior judges of high courts. The collegium has also kept in mind the desirability of giving due representation on the bench of the Supreme Court, as far as possible, to all the high courts,” it read.
The 58-year-old justice Gavai who had been a judge of the Bombay High Court is all set to become the next Chief Justice of India in 2025. At the same time, he will be the third Dalit Supreme Court Justice. Justice Bopanna is the Chief Justice of Gauhati High Court and is at number 36 in all-India seniority.