President appoints 2 judicial officers as judges of J&K High Court

Recommendations for appointment of 3 lawyers as judges pending with Centre; Strength of judges in UT’s top court reaches 13

Srinagar, Nov 03 : The Centre on Wednesday appointed two judicial officers as judges of the High Court of Jammu & Kashmir and Ladakh.

According to a notification issued by Union Ministry of Law and Justice, the President has appointed Mohd Akram Chowdhary and Mohan Lal as judges of the High Court of Jammu & Kashmir and Ladakh.

“In exercise of the power conferred by clause (1) of Article 217 of the Constitution of India, the President is pleased to appoint Shri (I) Mohan Lal and (II) Mohd. Akram Chowdhary, to be judges of the High Court of Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh, in that order of seniority, with effect from the date they assume charge of their respective offices,” read the notification, a copy of which is in possession of news agency.

In December 2020, the J&K High Court’s collegium had recommended the names of these two judicial officers.

Subsequently, on September 01, this year, the Supreme Court Collegium had approved these names for elevation as judges of the High Court.

The collegium also reiterated the names of Moksha Kazmi (Khajuria) and Rahul Bharati as judges of the High Court. The collegium reiterated the recommendation after Centre returned Kazmi’s file to it for reconsideration without stating any reasons. In March 2019, the J&K High Court collegium, led by then Chief Justice Gita Mittal, had recommended Kazmi’s name for appointment as judge of the High Court.

Subsequently, the SC collegium approved the proposal for appointment of Kazmi as judge of J&K High Court and sent it to the Centre for appointment. The recommendation for appointment of another lawyer Sadiq Wasim Nargal is also pending with the Centre.

Nargal’s name was recommended by the J&K High Court collegium on August 24, 2017.

With the appointment of two judicial officers as judges, the strength of judges in the top court of J&K and Ladakh has gone upto 13, which has a sanctioned strength of 17 judges

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