THE CENTRE on Thursday appointed Justice Mohammad Yaqoob Mir, the most senior judge of the Jammu & Kashmir High Court, as the Chief Justice of Meghalaya High Court.
The Meghalaya HC currently has just one judge, Justice Sudip Ranjan Sen, who is also officiating as the acting Chief Justice. Its sanctioned strength is four judges.
“In the exercise of powers conferred by clause (1) of Article 217 of the Constitution of India, the President is pleased to appoint Shri Justice Mohammad Yaqoob Mir, Judge of the Jammu and Kashmir High Court, to be the Chief Justice of the Meghalaya High Court with effect from the date he assumes charge of his office,” said the notification issued by the Ministry of Law and Justice.
The appointment is significant as the Supreme Court Collegium, on April 19, while recommending Justice Mir’s name, had cited regional representation. “Justice M Yaqoob Mir is the senior-most Judge from Jammu & Kashmir High Court and has been serving there since his elevation as a Judge of that High Court in November 2007. Having regard to all relevant factors, the Collegium finds Justice M Yaqoob Mir suitable in all respects for being appointed as Chief Justice of the Meghalaya High Court. The Collegium resolves to recommend accordingly. While making the above recommendation, the Collegium has also taken into consideration the fact that for quite some time there has been no Chief Justice from Jammu & Kashmir High Court,” it had said.
Last week, a Supreme Court bench of Justices Madan B Lokur and Deepak Gupta had pointed out the shortage of judges in high courts in the North-East. On May 5, Attorney General K K Venugopal had assured that the appointments would be made soon. On May 4, the ministry also cleared the appointment of Arindam Lodh, member of bar, as a Judge of the Tripura High Court.