The chief justice of India, which is also known as the chief justice of the Republic of India, is technically the chief judge of the Supreme Court and is the highest-ranking officer of the Indian Judiciary. The Chief Justice is appointed by the president of the country. The chief justice is the head of the Supreme Court and is responsible for the allocation of cases and appointment of constitutional benches which deal with important matters of law. 

There are a total of 48 Chief Justices of India that have served since the establishment of the Supreme Court of India in 1950. The 48th Chief Justice of India is Nuthalapati Venkata Ramana, who started his service on 24 April 2021.

CJI – Important Points

  • The Chief Justice of India is appointed by the President of India, and the CJI can serve until he or she reaches the age of 65. In addition, the CJI can only be removed by Parliament through an impeachment process.
  • The President of India accepts the Chief Justice of India’s resignation. The Chief Justice of India is sworn in by the President of India.
  • The first (Indian) Chief Justice of India was Justice Harilal Jekisundas Kania.
  • From November 21, 1991, until December 12, 1991, Kamal Narain Singh served as the Supreme Court’s Chief Justice for only 17 days.
  • Justice Y. V. Chandrachud, who served for 2696 days, is India’s longest-serving Chief Justice.
  • Justice Fatimah Beevi was India’s first female judge and the first woman Supreme Court Judge. She was born in Kerala and served as the Supreme Court of India from October 6, 1989, to April 29, 1992.
  • There are 29 SC judges in India right now (April 2021), including the Chief Justice of India. (With CJI, the total sanctioned strength is 34.)

List of Chief Justices of India

S.no.Chief Justice of India – ListTenure
1.H.J Kania26 January 1950 – 6 November 1951
2.M. Patanjali Sastri7 November 1951 – 3 January 1954
3.Mehr Chand Mahajan4 January 1954 – 22 December 1954
4.Bijan Kumar Mukherjea23 December 1954 – 31 January 1956
5.Sudhi Ranjan Das1 February 1956 – 30 September 1959
6.Bhuvaneshwar Prasad Sinha1 October 1959 – 31 January 1964
7.P. B. Gajendragadkar1 February 1964 – 15 March 1966
8.Amal Kumar Sarkar16 March 1966 – 29 June 1966
9.Koka Subba Rao30 June 1966 – 11 April 1967
10.Kailas Nath Wanchoo12 April 1967 – 24 February 1968
11.Mohammad Hidayatullah25 February 1968 – 16 December 1970
12.Jayantilal Chhotalal Shah17 December 1970 – 21 January 1971
13.Sarv Mittra Sikri22 January 1971 – 25 April 1973
14.A. N. Ray26 April 1973 – 27 January 1977
15.Mirza Hameedullah Beg29 January 1977 – 21 February 1978
16.Y. V. Chandrachud22 February 1978 – 11 July 1985
17.P. N. Bhagwati12 July 1985 – 20 December 1986
18.Raghunandan Swarup Pathak21 December 1986 – 18 June 1989
19.Engalaguppe Seetharamaiah Venkataramiah19 June 1989 – 17 December 1989
20.Sabyasachi Mukharji18 December 1989 – 25 September 1990
21.Ranganath Misra26 September 1990 – 24 November 1991
22.Kamal Narain Singh25 November 1991 – 12 December 1991
23.Madhukar Hiralal Kania13 December 1991 – 17 November 1992
24.Lalit Mohan Sharma18 November 1992 – 11 February 1993
25.M. N. Venkatachaliah12 February 1993 – 24 October 1994
26.Aziz Mushabber Ahmadi25 October 1994 – 24 March 1997
27.J. S. Verma25 March 1997 – 17 January 1998
28.Madan Mohan Punchhi18 January 1998 – 9 October 1998
29.Adarsh Sein Anand10 October 1998 – 31 October 2001
30.Sam Piroj Bharucha1 November 2001 – 5 May 2002
31.Bhupinder Nath Kirpal6 May 2002 – 7 November 2002
32.Gopal Ballav Pattanaik8 November 2002 – 18 December 2002
33.V. N. Khare19 December 2002 – 1 May 2004
34.S. Rajendra Babu2 May 2004 – 31 May 2004
35.Ramesh Chandra Lahoti1 June 2004 – 31 October 2005
36.Yogesh Kumar Sabharwal1 November 2005 – 13 January 2007
37.K. G. Balakrishnan14 January 2007 – 12 May 2010
38.S. H. Kapadia12 May 2010 – 28 September 2012
39.Altamas Kabir29 September 2012 – 18 July 2013
40.P. Sathasivam19 July 2013 – 26 April 2014
41.Rajendra Mal Lodha27 April 2014 – 27 September 2014
42.H. L. Dattu28 September 2014 – 2 December 2015
43.T. S. Thakur3 December 2015 – 3 January 2017
44.Jagdish Singh Khehar4 January 2017 – 27 August 2017
45.Dipak Misra28 August 2017 – 2 October 2018
46.Ranjan Gogoi3 October 2018 – 17 November 2019
47.Sharad Arvind Bobde18 November 2019 – 23 April 2021
48.NV Ramana23 April 2021 – Incumbent(Will retire on 26 August 2022)

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