The first all-women full bench of Madras will hold their first hearing on ESI Act
Madras High Court Chief Justice Amreshwar Pratap Sahi has made the oncoming International Women's Day this year a memorable event by constituting its first-ever all-women Full Bench to answer a reference made to it by a division bench.
The Full Bench consisting of Justices Pushpa Sathyanarayana, Anita Sumanth and PT Asha will hold their first hearing together on Wednesday, reports The Hindu.
Maiden sitting of the all-women Full Bench would decide a crucial question of law — whether unaided private educational institutions in the State could be treated to be an "establishment" under the Employees State Insurance (ESI) Act of 1948.
The Full Bench would also be answering as to whether the State government had discriminated between private unaided educational institutions on the one hand and Government-aided educational institutions on the other by issuing a notification for application of the ESI Act only to the former and not to the latter.
About a year ago, the Madras High Court had the distinction of having had the highest number of 11 women judges. Pursuant to the retirement of two, now nine among the 55 sitting judges are women. Most of them got elevated to the Bench during the tenure of former Chief Justice Sanjay Kishan Kaul
The Indian High Court had already reached the distinction of having had an all-women Division Bench during the tenure of former Chief Justice Indira Banerjee. Women judges also outnumbered men in a Full Bench when Justice TS Sivagnanam sat along with Justices V Bhavani Subbaroyan and Asha last year.