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Legal practice feudal, patriarchal; needs more access to women: CJI

Legal practice feudal, patriarchal; needs more access to women: CJI

New Delhi: CJI DY Chandrachud called the legal industry's current structure "feudal" and "patriarchal," and he made a case on Saturday for opening the legal field to women in order to build the foundation for the future. CJI Chandrachud was addressing in New Delhi at the HT Leadership Summit.

"Judiciary has a feeding pool and for the Supreme Court, it is high court & lawyers from the bar. For HC, the feeding pool is the district judiciary or the lawyers who practice before the SC. What has happened therefore is that the feeding pool which determines who enters our judiciary is largely dependent on the structure of the legal profession. The structure of the legal profession today is feudal, patriarchal and has not been accommodating women. So when we talk of the need to have women in the judiciary, it's necessary for us to lay the building blocks of the future by creating access to women now within the legal profession. Entering the chambers of a senior counsel, it looks like an old boys club. How do you gain access to chambers? You gain access to chambers by tapping your connections. Until we have a democratised and merit-based access to the entry point in the legal profession, we will not have women or people belonging to marginalised groups entering the profession," he said, according to the NIE.

He added that it was urgent to fill open court positions in order to deal with the massive backlog of cases.

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