There have been 50 Chief justices in India to date. Justice H J Kania served as the First Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of India. The list of Chief Justices of India is given below:

The Chief Justice of India is the head of the judiciary system in India. 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.

The Constitution of India grants plenary power to the President of India to nominate and with the advice and consent of the Parliament of India, appoint a chief justice, who serves until they reach the age of sixty-five, resign, retire, is impeached and convicted, or die.

Article 145 of the Constitution gives the right to the Chief Justice of India to allocate the respective matters of relevance to the bench of judges. On the administrative side, the chief justice carries out the following functions: maintenance of the roster; appointment of court officials and general and miscellaneous matters relating to the supervision and functioning of the Supreme Court.

The Chief Justice of India is appointed by the President of India on the basis of nomination by other judges of the supreme court.

List of Chief Justices of India

There have been 50 Chief justices in India to date. Justice H J Kania served as the First Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of India. The list of Chief Justices of India is given below:

S.No.

Chief Justice of India

Tenure

1.

Justice H.J. Kania

26 January 1950 – 6 November 1951

2.

Justice M. Patanjali Sastri

7 November 1951 – 3 January 1954

3.

Justice Mehr Chand Mahajan

4 January 1954 – 22 December 1954

4.

Justice Bijan Kumar Mukherjea

23 December 1954 – 31 January 1956

5.

Justice Sudhi Ranjan Das

1 February 1956 – 30 September 1959

6.

Justice Bhuvaneshwar Prasad Sinha

1 October 1959 – 31 January 1964

7.

Justice P.B. Gajendragadkar

1 February 1964 – 15 March 1966

8.

Justice Amal Kumar Sarkar

16 March 1966 – 29 June 1966

9.

Justice K. Subba Rao

30 June 1966 – 11 April 1967

10.

Justice Kailas Nath Wanchoo

12 April 1967 – 24 February 1968

11.

Justice Mohammad Hidayatullah

25 February 1968 – 16 December 1970

12.

Justice J.C. Shah

17 December 1970 – 21 January 1971

13.

Justice S.M. Sikri

22 January 1971 – 25 April 1973

14.

Justice A.N. Ray

26 April 1973 – 27 January 1977

15.

Justice Mirza Hameedullah Beg

29 January 1977 – 21 February 1978

16.

Justice Y.V. Chandrachud

22 February 1978 – 11 July 1985

17.

Justice P.N. Bhagwati

12 July 1985 – 20 December 1986

18.

Justice Raghunandan Swarup Pathak

21 December 1986 – 18 June 1989

19.

Justice E.S. Venkataramiah

19 June 1989 – 17 December 1989

20.

Justice Sabyasachi Mukharji

18 December 1989 – 25 September 1990

21.

Justice Ranganath Mishra

26 September 1990 – 24 November 1991

22.

Justice Kamal Narain Singh

25 November 1991 – 12 December 1991

23.

Justice M.H. Kania

13 December 1991 – 17 November 1992

24.

Justice Lalit Mohan Sharma

18 November 1992 – 11 February 1993

25.

Justice M.N. Venkatachaliah

12 February 1993 – 24 October 1994

26.

Justice A.M. Ahmadi

25 October 1994 – 24 March 1997

27.

Justice J.S. Verma

25 March 1997 – 17 January 1998

28.

Justice Madan Mohan Punchhi

18 January 1998 – 9 October 1009

29.

Justice Adarsh Sein Anand

10 October 1998 – 31 October 2001

30.

Justice Sam Piroj Barucha

1 November 2001 – 5 May 2002

31.

Justice B.N. Kirpal

6 May 2002 – 7 November 2002

32.

Justice G.B. Pattanaik

8 November 2002 – 18 December 2002

33.

Justice V.N. Khare

19 December 2002 – 1 May 2004

34.

Justice S. Rajendra Babu

2 May 2004 – 31 May 2004

35.

Justice Ramesh Chandra Lahoti

1 June 2004 – 31 October 2005

36.

Justice Yogesh Kumar Sabharwal

1 November 2005 – 13 January 2007

37.

Justice K.G. Balakrishnan

14 January 2007 – 12 May 2010

38.

Justice S.H. Kapadia

12 May 2010 – 28 September 2012

39.

Justice Altamas Kabir

29 September 2012 – 18 July 2013

40.

Justice P. Sathasivam

19 July 2013 – 26 April 2014

41.

Justice Rajendra Mal Lodha

27 April 2014 – 27 September 2014

42.

Justice H.L. Dattu

28 September 2014 – 2 December 2015

43.

Justice T.S. Thakur

3 December 2015 – 3 January 2017

44.

Justice Jagdish Singh Khehar

4 January 2017 – 27 August 2017

45.

Justice Dipak Mishra

28 August 2017 – 2 October 2018

46.

Justice Ranjan Gogoi

3 October 2018 – 17 November 2019

47.

Justice Sharad Arvind Bobde

18 November 2019 – 23 April 2021

48.

Justice N. V. Ramana

24 April 2021 – 26 August 2022

49.

Justice Uday Umesh Lalit

27 August 2022 – 08 November 2022

50.

Dr. Justice D.Y. Chandrachud

09 November 2022 – 10 November 2024


Updated On 30 Dec 2022 8:11 AM GMT
Apurva Neel

Apurva Neel

I am a Research Associate and Editor at Legal Bites with an LL.M. specialization in Corporate and Commercial Laws from Amity University, Mumbai. I have put my best efforts into presenting socio-legal aspects of society through various seminars, conferences etc. I keep refining content as I am an ardent writer, and palpably law has got multi-dimensional aspect, so I passionately try to explore ahead.

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