Passing Law in First Attempt Must to Become Judge

IAS Prelims 2023

The Bombay High Court has held that in order to become a junior division civil judge, it is mandatory for a candidate to clear all exams leading to the degree in first attempt. This rule is applicable to fresh law graduates only.

A bench of Justice SC Dharmadhikari and Justice Shalini Phanslkar Joshi made this observation while hearing a petition filed by Harsha Gadekar, whose name was removed from the shortlist of candidates for the post of junior division civil judge after it was discovered she had cleared one of her law papers in her second attempt.

According to the Maharashtra Judicial Services Rules, 2008, a fresh law graduate can be eligible for the post of junior division civil judge if he/she has secured the degree in law by passing all the examinations leading to the degree, in “first attempt”.


Gadekar was a meritorious student, who joined the five-year law course in 2008, and had joined the National Cadet Corps in her first year itself. Thereafter, she participated in the integration camp held in Nagaland in November. This is when she missed her first year pre-law examination. As a result, she was marked absent and later on cleared the same examination along with her second year exam.