Uttarakhand High Court

Coordinates: 29°23′45″N 79°26′52″E / 29.3958°N 79.4477°E / 29.3958; 79.4477
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Uttarakhand High Court
29°23′45″N 79°26′52″E / 29.3958°N 79.4477°E / 29.3958; 79.4477
Established9 November 2000; 23 years ago (2000-11-09)
LocationNainital, Uttarakhand
Coordinates29°23′45″N 79°26′52″E / 29.3958°N 79.4477°E / 29.3958; 79.4477
Composition methodPresidential with confirmation of Chief Justice of India and Governor of Uttarakhand
Authorized byConstitution of India
Judge term lengthmandatory retirement by age of 62
Number of positions11
(9 Permanent Judges + 2 Additional Judges)
WebsiteUttarakhand High Court
Chief Justice
CurrentlyRitu Bahri
Since4 February 2024

The Uttarakhand High Court is the High Court of the state of Uttarakhand in India. The Uttarakhand High Court was established on 9 November 2000 after the separation of the state of Uttarakhand from Uttar Pradesh.[1]

The sanctioned judge strength at the time of creation in 2000 was 7; this was increased to 9 in 2003. Justice Ashok Desai was the inaugural holder of the office. Former Chief Justices of Uttarakhand Sarosh Homi Kapadia and Jagdish Singh Khehar later went on to become Chief Justice of India. Ritu Bahri is the current Chief Justice of the Uttarakhand High Court. She assumed office on 4 February 2024.[2]


The Uttarakhand High Court is a relatively new addition to India's judiciary system. The building of Uttarakhand High Court was constructed by Santoni MacDonald in 1900.

Uttarakhand was carved out from the state of Uttar Pradesh on 9 November 2000 under the Uttar Pradesh Reorganisation Act, 2000. At the time of the creation of the state, the High Court of Uttarakhand was also established on the same day.

The Uttarakhand High Court is located in Nainital, a scenic hill station in the Kumaon region of the state.[1]

The High Court consisted of just five court rooms at the beginning but later more court rooms were added. A huge Chief Justice Court Block and a Block of Lawyers’ chambers were built in 2007.[3]

Landmark judgements[edit]

Status of rivers as legal persons[edit]

In March 2017, Uttarakhand High Court's single-judge bench presided by Justice Rajeev Sharma, mandated that the rivers Ganges and Yamuna as well as all water bodies are "living entities" i.e. "legal person", and appointed 3 persons as trustees to protect the rights of rivers against the pollution caused by the humans.[4]

Rohit Sagar v. State of Uttarakhand[edit]

Rohit Sagar v. State of Uttarakhand (2021) is a case where Uttarakhand High Court's two-judges bench presided by Chief Justice Raghvendra Singh Chauhan and Justice Narayan Singh Dhanik, held that the legal adults have the fundamental right to choose their own partners, and directed the Uttarakhand Police to provide necessary protection for the individuals and their property.[5][6]

List of sitting judges of the Uttarakhand High Court[edit]

There are currently eight sitting judges including the Chief Justice, with three posts of judges lying vacant.[7] Following is the list of the current serving judges of the Uttarakhand High Court, ordered by seniority.

No. Name Date of Appointment Date of Retirement Parent High Court Type of Vacancy
Permanent Judges
1 Ritu Bahri(Chief Justice) 4 February 2024 10 October 2024 Punjab and Haryana Bench
2 Manoj Kumar Tiwari 19 May 2017 18 September 2027 Uttarakhand Bar
3 Sharad Kumar Sharma 31 December 2023
4 Ravindra Maithani 3 December 2018 24 June 2027 Bench
5 Alok Kumar Verma 27 May 2019 15 August 2026
6 Rakesh Thapliyal 28 April 2023 14 November 2027 Bar
7 Pankaj Purohit 27 July 2030
8 Vivek Bharti Sharma 12 June 2025 Bench
9 Vacant
Additional Judges
10 Vacant
11 Vacant

Registrar General[edit]

Ashish Naithani is the current Registrar General of the Uttarakhand High Court. He Assumed office on 31 October 2023.

List of judges elevated to the Supreme Court of India[edit]

Sr. No Portrait Name Date of Elevation Date of Retirement Parent High Court
1 Prafulla Chandra Pant 13 August 2014 29 August 2017 Uttarakhand
2 Sudhanshu Dhulia 9 May 2022 9 August 2025

List of judges elevated as Chief Justice to other High Courts[edit]

Sr. No Name Date of Elevation Date of Retirement Parent High Court Remark
1 Prafulla Chandra Pant 20 September 2013 Elevated to the Supreme Court of India

Retired on 29 August 2017

Uttarakhand Chief Justice of the Meghalaya High Court
2 Vijay Kumar Bist 30 October 2018 16 September 2019 Chief Justice of the Sikkim High Court
3 Sudhanshu Dhulia 10 January 2021 Elevated to the Supreme Court of India

Retired on 9 August 2025

Chief Justice of the Gauhati High Court

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b "Uttaranchal High Court Inaugurated". Zee News. 9 November 2000.
  2. ^ "Justice Ritu Bahri becomes first woman chief justice of Uttarakhand high court". Hindustan Times. 4 February 2024. Retrieved 19 February 2024.
  4. ^ Birds to holy rivers: A list of everything India considers “legal persons”, Quartz, September 2019.
  5. ^ Rohit Sagar & Anor. versus State of Uttarakhand & Ors., Writ Petition (CRL) No. 2254 of 2021 (Uttarakhand High Court 16 December 2021).
  6. ^ Jha, Prashant. "Uttarakhand High Court grants police protection to gay couple threatened by parents". Bar and Bench - Indian Legal news. Retrieved 23 September 2022.
  7. ^ Sitting judges of the Uttarakhand High Court

External links[edit]