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Manjula Chellur (born 5 December 1955) is a former Chief Justice of Bombay High Court. She was the first woman Chief Justice of Calcutta High Court, was the Chief Justice of Kerala High Court and the first female judge of the Karnataka High Court. She demitted her office upon attaining the age of superannuation on 4 December 2017.[1][2][3][4]

Hon'ble Justice

Manjula Chellur
Justice Manjula Chellur.jpg
Chief Justice of Bombay High Court
In office
22 August 2016 – 04 December 2017
Appointed byPranab Mukherjee
Preceded byJustice Dhirendra H. Waghela
Chief Justice of Calcutta High Court
In office
6 August 2014 – 21 August 2016
Appointed byPranab Mukherjee
Preceded byJustice Arun Kumar Mishra
Succeeded byJustice Girish Chandra Gupta
Chief Justice of Kerala High Court
In office
26 September 2012 – 05 August 2014
acting: 9 November 2011 - 26 September 2012
Appointed byPratibha Patil (acting)
Pranab Mukherjee (permanent)
Preceded byJustice Jasti Chelameswar
Succeeded byJustice Ashok Bhushan
Judge of High Court of Karnataka
In office
21 February 2000 – 25 September 2012
Personal details
Born (1955-12-05) 5 December 1955 (age 63)
Bellary, Mysore State, India
(now in Karnataka, India)
NationalityIndia Indian
Alma materAllum Sunmangalamma Women's College, Bellary


Chellur was born in Karnataka. She received her Bachelor of Arts degree from Allum Sunmangalamma Women's College, Bellary, and went on to earn her law degree from Renukacharya Law College, Bangalore. In 1977 the Supreme Court of India sponsored her on a Gender & Law fellowship to England's University of Warwick.[2] In 2013 Chellur received an honorary doctorate from Karnataka State Women's University.[5]


Chellur became the first female advocate to practice law in Bellary. She worked as a legal advisor, practising both civil and criminal law before the local Bellary courts.[2]

In 1988 she was appointed as District and Sessions Judge; she served as the Principal and Sessions Judge for Kolar and Mysore. In addition to these positions she was also the Chief Judge of Court of Small Causes, and Principal Judge of the Family Court at Bangalore. On 21 February 2000 she was named judge of Karnataka High Court.[2][4]

Chellur served as the President of the Karnataka Judicial Academy from 21 June 2008 to 25 March 2010. She was also the executive chairperson of Karnataka State Legal Service Authority. On 9 November 2011 she was appointed Acting Chief Justice of the Kerala High Court[6] and since 26 September 2012 she has been the Chief Justice of Kerala.[2][4]

High-profile casesEdit

In 2013 the Division Bench of the Kerala High Court, consisting of Chief Justice Chellur and Justice Vinod Chandran, ordered the state government to submit a statement regarding the high-profile rape case against the Deputy Chairman of the Rajya Sabha, P. J. Kurien.[7] Also in March 2013, the justices refused the plea of prominent Marxist politician and Leader of the Opposition V. S. Achuthanandan for an early hearing in another investigation into the "Ice Cream Parlour sabotage case", involving an ice cream parlour that was allegedly being used as a front to lure girls and women into prostitution in the 1990s.[8]


  1. ^ "Manjula Chellur to become first woman Chief Justice of Calcutta High Court; Assumes office on August 5". Bar and Bench. B&B News Network. 23 July 2014. Archived from the original on 24 July 2014. Retrieved 24 July 2014.
  2. ^ a b c d e Kerala High Court (2013). "Website Kerala High Court". Kerala High Court. Retrieved 26 March 2013.
  3. ^ Express News Service (27 September 2012). "Manjula Chellur sworn in as Kerala HC CJ". The New Indian Express. Retrieved 26 March 2013.
  4. ^ a b c Venkatesan, J. (31 August 2012). "Manjula Chellur to be Chief Justice of Kerala High Court". The Hindu. Retrieved 26 March 2013.
  5. ^ Express News Service (4 March 2013). "Honorary Doctorates for 5 Women". The New Indian Express. Retrieved 28 March 2013.
  6. ^ "Manjula Chellur Acting Chief Justice". The Hindu. 8 November 2011. Retrieved 26 March 2013.
  7. ^ "Suriyanelli rape case: Kerala HC asks govt to file statement against Kurien". First Post. 11 March 2013. Retrieved 7 April 2013.
  8. ^ "Kerala HC turns down Achuthanandan plea". WebIndia123. 26 March 2013. Retrieved 7 April 2013.

External linksEdit