JAMMU: Justice Rajnesh Oswal was sworn in as a permanent judge of the common High Court of Jammu & Kashmir and Ladakh on Thursday. He was administered the oath of office by the Chief Justice Jammu and Kashmir High Court, Justice Gita Mittal in Jammu. He is the first judge of the High Court to take oath under the Indian constitution. “All previous Judges of the High Court had taken oath under the constitution of Jammu and Kashmir, which ceased to have an effect since August 5, 2019,” said an official spokesperson. “On account of guidelines with regard to measures for containment of Covid-19 pandemic and to avoid gathering as well as to maintain social distancing other Judges of the High Court of Jammu and Kashmir joined the oath ceremony through video link. The oath ceremony was livestreamed on internet through webcast also,” he said. It is for the first time in the history of Indian Judiciary that the oath ceremony was attended by other judges of the High Court through video conferencing wherein judges joined while sitting from their respective residences. Advocate General, Assistant Solicitor General of India of both the wings of the High Court, President Bar Association, High Court of J&K, Jammu, Secretary Law, Justice and Parliamentary Affairs of J&K also joined the oath ceremony through video link. “Warrant of appointment of Justice Rajnesh Oswal was read by Sanjay Dhar, Registrar General High Court of Jammu and Kashmir in English and Hindi,” he added. With the appointment of Justice Oswal as a judge, the strength of J&K High Court increased from eight to nine. The J&K High Court has sanctioned strength of 17 Judges including 13 Permanent Judges and 4 Additional Judges. Justice Oswal was appointed as Judge of Common High Court for the Union territories of J&K and Ladakh on January 29 and the authorisation for administering oath by Chief Justice to Justice Rajnesh Oswal was received on 1st of April 2020.