"Hands off the judiciary," said one placard carried by a protester. "Courts stoned, judges threatened, CJ insulted, democracy stalled," said another, referring to the clash between the government and judges.
Ruling party lawmakers submitted the impeachment resolution on Thursday after the government said Bandaranayake had "violated the constitution" by naming a junior judge as head of the country's judicial watchdog and was guilty of "misconduct".
Analysts have said the government was infuriated by Bandaranayake's recent decision to shoot down a bill giving more powers to the economic development ministry headed by the president's younger brother, Basil.
The United States voiced concern on Friday about the move to impeach the chief justice and called on the Sri Lankan government to protect the independence of its judiciary.
Sri Lanka's parliament is due to appoint a panel shortly to probe charges against Bandaranayake, 54, with the process likely to last some months.The impeachment motion is the latest sign of efforts by the government to tighten its grip on power after crushing the Tamil Tiger separatist rebels in 2009 at the end of a decades-long war.