Judiciary | Part 1 | Constitution

Q1. What is the provision under Article 129 of Indian Constitution ?

Ans. Article 129 of the Constitution of India makes the Supreme Court a ‘court of record’ and confers all the powers of such a court including the power to punish for its contempt as well as of its subordinate courts.

Q2. What is the provision under Article 141 of Indian Constitution ?

Ans. Article 141 of the Constitution of India provides that the law declared by Supreme Court is binding on all courts.

Q3. What are the functions of Judiciary in India ?

Ans. Judiciary in India performs the following important functions:

  1. Interpreting and applying the law and adjudicating upon controversies between the citizens, the states and various other parties.
  2. The courts function to uphold the rule of law and to safeguard civil and political rights.
  3. Due to a written constitution, courts have an additional function of safeguarding the supremacy of the Constitution by interpreting and applying its provisions and limiting the functioning of all authorities within the constitutional framework.
  4. The judiciary also decide upon controversies between the constituent states inter se as well as between the Union and the States, in a federation [i.e. union of states].

Q4. What is the Doctrine of Pith and Substance ?

Ans. Doctrine of pith and substance i.e. the true object of the legislation or a statute, relates to a matter with the competence of the legislature which enacted it.
In order to ascertain the true character of the legislation one must have regard to the enactment as a whole, to its object and to the scope and effect of its provisions.

Q5. What is the Doctrine of severability ?

Ans. Doctrine of severability separates the repugnant provisions of a statute or law from others that are constitutional.
The violating part of any provision of a statute is declared unconstitutional and void to the extent of such inconsistency, but the remainder remains enforceable and valid.

Q6. What is the Doctrine of colourable legislation ?

Ans. Doctrine of colourable legislation prevents legislatures to make laws that they would otherwise not be able to create given the constitutional contraints.
The whole doctrine of colourable legislation is based upon the maxim that you cannot do indirectly what you cannot do directly.

Q7. What are the grounds on which the Supreme Court can strike down a legislation ?

Ans. The Supreme Court of India has the power to strike down any piece of legislation aimed at amending the Indian Constitution on two grounds :

  1. If the procedure prescribed under Article 368 is not followed
  2. If  the amending Act seeks to violate one or more basic features of Constitution

Q8. What is a PIL ?

Ans. The Supreme Court assumes additional duties under a concept called ‘Public Interest Litigation’ (PIL), under which any citizen can bring any matter of general importance to the general public for consideration of the Supreme Court.
If the Supreme Court finds that the executive has been failing in due discharge of its duties, it passes the required directions to the concerned authorities in government.

Q9. What is an Appeal in Constitutional Matters to Supreme Court.

Ans. Under Article 132(1) of the Constitution of India, an appeal shall lie to the Supreme Court from any judgement, decree or final order of a High Court whether in civil, criminal or other proceedings, if the High Court certifies under Article 134-A that the case involves a substantial question of law as to the interpretation of this Constitution.

Q10. What is an Appeal in Civil cases to Supreme Court.

Ans. Article 133 provides that an appeal shall lie to the Supreme Court from any judgement, decree or final order in a civil proceeding of a High Court only if High Court certifies under Article 134-A :

  • that the case involves a substantial question of law of general importance
  • that in the opinion of the High Court the said question need to be decided by the Supreme Court

Q11. What is an the Appeal in Criminal Cases to the Supreme Court ?

Ans. Article 134 provides that an appeal shall lie to the Supreme Court from any judgement, final order or sentence in a criminal proceeding of a High Court. The appeal can be in the following two ways :

  • with a certificate of the High Court
  • without a certificate of High Court in cases where
    • if the High Court has on appeal reversed an order of acquittal of an accused person and sentenced him to death
    • if the High Court has withdrawn for trial before itself any case from any court subordinate to its authority and has in such trial convicted the accused person and sentenced him to death.

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