NIOS Class 10 Social Studies Chapter 20 Governance at the Union Level Part 6 (For CBSE, ICSE, IAS, NET, NRA 2022)

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The Supreme Court

  • The courts are at;
    • The district levels
    • The High Court
    • The Supreme Court.
  • India has a unified judiciary.
    • At the highest level - The Supreme Court
    • At the state level - The High Courts
    • At the district or lower levels - The subordinate courts.
The Supreme Court
  • As given in the Constitution, the Supreme Court of India comprises the Chief justice and other Judges whose number is recommended by the Parliament from time to time.
  • There was a Chief Justice and there were 7 Judges in 1950.
  • As per the need the number of Judges continued.
  • The Supreme Court, at present, comprises the Chief Justice and 30 Judges.
  • The President of India appoints the Chief Justice and other Judges of the Supreme Court.
  • The other Judges of the Supreme or High Courts will be consulted when the chief justice is appointed.
  • The senior-most Judge in the Supreme Court is appointed as the Chief Justice.
  • The Chief Justice has to be consulted for the appointment of other Judges of the Supreme Court.
  • A Judge of the Supreme Court can be appointed only if he/she:
    • Is a citizen of India;
    • Must have been at least a Judge of a High Court or of two or more such Courts in succession for at least five years or Must have been an advocate of a High Court or of two or more such Court in succession for at least ten years or Is, in the opinion of the President, a distinguished jurist;
  • Till attaining the age of 65 years judges of the Supreme Court hold office.
  • Impeachment procedure;
    • In any case, they might be taken out of office by a request for the President, gone after a location by each House of Parliament upheld by a special majority on the ground of proved misbehaviour or incapacity.
  • No Chief Justice or Judge of the Supreme Court has been impeached so far.
  • A Judge who has served in the Supreme Court is debarred from pledge in any court in the territory of India after retirement.

The Jurisdiction of the Supreme Court

Three types of jurisdiction among supreme court;

  • Original
  • Appellate
  • Advisory

Original Jurisdiction

To hear directly about certain cases authority is there for supreme court these are;

  • Disputes between the Union government and one or more State governments,
  • Disputes between two or more States,
  • Disputes between the Government of India and one or more States on the one side and one or more States on the other side.

Appellate Jurisdiction

  • The power of a superior or higher court to hear and decide appeals against the judgment of the lower court.
  • The Supreme Court is a court of appeal for;
    • Constitutional
    • Civil
    • Criminal cases
  • Appellate Jurisdiction can hear appeals against the judgments of the High Courts and It also has the power to review its own judgment.
  • Within the territory of India Appellate Jurisdiction its own discretion grants special lease to appeal against any judgment or order delivered or passed by any court or tribunal.
  • In any criminal case an Appeal may come to the Supreme Court, if the High Court certifies that the case is fit for appeal to the Supreme Court.

Advisory Jurisdiction

  • The Supreme Court has an extraordinary advisory jurisdiction in issues which may exactly be mentioned to it by the President of India.
  • The report or the opinion of the Supreme Court is, of course, not binding on the President and The Supreme Court may, after such hearing as it thinks fit, report to the President its opinion there on.
  • The Supreme Court is a court of record.
  • There are some special functions of the Supreme Court of India. These are:

Guardian of the Constitution

  • As the interpreter of the Constitution, to protect and defend the Constitution, the Supreme Court has the power.
  • If the court finds that any law or executive order is against the Constitution, then the court can declare it unconstitutional or invalid.
  • The Supreme Court acts as the custodian and protector of Fundamental Rights.
  • If any person feels that his/her fundamental rights have been violated, then the person may move to the Supreme Court directly for the protection of his/her fundamental rights.

Judicial Review

  • To examine the validity of laws or executive orders the Supreme Court of India has the right.
  • The Supreme Court has the powers to interpret the Constitution, and through this it has assumed the power of judicial review.
Judicial Review

Judicial Activism

  • The Court defines Judicial activism as ‘innovative interpretation’ of the Constitution.
  • The word said by the court is often criticized as the judiciary taking over the powers of the legislature.
  • Judicial activism has concentrated on giving the disadvantaged that access to justice, hence in India it has enjoyed support from the public.
  • It uses the instrument of Public Interest Litigation (PIL) .
  • With public interest litigation, any person can bring a petition about a problem before the court, and not just the person affected by the problem.
  • PIL often has people who are poor or disadvantaged and who are not able to approach the court.
  • With judicial activism and PIL the courts have given judgments on;
    • Pollution
    • The need for a uniform civil code
    • Eviction of unauthorized buildings
    • Stopping child labour in dangerous occupations
    • And other issues.

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