How does the judiciary protect our Fundamental Rights?
(i) It is possible that sometimes our rights may be violated by fellow citizens, private bodies or by the government. When any of our rights are violated we can seek remedy through courts. If it is a Fundamental Right we can directly approach the Supreme Court or the High Court of a state. (ii) Fundamental Rights. are guaranteed against the actions of the Legislatures, the Executive and any other authorities instituted by the government. There can be no law or action that violates the Fundamental Rights. (iii) If any act of Legislature or the Executive takes away or limits any of the Fundamental Rights it will be invalid. We can challenge such laws of the central and state governments. (iv) Courts also enforce the Fundamental Rights against private individuals and bodies. The Supreme Court and High Courts have the power to issue directions, orders or writs for the enforcement of the Fundamental Rights. (v) They can also award compensation, to. the victims and punishment to the violators. Our judiciary is. very powerful and can do whatever is needed to, protect the rights of the citizens.
What is a public interest litigation?
Public interest litigation, or PIL, is defined as the use of
litigation, or legal action, which seeks to advance the cause of minority or
disadvantaged groups or individuals, or which raises issues of broad public
concern. It is a way of using the law strategically to effect social change.
If a person is not satisfied with the judgment of the court of sessions judge, to which court should he appeal?
If a person is not satisfied with the judgment of the court of sessions judge, he should appeal to the High Court.
Re-read excerpts from the judgment on the Olga Tellis vs Bombay Municipal Corporation case.
Now write in your own words what the judges meant when they said that the Right to Livelihood was part of the Right to Life.
Tellis vs. Bombay Municipal Corporation case, the judges said that the Right to
Livelihood was part of the Right to Life. They stated that life does not merely
imply an animal existence; it cannot be lived without a means of living, that
is, "the means of livelihood". The judges conferred that eviction
from a pavement or slum is deprivation of means of livelihood for the poor who
cannot afford to live anywhere else. They take up small jobs in surrounding
areas and to lose their pavement or slum would lead to loss of a job resulting
in loss of a means of livelihood. Consequently, leading to "deprivation of
life". This is how the judges connected Right to Livelihood to the Right
In the following illustration, fill in each tier with the judgments given by the various courts in the Sudha Goel case. Check your responses with others in class.
Lower Court (Trial Court): Laxman, his mother Shakuntala and
his brother-in-law Subhash Chandra were sentenced to death.
High Court: Laxman, Shakuntala and Subhash Chandra were acquitted.
Supreme Court: Laxman, Shakuntala were given life imprisonment while Subhash
Chandra was acquitted for lack of sufficient evidence.
Write a story around the theme "Justice delayed is justice denied".
was a bank officer. After retirement he came back to his forefather's house. He
requested the tenant to vacate the house. But the tenant did not vacate the
house. Tenant challenged that if Jatin Sarkar wanted to have his house vacated,
he should move to court for justice. He was compelled to live in a rented
house. The owner lodged litigation against the tenant. After fighting the case
for five years, the owner won the case. The decision was made in his favour by
the Trial Court. But the tenant appealed in the High Court against the lower
court decision. It again took five years for justice. In the meantime Jatin
Sarkar kept on living in the rented house because unless there was judgement,
he had no other option. In such a situation we can definitely say, 'Justice
delayed is justice denied'.
Make sentences with each of the glossary words given on the next page: Acquit, To Appeal, Compensation, Eviction, Violation.
Acquit: The High Court, acquiltted Mrs Sharma but convicted her husband.
To Appeal: Very soon the Gupta family moved to the Supreme Court to appeal against the Lower Court's decision.
Compensation: The government announced compensation to the victim's family members.
Eviction: Pankaj's house was evicted and was given to the owner by the Supreme Court.
Violation: Pankaj was charged a heavy amount for the violation of traffic rules.
Why do you think the introduction of Public Interest Litigation (PIL) in the 1980s is a significant step in ensuring access to justice for all?
introduction of Public Interest Litigation (PIL) in the 1980s is a significant
step in ensuring access to justice for all because it also keeps in mind the
interests of the illiterate and poor who are not educated enough or cannot
afford to access the Indian legal system for justice against exploitation or
violation of their basic human and Fundamental Rights.
Distinguish between judicial activism and judicial restraint.
The primary distinction between the two terms is that-
Judicial activism is a progressive term it is used in a positive way. It gives the power to the court to exercise its jurisdiction wherever it is necessary.
Practices like filing of Public Interest Litigation for an area has increased the role of the judiciary and judges in the making of social policies. It gives power to the court to struck down the statutes, policies and previous judgments that are unjust.
Whereas, Judicial Restraint is used in a negative sense and it limits the role of the judges to strike down an act of a law unless they are unconstitutional at the face of it. therefore, the court also presumes the constitutionality of a statute unless proved otherwise.
Under which circumstances, a person may approach the court?
If a person feels that a particular law is not being followed he/she may approach the court.
Where can one register case?
One can register a case in the police station which comes under his/her area or locality.
The following is a poster made by the Right to Food campaign. Read this poster and list the duties of the government to uphold the Right to Food. How does the phrase "Hungry stomachs, overflowing godowns! We will not accept it!!" used in the poster relate to the photo essay on the Right to Food on page 61?
To provide food for all To give special attention on the persons who are most vulnerable to hunger like elderly, disabled, widows, children etc. "Hungry stomachs, overflowing godowns!we will not accept it!!" do relate to the photo essay oh the Right to Food on page 61. We can see that due to drought in Rajasthan and Orissa, millions faced an acute shortage of food. Meanwhile the government godowns were full of grain. In such a situation, an organisation called the People's Union of Civil Liberties field a PIL in the Supreme Court. It stated that the Fundamental Right to Life guaranteed in Article 21 of the Constitution include the Right to food. The states' excuse that they did not have adequate funds was shown to be wrong because the godowns were overflowing with grains. The Supreme Court directed the government to provide food at cheaper prices through the government ration shops, and to provide mid-day meals to children.