Sunday, February 19, 2017

Prosecution of a Judge - K Veeraswami Case

Prosecution of a judge:
In K. Veeraswami case, a five judge constitution bench of Supreme Court held that a Judge of a Supreme Court or High Court can be prosecuted and convicted for criminal misconduct. In this case Veeraswami who was a retired Chief Justice of Madras High Court was prosecuted under The Prevention of Corruption Act. Veeraswami pleaded that a judge can not be prosecuted. The only remedy available against him is that provided in Article 124 of Indian Constitution i.e. Impeachment.

Supreme Court rejected his plea. Article 124 is not a shield conferring immunity to a judge from being prosecuted on a charge of corruption.

Citation / Relevant Case Law:K. Veeraswami vs Union of India 1991 3 SCC 655

Saturday, February 18, 2017

Meaning of Life and Personal Liberty

Article 21 is a Fundamental right in Indian Constitution. 

Meaning of Life and Personal Liberty: - Life is not mere animal existence or survival. It would include the right to live with human dignity and all those aspects of life which go to make a man's life meaningful, complete and worth living.

The expression personal liberty covers a wide variety of rights which go to constitute the personal liberties of a man other than those which are already included in Article 21. The courts are inclined to give the widest amplitude to the expression. On account of the liberal interpretation Article 21 has now come to be invoked almost as a residuary right, even to  the extent which the founding fathers never dreamt of.

From the judgments of the Supreme Court the following are some of the rights that are to be read in Article 21:
  1. Right not to be subjected to bonded labour
  2. Right to livelihood by means which are not illegal, immoral or opposed to public policy
  3. Right to decent environment
  4. Right to shelter
  5. Right to travel abroad
  6. Right to speedy trial
  7. Right to legal aid
  8. Right to privacy
  9. Right against solitary confinement
  10. Right against bar fetters
  11. Right against handcuffing
  12. Right against delayed execution
  13. Right against custodial violence
  14. Right to education (not professional or special)
  15. Right to drinking pure water
  16. Right to good roads
  17. Right to reputation
  18. Freedom from noise pollution.

Friday, December 16, 2016

Basic Features Of The Constitution

It is necessary to identify the basic features of the Constitution which are non-amendable under Art. 368. The question has been considered by the Court from time to time, and several such features have been identified, but the matter still remains an open one; no exhaustive list of such features has yet emerged and the Court has to decide from case to case whether a constitutional feature can be characterised as basic or not.

In the seminal Kesavananda case, Sikri Chief Justice mentioned the following as  the "basic foundation and structure" of the Constitution:

  1. Supremacy of the Constitution;
  2. Separation of Powers between the legislature, the executive and the judiciary;
  3. Republican and democratic form of Government;
  4. Secular character of the Constitution,
  5. Federal Character of the Constitution,
  6. The dignity of the individual secured by the various Fundamental Rights and the mandate to build a welfare state contained in the directive principles;
  7. The unity and integrity of the nation
  8. Parliamentary system.
The above features have been mentioned  as only illustrative and the list is not by any means exhaustive. Whether a feature of the Constitution is 'basic' or not is to be determined from time to time by the court as and when question arises.

Since Kesavananda, the matter has been considered by the Supreme Court is several cases and the Court has had occasion to declare several features of the Constitution as fundamental features or part of basic structure of the constitution of India.

In Kihoto Hollohon, the Supreme Court has declared Democracy is the basic feature of the constitution.

In the same judgment Verma J. in his minority judgment declared : Democracy is a part of the basic structure of our Constitution; and the rule of law, and free and fair elections are basic features of democracy.

In Bommai Case, it has been observed: Democracy and Federalism are essential features of our Constitution and are part of its basic structure.

In the same judgment Supreme Court has ruled that secularism is a basic or an essential feature of the Constitution.

In Indira Gandhi vs Rajnarain, the Supreme Court has unequivocally ruled that the Preamble to the Indian Constitution guarantees equality of status and of opportunity and that the Rule of law is the basic structure of the Constitution.

In plethora of cases, the Supreme Court has asserted that independence of Judiciary is a basic feature of the Constitution as it is the sine qua non of the democracy; it is the most essential characteristic of a free society.

Thursday, July 28, 2016

Article 395 Constitution of India

Article 395 in The Indian Constitution

Repeals The Indian Independence Act, 1947 , and the Government of India Act, 1935 , together with all enactment s amending or supplementing the latter Act, but not including the Abolition of Privy Council Jurisdiction Act, 1949 , are hereby repealed

India's Important Case Laws and Landmark Judgments on Constitution of India i.e. Article 395 Constitution of India

Article 394 Constitution of India

Article 394 in The Indian Constitution

Commencement This article and Articles 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 60, 324, 366, 367, 379, 380, 388, 391, 392 and 393 shall come into force at once, and the remaining provisions of this Constitution shall come into force on the twenty sixth day of January, 1950 , which day is referred to in this Constitution as the commencement of this Constitution

India's Important Case Laws and Landmark Judgments on Constitution of India i.e. Article 394 Constitution of India

Article 393 Constitution of India

Article 393 in The Indian Constitution

Short title This Constitution may be called the Constitution of India

India's Important Case Laws and Landmark Judgments on Constitution of India i.e. Article 393 Constitution of India

Article 392 Constitution of India

Article 392 in The Indian Constitution

Power of the President to remove difficulties
(1) The President may, for the purpose of removing any difficulties, particularly in relation to the transition from the provisions of the Government of India Act, 1935 , to the provisions of this Constitution, by order direct that this Constitution shall, during such period as may be specified in the order, have effect subject to such adaptations, whether by way of modification, addition or omission, as he may deem to be necessary or expedient: Provided that no such order shall be made after the first meeting of Parliament duly constituted under Chapter II of Part V
(2) Every order made under clause ( 1 ) shall be laid before Parliament
(3) The powers conferred on the President by this article, by Article 324, by clause ( 3 ) of Article 367 and by Article 391 shall, before the commencement of this Constitution, be exercisable by the Governor General of the Dominion of India

India's Important Case Laws and Landmark Judgments on Constitution of India i.e. Article 392 Constitution of India