Ashna Sisodia is teaching live on Unacademy Plus
Course: The Union ( Part V) Lesson: Jurisdiction of Supreme Court Presented by : Ashna Sisodia
Jurisdiction & Powers of SC .extensive jurisdiction and vast powers on the Supreme Court. It is not only a Federal Court like the American Supreme Court but also a final court of appeal like the British House of Lords (the Upper House of the British Parliament). Has advisory and supervisory powers. The jurisdiction and powers of the Supreme Court can be classified into the following: 1. Original Jurisdiction. 2. Writ Jurisdiction. 3. Appellate Jurisdiction. 4. Advisory Jurisdiction. 5. A Court of Record. 6. Power of Judicial Review. 7. Other Powers.
Original Jurisdiction As a federal court, the Supreme Court decides the disputes between different units of the Indian Federation. More elaborately, any dispute between: . (a) the Centre and one or more states; or . (b) the Centre and any state or states on one side and one or more states on the other; or . (c) between two or more states. In the above federal disputes, the Supreme Court has exclusive original jurisdiction. Exclusive means, no other court can decide such disputes and original means, the power to hear such disputes in the first instance, not by way of appeal.
Original Jurisdiction With regard to the exclusive original jurisdiction of the Supreme Court, two points should be noted. 1. the dispute must involve a question (whether of law or fact) on which the existence or extent of a legal right depends. Thus, the questions of political nature are excluded from it. 2. any suit brought before the Supreme Court by a private citizen against the Centre or a state cannot be entertained under this.
Original Jurisdiction this jurisdiction of the Supreme Court does not extend to the following: .(a) A dispute arising out of any pre-Constitution treaty, agreement, covenant, engagement or other similar instrument. . (b) A dispute arising out of any treaty, agreement, etc., which specifically provides that the said jurisdiction does not extent to such a dispute. . (c) Inter-state water disputes. . (d) Matters referred to the Finance Commission. . (e) Adjustment of certain expenses and pensions between the Centre and the states. . (f) Ordinary dispute of Commercial nature between the Centre and the states. (g) Recovery of damages by a state against the Centre.
Writ Jurisdiction The Constitution has constituted the Supreme Court as the guarantor and defender of the fundamental rights of the citizens. The Supreme Court is empowered to issue writs including habeas corpus, mandamus, prohibition, quo-warranto and certiorarifor the enforcement of the fundamental rights of an aggrieved citizen. In this regard, the Supreme Court has original jurisdiction in the sense that an aggrieved citizen can directly go to the Supreme Court, not necessarily by way of appeal. However, the writ jurisdiction of the Supreme Court is not exclusive. The high courts are also empowered to issue writs for the enforcement of the Fundamental Rights The supreme ourt isempowered to isue writs including habeas.corpus mandomus . . . It means, when the Fundamental Rights of a citizen are violated, the aggrieved party has the option of moving either the high court or the Supreme Court directly.
Writ Jurisdiction the original jurisdiction of the Supreme Court with regard to federal disputes is different from its original jurisdiction with regard to disputes relating to fundamental rights. In the first case, it is exclusive and in the second case, it is concurrent with high courts jurisdiction. The parties involved in the first case are units of the federation (Centre and states) while the dispute in the second case is between a citizen and the Government (Central or state) There is also a difference between the writ jurisdiction of the Supreme Court and that of the high court.
Writ Jurisdiction The Supreme Court can issue writs only for the enforcement of the Fundamental Rights and not for other purposes. The high court, on the other hand, can issue writs not only for the enforcement of the fundamental rights but also for other purposes. . It means that the writ jurisdiction of the high court is wider than that of the Supreme Court. . But, the Parliament can confer on the Supreme Court, the power to issue writs for other purposes also.
Appellate Jurisdiction . As mentioned earlier, the Supreme Court has not only succeeded the Federal Court of India but also replaced the British Privy Council as the highest court of appeal. The Supreme Court is primarily a court of appeal and hears appeals against the judgements of the lower courts It enjoys a wide appellate jurisdiction which can be classified under four heads: .(a) Appeals in constitutional matters. . (b) Appeals in civil matters. .(c) Appeals in criminal matters. . (d) Appeals by special leave.
Appellate Jurisdiction (a) Constitutional Matters in the constitutional cases, an appeal can be made to the Supreme Court against the judgement of a high court if the high court certifies that the case involves a substantial question of law that requires the interpretation of the Constitution Bround that the tuestion thas beeyn wrongyecaneapeal to the Supreme Court on the Based on the certificate, the party in the case can appeal to the Supreme Court on the ground that the question has been wrongly decided (b) Civil Matters In civil cases, an appeal lies to the Supreme Court from any judgement of a high court if the high court certifies- . .(i) that the case involves a substantial question of law of general importance; and . (ii) that the question needs to be decided by the Supreme Court .Originally, only those civil cases that involved a sum of 20,000 could be appealed before the Supreme Court. But this monetary limit was removed by the 30th Constitutional Amendment Act of 1972