Constitutional Remedies and Writ Jurisdiction

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32. Remedies for enforcement of rights conferred by this Part

(1) The right to move the Supreme Court by appropriate proceedings for the enforcement of the rights conferred by this Part is guaranteed.
(2) The Supreme Court shall have power to issue directions or orders or writs, including writs in the nature of habeas corpus, mandamus, prohibition, quo warrant and certiorari, whichever may be appropriate, for the enforcement of any of the rights conferred by this Part.
(3) Without prejudice to the powers conferred on the Supreme Court by clauses (1) and (2), Parliament may by law empower any other court to exercise within the local limits of its jurisdiction ill or any of the powers exercisable by the Supreme Court under clause (2).
(4) The right guaranteed by this article shall not be suspended except as otherwise provided for by this Constitution.


226. Power of High Courts to issue certain writs

(1) Notwithstanding anything in article 32 every High Court shall have powers, throughout the territories in relation to which it exercise jurisdiction, to issue to any person or authority, including in appropriate cases, any Government, within those territories directions, orders or writs, including writs in the nature of habeas corpus, mandamus, prohibition, quo warrantor and certiorari, or any of them, for the enforcement of any of the rights conferred by Part III and for any other purpose.
(2) The power conferred by clause (1) to issue directions, orders or writs to any Government, authority or person may also be exercised by any High Court exercising jurisdiction in relation to the territories within which the cause of action, wholly or in part, arises for the exercise of such power, notwithstanding that the scat of such Government or authority or the residence of such person is not within those territories.
(3) Where any party against whom an interim order, whether by way of injunction or stay or in any other manner, is made on, or in any proceedings relating to, a petition under clause (1), without–
(a)furnishing to such party copies of such petition and all documents in support of the plea for such interim order; and
(b)giving such party an opportunity of being heard,
makes an application to the High Court for the vacation of such order and furnishes a copy of such application to the party in whose favour such order has been made or the counsel of such party, the High Court shall dispose of the application within a period of two weeks from the date on which it is received or from the date on which the copy of such application is so furnished, whichever is later, or where the High Court is closed on the last day of that period, before the expiry of the next day afterwards on which the High Court is open; and if the application is not so disposed of, the interim order shall, on the expiry of that period, or, as the case may be, the expiry of the said next day, stand vacated.
(4) The power conferred on a High Court by this article shall not be in derogation of the power conferred on the Supreme Court by clause (2) of article 32.

227. Power of superintendence over all courts by the High Court

(1) Every High Court shall have superintendence over all courts and tribunals throughout the territories interrelation to which it exercises jurisdiction.
(2) Without prejudice to the generality of the foregoing provisions, the High Court may–
(a)call for returns from such courts;
(b)make and issue general rules and prescribe forms for regulating the practice and proceedings of such courts; and
(c)prescribe forms in which books, entries and accounts shall be kept by the officers of any such courts.
(3) The High Court may also settle tables of fees to be allowed to the sheriff and all clerks and officers of such courts and to attorneys, advocates and pleaders practising therein:
Provided that any rules made, forms prescribed or tables settled under clause (2) or clause (3) shall not be inconsistent with the provision or any law for the time being in force, and shall require the previous approval of the Governor.
(4) Nothing in this article shall be deemed to confer on a High Court powers of superintendence over any court or tribunal constituted by or under any law relating to the Armed Forces.


The idea

“…The Courts, it is also pointed out, have to be much more circumspect in seeing that they do not overstep the limits of their powers because to them is assigned the function of being the guardian of the Constitution. It is a faith and trust reposed by the framers of the Constitution in the Courts and their position in this respect is akin to that of a trustee. When the other agencies or wings of the State overstep their limits, the aggrieved parties can always approach the courts and seek redress against such transgression”–justice Khanna

The issue of prerogative writs in the nature of habeas corpus, mandamus, quo warrantto, prohibition and certiorari had their origin in England-in the King’s prerogative power of superintendence over the due observance of law by his officials and Tribunals. The powers of the Supreme Court as well as of all the High Courts in India under articles 32 and 226 of the Constitution respectively are very wide. The Supreme Court as well as the High Courts in India can make an order or issue a writ in the nature of certiorari in all appropriate cases and in appropriate manner so long as the broad and fundamental principles of English law regulating the exercise of jurisdiction in the matter of granting such writs are adhered to. A writ of certiorari can be availed of only to remove or adjudicate upon the validity of judicial acts, which expression includes the exercise of quasi-judicial functions by administrative bodies or other authorities or persons obliged to exercise such functions but does not include purely ministerial acts. In granting a writ of certiorari the superior Court does not exercise the power of an appellate Tribunal, the control exercised through it being merely in a supervisory and not appellate capacity. It does not review or reweigh the evidence upon which the determination of the inferior Court is based nor does it substitute its own views for those of the inferior Tribunal. A writ of certiorari is generally granted when a Court has acted without or in excess of its jurisdiction. The want of jurisdiction may &rise from the nature of the subject-matter of the proceeding or from the absence of some preliminary proceeding or the Court itself may not be legally constituted or may suffer from a certain disability by reason of extraneous circumstances. If the jurisdiction of the Court depends upon the existence of some collateral fact the Court cannot by a wrong decision of the fact assume jurisdiction which it would not otherwise possess. A writ of certiorari is available in those cases where a Tribunal though competent to enter upon an enquiry acts in flagrant disregard of the rules of procedure or violates the principles of natural justice where no particular procedure is prescribed. A mere wrong decision cannot be corrected by a writ of certiorari as that would be -using it as the cloak of an appeal in disguise but a manifest error apparent on the face of the proceeding based on a clear ignorance or disregard of the provisions of law or absence of or excess of jurisdiction, when shown, can be so corrected. [T. C. BASAPPA Vs. T. NAGAPPA AND ANOTHER ]

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Artcle 32

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Article 226 & 227

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