ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Constitutional Rights, Judicial Review and Parliamentary Democracy

While the contribution of the Supreme Court towards asserting the inviolability of constitutional rights is undeniable, the rightful limits of judicial intervention in the executive and legislative domains need to be questioned. In this context, the debate on related jurisprudential issues in the framework of a functioning parliamentary democracy is taken forward, and the principles defining the philosophy of judicial review have been discussed towards a holistic appreciation of the larger politico-constitutional issues.

In the 70th year of the Republic and 72nd year into freedom, we find ourselves engaged in a heightened debate on the imperatives of preserving the constitutionally ordained jurisdictional equ­ilibrium between the legislative, executive and judicial branches of the Indian state even as we celebrate the expansion of fundamental freedoms and the resilience of our democracy. The issue in question is at the heart of our democracy. It is about the reach of judicial review power exercised by the Supreme Court and the high courts, often extended through the agency of what is popularly known in India as public interest litigation (PIL) or social action litigation. The sterling contribution of the apex court in asserting the inviolability of constitutional rights, particularly the right to dignity as the core constitutional value notwithstanding, pertinent questions about the rightful limits of judicial intervention in the executive and legislative domains need to be addressed. This article seeks to advance the debate on related jurisprudential issues in the larger framework of a functioning parliamentary democracy. The principles defining the philosophy of judicial review have been discussed towards a holistic appreciation of the larger politico-constitutional issues.

Instrument of Judicial Review

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Updated On : 12th Apr, 2019

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