National Judicial Academy, India

National Judicial Academy India
                     Knowledge for Justice

    P.N. Bhagwati, J. in S.P. Gupta Vs. President of India and Ors. AIR1982SC149
    The principle of independence of the judiciary is not an abstract conception but it is a living faith which must derive its inspiration from the constitutional charter and its nourishment and sustenance from the constitutional values. It is necessary for every Judge to remember constantly and continually that our Constitution is not a non-aligned rational charter. It is a document of social revolution which casts an obligation on every instrumentality including the judiciary, which is a separate but equal branch of the State, to transform the status quo ante into a new human order in which justice, social, economic and political will inform all institutions of national life and there will be equality of status and opportunity for all. The judiciary has therefore a socio-economic destination and a creative function. It has to use the words of Glanville Austin, to become an arm of the socio-economic revolution and perform an active role calculated to bring social justice within the reach of the common man. It cannot remain content to act merely as an umpire but it must be functionally involved in the goal of socio-economic justice.

    S.B. Sinha, J. in Santosh Kumar SatishbhushanBariyar Vs. State of MaharashtraANDState of Maharashtra Vs. SanjeevkumarMahendraprasad Roy and Anr. JT2009(7)SC248
    For an effective compliance of sentencing procedure under Section 354(3) and Section 235(2) Cr.P.C, sufficient discretion is a pre-condition. Strict channeling of discretion would also go against the founding principles of sentencing as it will prevent the sentencing court to identify and weigh various factors relating to the crime and the criminal such as culpability, impact on the society, gravity of offence, motive behind the crime etc….
    The constitutional role of the judiciary also mandates taking a perspective on individual rights at a higher pedestal than majoritarian aspirations. To that extent we play a countermajoritarian role….

    P.N. Krishna Iyer, J. in Union of India (UOI) Vs. SankalchandHimatlalSheth and Anr. AIR1977SC2328
    The apparatuses of activist Justice, working under such societal strains and stresses and charged with engineering progressive change through the law, may have to enjoy more than traditional functional freedom. For, in a dynamic democracy, with goals of transformation set up by the Constitution, the Judge, committed to uphold the founding faiths and fighting creeds of the nation so set forth, has to act heedless of executive hubris, socio-economic pressures and die-hard obscurantism. This occupational heroism, professionally essential, demands the inviolable independence woven around the judiciary by our Constitution. Perfection baffles even the framers of a Constitution, but while on statutory construction of an organic document regulating and coordinating the relations among instrumentalities, the highest Court must remember that law, including the supremalex, is a principled, pragmatic, holistic recipe for the behavioral needs and norms of life in the raw-of individuals, instrumentalities and the play of power and freedom.

  National Judicial Academy, India
National Judicial Academy, India