New Dimension of Judicial Review of Constitutional Amendments : A Study with special reference to Articles 31A, 31B, 31C read with the Schedule 9th of Constitution of India (Paper)

  • Puneetha Choudhary, Christ University Bangalore
  • January 21, 2021

Content :

The Indian Constitution was amended in the year 1951 for the first time and this amendment led to several modifications in the fundamental rights and started the era of land reform through constitutional mechanism, and the Supreme Court of India which has the prime responsibility of interpreting and protecting it. It also acts as the guardian of the Fundamental Rights of the people. For this, the Supreme Court exercises the power to determine the constitutional validity of all laws. It has the power to reject law or any of its part which is found to be un­constitutional. This power of the Supreme Court is also called the judicial review power. State High Courts also exercise this power but their judgements are often rejected or modified or upheld by the Supreme Court. The principle of the judicial review became an important feature of written Constitutions of many countries. The power of judicial review has in itself the concept of separation of powers an important component of the rule of law, which is the basic feature of the Indian Constitution. The power of Judicial Review is included in the Articles 226 and 227 of the Constitution regarding the High Courts are concerned and in the Articles 32 and 136 of the Constitution regarding the Supreme Court. The judiciary in India has come to control by judicial review in every aspect of governmental and public functions. Judicial review is basically a process under which the legislative or the executive actions are subject to review by the judiciary. A court authoritatively for judicial review may invalidate laws, acts and governmental actions that are incompatible with a higher authority: an executive decision could also be invalidated for being unlawful or a statute could also be invalidated for violating the terms of a constitution. The Supreme Court’s power of judicial review extends to the Constitutional Amendments. However, review of constitutional Amendments by judiciary in reference to Fundamental Rights and its legal Validity has been a Contentious Political issue. This paper will be dealing with introducing the topic judicial review along with its background, features and its legal outlook with references to landmark case laws. Judicial review is often understood by two distinct but parallel legal systems, firstly the civil law and secondly the common law, and also by two distinct theories of democracy regarding the manner in which the government should be organized with reference to the principles and doctrines of legislative supremacy and therefore the separation of powers. Following the period of emergency, the judiciary was on the end for having delivered a series of judgments which were recognized by many as violative of the basic human rights of Indian citizens and changed the way it looked at the constitution and the Supreme Court said that any legislation is amenable to judicial review.