The rule of law was written by A.V. dicey in 1885 in the British constitution and he had 3 ideas in rule of law-
1) Absence of Arbitrary Power: No man is above law. No man is punishable except for a distinct breach of law established in an ordinary legal manner before ordinary courts. Persons in authority in Britain do not enjoy wide, arbitrary or discretionary powers. Dicey asserted that wherever there is discretion there is room for arbitrariness.
2) Equality before Law: Every man, whatever his rank or condition, is subject to the ordinary law and jurisdiction of the ordinary courts. No man is above law.
3) individual liberties: the liberties of individual are the result of judicial l decisions determining the rights of private persons in particular cases brought before the courts.
The rights of the individuals are part of the Constitution because these are secured by the courts.
DICEY’S emphasis, in his enunciation of Rule of Law is on the absence of arbitrary power, and discretionary power, equality before Law, and legal protection to certain basic human rights, and these ideas remain relevant and significant in every democratic country even today.
Rule of law has no fixed connotation though the Indian courts use this phrase many times. Govt. intervention in daily activities of citizens is increasing and rule of law is a counter to this situation as it emphasizes on exclusion of arbitrariness, lawlessness and unreasonableness on the part of the government.
Rule of law connotes some higher kind of law which is reasonable just and non-discriminatory. Rule of Law to-day forms a mental picture of not arbitrary power but controlled power. Constitutional values, such as constitutionalism, absence of arbitrary power in the government, liberty of the people, an independent judiciary etc. are imbibed in the concept of Rule of Law.
The Constitution makes adequate provisions guaranteeing independence of the judiciary. Judicial review has been guaranteed through several constitutional provisions. The Supreme Court has characterised judicial review as a “basic feature of the Constitution”. Article 14 of the Constitution guarantees right to equality before law.
Relevant cases- In P. Sambamurthy v. State of Andhra Pradesh, the Supreme Court has declared a provision authorising the executive to interfere with tribunal justice as unconstitutional characterising it as “violative of the rule of law which is clearly a basic and essential feature of the Constitution.”
In Wadhwa, the Supreme Court has again invoked the Rule of Law concept to decry too frequent use by a State Government of its power to issue ordinances as a substitute for legislation by the Legislature.
In Yusuf Khan v. Manohar Joshi, the Supreme Court has laid down the proposition that it is the duty of the state to preserve and protect the law and the Constitution and that it cannot permit any violent act which may negate the rule of law.
A significant derivative from ‘Rule of Law’ is judicial review. Judicial review is an essential part of Rule of Law. Judicial review involves determination not only of the constitutionality of the law but also of the validity of administrative action. The actions of the state public authorities and bureaucracy are all subject to judicial review; they are thus all accountable to the courts for the legality of their actions. In India, so much importance is given to judicial review that it has been characterized as the ‘basic feature’ of the Constitution which cannot be done away with even by the exercise of the constituent power.
I have always been against Glorifying Over Work and therefore, in the year 2021, I have decided to launch this campaign “Balancing Life”and talk about this wrong practice, that we have been following since last few years. I will be talking to and interviewing around 1 lakh people in the coming 2021 and publish their interview regarding their opinion on glamourising Over Work.
If you are interested in participating in the same, do let me know.
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