writs under indian constitution

The Supreme court and High court have been given a lot of power to provide justice to the people. One of the most important powers the court has been provided by the constitution is the power to issue writs.

A writ means a command of the court to another person or authority by which such person or the authority has to act or abstain from acting in a certain way. Thus, writs are a very essential part of the judicial power of the courts.

In India, the constitution has provided the Supreme Court with the power to issue the writs under Article 32 of the constitution. Under Article 32 of the Indian Constitution, when any fundamental Right of a citizen is violated, that person has the right to directly approach the supreme court for the enforcement of his rights and the court can issue the appropriate writ for enforcing such rights. The power to issue such writs is also provided to the High court under Article 226. While citizens can approach the supreme court only when their fundamental rights are infringed, the citizens also have the right to approach the high court for the issue of writs in others matters in which the fundamental rights are not violated.

ILLUSTRATION- A is an Indian citizen whose Fundamental rights have been violated. Here he has the right to approach the Supreme court or the Hight court for enforcing his rights. But if there is a violation of A’s rights which is not a fundamental right then he only has the right to approach the High court under article 226.


There are five types of writs provided by the Indian Constitution which can be issued by the courts. They are as follows-

  • Habeas Corpus
  • Mandamus
  • Certiorari
  • Quo Warranto
  • Prohibition

HABEAS CORPUS – The writs of Habeas corpus is issued by the courts when a person is illegally detained. Habeas Corpus means to have the body and it is one of the most effective remedies available to a person who is illegally detained. This writ is very important for the personal liberty of the citizens because if this writ is not provided by the Indian constitution a person can be unlawfully restrained or detained by any authority and it will be a clear violation of the personal liberty of the citizens. This writ can be applied not only by the person who is detained but it can also be applied on behalf of the detained person.

MANDAMUS- Mandamus is another important writ that is provided by the Indian constitution. In the writ of Mandamus, the superior courts order the Inferior courts to do an act or to abstain from doing an act.  This writ is useful for enforcing the duty which is required to be done by the law or by the office which a person holds. One of the most important points about the writ of mandamus is that it cannot be issued against a private person and therefore only the state or the people who hold any office which falls in the category of a public office can be compelled to do or abstain from doing an act.

CERTIORARI- Certitorai is a different type of writ as compared to other writs. This writ is corrective which means the purpose of this writ is to correct an error that is apparent on the records. It is a writ that is issued by the superior court to an inferior court. This can be issued when a superior court wants to decide a matter in the case itself or if there is an excess of jurisdiction by the inferior court. This can also be issued when there is a fundamental error in the procedure followed by the inferior court or if there is a violation of the principles of natural justice.

QUO WARRANTO- This is issued by the courts against a private person when he assumes an office on which he has no right. Quo warranto means by what authority and it is an effective measure to prevent people from taking over public offices. The power to issue this writ is discretionary on the courts and therefore nobody can demand that the court is bound to issue this writ.

PROHIBITION- The last writ which can be issued under the constitution is the writ of prohibition. This writ is not issued often and is an extraordinary remedy that a superior court issues to an inferior court or tribunal for stopping them from deciding a case because these courts do not have the jurisdiction. If the court or tribunals doesn’t have jurisdiction and it still decides the case, it will be an invalid judgement because for an act to be legal it should have the sanction of the law.

Aishwarya Says:

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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The copyright of this Article belongs exclusively to Ms. Aishwarya Sandeep. Reproduction of the same, without permission will amount to Copyright Infringement. Appropriate Legal Action under the Indian Laws will be taken.

If you would also like to contribute to my website, then do share your articles or poems at adv.aishwaryasandeep@gmail.com

We also have a Facebook Group Restarter Moms for Mothers or Women who would like to rejoin their careers post a career break or women who are enterpreneurs.

We are also running a series Inspirational Women from January 2021 to March 31,2021, featuring around 1000 stories about Indian Women, who changed the world. 

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