Administrative law is that the law that governs the executive actions. As per Ivor Jennings- the executive law is that the law concerning administration. The powers and duties of administrative authorities are determined. It includes law concerning the rule-making power of the executive bodies, the quasi-judicial function of administrative agencies, legal liabilities of public authorities and power of the standard courts to supervise administrative authorities. It governs the chief and ensures that the chief treats the general public fairly. Administrative law is a branch of public law. It deals with the relationship of individuals with the government. It determines the organization and hierarchy of administrative and quasi-judicial authorities to enforce the law. It is primarily concerned with official actions and procedures and puts in situ an impact mechanism by which administrative agencies stay within bounds.


In the year 1885 Albert Venn Dicey, a British jurist, rejected the entire concept of law. Hence, the executives and the administrative authorities are given the numerous statutory discretionary powers and the control which is exercised over them, they were all disregarded by the legal thinkers to form a separate branch of law. Until the 20th Century, law wasn’t accepted as a separate branch of law. It was only later that the existence of law came to be recognized.
In 1929, The Lord Donoughmore Committee, recommended for the better control and publications of subordinate legislation. The principle, that the king cannot do anything wrong with the citizens, was abolished and thus the scope of law expanded by virtue of the Crown Proceeding Act in 1947.
For the better control and supervision of Administrative Decisions the Tribunals and Inquires Act was passed in 1958.
Breen v Amalgamated Engineering Union [1971] 2 QB 175 was the primary case wherein the existence of law within the UK was declared.

In the US of America, the existence of law and its growth was ignored until it grew up to become the fourth branch of the State. By then many legal scholars like Frank Goodnow and Ernst Freund had already authored a couple of books on law.
It was in 1933 that a special committee was appointed to work out how judicial control over administrative agencies might be exercised. Thereafter, in 1946 the executive Procedure Act was passed which provided for judicial control over administrative actions.

The Mauryans and the Guptas of ancient India had a centralized administrative system. It was with the approaching of British that law in India went through a couple of changes. Legislations regulating administrative actions were passed in British India.
After independence, India adopted to become a state, which henceforth increased the state activities. As the activities and powers of the government and administrative authorities increased so did the necessity for ‘Rule of Law’ and ‘Judicial Review of State actions’.
Henceforth, if rules, regulations and orders passed by the administrative authorities were found to be beyond the authority legislative powers then such orders, rules and regulations were to be declared ultra-vires, unconstitutional, illegal and void.


The concept of a welfare state
As the States changed their nature from laissez-faire thereto of a state , government activities increased and thus the necessity to manage an equivalent . Thus, this branch of law developed.

The inadequacy of Legislature

Legislature has no time to legislate upon the day-to-day ever-changing needs of the society. Even if it does, the lengthy and time-taking legislating procedure would render the rule so legislated of no use because the needs would have changed by the time the rule is implemented.
Thus, the chief is given the facility to legislate and use its discretionary powers. Consequently, when powers are given they arises a need to regulate the same.

The inefficiency of Judiciary
The judicial procedure of adjudicating matters is extremely slow, costly complex and formal. Furthermore, there are numerous cases already lined up that speedy disposal of suites isn’t possible. Hence, the need for tribunals arose.

Scope for the experiment

Law isn’t a codified law there’s a scope of modifying it as per the need of the State machinery. Hence, it is more flexible. The rigid legislating procedures needn’t be followed again and again.


As one begins to review the specifics of a specific branch of law it becomes important to understand why and the way they said branch of law happened.
Administrative law may be a judge-made law which evolved over time. It is not a codified law. The need for it arose with the rise in administrative actions and its discretionary powers.

Administrative law is that the law governing the chief, to manage its functioning and protect the common citizenry from any abuse of power exercised by the chief or any of its instrumentalities. It is a replacement branch of law which has evolved with time and shall still evolve as per the changing needs of the society. The aim of law isn’t to require away the discretionary powers of the chief but to bring them in consonance with the ‘Rule of 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.

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