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The Judiciary

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The Judiciary - Lesson Summary

The judiciary in India is an independent body that plays a critical role in the functioning of the country. It has the sole right to make or break decisions without the interference of the government including the legislature and the executive.

It plays a key role in the functioning of the country and protecting the Fundamental rights of the citizens. Apart from resolving all disputes between the citizens and the government, the judiciary at various levels is also the final interpreter of the Constitution.

The Indian judiciary is a three-tiered system with the Supreme Court at its helm officiated by the Chief Justice, the high court at the head of state followed by district and sessions court.

The High Courts were established in the presidencies of Bombay, Calcutta, and Madras in 1862 well before the Supreme Court. The first Supreme Court was established on the 26 th January, 1950, the republic day. The courts are interconnected through the appellate system that exists in India. This means if a person feels they have not been given justice at a lower court, they can approach the high court to relook at the case.

Most of the cases fall into two broad categories of the legal system, criminal and civil law. Criminal law deals with cases of assault, theft, murder, dowry, and harassment whereas civil law deals with land disputes, property deals, divorce and rent agreements.

To increase the accessibility to justice, the Supreme Court introduced the Public Interest Litigation or PIL in the 1980s.  This enabled a person who needed justice to file a PIL directly to the High Court or Supreme Court.

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