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Powers and Functions of Supreme Court

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  • Last Updated : 27 Jul, 2022
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According to the Indian Constitution, the Supreme Court of India is the highest judicial court in India and the ultimate court of appeal. It is also the highest constitutional court with judicial review authority. The first Supreme Court was established in Calcutta as a superior court, and the first Chief Justice, Sir Elijah Impey, was appointed. The court was formed to settle disputes in Bengal, Orissa, and Patna. As a result, King George-III founded the other two Supreme Courts in Bombay and Madras in 1800 and 1834, respectively.

The Supreme Court is our country’s highest appeals court. The people of India are announcing justice with its establishment. The Supreme Court’s authority is to provide a proper hearing in cases involving the Indian Constitution.

Supreme Court’s Significance in India

The Indian Constitution deals with the Supreme Court’s power, function, nomination, retirement, jurisdiction, and so on, from Article 124 to Article 147. The following are the reasons why the Supreme Court was established:

  1. The Supreme Court possesses Judicial Review power under Article 13 of the Constitution, which means it has the authority to reject any law or executive action that is determined to be incompatible with the Indian Constitution.
  2. The Supreme Court is India’s highest court ruling, commonly referred to as the country’s top court or even the final chance, where people can seek justice if they are dissatisfied with a High Court decision.
  3. If certain fundamental rights are violated, Indian individuals can claim compensation immediately through writs under Article 32 of the Constitution.

 Functions of the Supreme Court

  1. It functions as a medium for settling disputes between various governmental entities, the federal government, and state governments.
  2. In accordance with Article 141 of the Constitution, all courts in the Indian Territory must obey legislation made by the Supreme court.
  3. In response to an appeal from one of the High courts or another subordinate court, the Supreme court gives the final decision.
  4. The Supreme Court can make decisions and act independently in specific cases.
  5. It is the highest court of appeal in civil and criminal cases.

Powers of the Supreme Court

The Supreme Court has the following judicial powers:

Original Jurisdiction

  • In cases when there are disagreements between the Central government and the state government or between two or more state governments, the Supreme Court serves as the original jurisdiction authority under Article 131 of the Constitution.
  • According to Article 139A of the Constitution, the Supreme Court may, at its judgment or on the advice of the Attorney General of India, accept matters from the high courts while they are still pending if they involve the same legal problem that has to be decided by the Supreme Court. 
  • Additionally, it has the power to transfer cases that are still ongoing, appeals, or other legal actions from one High Court to another High Court.
  • The Supreme Court has the authority to issue writs, orders, or directions under Article 139 of the Constitution.
  • The Supreme Court is also able to uphold fundamental rights, according to section 32 of the Constitution.

Appellate Jurisdiction

The Supreme Court has administrative authority in cases involving civil, criminal, or constitutional law, according to articles 132, 133, and 134 of the Constitution. Additionally, under article 136, the Supreme Court has the authority to grant exceptional leave requested by any Indian judicial court, but not by Army courts.

Advisory Jurisdiction

According to article 143 of the Constitution, the Supreme Court may provide the President of India with legal advice where the basis of the issue is related to the public interest. Additionally, the President has the right to consult others on problems relating to Article 131 of the Constitution.

Review Jurisdiction

The Supreme Court has the authority to examine any laws that are being approved by the legislature under article 137 of the Constitution.

Frequently Asked Questions

Question 1: How is article 139A relate to Supreme Court?

Answer:

According to Article 139A of the Constitution, the Supreme Court may, at its judgment or on the advice of the Attorney General of India, accept matters from the high courts while they are still pending if they involve the same legal problem that has to be decided by the Supreme Court. Additionally, it has the power to transfer cases that are still ongoing, appeals, or other legal actions from one High Court to another High Court.

Question 2: What are the significations of the Supreme Court?

Answer:

  1. The Supreme Court possesses Judicial Review power under Article 13 of the Constitution, which means it has the authority to reject any law or executive action that is determined to be incompatible with the Indian Constitution.
  2. The Supreme Court is India’s highest court ruling, commonly referred to as the country’s top court or even the final chance, where people can seek justice if they are dissatisfied with a High Court decision.
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