Law Commission is an executive body that is intended to work for legal improvement. The members of the commission are mainly legal experts, who work as per the government’s mandate. The Commission is established for a fixed tenure and works as an advisory body to the Law Ministry.
The first Law Commission was established during the British regime in 1834. Before independence, India saw three more commissions being established. The first such commission in independent India was set up for a three-year term in 1955. Since then, 19 more Commissions have been established.
The Commission is supervised by a full-time Chairperson. Its membership primarily comprises legal experts, who are entrusted a mandate by the Government.
The 21st Law commission would be comprised of a full-time Chairperson, four full-time Members (including a Member-Secretary), Secretary, and Department of Legal Affairs as ex offcio Member, Secretary, Legislative Department as ex offcio Member.
The Commission is established for a fixed tenure (usually three years) and works as an advisory body to the Ministry of Law and Justice.
Before finalising its recommendations, the Commission needs to consult the law ministry. Law Commission works in synchronisation and under the general instruction of Ministry of Law and Justice. It generally acts as primary commission for law reform in the country.
Internally, the Law Commission works in a research-oriented manner. The Law Commission employs research analysts and law students who work in a research-oriented manner. The commission comprises of research employees of different ranks and secretarial staff who looks after the day-to-day functioning.
This executive body works towards outlining the problems and determining areas for law reform. After due diligence and extensive research, it prepares report, which is sent to the Law Ministry. Once the proposals are cleared by other relevant ministries, action is taken to implement those recommendations.
Although an ad-hoc body but the Law Commission has played a major role in law reform in India. At times, it’s also critical of the government’s policies.
The Supreme Court often follows the recommendations of the commission. However, since the commission’s proposals are not binding on the government, often the critical recommendations made by it are not implemented. The Law commission also works on specific issues when requested by the Supreme Court.
The Commission evaluations and judicial administration ensures that it is responsive so that delays are eliminated, arrears are cleared and disposal of cases is quick and cost-effective without sacrificing the cardinal principle that they are just and fair.
The Commission seeks to simplify procedure to control delays and improve standards of justice. It also promotes an accountable and citizen-friendly government which is transparent and ensures the people’s right to information.