Judicial Pendency

The Supreme Court fails to decide key constitutional cases in time-bound manner

Note4Students

From UPSC perspective, the following things are important :

Prelims level : CAA

Mains level : Paper 2- Pendency of important cases

Context

Unless the Court strives in every possible way to assure that the Constitution, the law, applies fairly to all citizens, the Court cannot be said to have fulfilled its custodial responsibility.

Landmark judgments

  • In the last few years, the Indian Supreme Court has delivered some judgments of far-reaching consequence.
  • It declared the right to privacy a fundamental right; decriminalized consensual sexual conduct between adults of the same sex; recognized transgender persons as the third gender; and outlawed triple talaq.
  • These decisions shore up the belief in republican values like liberty and equality reified in our Constitution.

Important cases pending in the Supreme Court

  • Constitutionality of CAA: Many petitions were filed before the Supreme Court challenging the constitutionality of the Citizenship (Amendment) Act, 2019, that provides non-Muslim communities from Bangladesh, Pakistan, and Afghanistan a fast-track route to Indian citizenship.
  • More than two years later, the matter continues to languish in the apex court.
  • Dilution of Article 370: Innumerable petitions have been filed challenging the Presidential Order of August 5, 2019, that effectually diluted Article 370 of the Constitution.
  • To date, the court has done precious little to decide this vexed question of law.
  • Constitutionality of 103rd amendment: Petitions challenging the constitutionality of the Constitution(One Hundred and Third Amendment)Act,2019 that provides reservations in public educational institutions and government jobs for economically weaker sections are also languishing in the Supreme Court.
  • Challenges to the electoral bond scheme: The Supreme Court has failed to accord proper hearing in the last four years to the constitutional challenge to the electoral bonds scheme.

Conclusion

Unless the Court strives in every possible way to assure that the Constitution, the law, applies fairly to all citizens, the Court cannot be said to have fulfilled its custodial responsibility”.

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