February 29, 2024

Lukmaan IAS

A Blog for IAS Examination

CRUCIAL ISSUES BEFORE SEVEN-JUDGE BENCHES

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TAG: GS 2: POLITY

THE CONTEXT: The forthcoming year, 2024, holds a significant series of hearings in the Supreme Court, with a focus on various crucial matters to be deliberated upon by several seven-judge Constitution Benches.

EXPLANATION:

  • These crucial issues encompass diverse legal concerns and constitutional interpretations pivotal to India’s legal landscape.
  • The roster of cases includes pivotal topics such as the passage of laws as Money Bills, sub-classification of Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes, the intersection between legislative privilege breach and citizens’ fundamental rights, among others.

Scheduled Hearings:

  • Money Bills and Enforcement Directorate Powers:
    • A significant case involves amendments in the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) through Money Bills, granting extensive powers to the Enforcement Directorate.
    • The court had upheld the legality of these amendments but referred the question of passing them as Money Bills to a seven-judge Bench, assessing their constitutional validity concerning Article 110 of the Constitution.
  • Sub-Classification of SCs/STs:
    • Another critical issue pertains to the sub-classification of Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes.
    • Differing views by different benches necessitate a seven-judge Bench to reconcile the conflict and address the constitutional implications of allowing states to sub-classify these communities.
  • Legislature’s Privilege and Fundamental Rights:
    • Exploring the interplay between legislative privilege under Article 194 and the protection of fundamental rights, a case involving the authority of the legislature’s privilege to supersede fundamental rights is set for deliberation.

Timeline of Hearings

  • The Supreme Court is scheduled to hear four out of six cases in January 2024.
  • Chief Justice of India will head the seven-judge Bench for these hearings, with the remaining cases slated for March.

Significance of Cases

  • These cases hold substantial constitutional implications.
  • The decision on Money Bills’ passage, SC/ST sub-classification, and the clash between legislative privileges and fundamental rights will shape the legal landscape and impact governance and societal equality.

Background

  • The legal issues arose from various judgments, conflicts between earlier rulings, and the need for clarity and uniformity in constitutional interpretations.
  • These cases highlight conflicting precedents and the necessity for cohesive legal guidelines.

Conclusion

  • The upcoming Supreme Court hearings in 2024 are poised to address critical constitutional and legal dilemmas.
  • It will ensure the resolution of conflicting interpretations and providing vital clarity on significant issues impacting governance, societal rights, and constitutional validity.

SOURCE: https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/2024-will-see-a-flurry-of-seven-judge-benches-hearing-a-series-of-crucial-issues-in-sc/article67666804.ece

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