Important Judgements For Judicial Services Examination

Knowledge about landmark as well as recent judgments is very important for a judicial aspirant. Questions are asked from these not only in preliminary but also in mains examination and sometimes in an interview as well. In addition to this, it will surely fetch you some extra marks and keep you inches ahead of your other competitors if mentioned when you get a chance to express it on a piece of paper or vocally in front of the panel. The important points for the preliminary exam are the legal provision involved, the issue raised, and the judgment pronounced. For mains examination, the ‘Ratio Decendi’ has to be analyzed carefully along with the legal provisions. The landmark cases and the recent ones have to be kept at your fingertips by you to attempt all questions and to share some additional information with the evaluator. In this article, we present a series of crisp summaries of such judgments from different legal arenas to help you in your preparation. It is practically known fact for you if you have already set the first step in preparation that researching for the important & relevant judgment from an exam point of view takes a lot of time, and reading whole cases will not be possible for you especially when you are not left with lots of time and the syllabus which need to be covered is limitless. This piece of writing contains five such judgments which will give you a grip over the concept and add some value to your training.

Important Judgements For Judicial Services Examination

1. Anuradha Bhasin vs. Union of India ( 2020 3 SCC 637)

As per the factual aspect of this case, a Writ Petition was filed by the executive editor of ‘Kashmir Times’(a newspaper agency), Srinagar edition to challenge the legality of internet shutdown in the state of Jammu and Kashmir (now, Union territory of Ladakh and Jammu by ‘The Jammu and Kashmir Reorganisation Act of 2019’). It is to notice that at that time prohibitory orders were issued under section 144 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973. In that order internet services, mobile connectivity, other dependant services were shut down and such conditions continued for more than a hundred days. 

The issue raised in this case was whether ‘Fundamental Right to Freedom of Speech and Expression’ guaranteed under Article 19(1)(a) of the Constitution of India Act & ‘Fundamental Right to Practice any profession, or to carry on any occupation, trade or business’ guaranteed under Article 19 (1)(g) of the Constitution of India Act, also includes Right to Use Internet Services for exercising these rights. 

The Apex Court ruled out that undefined restriction on these rights is illegal and the order passed by the Government has to pass the test of necessity and proportionality. The case of Indian Express vs. Union of India (AIR 1986 SC 515) was referred by the Supreme Court of India wherein it was held that print media is an essential right under Article 19(1)(a) of the Constitution of India Act and only those restriction could be imposed on this right which is provided under Article 19(2) of the Constitution of India Act namely Sovereignty and Integrity of India, Security of the State, friendly relations with the Foreign States, public order, decency, morality, contempt of court, defamation or incitement to an offence. Court further said that suspension of internet service can be done only for a reasonable period and periodic review should be done over such order. Use of internet services as a medium is protected under Article 19(1)(a) of the Constitution of India Act and 19(1)(g) of the Constitution of India Act and restrictions could be placed on this only in cases as provided under Article 19(2) and 19(6) of the Constitution of India Act, former being discussed above and restrictions under the later provision are reasonable restrictions in the interest of the general public.

2. Rhea Chakraborty vs. State of Bihar (Criminal Petition No. 225 of 2020)

One of the most burning issues of the year 2020 was the unnatural death of Bollywood actor Sushant Singh Rajput. The actor was found dead in his apartment in Mumbai and Mumbai Police had registered an ADR (Accidental Death Report) under Section 174 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973 which grants power only for the inquiry and not the investigation, and inquiry is limited to find the cause of unnatural death of the deceased. The father of the deceased had registered an FIR (First Information Report) by virtue of Section 154 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973 in Patna against the appellant(Rhea Chakraborty) alleging criminal misappropriation of money by her. This transfer petition was filed before the Supreme Court by the appellant under Section 406 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973 for transferring investigation from Patna police to Mumbai police. Section 406 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973 empowers Supreme Court to transfer cases and appeals for the end of justice. It provides that “whenever it is made to appear to the Supreme Court that an order under this section is expedient for the ends of justice, it may direct that any particular case or appeal be transferred from one High Court to another High Court or from a Criminal Court subordinate to one High Court to another Criminal Court of equal or superior jurisdiction subordinate to another High Court. Precedents show that the power is exercised in cases where the proceeding is prejudiced or a fair and impartial proceeding is not possible. The Supreme Court dismissed the petition and held that the Supreme Court has no power to transfer ongoing investigation under Section 406 of the Code of Criminal Procedure, 1973, and the power is limited to the transfer of cases and appeals. The Court further said that police is an entry under state list of the seventh schedule of the Constitution of India and this it has no power to interfere. However, Supreme Court invoked plenary power under Article 142 of the Constitution of India which provides that the Supreme Court in the exercise of its jurisdiction may pass such decree or make such order as is necessary for doing complete justice in any cause or matter pending before it, and directed CBI to investigate the new case as well. This is to notice that the CBI was already investigating the case of the unnatural death of the late actor.

3. Keshavanand Bharti vs. State of Kerala  ( AIR 1973 SC 1461)

The most important case in the history of constitutional law in India is the case of Keshavanda Bharti which laid down the theory of basic structure. In this case, the 24th Constitutional Amendment Act, the 25th Constitutional Amendment Act, and the 29th Constitutional Amendment Act were challenged before the Supreme Court of Inida. Under the 24th Amendment Act, certain amendments were made to Article 368 of the Constitution of India and empowered Parliament to amend any part of the constitution including part three that deals with the fundamental rights. Article 368 clause 1 provides that “notwithstanding anything in this Constitution, Parliament may in the exercise of its constituent power amend by way of addition, variation or repeal any provision of this Constitution in accordance with the procedure laid down in this article”. The 25th Amendment Act amended Article 31C of the Constitution of India and excluded power of judicial review of the Court in case of infringement of fundamental right for giving effects to Directive Principles of State Policy(DPSP’s) and lastly by way of the 29th Amendment Act put Kerala land reforms in 9th schedule of the Constitution. The issue was raised to figure out the nature, extent, and scope of the amending power of the Parliament under Article 368 of the Constitution. It has to be kept in mind that previously in the case of Golaknath vs. State of Punjab, the Supreme Court has held that Parliament has no power to amend the fundamental rights. However in this landmark case, Supreme Court accepted the amending power of the Parliament and upheld the 24th Constitutional Amendment Act and thus overruled the law laid down in the Golaknath case but, the part of the 25th Amendment Act which amended Article 31C to exclude the power of judicial review was held invalid. The case was decided by the thirteen judges bench by the ratio of 6:5. Then Chief Justice of India Justice Sikri made it clear that Parliament can’t change the fundamental feature of the Constitution and destroy the Constitutional identity. This case in fact widened the scope of Judicial Review on the basis of basic structure theory by formulating implied limitations on amending power of Parliament. What is a basic structure is not an exhaustive list but is an evolving concept with the change in time and it has many facets like secularism, democratic setup, judicial review, etc. 

4. Abhyanand Mishra vs. State of Bihar ( AIR 1961 SC 1698) 

This case is a landmark case in the criminal law arena and provides for what constitutes an attempt in an offense and highlighted the thin line of difference between preparation and attempt. In this case, the accused attached forged documents about him being a graduate and a teacher in a school with the application to appear in an entrance examination conducted by Patna University. The admit card was issued to him but the information about him not being a teacher and even being barred from appearing in any examination was received by the University. 

The issue was raised whether an attempt to cheat was committed or not. It was argued by the defense that act constitutes only preparation and not attempt and secondly, that no harm was caused to the reputation of the University. The court rejected both arguments and said that firstly, the act constitutes an attempt, and secondly, the idea of no harm is too remote to be considered. Section 415 of the Indian Penal Code, 1860 defines cheating as “Whoever, by deceiving any person, fraudulently or dishonestly induces the person so deceived to deliver any proper­ty to any person, or to consent that any person shall retain any property, or intentionally induces the person so deceived to do or omit to do anything which he would not do or omit if he were not so deceived, and which act or omission causes or is likely to cause damage or harm to that person in body, mind, reputation or property, is said to cheat”. Here, in this case, Court said that the ‘admit card’ is a property here as it is of value to the applicant and if not withdrawn, would have entitled him to appear in the examination. The Court convicted the accused of the offence of attempting to cheat as he induced the University to deliver admit card by deceiving it through false information. 

In criminal law, there are four stages of crime- 

  • Intention 
  • Preparation
  • Attempt
  • Commission

Among these four stages of crime, the first two stages are not punishable in the main for there are chances of retreat, and also proving intention is impossible. An attempt is an act towards the commission of the act and it begins when preparation is complete and the culprit does something with the intention to commit the offense and which will result in the crime if is not interrupted by some external factor beyond the control of the culprit. For such an act towards the commission of the crime, the person is punishable for the attempt to commit that offense. An attempt is either punishable specifically under a provision for instance-  Section 307 of the Indian Penal Code 1860 provides for punishment for an attempt to murder or is punishable under Section 511 of the Indian Penal Code 1860. Section 511 of the Code provides that “Whoever attempts to commit an offence punishable by this Code with imprisonment for life or imprisonment, or to cause such an offence to be commit­ted, and in such attempt does any act towards the commission of the offence, shall, where no express provision is made by this Code for the punishment of such attempt, be punished with 2[imprisonment of any description provided for the offence, for a term which may extend to one-half of the imprisonment for life or, as the case may be, one-half of the longest term of imprison­ment provided for that offence, or with such fine as is provided for the offence, or with both”. 

While interpreting Section 511 of the Indian Penal Code 1860, Court said, in this case, that act towards the commission of the offense needs not to be a penultimate act but it must be an act during the course of committing that offense. In this case, the accused was convicted under Section 420 read with Section 511 of the Indian Penal Code 1860 for the offence of attempt to cheat. 

5. Lalman Shukla vs. Gauri Dutt ( 1913 40 ALJ 489)

This case is a landmark case under the Contract law in India and provides for the basic law of contract formation as to when communication of offer is said to be complete in order to enter into an agreement. In this case, the nephew of the defendant went missing and sent his servant (plaintiff) in search of the boy. Later, the defendant made a General Offer of a reward for the person who find the boy. Plaintiff found the boy and returned him to the defendant and after that, he got to know about the reward. He claimed that but the defendant refused to pay and the same issue of him being entitled to the reward was raised before the competent court. This case discusses two important concepts of General Offer and Communication of Acceptance. A general offer is an offer made to the public without actual knowledge of the crowd and not to a definite person and performance of the conditions of the proposal is deemed to be acceptable. Section 8 of the Indian Contract Act, 1872 provides for this law by stating that “performance of the conditions of a proposal, or the acceptance of any consideration for a reciprocal promise which may be offered with a proposal, is an acceptance of the proposal”. On the communication of the proposal, Court said that communication is complete when the made offer comes to knowledge of the person to whom it is made but when any act matches with the conditions of any general proposal and on the other hand the act was done not in furtherance of it or in the ignorance of the proposal, it cannot be deemed to be acceptance of the proposal. 

Section 4 of the Indian Contract Act, 1872 provides that “the communication of a proposal is complete when it comes to the knowledge of the person to whom it is made” but in this case, an act was done in ignorance of the offer and not in furtherance of the offer but in his capacity as a servant. Therefore, Court held that communication cannot be said to be complete considering the circumstances of the case as the servant was ignorant of the offer. 

We hope that this swift reading has provided you with little detailed information and has also helped you to gain some understanding of various laws from different verticals. 


Leave a comment

Download 500+ Free Ebooks (Limited Offer)👉👉