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Minerva Mills v.

Union of India
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Minerva Mills Ltd. vs Union Of India

Court Supreme Court of India

Full case Minerva Mills Ltd. and Ors. vs Union Of India and Ors.

name

Decided 31 July 1980

Citation(s) AIR 1980 SC 1789

Case opinions

Majority Y.V. Chandrachud (Chief Justice of India); A.C.

Gupta; N.L. Untwalia; P.S. Kailasam

Dissent P.N. Bhagwati

Laws applied

Constitution of India

Minerva Mills Ltd. and Ors. v. Union Of India and Ors. (case citation: AIR 1980 SC 1789) is
a landmark decision of the Supreme Court of India[1] that applied and evolved the basic structure
doctrine of the Constitution of India.[2]
In the Minerva Mills case, the Supreme Court provided key clarifications on the interpretation of the
basic structure doctrine. The court unanimously ruled that the power of the parliament to amend the
constitution is limited by the constitution. Hence the parliament cannot exercise this limited power to
grant itself an unlimited power. In addition, a majority of the court also held that the parliament's
power to amend is not a power to destroy. Hence the parliament cannot emasculate the fundamental
rights of individuals, including the right to liberty and equality.[3]
The ruling struck down section 4 and 55 of the Constitution (Forty-second Amendment) Act,
1976 enacted during the Emergencyimposed by Prime Minister Indira Gandhi.[4].

Judgement[edit]
(5) For the removal of doubts, it is hereby declared that there shall be no limitation whatever on the
constituent power of Parliament to amend by way of addition, variation or repeal the provisions of
this Constitution under this article.
The above clauses were unanimously ruled as unconstitutional. Chief Justice Y.V.
Chandrachud explained in his opinion that since, as had been previously held in Kesavananda
Bharati v. State of Kerala, the power of Parliament to amend the constitution was limited, it could not
by amending the constitution convert this limited power into an unlimited power (as it had purported
to do by the 42nd amendment).
Since the Constitution had conferred a limited amending power on the Parliament, the Parliament
cannot under the exercise of that limited power enlarge that very power into an absolute power.
Indeed, a limited amending power is one of the basic features of our Constitution and therefore, the
limitations on that power can not be destroyed. In other words, Parliament can not, under Article
368, expand its amending power so as to acquire for itself the right to repeal or abrogate the
Constitution or to destroy its basic and essential features. The donee of a limited power cannot be
the exercise of that power convert the limited power into an unlimited one.[5]
Section 4 of the 42nd Amendment, had amended Article 31C of the Constitution to accord
precedence to the Directive Principles of State Policy articulated in Part IV of the Constitution over
the Fundamental Rights of individuals articulated in Part III of Indian Costitution. By a verdict of 4-1,
with Justice P.N. Bhagwati dissenting, the court held section 4 of the 42nd Amendment to be
unconstitutional.[2] Chief Justice Chandrachud wrote:
Three Articles of our Constitution, and only three, stand between the heaven of freedom into which
Tagore wanted his country to awake and the abyss of unrestrained power. They are Articles 14, 19
and 21. Article 31C has removed two sides of that golden triangle which affords to the people of this
country an assurance that the promise held forth by the preamble will be performed by ushering an
egalitarian era through the discipline of fundamental rights, that is, without emasculation of the rights
to liberty and equality which alone can help preserve the dignity of the individual.[3]
Kesavananda Bharati v. State of Kerala
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Kesavananda Bharati v. State of Kerala

Court Supreme Court of India

Full case name Kesavananda Bharati Sripadagalvaru and Ors. v. State

of Kerala and Anr.

Citation(s) (1973) 4 SCC 225

Holding

There are certain principles within the framework of Indian Constitution

which are inviolable and hence cannot be amended by the Parliament.

These principles were commonly termed as Basic Structure.

Case opinions

Majority Sikri C. J. Hegde and Mukherjea, JJ.; Shelat and Grover,

JJ.; Jaganmohan Reddy, J.; Khanna, J.


Dissent Ray J.; Palekar J.; Mathew J.; Beg J.; Dwivedi J.;

Chandrachud J.

Laws applied

Constitution of India, Criminal Procedure Code (CrPC), Indian Evidence

Act, Indian Contract Act 1872

Kesavananda Bharathi is the case which saved

“ Indian democracy; thanks to Shri Kesavananda


Bharati, eminent jurist Nanabhoy Palkhivalaand the

seven judges who were in the majority.

— The Hindu - in April 2013, on the occasion of the 40th anniversary of the
judgement., [1]

The Kesavananda Bharati judgement or His Holiness Kesavananda Bharati Sripadagalvaru


and Ors. v. State of Kerala and Anr.(case citation: (1973) 4 SCC 225) is a landmark decision of
the Supreme Court of India that outlined the basic structure doctrine of
the Constitution.[2] Justice Hans Raj Khanna asserted through this doctrine that the constitution
possesses a basic structure of constitutional principles and values. The Court partially cemented the
prior precedent Golaknath v. State of Punjab, which held that constitutional amendments pursuant to
Article 368 were subject to fundamental rights review, by asserting that only those amendments
which tend to affect the 'basic structure of the Constitution' are subject to judicial review. At the same
time, the Court also upheld the constitutionality of first provision of Article 31(c), which implied that
any constitutional amendment seeking to implement the Directive Principles, which does not affect
the 'Basic Structure', shall not be subjected to judicial review.
The basic structure doctrine forms the basis of power of the Indian judiciary to review, and strike
down, amendments to the Constitution of India enacted by the Indian parliament which conflict with
or seek to alter this basic structure of the Constitution.
The 13-judge Constitutional bench of the Supreme Court deliberated on the limitations, if any, of the
powers of the elected representatives of the people and the nature of fundamental rights of an
individual. In a sharply divided verdict, by a margin of 7-6, the court held that while the Parliament
has "wide" powers, it did not have the power to destroy or emasculate the basic elements or
fundamental features of the constitution.[3]
Although the court upheld the basic structure doctrine by only the narrowest of margins, it has since
gained widespread acceptance and legitimacy due to subsequent cases and judgments. Primary
among these was the imposition of the state of emergency by Indira Gandhi in 1975, and the
subsequent attempt to suppress her prosecution through the 39th Amendment. When the
Kesavananda case was decided, the underlying apprehension of the majority bench that elected
representatives could not be trusted to act responsibly was perceived to be unprecedented.
However, the passage of the 39th Amendment proved that in fact this apprehension was well-
founded. In Indira Nehru Gandhi v. Raj Narain, a Constitution Bench of the Supreme Court used the
basic structure doctrine to strike down the 39th amendment and paved the way for restoration of
Indian democracy.[4]
The Kesavananda judgment also defined the extent to which Parliament could restrict property
rights, in pursuit of land reform and the redistribution of large landholdings to cultivators, overruling
previous decisions that suggested that the right to property could not be restricted. The case was a
culmination of a series of cases relating to limitations to the power to amend the Indian constitution.

Contents

 1Facts
 2Judgment
o 2.1Majority judgment
o 2.2S.M. Sikri, Chief Justice
o 2.3Shelat and Grover, JJ
o 2.4Hegde and Mukherjea, JJ
o 2.5Jaganmohan Reddy, J
o 2.6H R Khanna J.
 3Significance
 4Books
 5See also
 6Notes

Facts[edit]
In February 1970 Swami Kesavananda Bharati, senior plaintiff and head of "Edneer Mutt" -
a Hindu Mutt situated in Edneer, a village in Kasaragod district of Kerala, challenged
the Kerala government's attempts, under two state land reform acts, to impose restrictions on the
management of its property. Although the state invoked its authority under Article 21, a noted Indian
jurist, Nanabhoy Palkhivala, convinced Swami into filing his petition under Article 26, concerning the
right to manage religiously owned property without government interference. Even though the
hearings consumed five months, the outcome would profoundly affect India's democratic processes.
The case had been heard for 68 days, the arguments commencing on October 31, 1972, and ending
on March 23, 1973[5].[6][7][8][9][10][9] [11] [10][12][13][14][15]

Judgment[edit]
The Supreme Court reviewed the decision in Golaknath v. State of Punjab, and considered the
validity of the 24th, 25th, 26th and 29th amendments. The case was heard by the largest ever
Constitution Bench of 13 Judges. The bench gave eleven separate judgements, which agreed on
some points and differed on others.[16] Nanabhoy Palkhivala, assisted by Fali Nariman, presented the
case against the government in both cases.[17]
Majority judgment[edit]
Upholding the validity of clause (4) of article 13 and a corresponding provision in article 368(3),
inserted by the 24th Amendment, the Court settled in favour of the view that Parliament has the
power to amend the fundamental rights also. However, the Court affirmed another proposition also
asserted in the Golaknath case, by ruling that the expression "amendment" of this Constitution in
article 368 means any addition or change in any of the provisions of the Constitution within the broad
contours of the Preamble and the Constitution to carry out the objectives in the Preamble and the
Directive Principles. Applied to fundamental rights, it would be that while fundamental rights cannot
be abrogated, reasonable abridgement of fundamental rights could be effected in the public interest.
The true position is that every provision of the Constitution can be amended provided the basic
foundation and structure of the Constitution remains the same.[16]
The nine signatories to the statement were Chief Justice S M Sikri, and Justices J. M. Shelat, K.S.
Hegde, A.N. Grover, B. Jaganmohan Reddy, D.G. Palekar, H R Khanna, A.K. Mukherjee
and Yeshwant Vishnu Chandrachud. Four judges did not sign: A.N. Ray, K.K. Mathew, M.H. Beg
and S.N. Dwivedi.[18]
S.M. Sikri, Chief Justice[edit]
S M Sikri, Chief Justice held that the fundamental importance of the freedom of the individual has to
be preserved for all times to come and that it could not be amended out of existence. According to
the Hon'ble Chief Justice, fundamental rights conferred by Part III of the Constitution of India cannot
be abrogated, though a reasonable abridgement of those rights could be effected in public interest.
There is a limitation on the power of amendment by necessary implication which was apparent from
a reading of the preamble and therefore, according to the learned Chief Justice, the expression
"amendment of this Constitution", in Article 368 means any addition or change in any of the
provisions of the Constitution within the broad contours of the preamble, made in order to carry out
the basic objectives of the Constitution. Accordingly, every provision of the Constitution was open to
amendment provided the basic foundation or structure of the Constitution was not damaged or
destroyed.
Shelat and Grover, JJ[edit]
Held that the preamble to the Constitution contains the clue to the fundamentals of the Constitution.
According to the learned Judges, Parts III and IV of the Constitution which respectively embody the
fundamental rights and the directive principles have to be balanced and harmonised. This balance &
harmony between two integral parts of the Constitution forms a basic element of the Constitution
which cannot be altered. The word 'amendment' occurring in Article 368 must therefore be construed
in such a manner as to preserve the power of the Parliament to amend the Constitution, but not so
as to result in damaging or destroying the structure and identity of the Constitution. There was thus
an implied limitation on the amending power which prevented the Parliament from abolishing or
changing the identity of the Constitution or any of its Basic Structure.
Hegde and Mukherjea, JJ[edit]
Held that the Constitution of India which is essentially a social rather than a political document, is
founded on a social philosophy and as such has two main features basic and circumstantial. The
basic constituent remained constant, the circumstantial was subject to change. According to the
learned Judges, the broad contours of the basic elements and the fundamental features of the
Constitution are delineated in the preamble and the Parliament has no power to abolish or
emasculate those basic elements of fundamental features. The building of a welfare State is the
ultimate goal of every Government but that does not mean that in order to build a welfare State,
human freedoms have to suffer a total destruction. Applying these tests, the learned Judges
invalidated Article 31C even in its un-amended form.
Jaganmohan Reddy, J[edit]
Held that the word 'amendment' was used in the sense of permitting a change, in contradistinction to
destruction, which the repeal or abrogation brings about. Therefore, the width of the power of
amendment could not be enlarged by amending the amending power itself. The learned Judge held
that the essential elements of the basic structure of the Constitution are reflected in its preamble and
that some of the important features of the Constitution are justice, freedom of expression and
equality of status and opportunity. The word 'amendment' could not possibly embrace the right to
abrogate the pivotal features and the fundamental freedoms and therefore, that part of the basic
structure could not be damaged or destroyed. According to the learned Judge, the provisions of
Article 31d, as they hen, conferring power on Parliament and the State Legislatures to enact laws for
giving effect to the principles specified in Clauses (b) and (c) of Article 39, altogether abrogated the
right given by Article 14 and were for that reason unconstitutional. In conclusion, the learned Judge
held that though the power of amendment was wide, it did not comprehend the power to totally
abrogate or emasculate or damage any of the fundamental rights or the essential elements of the
basic structure of the Constitution or to destroy the identity of the Constitution. Subject to these
limitations, Parliament had the right to amend any and every provision of the Constitution.
H R Khanna J.[edit]
H R Khanna has given in his judgment that the Parliament had full power to amend the Constitution,
however, since it is only a "power to amend", the basic structure or framework of the structure should
remain intact. While as per the aforesaid views of the six learned Judges, certain "essential
elements" ( which included fundamental rights) of the judgment cannot be amended as there are
certain implied restrictions on the powers of the parliament.
According to the Hon'ble Judge, although it was permissible to the Parliament, in exercise of its
amending power, to effect changes so as to meet the requirements of changing conditions, it was
not permissible to touch the foundation or to alter the basic institutional pattern. Therefore, the words
"amendment of the Constitution" in spite of the width of their sweep and in spite of their amplitude,
could not have the effect of empowering the Parliament to destroy or abrogate the basic structure or
framework of the Constitution.
This gave birth to the basic structure doctrine , which has been considered as the cornerstone of the
Constitutional law in India.[4] [19]

Significance[edit]
This judgement ruled that Article 368 does not enable Parliament in its constituent capacity to
delegate its function of amending the Constitution to another legislature or to itself in its ordinary
legislative capacity.[20][21] This ruling made all the deemed constitutional amendments stipulated under
the legislative powers of the parliament as void and inconsistent after the 24th constitutional
amendment. These are articles 4 (2), 169 (3)-1962, 239A2-1962, 244A4-1969, 356 (1)c, para 7(2) of
Schedule V and para 21(2) of Schedule VI.[22] Also articles 239AA(7)b-1991, 243M(4)b-1992,
243ZC3-1992 and 312(4)-1977 which are inserted by later constitutional amendments and
envisaging deemed constitutional amendments under legislative powers of the parliament, should be
invalid. The Supreme Court declared in the case ‘A. K. Roy, Etc vs Union Of India And Anr on 28
December 1981’ that the article 368(1) clearly defines constituent power as 'the power to amend any
provision of the constitution by way of an addition, variation or repeal'. it reiterated that constituent
power must be exercised by the parliament itself in accordance with the procedure laid down in
article 368.[23]
The government of Indira Gandhi did not take kindly to this implied restriction on its powers by the
court. On 26 April 1973, Justice Ajit Nath Ray, who was among the dissenters, was promoted
to Chief Justice of India superseding three senior Judges, Shelat, Grover and Hegde, which was
unprecedented in Indian legal history. Advocate C.K. Daphtary termed the incident as "the blackest
day in the history of democracy". Justice Mohammad Hidayatullah (previous Chief Justice of India)
remarked that "this was an attempt of not creating 'forward looking judges' but 'judges looking
forward' to the office of Chief Justice".[24]
The 42nd Amendment, enacted in 1976, is considered to be the immediate and most direct fall out of
the judgement. Apart from it, the judgement cleared the deck for complete legislative authority to
amend any part of the Constitution except when the amendments are not in consonance with the
basic features of the Constitution.
The basic structure doctrine was adopted by the Supreme Court of Bangladesh in 1989, by
expressly relying on the reasoning in the Kesavananda case, in its ruling on Anwar Hossain
Chowdhary v. Bangladesh (41 DLR 1989 App. Div. 165, 1989 BLD (Spl.) 1).[25]

Books[edit]
 T R Andhyarujina, who was a witness to the court proceedings wrote a book titled "The
Kesavananda Bharati Case: The untold story of struggle for supremacy by Supreme Court and
Parliament" to discuss the case and the politics involved during and after the judgment was
pronounced. It has been published by Universal Law Publishing Company in
2011.[11][14][26][26][27][28][29][30][31][32]
 "Basic Structure Constitutionalism: Revisiting Kesavananda Bharati" was published by Eastern
Book Company in 2011 which was edited by Sanjay S. jain and Sathya Narayan.[31]
I.C. Golaknath and Ors. vs State of Punjab and
Anrs.
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Golaknath v. State of Punjab .

Court Supreme Court of India

Full case name L.C. Golaknath and Ors. v. State of Punjab and Anr.

Decided February 27, 1967 1967

Citation(s) 1967 AIR 1643, 1967 SCR (2) 762

Holding

Parliament could not curtail any of the Fundamental Rights in the

Constitution.

Case opinions
Majority Koka Subba Rao, C.J.

Laws applied

Constitution of India:Articles 13(2), 14, 19, 31(1), (2), 2A and 31A(1), 32,

245, 246, 248 and 368

Golaknath v. State Of Punjab (1967 AIR 1643, 1967 SCR (2) 762), or simply the Golaknath case,
was a 1967 Indian Supreme Court case, in which the Court ruled that Parliament could not curtail
any of the Fundamental Rights in the Constitution.[1]

Contents

 1Facts
 2Judgement
o 2.1The Doctrine of Prospective Overruling
o 2.2Minority view
 3Significance
 4See also
 5Notes

Facts[edit]
The family of Henry and William Golak Nath held over 500 acres of farmland in Jalandhar, Punjab. In
the phase of the 1953 Punjab Security and Land Tenures Act, the state government held that the
brothers could keep only thirty acres each, a few acres would go to tenants and the rest was
declared 'surplus'. This was challenged by the Golak Nath family in the courts and the case was
referred to the Supreme Court in 1965. The family filed a petition under Article 32 challenging the
1953 Punjab Act on the ground that it denied them their constitutional rights to acquire and hold
property and practice any profession (Articles 19(f) and (g)) and to equality before and equal
protection of the law (Article 14). They also sought to have the Seventeenth Amendment – which
had placed the Punjab Act in the Ninth Schedule – declared ultra vires'.[2]
The issues involved were whether Amendment is a “law” under the meaning of Article 13(3)( a), and
whether Fundamental Rights can be amended or not.

Judgement[edit]
The judgement reversed the Supreme Court's earlier decision which had upheld Parliament's power
to amend all parts of the Constitution, including Part III related to Fundamental Rights. The
judgement left Parliament with no power to curtail Fundamental Rights.[3]
The Supreme Court, by thin majority of 6:5, held that a constitutional amendment under Article 368
of the Constitution was an ordinary 'law' within the meaning of Article 13(2) of the Constitution. The
majority did not believe there was any difference between ordinary legislative power of the
parliament and the inherent constituent power of parliament to amend the Constitution. The majority
did not agree with the view that Article 368 of the Constitution contained "power and procedure" to
amend, but instead believed that the text of Article 368 only explained the procedure to amend the
constitution, the power being derived from entry 97 of the List I of the VII Schedule to the
Constitution.
Since according to Article 13(2), the parliament could not make any law that abridges the
Fundamental Rights contained in Part III of the Constitution, a constitutional amendment, also being
an ordinary law within the meaning of Article 13, could not be in violation of the fundamental rights
chapter contained in the Constitution of India. Therefore, all constitutional amendments thus far
which were in contravention or which had made an exception to fundamental rights chapter of the
Constitution were said to be void.
The Doctrine of Prospective Overruling[edit]
It was in this case that the then Chief Justice Koka Subba Rao had first invoked the doctrine of
prospective overruling. He had taken import from American law where jurists like George F.
Canfield, Robert Hill Freeman, John Henry Wigmore and Benjamin N. Cardozo had considered this
doctrine to be an effective judicial tool. In the words of Canfield, the said expression means:
"........ a court should recognize a duty to announce a new and better rule for future
transactions whenever the court has reached the conviction that an old rule (as established
by the precedents) is unsound even though feeling compelled by stare decisis to apply the
old and condemned rule to the instant case and to transactions which had already taken
place".
Taking cue from such formulation, Justice Subba Rao used this doctrine to preserve the
constitutional validity of the Constitution (Seventeenth Amendment) Act, legality of which had
been challenged. He drew protective cover offered by the doctrine over the impugned
amendments while manifestly holding that the impugned amendments abridged the scope of
fundamental rights. Justifying his stand, he held that:
What then is the effect of our conclusion on the instant case? Having regard to the history of
the amendments, their impact on the social and economic affairs of our country and the
chaotic situation that may be brought about by the sudden withdrawal at this stage of the
amendments from the Constitution, we think that considerable judicial restraint is called for.
We, therefore, declare that our decisions will not affect the validity of the constitution
(Seventeenth Amendment) Act, 1964, or other amendments made to the Constitution taking
away or abridging the fundamental rights. We further declare that in future Parliament will
have no power to amend Part III of the Constitution so as to take away or abridge the
fundamental rights.[4]
Minority view [edit]
The judges who delivered the minority judgment in the Golaknath case dissented with the
view of the invocation of the doctrine of prospective overruling. They seemed to rest their
argument on the traditional Blackstonian theory, where they said that courts declare law and
a declaration being the law of the land takes effect from the date the law comes into force.
They further said that it would be loathsome to change the above principle and supersede it
by the doctrine of prospective overruling. It is submitted here that the doctrine of prospective
overruling in anyway does not supersede the already existing doctrine but simply tries to
enrich the existing and rather complex practice with regard to the effects of new judicial
decisions, by the adoption of an alternative discretionary device to be employed in
appropriate cases. So, the basic characteristics of the above doctrine are the flexibility of
content and fitfulness of occurrence.

Significance[edit]
Parliament passed the 24th Amendment in 1971 to abrogate the Supreme Court judgement.
It amended the Constitution to provide expressly that Parliament has the power to amend
any part of the Constitution including the provisions relating to Fundamental Rights. This
was done by amending articles 13 and 368 to exclude amendments made under article 368,
from article 13's prohibition of any law abridging or taking away any of the Fundamental
Rights.[5]
In 1973, the Supreme Court in the landmark case of Kesavananda Bharati v. State of
Kerala held that the Parliament under the Indian Constitution is not supreme, in that it
cannot change the basic structure of the constitution.[6] It also declared that in certain
circumstances, the amendment of fundamental rights would affect the basic structure and
therefore, would be void. Thus, one can see that this case is drawn on a larger canvas as
compared to that of Golaknath. It also overruled Golaknath and thus, all the previous
amendments which were held valid are now open to be reviewed. They can also be
sustained on the ground that they do not affect the basic structure of the constitution or on
the fact that they are reasonable restrictions on the fundamental rights in public interest.
Both the cases, if seen closely, bear the same practical effects. What Golaknath said was
that the Parliament cannot amend so as to take away the fundamental rights enshrined in
Part III, whereas in Keshavananda, it was held that it cannot amend so as to affect the basic
structure.
10
Jul
Maneka Gandhi vs Union of India 25th January, 1978
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Posted in:Judgment

INTRODUCTION:
This case is a landmark judgement which played the most significant role towards the transformation of the judicial view
on Article 21 of the Constitution of India so as to imply many more fundamental rights from article 21.
This case is always read and linked with A.K. Gopalan v. State of Madras case, because this case revolves around the
concept of“personal liberty” which first came up for consideration in the A.K. Gopalan’s case.

JUDGES INVOLVED IN THE CASE-


This case was decided by a 7-judge bench of the Supreme Court in 1978.
The judges involved in the case were-

1. M.H. Beg, C.J.


2. P.N. Bhagwati.
3. Y.V. Chandrachud.
4. V.R. Krishna Iyer.
5. N.L. Untwalia.
6. P.S. Kai asam.
7. S. Murtaza Fazal Ali.
FACTS OF THE CASE–
The factual summary of this case is as follows-

 Maneka Gandhi was issued a passport on 1/06/1976 under the Passport Act 1967. The regional passport officer,
New Delhi, issued a letter dated 2/7/1977 addressed to Maneka Gandhi, in which she was asked to surrender
her passport under section 10(3)(c)of the Act in public interest, within 7 days from the date of receipt of the
letter.
 Maneka Gandhi immediately wrote a letter to the Regional Passport officer, New Delhi seeking in return a copy
of the statement of reasons for such order. However, the government of India, Ministry of External Affairs
refused to produce any such reason in the interest of general public.
 Later, a writ petitionwas filed by Maneka Gandhi under Article 32 of the Constitution in the Supreme Court
challenging the order of the government of India as violating her fundamental rights guaranteed under Article
21 of the Constitution.

ISSUES OF THE CASE–


The main issues of this case were as follows-

1. Whether right to go Abroad is a part of right to personal liberty under Article 21.
2. Whether the Passport Act prescribes a ‘procedure’ as required by Article 21 before depriving a person from the
right guaranteed under the said article.
3. Whether section 10(3)(c) of the Passport Act is violative of Article 14,19(1) (a) and 21of the constitution.
4. Whether the impugned order of the Regional passport officer is in contravention of the principle of natural
justice.

JUDGEMNT OF TEH CASE–


 To the extent to which section 10(3)(c) of the Passport Act, 1967 authorises the passport authority to impound a
passport “in the interest of the general public”, it is violative of Article 14 of the Constitution since it confers
vague and undefined power on the passport authority.
 Section 10(3)(c) is void as conferring an arbitrary power since it does not provide for a hearing to the holder of
the passport before the passport is impounded.
 Section 10(3)(c) is violative of Article 21 of the Constitution since it does not prescribe ‘procedure’ within the
meaning of that article and the procedure practiced is worst.
 Section 10(3)(c) is against Articles 19(1)(a) and 19(1)(g) since it permits restrictions to be imposed on the rights
guaranteed by these articles even though such restrictions cannot be imposed under articles 19(2) and 19(6).
 A new doctrine of post decisional theory was evolved.
One of the significant interpretation in this case is the discovery of inter connections between the three Articles- Article
14, 19 and 21. This a law which prescribes a procedure for depriving a person of “personal liberty” has to fulfill the
requirements of Articles 14 and 19 also.

It was finally held by the court that the right to travel and go outside the country is included in the right to personal
liberty guaranteed under Article 21. The Court ruled that the mere existence of an enabling law was not enough to
restrain personal liberty. Such a law must also be “just, fair and reasonable”.