Control over Subordinate Courts


An essential component of judicial administration in many nations, including India, is control over inferior courts. Effective control and supervision are required to maintain the correct operation of the judicial system since subordinate courts are crucial in providing justice at the local level. The following are some crucial details regarding the exercise of power over inferior courts:

  1. Judge Appointment and Transfer: The higher judiciary, frequently the High Court, has the power to nominate and remove judges from lower courts in many countries, including India. This procedure guarantees that competent and qualified judges are appointed to these courts and permits changes based on workload or other factors.
  2. Administrative Oversight: High Courts often exercise administrative supervision over the inferior judicial branch. This control include the distribution of funds, the creation of new courts, the formulation of policies, and the general administration of the inferior judiciary.
  3. Review of Decisions: High Courts and occasionally the Supreme Courts have the authority to review decisions made by lower courts. This enables them to fix legal blunders, guarantee that due process is followed, and keep legal interpretations consistent.
  4. Disciplinary Authority: Judges in lower courts frequently fall within the disciplinary jurisdiction of the higher judiciary. This includes looking into allegations of wrong doing or corruption and, if required, taking appropriate action, such as suspension or removal.
  5. Writ jurisdiction: To exert control over the decisions and acts of lower courts, High Courts and the Supreme Court frequently have the power to issue writs, such as habeas corpus, mandamus, certiorari, and prohibition. These writs can be used to overturn unlawful or unfair orders and guarantee that justice is done.
  6. Judicial Training: Judges in lower courts frequently receive training from judges in higher courts, who also help them advance their careers. This keeps legal knowledge consistent and guarantees that judges are prepared to address challenging cases.
  7. Legal precedent-setting: Decisions issued by higher courts act as a legal standard for decisions made by lower courts. This aids in preserving uniformity and predictability in the legal system’s interpretation and application.
  8. Revisional Jurisdiction: In some countries, the higher courts have the authority to review and overturn decisions made by lower courts, especially when there has been an injustice or error of jurisdiction.
  9. Supervisory Jurisdiction: High Courts frequently have supervisory jurisdiction over the judicial process within their territorial jurisdiction. To maintain fair and effective judicial proceedings, they have the authority to take suo motu cognizance of matters and to issue instructions or guidelines.
  10. Public Interest Litigation (PIL): To address matters of public interest, courts, particularly the higher ones, will hear PILs. This provides them the authority to order lower courts to take particular acts or to examine cases involving issues of public interest.

A high court has administrative control over lower courts in addition to its appeal jurisdiction and supervisory jurisdiction over them, as was previously mentioned. They consist of the following:

(a) The governor consults it when making decisions regarding the appointment, posting, and promotion of district judges as well as the nominations of individuals to the state’s judicial service (other than district judges).
(b) It covers issues related to posting, promotion, leave grants, transfers, and discipline of state judicial employees (other than district judges).
(c) It has the authority to withdraw a case from a lower court if it concerns a significant legal issue that calls for a constitutional interpretation. It can then decide the legal issue and send the matter back to the lower court with its ruling, or it can decide the case itself.
(d) In the same way that the Supreme Court’s declaration of law is binding on all Indian courts, its law is also obligatory on all subordinate courts operating within its territorial jurisdiction.


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