THE TERM “JUDICIAL OVERREACH”  HAS BEEN RECENTLY HITTING THE NEWS HEADLINES, So what is it ? what are its implications in the day to day administration’s ?

In order to explain the concept of judicial overreach, it is important that one must be well acquainted with the term ” Judicial activism”. Judicial activism is nothing but the judiciary plays an active role in various spheres of governance in order to ensure social justice . The concept of judicial activism pioneered in India by the Justices Krishna Iyer and Justice P.N. Bhagavati has created revolutionary changes in the role of judicial systems further leading  to invention of innovative methods like PIL, Suo motto etc, which played a major role in addressing the problems of weaker sections of the society.

Although the line of separation between Judicial activism and Judicial overreach is quite narrow, there exist certain sort of dissimilarities in its definition as well as in its practicality. JUDICIAL  OVERREACH is a situation by which the judicial activism crosses its limits and becomes judicial adventurism. Thus when judiciary oversteps in to the powers given to it, it creates conflicts between executive, judicial and legislative organs of the society.

EXAMPLES OF JUDICIAL OVERREACH : Order passed by the Allahabad High court making its compulsory  for all Bureaucrats to send their children to government schools.

Implication of Judicial overreach in day to day governance :

  • Judicial overreach destroys the spirit of separation of powers.
  • It will creates conflicts between legislative and judicial systems of  nation.
  •  Judicial overreach led to situations in which the judiciary encroaching upon the clearly defined spheres of executive and legislative organs.
  • It led to Supreme court having less time for its mandated purpose of defending the  constitution, protecting the rights of the people and resolving the disputes between centre and states.
  • Conflicts between judiciary and legislative organs will create impedance in the various fields of administration thereby affecting the life of common people.

JUDICIAL ACTIVISM has been invented to in order to address the problems of weaker sections of the society, but over a decades of time its has been converted to Judicial overreach. Its time to define the perimeters of judiciary in matters of governance thereby avoiding the situations of judicial overreach and enhancing spirit of separation of powers in daily governance.




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