'An outstanding effort' - Chief Justice Venkatachaliah
'An extraordinary book' - Fali S. Nariman
'Unputdownable' - Ashok Desai
First published in 2001 Courts and Their Judgments soon became a pioneering work on the subject. It raised important questions on the functioning of our judiciary - questions that continue to be as relevant today.
Do judges merely enforce and interpret the law? Or do they at times interpolate words into statutes even into the Constitution? Where does interpretation end and rewriting commence? How is it that in one judgment a court declares that it is the right of ministers to determine how far and in what direction a criminal investigation shall be carried and in another the same court indeed the same judge decides to as good as monitor an investigation? How is it that in some cases a court delves into detailed facts that do not just bear on the case but on why a law was passed and in another the same court lays it down as a principle that facts need not be considered once the legislature has passed a law?
The failure of other institutions to discharge their duties has compelled the courts to step far outside their traditional role. In doing so have they stretched the law and Constitution too far? Has the intervention been effective? Courts and Their Judgments looks at judicial activism through some brilliantly argued cases and at the need for and pitfalls of such overreach. With its searing answers evidence dissection of judgments on these and other issues the book remains a must-read for strengthening the country.