ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

Madhav KhoslaSubscribe to Madhav Khosla

Inside Our Supreme Court

Judges of the Supreme Court of India: 1950-1989 by George H Gadbois, Jr (New Delhi: Oxford University Press), 2011; pp xiii + 412, Rs 795.

Understanding Our Supreme Court

Abhinav Chandrachud's study of the composition of the Supreme Court between 1980 and 2003 does not develop either an institutional sociology or a realist analysis of the Supreme Court as an institution.

Reading A K Thakur vs Union of India: Legal Effect and Significance

The decision earlier this year of the Supreme Court in the case relating to reservations for the Other Backward Classes has generated substantial debate. Unfortunately, much of this debate has failed to subject the judgment to rigorous legal analysis. This paper attempts to fill the gap by first proposing a general methodology for a legal reading of a court judgment. It then provides a careful analysis of the A K Thakur judgment and shows that the ratio in the case is a narrow one with no radical departures from the Court's existing doctrine on reservation law and policy. The paper then assesses the Court's approach to the problems of identifying beneficiaries and suggests that the Court closely correlate the intrusiveness of affirmative action measures chosen and the moral justifications for the same. It concludes by addressing several policy proposals that aim to restructure affirmative action and suggest alternative frameworks of legal doctrine that will allow the Court to effectively respond to these demands for reform.

The Ninth Schedule Decision

The Supreme Court's decision to judicially review any law incorporated to the Ninth Schedule post April 24, 1973, brings certain troubling questions of constitutional significance to the fore. It exposes the flexibility and vagueness associated with the "basic structure doctrine" and provides an understanding of the vast powers the judiciary has amassed because of the nature of that doctrine.
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