Study Material and Notes of Ch 5 Judiciary Class 8th Civics

Topics in the Chapter

• What is the Role of the Judiciary?
• What is an Independent Judiciary?
• What is the Structure of Courts in India?
• What are the Different Branches of the Legal System?
→ Importance of Judiciary

What is the Role of the Judiciary?

• Judiciary work is divided into the following types:

→ Dispute Resolution: The judicial system resolves disputes between citizens, between citizens and the government, between two state governments and between the centre and state governments.

→ Judicial Review: The judiciary is the final interpreter of the Constitution therefore, it has the power to strike down particular laws passed by the Parliament if it believes that these are a violation of the basic structure of the Constitution. This is called judicial review.

→ Upholding the Law and Enforcing Fundamental Rights: Every citizen of India can approach the Supreme Court or the High Court if they believe that their Fundamental Rights have been violated.

What is an Independent Judiciary?

• The other branches of the State-like the legislature and the executive - cannot interfere in the work of the judiciary. 

• The courts are not under the government and do not act on their behalf.

• All judges in the High Court as well as the Supreme Court are appointed with very little interference from other branches of government. 
→ After appointment, it is very difficult to remove a judge.

What is the Structure of Courts in India?

• There are three different levels of courts in our country:

Supreme Court of India
High Courts of States
District courts

→ Supreme Court of India: Located in New Delhi and is presided over by the Chief Justice of India.

→ High Courts of States:  Each state has a High Court which is the highest court of that state.

→ Subordinate or district courts: These courts at the district or Tehsil level or in towns and presided over by a District Judge.

• The decisions made by higher courts are binding on the lower courts.

• A person can appeal to a higher court if they believe that the judgment passed by the lower court is not just through the appellate system.

What are the Different Branches of the Legal System?

• The Indian legal system deals with civil and criminal cases:

Criminal Law
Civil Law
It deals with conduct or acts that the law defines as offences. For example, theft or murder. It deals with any harm or injury to rights of individuals. For example, disputes relating to sale of land.
It usually begins with the lodging of FIR with the police who investigate the crime after which a case is filed in the court.  A petition has to be filed before the relevant court by the affected party only. 
If found guilty, the accused can be sent to jail and also fined. The court gives the specific relief asked for. 

Does Everyone Have Access to the Courts?

• Theoretically, all citizens of India can access the courts in this country.

• In reality access to courts has always been difficult for a vast majority of the poor in India.
→ Legal procedures involve a lot of money and paperwork as well as take up a lot of time.
→ For a poor person who cannot read and whose family depends on a daily wage, the idea of going to court to get justice often so remote.


• Public Interest Litigation (PIL) is introduced by Supreme Court in the early 1980s.

• It allowed any individual or organisation to file a PIL in the High Court or the Supreme Court on behalf of those whose rights were being violated.

• A letter or telegram addressed to the Supreme Court or the High Court could be treated as a PIL.

Importance of Judiciary

• The judiciary has played a crucial role in democratic India,

• It also keep a check on the powers of the executive and the legislature

• Also, it helps in protecting the Fundamental Rights of citizens.

NCERT Solutions of Chapter 5 Judiciary

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