Q.Evaluate the role of Judicial Activism in the context of functioning of Indian polity.
Ans: The judiciary plays a major role in upholding and protecting the rights of citizens in a country. The active role of the judiciary upholds the rights of citizen and preserves the constitutional and legal system of the country is known as judicial activism.
This entails, sometimes overstepping into the territories of the executive. Judicial activism was first initiated by justices V R Krishna Ayer and P N Bhagwati.
Role of Judicial Activism
It is an effective tool for upholding citizens’ rights and implementing constitutional principles when the executive and legislature fails to do so.
Citizens have the judiciary as the last hope for protecting their rights when all other doors are closed. The Indian judiciary has been considered as the guardian and protector of the Indian Constitution.
There are provisions in the constitution itself for the judiciary to adopt a proactive role. Article 13 read with Articles 32 and 226 of the Constitution provides the power of judicial review to the higher judiciary to declare any executive, legislative or administrative action void if it is in contravention with the Constitution.
According to experts, the shift from locus standi to public interest litigation made the judicial process more participatory and democratic.
Judicial activism counters the opinion that the judiciary is a mere spectator.
Therefore it is evident that judicial activism aims to promote social justice though it has many criticism, but it plays a vital role in upholding the rights of citizen.