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Judicialization of Executive decisions -A Threat to Democracy

                                                                    (Photo: Science ABC)

It is true to say that, "Judicialization of
executive decisions is dangerous for democracy". Judicialization is the
growing involvement of judges in assessing the executive prerogatives and
performance and the reliance on courts for addressing core public policy
questions and political controversies.

 Judicialization occurs in parliamentary democracies when a high degree
of party competition in legislature invites challenges from judiciary because
these systems produce weak coalitions. In 1950s and 60s, the political elite
passed the decision-making burden to the court because they wanted an umpire.
Successive governments expanded the court jurisdiction over administrative tribunals
and the court seized more powers of judicial review. In the last decade, the
main driver of judicial involvement in executive decisions is pressure from
civil society actors. The relationship between courts and political
considerations in India's parliamentary system is less coherent.

 When the political actor is strong (single-party majority), prepared to
take on courts and has a policy agenda, SC is more constrained. This occurred
during Indira Gandhi's time. If the political actor is strong, but not prepared
to strike at the courts autonomy (Nehru's time), or if there is a weak
coalition (post-1988), the judiciary has more room to manoeuvre. Today, within
the space given by structural conditions, higher judiciary is trying to balance
constraints imposed by institutional realities with demands for judicial action
from societal actors. Judiciary's intervention has had positive as well as
negative effect. On the positive side, it has knitted alliances with political
parties, citizen groups, activists and the media to keep an eye on the
administration. On the negative side, the danger remains of collision between
judiciary and other organs of state, which is against the principles of
constitution and democracy. A bigger concern is the habit developed by higher
judiciary of monitoring implementation of orders.

Judiciary interference should only be when required and should not be
made as a permanent thing. It contains the principles of democracy as the three
wings are different and has their own jurisdictions. Thus, it can be said that
judicialization of executive decision is dangerous for democracy.


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