We’ve discussed the establishment of Indian portals and the Indian Legal Information Institute. I’m reporting unhappily that they don’t seem to be that responsive. Earlier today the announcement came down of a significant unanimous Supreme Court decision on constitutional review of legislation. The issue was whether the judiciary could address the constitutionality of laws put under the Ninth Schedule of the constitution, holding that they cannot be granted blanket immunity from judicial review.
Nearly 280 laws or legislations were included in the Ninth Schedule to take away the jurisdiction of the courts to examine their legality. The decision is expected to have far-reaching implications, including the reservation policy of Manmohan Singh’s central government and various state governments. In a unanimous verdict, a nine-judge bench headed by Chief Justice Y.K. Sabharwal held that all laws included in the Ninth Schedule after the evolution of the basic-structure doctrine of the constitution — through the 1973 verdict of the Keshavananda Bharti case — are open to judicial review.
Such laws, ensconced in the Ninth Schedule to protect them from the vagaries of judicial reviews, also have to conform to the basic-structure doctrine of the constitution and fundamental rights of the citizens.
But just try finding the decision on the Supreme Court website, or the Indian Courts site. This was a golden opportunity for Indlii – but it doesn’t seem to have risen to it. Or is it just me, and it’s staring me in the face?