Writs: A Necessary Equipment of Constitution

Writs: A Necessary Equipment of Constitution

Author:- Archana Pandey

India is a republic and sovereign country where the rule of law is superior to every system. The Indian system has been divided into three parts that are, legislative which have to make rules and regulations for the society, the second one is executive, whose work is to execute those regulations in the society; and lastly, Judiciary, which is responsible for looking after whether the rights of individual are protected in the society or not. The Indian Constitution has been provided six fundamental rights to each individual of the country. Therefore, to protect those rights, Article 32 and 226 of the Indian Constitution’s provisions will ensure the protection of an individual’s fundamental rights by directly filing a writ petition under these articles in the Supreme Court and High Court simultaneously.

Article 32 defines that when there is an infringement of an individual’s rights, they can directly approach the Supreme Court to protect those rights.

Article 226 of the Indian Constitution, it was mentioned that a person whenever their rights are infringed in the society, then we can directly approach the high court, which has the jurisdiction for entertaining that writ to provide justice.

There are five types of writs that have been defined under the Indian constitution, which protects our frame to protect the rights of an individual whenever 2nd August is infringed by any unlawful means.

1-The Writ of Habeas Corpus

The Latin term habeas Corpus means, “Let us have the body.” It can be explained, as whenever the police officials have arrested an individual, then he has a right to file a writ of habeas corpus, which says that a person after arresting then within the 24 hours, he or she should have to be presented before the court, to check whether that person is really an accused or not. If the accused was not found guilty by the court, then it will be declared as wrongful detention, and that person will be released from all liabilities. The application can be filed by the person who is in wrongful detention by the officials or by his relative or friend on his behalf.

In the case, Sunil Bhatra V/S Delhi Administration[1], the court held that the writ of habeas Corpus is releasing a person from wrongful detention and stopping the inhuman and barbaric activities against the prisoners.

2-The writ of Quo Warranto

The literal meaning of this word is “by what warrant.” Under this provision, it was clarified that the supreme authority stops or restricts the person from using the head office for which he is not entitled. It is protecting the law from any misuse. 

For instance, the retirement age for entertaining an office is 60 years. The official has crossed 62 years of age, and then the court will restrict him from using his office because he is now not entitled to use the same.

3-The Writ of Mandamus

The Latin term mandamus means “we command.” The superior authority has filed this writ to the lower ones. When any authority omits his duty, this means he is provided with an office, under which he is assigned with some duty to be performed, but they are unable to perform those. In these cases, the superior authority has a right to file a writ petition against the lower tribunals, who are omitting their duties. The writ can also be filed in the jurisdiction cases in which the court, which has that jurisdiction, is not considering this; then, the authority has a right to file a writ over that.

Municipal Corporation of Delhi vs Subhagwanti[2]

In this case, the municipal corporation must maintain the clock tower, situated in the heart of the city. If the corporation fails to do so, due to lack of maintenance, the clock tower falls down and causes harm to many individuals and can also cause death. The municipal corporation will be held liable for the same because they have omitted their duty.

4-The Writ of Certiorari

This exactly means to be certified. It gave power to the superior authority that they can order the law tribunal or court to transfer a particular case to it for assurance. This writ can be issued in the circumstances when:

● There is an excess of a jurisdiction that can also be decided by the act’s nature or the case.

● The second situation can be correcting the inferior tribunals’ errors like the superior authority has more experienced persons. Hence, they have more knowledge about the law, and they can guide or stop their juniors from making the wrong decision.

5-The Writ of Prohibition

This word means a “stay order.” The Supreme Court can issue this writ to its lower courts or tribunals. This writ stands like a barrier in the lower course processing when they are doing and leave away from the law for which they are not justified and have no jurisdiction for the same. The supreme authority must stop such activities beyond the law of the country.


The writs are very important essential in securing law and order in society. When all the three pillars of democracy that are the legislature, executive, and Judiciary, have work accordingly, the state should also be in its power and presence. Therefore for the maintenance of democracy and rights, it is necessary to look after the same, and it should also work as a safeguard to it.

 [1] (1978) 4 SCC 409

[2] 1966 AIR 1750






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