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DAV CLASS 8 The Union Government: The Judiciary Question and Answers
Something to Know
A. Tick (✓) the correct option.
1. The Lok Adalat is generally presided over by—
Ans 1. (b) retired judge
2. Who among the following does not work under the Board of Revenue?
Ans 2. (c) Metropolitan Magistrate
3. A judge of the Supreme Court may continue to remain in office till the attainment of—
Ans 3. (d) 65 years
4. Which one of the following statements about Public Interest Litigation is false?
Ans 4. (b) It has proved to be a boon for the upper-middle-class people of India.
5. Which case related to the following subjects is a civil case?
Ans 5. (a) marriage
Ans. 1. (b) 2. (c) 3. (d) 4. (b) 5. (a)
Fill in the blanks.
1. The highest Revenue Court in the district is the Board of Revenue which deals with the cases of land revenue.
2. Any law declared unconstitutional, immediately ceases to remain in force.
3. The criminal cases begin with the lodging of a First Information Report.
4. Legal cases can be either civil or criminal in nature.
5. The Supreme Court is the guardian of the Indian Constitution.
C. Write True or False for the following statements.
|1. Tax evasion is a crime.
|2. The judges of the High Court are appointed by the Chief Justice of India.
|3. The Court of the Sessions Judge is the highest Civil Court in a district.
|4. The High Court has the power of Judicial Review.
|5. Subordinate Courts are equally competent to interpret the Constitution of India.
Ans. 1. True 2. False 3. True 4. False 5. False
D. Answer the following questions in brief.
1. What is meant by independence of judiciary? Give any two examples to prove that Indian Judiciary is independent.
Ans 1. Justice is possible only if the judiciary is independent, impartial and unbiased. The judiciary not only protects the rights of the citizens but also resolves various disputes arising out of civil cases, criminal cases and constitutional matters without any pressure from the executive or the legislature.
2. Differentiate between civil and criminal cases with the help of examples.
Ans 2. Civil cases: All the civil cases pertaining to property, contracts, agreements, landlord-tenant disputes, money, marriage disputes which do not originate in the High Court, are heard in the District Courts. The District Court is the highest civil court in a district.
Criminal cases: For criminal cases in a district, the highest court is the court of the Sessions Judge. It deals with matters like theft, murder, etc.
3. Describe the composition of Criminal Courts and Revenue Courts.
Ans 3. Criminal Courts: For criminal cases in a district, the highest court is the court of the Sessions Judge. Below this court, there are courts of Magistrate of First, Second and Third Class. In big cities like Delhi, Kolkata, first-class magistrates are called Metropolitan Magistrates.
Revenue Courts: The highest revenue court in a district is the Board of Revenue which deals with the cases of land revenue. Courts of Commissioner, Collector, Tehsildar and Assistant Tehsildar work under the Board of Revenue which hears the final appeals against the lower revenue courts.
4. What qualifications are required to be a judge of the Supreme Court? How can a judge of the Supreme Court be removed?
OR Mention any three qualifications required to be a judge of the Supreme Court. How are the judges of the Supreme Court appointed or removed if need be?
Ans 4. To be eligible to become a judge of the Supreme Court, a person must be:
(i) a citizen of India
(ii) a judge of the High Court/Courts for a minimum period of five years, or
(iii) a distinguished jurist in the opinion of the President of India. The Chief Justice and all other judges of the Supreme Court remain in office till they attain the age of 65 years. Once a judge is appointed, he/she cannot be removed from office under normal circumstances. He/She can be removed, only on grounds of proved misbehaviour or incapacity to discharge function, by the President on the basis of a resolution of impeachment passed by each House of the parliament by a special majority during the same session.
5. ‘India has a single unified and integrated judicial system.’ Explain.
Ans 5. It is a unique feature of our federal democratic setup. It has the power to supervise and control the working of the entire judicial system in India. It ensures justice to all. The Supreme Court is the highest judicial authority followed by the High Courts in the states and then the subordinate courts in every district. The lowest court in the judicial hierarchical order is the court of the magistrate. The lower courts are controlled and supervised by the High Courts. A judgement given by the lower court can be challenged in the higher court. Similarly, an individual can go to the Supreme Court of India to appeal against the judgement of a High Court. The law declared by the Supreme Court shall be binding on all courts within the territory of India.
E. Answer the following questions.
1. Briefly describe any five powers and functions of the Supreme Court of India.
Ans 1. The Supreme Court of India performs many important functions and exercises different types of jurisdiction, such as original, appellate, advisory and supervisory jurisdiction.
(i) Original Jurisdiction: There are certain cases that can only be decided by the Supreme Court. They have to originate in the Supreme Court. Among these are:
• disputes between the Union Government and one or more state governments.
• between the two or more states
• Inter-state water disputes regarding sharing of water and power.
(ii) Appellate Jurisdiction: This jurisdiction is exercised to hear appeals against the decisions of the High Courts and other courts regarding constitutional, civil and criminal cases. This jurisdiction is applicable to cases involving interpretation of the Constitution, cases sent by the High Courts and the criminal cases where a High Court changes the decision of a lower court and gives a death sentence. The Supreme Court can also review its own decisions taken earlier.
(iii) Advisory Jurisdiction: It covers Constitutional issues on matters of public importance if the President of India desires to obtain the opinion of the Supreme Court. However, any such opinion given by the Supreme Court is not binding on the President.
(iv) Supervisory Jurisdiction: The Supreme Court supervises the functioning of all the courts below it.
(v) Court of Record: The Supreme Court functions as the Court of Record under which the proceedings of the court are preserved. These records can be cited as precedents in future in all the courts in the country.
(vi) Protector of Fundamental Rights: The Supreme Court has the power to declare a law passed by the legislature null and void if it encroaches upon the Fundamental Rights of the people.
(vii) Guardian of the Constitution: The Supreme Court is the Guardian of our Constitution. So, the Court does not allow either the executive or the legislative to violate any provision of the Constitution. The Supreme Court alone has the authority to interpret the Constitution.
(vii) Power of Judicial Review: It is the power of the Supreme Court to review the laws enacted by the Parliament or the State Legislatures to ascertain whether they are in conformity with the provisions of the Constitution or not. Any law declared unconstitutional, immediately ceases to remain in force. In this way, the Apex Court protects the rights of the people and guards the Constitution. Judicial review is an important means of protecting and enforcing the rights of the people.
2. Explain the main powers and functions of the High Courts.
Ans 2. The main powers and functions of the High Courts are given below:
(i) Under its original jurisdiction, the High Court deals with cases involving a violation of Fundamental Rights, disputes related to the election of an MP or MLA where interpretation of the Constitution is required.
(ii) The High Court also deals with the cases pertaining to marriage, divorce, laws, wills of the deceased persons, etc.
(iii) The High Court also has the power of judicial review. It can transfer to itself those cases where the substantial question of law is involved and require interpretation of the Constitution.
(iv) The High Court controls and supervises the working of the Subordinate Courts in the state.
(v) Like the Supreme Court of India, the High Court is also a Court of Record. It has the power to punish for contempt of itself. All decisions of the High Court are binding on the Lower Courts. These decisions or judgements serve as laws and can be cited by the Lower Courts throughout the country.
3. State the significance of Public Interest Litigation in the Indian judicial system.
Ans 3. The concept of Public Interest Litigation was devised by the Supreme Court of India to enable the poor and illiterate, who are in the vast majority in our country, to seek justice speedily and comfortably. Now any person from the public, whether directly affected or not, may write an ordinary letter or even a postcard to draw the attention of the High Court or the Supreme Court towards any matter of serious public importance. If the court is convinced that the matter is of public interest, it will take up and decide the case. PIL has proven to be a boon for the common man and has set right a number of wrongs committed by an individual or society.
4. Explain the concept of Lok Adatats. Why are they called People’s Courts?
Ans 4. The process of seeking justice is time-consuming and expensive in our country. Besides, thousands of cases are lying pending in various courts. Lok Adalats have been established to simplify the legal procedures, reduce the cost of litigation and to provide speedy justice. Lok Adalats are normally presided over by a retired judge. The disputing parties plead their cases themselves. No advocate or pleader is allowed to argue the case. Even witnesses are not examined. Efforts are made to settle disputes through compromise, mutual agreement and on-the-spot decisions. Lok Adalats are called people’s courts because they are easily accessible to the common people.
5. Describe the composition of the High Court. Explain the qualifications, tenure and the method of removal of the High Court judges.
Ans 5. Composition: The High Court consists of a Chief Justice and some other judges. The number of judges varies from state to state, depending on its size and population. The Chief Justice of a High Court is appointed by the President of India in consultation with the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court and the Governor of the concerned state. Similarly, the other judges are also appointed by the President on the advice of the Chief Justice of India, the Governor of State and the Chief Justice of the High Court of the concerned state.
Qualifications: Any citizen of India who has been an advocate in one or more High Courts for at least 10 years or holder of a judicial office in Subordinate Courts for a period of 10 years, is eligible for appointment as judge in a High Court. Tenure and Removal: A judge may continue to remain in office till the attainment of 62 years of age. The judges of the High Court can be removed from office by the President of India in the same manner as the judges of the Supreme Court through impeachment.
Value Based Question
According to a recent report, Maharashtra is facing a drought-like situation as the underground water level has decreased alarmingly in many districts. People are facing water scarcity in these areas.
1. What can the citizens do to draw the attention of the Court to the problem of water scarcity?
Ans 1. Citizens can submit water scarcity related news and photographs of particular regions in the court. They can inform the court that many villages and cities in India are facing severe water shortages. Thousands of farmers have committed suicide in regions like Marathwada and Vidarbha of Maharashtra due to drought-like situations. If necessary steps are not taken immediately, then there will be further destruction. On the advice of the court, the government should formulate a plan to come up with a permanent solution of water scarcity.
2. Why is water conservation considered as the need of the hour? Explain.
Ans 2. Water supports all forms of life on the earth and is a very precious natural resource. It is useful in a number of ways, but rapid population growth has fast depleted the reservoirs of freshwater. Deforestation, construction of buildings, roads and industries have also depleted the underground water reserves. One of the significant challenges of the 21st century is access to an adequate supply of clean water. Thus, it is imperative that we manage our water resources carefully and conserve it for future use.