What is Article 13 of Indian Constitution Bare Act?
Article 13 of Indian Constitution Bare Act is the exact text of the Article 13 of the Constitution of India, passed by the Indian legislature or Parliament. Thus, it is a replica of the original Article 13 of the Constitution of India available to the people of India by the Indian legislature or Parliament.
Article 13 of the Constitution of India Bare Act
13. Laws inconsistent with or in derogation of the fundamental rights.—
(1) All laws in force in the territory of India immediately before the commencement of this Constitution, in so far as they are inconsistent with the provisions of this Part, shall, to the extent of such inconsistency, be void.
(2) The State shall not make any law which takes away or abridges the rights conferred by this Part and any law made in contravention of this clause shall, to the extent of the contravention, be void.
(3) In this article, unless the context otherwise requires,—
(a) “law” includes any Ordinance, order, bye-law, rule, regulation, notification, custom or usage having in the territory of India the force of law;
(b) “laws in force” includes laws passed or made by a Legislature or other competent authority in the territory of India before the commencement of this Constitution and not previously repealed, notwithstanding that any such law or any part thereof may not be then in operation either at all or in particular areas.
(4) Nothing in this article shall apply to any amendment of this Constitution made under article 368.
What is Article 13 of Indian Constitution?
Article 13 of the Constitution of India is a fundamental right that guarantees the supremacy of the fundamental rights enshrined in Part III of the Constitution. It states that any law, whether existing or future, that is inconsistent with the fundamental rights is void to the extent of the inconsistency. This means that the fundamental rights are the highest law of the land and cannot be violated by any law or authority.
Article 13 is a very important provision in the Indian Constitution. It protects the fundamental rights of citizens from being violated by laws. Article 13 ensures that all citizens are treated equally and fairly under the law. It also prevents the government from making laws that discriminate against certain groups of people.
Article 13 is a unique provision in the Indian Constitution. It is one of the few provisions that gives the courts the power to strike down laws that are inconsistent with the fundamental rights of citizens. This power of judicial review is essential for the protection of fundamental rights.
Key features of Article 13 of Indian Constitution?
- Article 13 applies to all laws in force in the territory of India, including laws made by the Parliament, state legislatures, and subordinate authorities.
- Article 13 applies to all laws, whether they were made before or after the commencement of the Constitution.
- Article 13 applies to all laws, whether they are civil or criminal in nature.
- Article 13 does not apply to amendments made to the Constitution under Article 368.
Understanding Article 13 of the Indian Constitution
- Voiding Inconsistent Laws: Article 13(1) addresses the issue of existing laws in force in India before the Constitution’s commencement. When these laws are found to be inconsistent with the fundamental rights enshrined in the Constitution (Part III), they are declared void to the extent of such inconsistency. This means that if a law contradicts or infringes upon the rights guaranteed in Part III, it loses its legal validity. The goal is to harmonize pre-existing laws with the fundamental rights.
- Prohibition of New Laws Contravening Fundamental Rights: Article 13(2) imposes a vital restriction on the State. It mandates that no law can be enacted that diminishes or takes away the rights granted under Part III of the Constitution. If the State violates this provision by passing a law that contravenes these rights, such a law is declared void to the extent of the contradiction. This clause serves as a powerful shield against any future legislation that may compromise fundamental rights.
- Expansive Definition of ‘Law’: Article 13(3) provides a comprehensive definition of what constitutes a “law” in the context of this article. It includes not only the laws passed by legislatures but also other instruments such as ordinances, orders, bye-laws, rules, regulations, notifications, customs, or usages that possess the force of law within the territory of India. This broad interpretation ensures that all instruments with the potential to affect fundamental rights are covered under Article 13.
- Exclusion of Constitutional Amendments: Article 13(4) presents an exception. It explicitly states that Article 13 does not apply to amendments made under Article 368 of the Indian Constitution. Constitutional amendments under Article 368 of the Indian Constitution, which may alter the fundamental rights or other provisions, are not subject to Article 13’s scrutiny. This safeguards the flexibility of the Constitution’s framework while ensuring that fundamental rights remain protected.
How does Article 13 work?
If a person believes that a law is inconsistent with the fundamental rights, they can file a petition in the Supreme Court or a High Court challenging the validity of the law. If the court finds that the law is indeed inconsistent with the fundamental rights, it will strike down the law to the extent of the inconsistency.
Examples or Judgments of Article 13 of Indian Constitution
Some of the laws that have been struck down under Article 13 include:
- The Golaknath case: The Supreme Court held that the Parliament of India cannot amend the fundamental rights. The Golaknath decision was a major setback for the government’s social and economic reform agenda. The government could no longer pass laws that imposed restrictions on the fundamental rights, even if those laws were necessary to achieve important social and economic goals.
- The Kesavananda Bharati case: The Supreme Court overturned the Golaknath decision and held that the Parliament of India can amend the fundamental rights, but the basic structure of the Constitution cannot be amended.
- The Indira Gandhi Case: The Supreme Court held that the President of India could suspend the fundamental rights during a national emergency.
- The Minerva Mills case: The Supreme Court held that the Parliament of India cannot amend the fundamental rights in such a way as to create a new class of fundamental rights that are inferior to the existing fundamental rights.
Check latest offer Price on Amazon. Buy at Amazon!*
Note: We're not perfect, but we're trying our best. Please let us know with evidence if you need any corrections to this article or post, and we will be happy to make the necessary corrections.
About Author: I am Varun Kumar Jha, founder and author of this website. I am a passionate writer and researcher with a keen interest in law, technologies and gadgets. I strive to provide informative and engaging content that helps my readers learn and grow. I am always looking for new ways to share my knowledge and insights with others. Important Websites : Law and Justice | Supreme Court of India | TCN