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Coverage of this article

  • Key Takeaways
  • Introduction
  • Origin
  • Purpose of the Principle
  • Rules of Natural Justice
  • Components
  • When can it be claimed?
  • Exceptions to the principles of Natural Justice
  • Conclusion


  • Essentially, natural justice requires that a person be given a fair and unbiased hearing before a judgment that will hurt them is made. 
  • The three fundamental natural justice standards that must be met in every case are appropriate notice, a fair hearing, and no bias.
  • Hearing both sides (Audi Alteram Partem): Every party has the right to be heard and to submit their case.
  • There are no biases or conflicts (Nemo Judex in Causa Sua): Decision-makers must be objective and free of personal bias.


The term "justice" comes from the Latin word "jus," which means "right" or "law," in other words. The concept of justice is located in various domains and viewpoints that include conceptions of good rightness based on morals, rationality, law, religion, value, and reasonableness. Justice focuses on three basic principles: justice, equality, and need, each of which operates within a specific domain of influence."Justice should not only be done but it should also be seen to be done."This well-known notion is regarded as the basic foundation of the Administration of JustJusticetem.As a result, the development of the Concept of Natural Justice is regarded as one of the most critical factors in the administration of Justice is not officially stated in the Indian Constitution, this idea is an essential component of ensuring the rights of the common people to a 'just and fair trial.' 'Equity' and 'equality' are the foundations of this notion.


The concept of natural justice is a very old one, going back to ancient times. The Greeks and Romans were also aware of this principle. In the days of Kautilya, Arthashastra, and Adam, natural justice was recognized. The divinity forbids Eve and Adam from eating the fruit of knowledge, according to the Bible. Before the punishment was imposed, Eve was given a fair chance to defend herself, and the same procedure was followed in the case of Adam.

English jurists later recognized the concept of natural justice. Natural justice is derived from the Roman words 'jus-naturale' and 'lex-naturale', which planned the principles of natural justice, natural law, and equity.

"Natural justice is the sense of what is wrong and right."

Early on, the concept was introduced in India. In Mohinder Singh Gill vs. Chief Election Commissioner, the court ruled that the principle of fairness should be present in all activities, whether judicial, quasi-judicial, administrative, or quasi-administrative.


  • To give everyone a fair chance to be heard.
  • Fairness is a concept.
  • To fill the legal gaps and loopholes.
  • To safeguard fundamental rights.
  • The fundamental elements of the Constitution.
  • There was no miscarriage of justice.

The principles of natural justice should be free of bias, and it should be given a fair opportunity to be heard, and the court should inform the respective parties of all reasons and decisions made.

The Supreme Court stated that the goal of judicial and administrative authorities is to reach a reasonable and justifiable decision. The primary goal of natural justice is to prevent miscarriages of justice.

A committee known as "Ministers Power" provided three fundamental procedures connected to natural justice principles.

  • No one should be a judge on his or her own.
  • No one can be sentenced without being heard.
  • The party has the right to know every rationale and decision made by the authority.



Nemo Judex In Causa Sua

"No one should be a judge in his own case" since it leads to a bias-based regulation. Bias is defined as any behavior that leads to unjust behavior related to a party or a specific case, whether conscious or unconscious. As a result, the necessity of this rule is to make the judge impartial and to provide a verdict based on the evidence recorded in the case.

Personal Bias

Personal bias is caused by a relationship between the party and the decision authority. Which causes the deciding authority in a questionable scenario to engage in unfair behavior and render a decision in favor of his person. Such equations develop as a result of numerous types of personal and professional relationships.

To effectively appeal an administrative action based on personal bias, a reasonable explanation for bias must be provided.

The Supreme Court ruled that while one of the members of the selection committee's panel, his brother, was a candidate in the competition, the entire selection method could not be thrown out.

To avoid biases at the turn of his brother, the respective panel member associated with the candidate can be urged to leave the selection committee panel. As a result, a fair and reasonable judgment can be reached: UOI vs. Ramanand Prasad Singh.

Pecuniary Bias 

If any member of the judicial body receives any form of financial benefit, no matter how modest, the administrative authority will be biased.

Subject Matter Bias 

When the deciding authority is directly or indirectly interested in the subject matter of a particular case.

Kadam Singh vs. Muralidhar: The court refused to overturn the Election Tribunal's ruling because the chairman's wife was a member of the Congress party, which the petitioner defeated.

Departmental Bias 

The problem or issue of departmental bias is quite widespread in every administrative procedure, and it is not monitored properly, resulting in a negative concept of fairness disappearing in the proceeding at every tiny interval period.

Policy Notion Bias

Issues emerging from prior policy notions are a particularly specific issue. The audience does not expect the judges to sit down with a blank piece of paper and give a fair trial and conclusion on the topic.

Bias On The Account Of The Obstinacy

Through the unreasonable condition, the Supreme Court discovered additional bias criterion. This new category arose from a case in which a Calcutta High Court judge upheld his own judgment on appeal. It is a direct violation of the principles of bias because no judge can sit on appeal in his own case.

Audi Alteram Partem 

It consists of three Latin words that effectively signify that no one can be judged or punished by a court without having a fair chance to be heard.

In many countries, the majority of matters are left unresolved without being given a fair hearing.

The precise meaning of this rule is that both sides should be given a fair opportunity to state their pertinent views, and a fair trial should be held.

This is an important natural justice norm, and its purest form is not to punish somebody without a valid and justifiable basis. A person should be given advance notice so that he can prepare to learn what charges have been filed against him. It is often referred to as the rule of fair hearing. Fair hearing components are not permanent or inflexible in nature. It changes depending on the circumstances and the authority.


Issuance of notice– To begin with the fair trial technique, valid and proper notice should be made to the required parties of the matter. Even if the statute does not require it, notice will be provided before any decisions are made. This was decided in Fazalbhai vs. Custodian.

The court stated in Kanda vs. Government of Malaya that notice must explicitly and clearly describe the topic of bias, facts, and circumstances against which action must be taken. It is one of the individual's rights to defend himself, so he should be familiar with the subject matter so that he may dispute the statement and protect himself.

The notice should include information about the charges filed against the accused individual and the upcoming proceedings. He can only be penalized for the offenses listed in the notice, and not for any other charges.

Right to present the case and evidence– Following receipt of the notice, he must be allowed a fair amount of time to prepare and present genuinely and effectively manner. The refusal should not be made on unjustified or arbitrary grounds.

Right to Cross Examination– The right to a fair hearing includes the opportunity to cross-examine the parties' statements. If tribunals are denied the opportunity to cross-examination, they will be violating natural justice norms. And all relevant copies of documents must be provided; failing to do so will also violate the principle. Officers participating in the investigation and cross-examination should be made available by the department. Section 137 of the Indian Evidence Act, 1872 (amended) defines cross-examination.

The right to cross-examination may be refused or dismissed in unusual circumstances. In Hari Nath Mishra vs. Rajendra Medical College, a male student was charged with improper behavior against a female student. So, in this case, the right to cross-examination was denied to the male student since it would result in embracement for the female student and would be a violation of natural justice.

When there is a threat to life or property, it is sometimes critical to keep one's identity hidden. A similar thing happened in the case of Gurubachan Singh vs. the State of Bombay.

The Right of Legal Representatives party has the right to be represented by a legal representative during the investigation process. Each party will be presented by a legally trained individual, and no one will be able to deny it (A. itK.Roy). Similarly, even if there is an investigative officer in an adjudicating procedure, the department has the same right to direct its officer (Sanghi textile processor vs. Commissioner).

Reasoned Decision

Essentially, it is based on three grounds:

  • The aggrieved party has the opportunity to demonstrate to the appellate and revisional courts what caused the authority to reject it.
  • It is an acceptable part of the party against whom the choice is taken.
  • The duty to record reasons acts as a deterrent to arbitrary action by the executive authority's judicial power.

When can it be claimed?

Natural justice can be asserted when operating judicially or quasi-judicial, such as pain heats and tribunals. It encompasses the concept of fairness, basic moral standards, and many types of biases, as well as why natural justice is essential and what exceptional scenarios or situations are included when natural justice rules will not be relevant.

It was said in the case of the Province of Bombay vs. Khushaldas Advani that natural justice will be applicable on statutory grounds since it is a core element of Natural justice that leads to fairness and justice.

Exceptions to the Principles of Natural Justice 

Exceptions to this rule are-

Statutory Exclusion 

When a Central or State statute clearly or implicitly prohibits the violation of natural justice principles, such principles can be ignored. However, courts may, at their discretion, rule such legislation unlawful.


The principles of natural justice cannot be applied in an emergency, but the essential structure of the Constitution cannot be ignored. Administrative orders must be implemented as soon as possible because delays may create public harm. In the case of Maneka Gandhi v. Union of India, it was observed that passports may be seized in the public interest without the consent of natural justice, but the court stated that public interest is a justified issue and that the administrative authority's decision if it is not definitive.

Interim Disciplinary Action

In the case of Abhay Kumar v. K. Srinivasan, the college management banned a student from entering the college premises while the criminal suit for stabbing a student was pending. This was an interim order issued by the college authority to keep the peace on campus, and hence the idea of natural justice did not apply.

Academic Evaluation

It is claimed that the competent academic authority evaluating student work can deem it unsatisfactory, and so the rule of natural justice cannot be applied.


When there are a significant number of people with the same interest, the Natural Justice Principle does not apply.


The principles of natural justice have been established and followed by the judiciary to defend public rights from arbitrary administrative actions. It is easy to see how the rule of natural justice incorporates the concept of fairness: they survive and encourage fair deals but, there are several exceptions to natural justice. Natural justice concepts do not apply when they are openly or implicitly prohibited by law. Similarly, no natural justice principle is raised in the event of legislation adopted by Parliament if such legislation comes within the competence of the legislature. Even if the person entitled to adjudicate is disqualified due to bias, his decision will not be reversed if there is no other person competent or licensed to judge the case under the statute.

 Learn the practical aspects of Criminal Law Drafting HERE, IBC HERE, CrPC HERE, CPC HERE, IPC HERE, Evidence Act HERE, NDPS Act HERE, Family Laws HERE, DV Act HER

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