Jurisdiction basically refers to the extent of judicial authority any particular legal body has in order to fulfil its defined responsibility.
The supreme court has 3 types of jurisdictions:
(i) Original jurisdiction under article 131
(ii) Appellate jurisdiction under article 132
(iii) Advisory Jurisdiction under article 143
Original jurisdiction refers to the matters for which the court is first approached. Such are the cases involving interpretation of the constitution
Therefore original jurisdiction of supreme court involves matters of:
- dispute between the Government of India and one or more States
- dispute between the Government of India and any State or States on one side and one or more States on the other
- dispute between two or more States
- Article 32 of the Constitution provides original jurisdiction to the SC for matters regarding the enforcement of Fundamental Rights.
- The SC can issue writs, directions, or orders including writs in the nature of mandamus, habeas corpus, quo warranto, prohibition and certiorari.
- The SC also has the power to direct the transfer of a criminal or civil case from the High Court in one State to the High Court in another State.
- It can also transfer cases from one subordinate court to another State High Court
- If the SC deems that cases involving the same questions of law are pending before it and one or more High Courts, and that these are significant questions of law, it can withdraw the cases before the high courts or Courts and dispose off all these cases itself.
- The Arbitration and Conciliation Act, 1996 gives SC the authority to initiate international commercial arbitration.
It also involves matters of question on which the existence or extent of legal rights depends. And the disputes concerned should be in respect of legal rights and not of political nature.