Void for vagueness

Due process has been firmly established by Supreme Court in Constitutional law of India. Is void for vagness also now used by Courts in judicial review of laws? If yes, then can anyone please provide the judgements.

Senior Partner

ref.: 1994 SCC (3) 569 - SC

According to a 5 judge bench of the SC,

“It is the basic principle of legal jurisprudence that an enactment is void for vagueness if its prohibitions are not clearly defined. Vague laws offend several important values. It is insisted or emphasised that laws should give the person of ordinary intelligence a reasonable opportunity to know what is prohibited, so that he may act accordingly. Vague laws may trap the innocent by not providing fair warning. Such a law impermissibly delegates basic policy matters to policemen and also judges for resolution on an ad hoc and subjective basis, with the attendant dangers of arbitrary and discriminatory application. More so uncertain and undefined words deployed inevitably lead citizens to "steer far wider of the unlawful zone ... than if the boundaries of the forbidden areas were clearly marked".”

Ref.: 1971 AIR 481 - SC

Ref.: 1995 CriLJ 2608 - AP HC

Total likes : 1 times




Your are not logged in . Please login to post replies

Click here to Login / Register  


  Search Forum



Post a Suggestion for LCI Team
Post a Legal Query
CrPC Course!     |    x