In 1970, the Parliament had enlarged the Criminal Appellate Jurisdiction of the Supreme Court.
Accordingly, an appeal lies to the Supreme Court from the judgment of a high court, if the high court convicted the accused person and sentenced him to imprisonment for life or for 10 years.
Appeal by Special Leave
The Supreme Court is authorised to grant in its discretion special leave to appeal from any judgement in any matter passed by any court or tribunal in the country except military tribunal and court martial.
Article 143 authorises the President to seek the opinion of the Supreme Court of India in two categories
On any question of law or fact of public importance which has arisen or likely to arise.
On any dispute arising out of any pre-constitution treaty, agreement, covenant, engagement, sanador other similar instruments.
In the firstcase, the Supreme Court may tender or may refuse to tender its opinion to the president.
But, in the second case, the Supreme Court ‘must’ tender its opinion to the president.
In both the cases, it is not binding on the president.
It also known as consultativejurisdiction.
A Court of Record
The judgements, proceedings and acts of the Supreme Court are recorded for perpetual memory and testimony.
These records are admitted to be of evidentiary value and cannot be questioned when produced before any court.
They are recognised legal references.
Supreme Court has power to punish for contempt not only of itself but also of high courts, subordinate courts and tribunals.
The expression ‘contempt of court’ has not been defined by the Constitution.
The expression has been defined by the Contempt of Court Act of 1971
Contempt of court may be civil or criminal.
Civil contempt means wilful disobedience to any judgment, order, writ or other process of a court.
Criminal contempt means
scandalises or lowers the authority of a court.
prejudices or interferes with the due course of a judicial proceeding.
interferes or obstructs the administration of justice in any other manner.
Power of Judicial Review
Judicial review is the power of the Supreme Court to examine the Constitutionality of legislative enactments and executive orders.
If they are found to be violative of the Constitution (ultra-vires), they can be declared as illegal, unconstitutional and invalid (null and void)
Supreme Court of India decides the disputes regarding the election of the president and the vice president.
It has the original, exclusive and final authority on this matter.
Supreme Court of India has power to review its own judgement or order.
It is authorised to withdraw the cases pending before the high courts and dispose them by itself.
Supreme Court of India can also transfer a case or appeal pending before one high court to another high court.
It has power of judicial superintendence and control over all the courts and tribunals functioning in the entire territory of the country.
Advocates of Supreme Court
The Court can designate any Advocate, with his consent, as Senior Advocate if in its opinion by virtue of his ability, standing at the Bar or special knowledge or experience in law the said Advocate is deserving of such distinction.
A Senior Advocate is not entitled to appear without an Advocate-on-Record in the Supreme Court or without a junior in any other court or tribunal in India.
Only these advocates are entitled to file any matter or document before the Supreme Court.
They can also file an appearance or act for a party in the Supreme Court.
These are advocates whose names are entered on the role of any State Bar Council maintained under the Advocates Act, 1961.
They can appear and argue any matter on behalf of a party in the Supreme Court but they are not entitled to file any document or matter before the Court.
An impeachment motion for the removal of a judge does not lapse on the dissolution of the Lok Sabha.
The Inter-State Water Disputes Act of 1956 has excluded the original jurisdiction of the Supreme Court of India in disputes between states with respect to water of inter-state river or river valley.
Supreme Court of India vs Supreme Court of America
Indian Supreme Court
American Supreme Court
Original jurisdiction of Supreme Court of India is confined to federal cases.
Original jurisdiction of Supreme Court of America covers not only federal cases but also cases relating to naval forces, maritime activities, ambassadors, etc.
Its appellate jurisdiction covers constitutional, civil and criminal cases
Its appellate jurisdiction is confined to constitutional cases only.
It has a very wide discretion to grant special leave to appeal in any matter against the judgment of any court or tribunal (except military)
It has no such plenary power.
Supreme Court of India has advisory jurisdiction
Supreme Court of America has no advisory jurisdiction.
Its scope of judicial review is limited
Its scope of judicial review is very wide
It defends rights of the citizen according to the ‘procedure established by law’.
It defends rights of the citizen according to the ‘due process of law’.
Jurisdiction and powers of Supreme Court of India can be enlarged by Parliament.
Jurisdiction and powers of Supreme Court of America are limited to that conferred by the Constitution.
It has power of judicial superintendence and control over state high courts due to integrated judicial system.
It has no such power due to double (or separated) judicial system.