Public Opinion and early up to 1935Sir Hari Singh Gour was the first in the legal history ofIndia, who realized the necessity of establishing and allIndian court of final appeal in India in place of the PrivyCouncil.So many times he moved resolutions in the CentralLegislature Assembly between 1921-1925 regardingestablishment of a Court of Ultimate Appeals in India.While introducing the resolutions, Sir Hari Singh Gour laidspecial emphasis on four important points.
1. the Judicial Committee of the Privy Council was not atribunal or a Court, it was just an advisory bodyconstituted and intended to advise the King.2. The expenditure of an appeal to the Privy Council was tooexpensive.3. The distance from India of the Privy Council resulted inunnecessary delay ( four to five years in many cases).4. Since Canada, Australia and South Africa had such atribunal there was no Supreme Court of our own in thiscountry.
During the period 1931-32 i.e. between the Second and thirdsession of the Round Table Conference, the CentralLegislature also passed a resolution for the establishmentof Supreme Count India.The joint Select Committee of both Houses of Parliament inits report in November, 1934 recommended to establish aFederal Court in India.
Foundation of the Federal CourtThe Government Act, 1935 changed the structure of theIndian Government from “Unitary” to that of the“ Federal type” in India.The Act established the foundation for the Federalframework in India.A Federal Constitution, it must be noted, involves adistribution of powers between the Centre and thecomponent units.Section 200 of the Act provided for the establishment of aFederal Court in India.
for appointment of a Judges in Federal Court, the ChiefJustice and not more then six judges, who were to beappointed by the King.• On 1st October, 1937, the Federal Court was inauguratedat Delhi. Three judges were appointed in the Court ofnamely,• Sir Maurice Gwyer(who had association with preparation of 1935 Act)• Sir Shah Muhammad Sulaiman(He was the Justice of Allahabad High Court)• Mukund Ramrao Hayakar(Leading Advocate of Bombay)
Appointment of the judges was purely based on thediscretion of King.The Judges, they could hold their office till the age of 65years.Qualifications: for judgesFive years experience s Judge of a High Court, orA barrister or an advocate of ten year’ standing orA pleader in High Court of ten years’ standingFor Chief justice15 years experience of standing in a High Court as abarrister, advocate or pleader.
• Salaries: the Federal Court Order in council of 1937fixed the salary of the Chief Justice at Rs. 7000 amonth and other judges at Rs. 5000 a month.Jurisdiction of the Federal CourtUnder the Government of India Act, the Federal Court wasgiven three kinds of jurisdictions namely:1. Original Jurisdiction2. Appellate Jurisdiction3. Advisory JurisdictionSection of 206 of the Federal Legislature to pass an Actenlarging the Appellate jurisdiction of the Federal Courtin civil cases to its full extent.
Original jurisdictionSection 204 of the Act of 1935 provided that the originaljurisdiction of the Federal Court was confined to disputesbetween Units of the Dominion or between the Dominionand unites.The Federal Court had no powers to certain suits brought byprivate individuals against the Dominion.Section 208 provided for a right of appeal to the PrivyCouncil from the judgments of the Federal Court in theexercise of its original jurisdiction.
Appellate JurisdictionThe Federal Court exercised appellate jurisdiction inconstitutional cases under the Act of 1935, its appellatejurisdiction was extended to civil and criminal cases from1948.No appeal was allowed to the Federal Court in the absenceof a certificate from British Indian High Courts or StateHigh Courts.Advisory Jurisdiction:Section 213 of the Act of 1935 empowered the FederalCourt to give advisory opinion to the GovernorGeneral.Governor General was not to bound to accept the opinion ofthe Federal Court which was given under section of 213.
Authority of Law laid down by Federal Court:Section 213 of the Government of India Act, 1935 providedthat the law declare by the Federal Court and anyjudgment of the Privy Council will be binding on all theCourts in British India.It introduced the English Doctrine of precedent in India