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THE CONSTITUTION OF
INDIA
PART-III
FUNDAMENTAL RIGHTS
ARTICLE 12
• Article 12 defines the term “state” for the
purpose of fundamental rights.
• It includes the Government body and
“Parliament” of India. And the
“Government” and the “Legislature” of
each of the states and all Local or Other
authorities within the territory of India or
under the control of government of India.
• Under article 12 “other authorities ” this
expression is not defined in the
constitution .
• Thus it is for the court to interperet this
term and it is clear that the wider this term
is interpereted , the wider the scope of
fundamental rights would become.
Local Authorities:
• The expression “local authority” refers to a
unit of local self-government.
• Local Authority shall mean a municipal
committee, District Board, or other authority
legally entitled to, or entrusted by
government, with the control or management
of a municipal or local fund.
• The characteristics of an authority to be a
“Local Authority” were noticed by supreme
Court in Union of India .v. R.C Jain that ::
• The authority must have separate legal
existence as corporate bodies.
• It must function in a defined area .
• It must enjoy a certain degree of
autonomy, with freedom to decide for
itself.
• It must be entrusted by statute with such
Governmental functions and duties .
• It must have the power to raise funds for
the furtherance of its activities and the
fulfillment of its projects by levying taxes,
charges or fee.
Other Authorities:
• The expression “other authorities” has neither
been defined in the constitution nor in Statute. It is
therefore , left for the Courts to interpret this
expression so as to determine the scope and
width of the Fundamental rights.
• In University Of Madras V. Shanta Bai (AIR
1954 Mad 67) In this case the madras high court
evaluated then principle of ‘Ejusdem generis’
which meant only authorities that perform
govermental or sovereign functions can be
included under article 12.
• In electricity board Rajasthan v. Mohan Lal
(AIR 1967 SC 1857) :- the supreme court held
that other authorities would include all authorities
created by the constitution or statute on which
powers are conferred by law. It was not necessary
that the statutory authority should be engaged in
performing government or sovereign functions.
• In sukdev singh V. Bhagat Ram Sardar Singh
Raghuvanshi:- the court had to deal with the
question whether statutory corporations such as
the ONGC,IFC AND LIC came within the definiton
of “the state” as three corporations were created
by statutes and had the statutory power to make
binding rules and regulations and were subjected
to pervasive government control.
• In Ajay Hasia v. Khalit Mujib sehravari
(AIR 1981 SC 487) where a society
registered under the societies registration act
running the regional engineering college,
sponsered, supervised and financially
supported by the government was held to be
an “authority ” for the purpose of Article 12.
• The court laid down the following tests to adjudge
whether a body is an instrumentality of the government
or not:-
• If the entire share capital of the corporation is held by the
government .
• Existence of deep and pervasive state control.
• Whether the financial assistance of the state is
so much as meet almost entire expenditure of
the corporation.
• Whether the corporation enjoys monopoly
status, which is state conferred or state
protected.
• If the functions of the corporations are of public
importance.
• If a department of government is transferred to
corporation.
• If on a consideration of these factors is to find
that the corporation is an instrumentality or
agency of government it would be an authority
and therfore,state within the meaning of article
12.
PRIVATE ENTITIES AS STATE :-
 In M.C Mehta v. Sri Ram Fertilizers ltd (1987 sc
819):-
the court expanded the ambit of article 12 . “primarliy
due to the social consequence of our corporate
structure”. The court stressed that the ambit of
article 12 needs to be enlarged so as to bring
private companies also under the discipline of
fundamental rights.
Further in the case of J.P unni krishnan v. State of
A.P”:- the court held that private educational
institutions cannot be allowed to violate article 14 as
they are performed function in furtherance of a state
function that is the previous for education.
•THANK YOU

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Article 12 The Constitution of India

  • 2. • Article 12 defines the term “state” for the purpose of fundamental rights. • It includes the Government body and “Parliament” of India. And the “Government” and the “Legislature” of each of the states and all Local or Other authorities within the territory of India or under the control of government of India.
  • 3. • Under article 12 “other authorities ” this expression is not defined in the constitution . • Thus it is for the court to interperet this term and it is clear that the wider this term is interpereted , the wider the scope of fundamental rights would become.
  • 4. Local Authorities: • The expression “local authority” refers to a unit of local self-government. • Local Authority shall mean a municipal committee, District Board, or other authority legally entitled to, or entrusted by government, with the control or management of a municipal or local fund. • The characteristics of an authority to be a “Local Authority” were noticed by supreme Court in Union of India .v. R.C Jain that ::
  • 5. • The authority must have separate legal existence as corporate bodies. • It must function in a defined area . • It must enjoy a certain degree of autonomy, with freedom to decide for itself. • It must be entrusted by statute with such Governmental functions and duties . • It must have the power to raise funds for the furtherance of its activities and the fulfillment of its projects by levying taxes, charges or fee.
  • 6. Other Authorities: • The expression “other authorities” has neither been defined in the constitution nor in Statute. It is therefore , left for the Courts to interpret this expression so as to determine the scope and width of the Fundamental rights. • In University Of Madras V. Shanta Bai (AIR 1954 Mad 67) In this case the madras high court evaluated then principle of ‘Ejusdem generis’ which meant only authorities that perform govermental or sovereign functions can be included under article 12.
  • 7. • In electricity board Rajasthan v. Mohan Lal (AIR 1967 SC 1857) :- the supreme court held that other authorities would include all authorities created by the constitution or statute on which powers are conferred by law. It was not necessary that the statutory authority should be engaged in performing government or sovereign functions. • In sukdev singh V. Bhagat Ram Sardar Singh Raghuvanshi:- the court had to deal with the question whether statutory corporations such as the ONGC,IFC AND LIC came within the definiton of “the state” as three corporations were created by statutes and had the statutory power to make binding rules and regulations and were subjected to pervasive government control.
  • 8. • In Ajay Hasia v. Khalit Mujib sehravari (AIR 1981 SC 487) where a society registered under the societies registration act running the regional engineering college, sponsered, supervised and financially supported by the government was held to be an “authority ” for the purpose of Article 12. • The court laid down the following tests to adjudge whether a body is an instrumentality of the government or not:- • If the entire share capital of the corporation is held by the government . • Existence of deep and pervasive state control.
  • 9. • Whether the financial assistance of the state is so much as meet almost entire expenditure of the corporation. • Whether the corporation enjoys monopoly status, which is state conferred or state protected. • If the functions of the corporations are of public importance. • If a department of government is transferred to corporation. • If on a consideration of these factors is to find that the corporation is an instrumentality or agency of government it would be an authority and therfore,state within the meaning of article 12.
  • 10. PRIVATE ENTITIES AS STATE :-  In M.C Mehta v. Sri Ram Fertilizers ltd (1987 sc 819):- the court expanded the ambit of article 12 . “primarliy due to the social consequence of our corporate structure”. The court stressed that the ambit of article 12 needs to be enlarged so as to bring private companies also under the discipline of fundamental rights. Further in the case of J.P unni krishnan v. State of A.P”:- the court held that private educational institutions cannot be allowed to violate article 14 as they are performed function in furtherance of a state function that is the previous for education.