The right to move to the court is a right whose fundamental right is violated. The supreme court can only exercise for the enforcement of fundamental right under Art. 31 of the Indian constitution. In law, standing or locus standi is the term for the ability of a party to demonstrate to the court in sufficient connection to and harm from the law or action challenged to support that party’s participation in the case. Else, the court will rule that the plaintiff “lacks standing” to bring the suit and will dismiss the case without considering the merits of the claim.
Locus standi means the right to bring an action, to be heard in court, or to address the Court on a matter before it. Locus standi is the ability of a party to demonstrate to the court sufficient connection to and harm from the law or action challenged to support that party’s participation in the case. For example, a person cannot bring a suit challenging the constitutionality of a law unless the plaintiff can prove that the plaintiff is harmed by the law. Otherwise, the court will rule that the plaintiff “lacks standing” to bring the suit, and will dismiss the case without considering the merits of the claim of unconstitutionality. In order to sue to have a court declare a law unconstitutional, there must be a valid reason for whoever is suing to be there. The party suing must have something to lose in order to sue unless they have automatic standing by action of law.
Locus Standi and Article 32
Article 32, which contains the fundamental right to judicial remedies, is often considered one of the most important fundamental rights. The main object of Article 32 is the enforcement of the fundamental rights guaranteed by the Indian Constitution. A person whose fundamental rights have been violated has the remedy of approaching the Supreme Court by way of a writ petition filed under Article 32. When faced with such a petition, the Supreme Court will first deal with the issue of the petitioner’s locus standi; the petitioner will have to establish that they have the necessary locus to approach the Court. In this regard, the traditional, well established rule of locus standi is that a person has no right to complain under Article 32 where no fundamental right has been infringed. Article 32 seeks to protect the fundamental rights of a person and therefore, a precondition for its applicability is that there has been a violation of fundamental rights.
The Court cannot give relief under Article 32 unless it is satisfied that the right, the infringement of which is complained of by the Petitioner, is a fundamental right.”
Locus standi and writs
When a person applied for writ, the first question which the Court has to consider is whether he has any locus standi or interest in the case. If he has none then the writ shall not be granted. In other words, the general rule governing issuance of writs is that it is only the aggrieved person who can apply for a writ under Article 32 or 226. When, there is no infringement of the rights of the petitioner and consequently there is no case of enforcement of any right, the Supreme Court or the High Courts cannot give a bare declaration of right under the cover of proceedings under Articles 32 and 226.There are, however, some well recognized exceptions to this general principle. In a Habeas Corpus petition, not only the person in detention or imprisonment but any person interested in him, e.g. next friend or next of kind not being an utter stranger can apply. Similarly the writ of Quo Warranto also admits of relaxation or modification in appropriate cases.
The requirement of locus standi came into being to restrict the remedy of high writs only to aggrieved persons. If the right to apply for writs was not so restricted, the judicial machinery would have become available to professional litigants so as to enable them to interfere in matter that do not even remotely concern them. At the same time the law wishes people to be vigilant. They should not tolerate any encroachment upon public rights. They should be encouraged to come forward and present to the judiciary complaints about violation of welfare schemes.
Locus Standi and Public Interest Litigation
Public interest litigation means litigation for the protection of the public interest. It is litigation introduced in a court of law, not by the aggrieved party but by the court itself or by any other private party. It is not necessary, for the exercise of the court’s jurisdiction, that the person who is the victim of the violation of his or her right should personally approach the court.
The rule of locus standi have been relaxed and a person acting bonafide and having sufficient interest in the proceeding of Public Interest Litigation will alone have a locus standi and can approach the court to wipe out violation of fundamental rights and genuine infraction of statutory provisions, but not for personal gain or private profit or political motive or any oblique consideration.
However, the person filing the petition must prove to the satisfaction of the court that the petition is being filed for a public interest and not just as a frivolous litigation by a busy body.
Public interest litigation is social litigation that provided remedies for all; PIL concept is concept of locus standi that whole society not standing before court but the some social worker or jurist file before court behalf of public or society, so locus standi is concept evolved from public interest litigation, which is changing their dimension and concept in broad. There is no special person require to the file the case locus standi in this cases are the report which the court are get matter to consider the case as public interest litigation.
The legal system is designed in such a way to protect and defend the rights of citizens. Courts take special care when they think that a case has no standing. They review the case carefully, also consider what may happen if they reject the case, and issue a ruling only after weighing this information. If courts reject a case, they also do so out of concerns that if they accepted it, it might set a precedent, or they might issue a ruling which would not be legally binding or would not stand up to a future challenge because the case had no standing and thus should not have been heard at all.
The liberalization of the principle of locus standi make possible for the court to recognize a general interest in any litigant on a matter as sufficient to have locus standi. So the concept of individual interest, changed to special interest, again to class interest and not to sufficient interest.
The author is BSc, LLM with Specialisation in Environmental Law and Legal Order