Indian Judiciary – Civil Courts

KNC501/KNC601 Constitution of India, Law and Engineering

Chapter 8: The Legal System

Unit 1

Unit 2

Unit 3

Unit 4

Unit 5


Indian Judiciary – Civil Courts

Civil courts deal with civil cases. Civil law is referred to in almost all cases other than criminal cases. Criminal law applies when a crime such as a robbery, murder, arson, etc.

    • Civil law is applied in disputes when one person sues another person or entity. Examples of civil cases include divorce, eviction, consumer problems, debt or bankruptcy, etc.
    • Judges in civil courts and criminal courts have different powers. While a judge in a criminal court can punish the convicted person by sending him/her to jail, a judge in a civil court can make the guilty pay fines, etc.
    • District Judges sitting in District Courts and Magistrates of Second Class and Civil Judge (Junior Division) are at the bottom of the judicial hierarchy in India.
Indian Judiciary Civil Courts
Indian Judiciary – Civil Courts
    • The court of the district judges is the highest civil court in a district.
    • It has both administrative and judicial powers.
    • The court of the District Judge is in the district HQ.
    • It can try criminal and civil cases and hence, the judge is called District and Sessions Judge.
    • Under the district courts, there are courts of the Sub-Judge, Additional Sub-Judge, and Munsif Courts.
    • Most civil cases are filed in the Munsif’s court.

Four types of jurisdiction of Civil Courts

    • Subject Matter Jurisdiction: It can try cases of a particular type and relate to a particular subject.
    • Territorial Jurisdiction: It can try cases within its geographical limit, and not beyond the territory.
    • Pecuniary Jurisdiction: Cases related to money matters, suits of monetary value.
    • Appellate Jurisdiction: This is the authority of a court to hear appeals or review a case that has already been decided by a lower court. The Supreme Court and the High Courts have appellate jurisdiction to hear cases that were decided by a lower court.

Author – Dilip Kumar Rawat

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