[Solved] The judicial systems in India and UK seem to be converging as well as diverging in the recent times. Highlight the key points of convergence and divergence between the two nations in terms of their judicial practices (UPSC GS-2 Mains 2020)

The idea of convergence is the method of getting together from different directions so as to ultimately produce a common conclusion. The convergence of laws, legal processes, and systems is of crucial importance since disorganized fragments of laws and procedures augment uncertainty, interruption, delay, and transaction costs which instill divergence into the judicial system.

  • The regimes of both countries face a backlog of cases that might paralyze the criminal justice system. They put a lot of effort to cope with underfunding, and are at risk of losing the public’s trust to some extent. The time taken for the clearance of cases is quite divergent across diverse natures of cases.
  • Judges do not display consistency while making decisions. In India, there still exists divergence on the death penalty.
  • The UK justice system undertook fast digitization. The Indian courts also received a major thrust in this direction to ease justice processes and reduce a backlog. Its highest court, unlike the supreme court of India, cannot strike down legislation, but it can judicially review the lawfulness of actions of great public and constitutional importance converging elements to ensure natural justice.

To add Further

  • The judicial system of India and UK seems to be converging on some aspects and diverging on some other.
  • For instance, limited separation of power, writ jurisdiction, rule of law , UK  moving towards independent judiciary, Indian judiciary going for quasi-judicial body, procedures of appointments and selection that resembles UK  judiciary system are converging in nature.
  • whereas absence of written constitution, parliamentary supremacy, draconian law being abolished or converted into civil laws in UK  but in Indian judiciary still there are draconian law which are constitutionalised like( sedition, defamation, contempt),UK have progressive legal system but India have adverbial legal system are diverging in nature. the diverging nature is due to that India adopted judiciary more towards USA than UK and converging because it adopted UK parliamentary democracy.
  • Although due to globalisation, the governments and nation-state are adopting the best practices of global world be it administration, policy making or judiciary like India adopting UK’s practice of judicial reforms, appointment and selection procedures etc.

Further reading

Independence of judiciary in the UK


  • Judiciary originated when Henry II had assigned five members to listen to complaints and give remedy in 1178.
  • The role of Lord Chancellor is vital back in the 7th century. The objective of independence of the judiciary from the power of the executive branch did not secure the success over arbitrary Royal prerogative until the Act of Settlement in 1701. Then came the era of William of Orange from 1688 to 1701.
  • Then the Glorious Revolution which laid down the concept of Rule of Law instead of the will of the monarch. In this absence of the written Constitution, it highlighted the relevance of parliamentary sovereignty.
  • Then came the Constitutional Reform Act 2005 and in the next year the new Judicial Appointment Commission.
  • In 2007 the Ministry of Justice was created. Finally, in 2009 the judicial function of parliament ended as the independent UK Supreme Court was established.
  • It got its jurisdiction from the Appellate Committee of the House of Lords. The devolution jurisdiction from the privy council. It was an independently functioning body with a presided by twelve independent judges. They were known as the Justices of the Supreme Court.

Comparative Study of Judiciary:- India, U.S.A and U.K

  • India,UK and USA are liberal democratic states. The judiciary in each of these enjoys a very important and powerful position. They have an independent, impartial, honest and efficient Judiciary.
  • Principle of Separation of power is followed in these countries and Judiciary is independent of other two organs interference. In USA there is two tier judicial systems.
  • In India there is single integrated judicial system where both state and center laws are administered under supervision of Supreme Court.
  • One unique feature of United Kingdom and US Judiciary is its Jury system. In India and USA judiciary has acquired the power of judicial Review. UK Judiciary does not enjoy the power of judicial review.
  • Principle of Rule of law is adopted by United Kingdom; there is no formal bill of fundamental rights and people’s rights stand guaranteed under ordinary laws.
  • In India and US, the constitution is the supreme law of the land and judiciary acts as the interpreter and protector of the constitution. In UK the judicial system has been the result of slow and gradual evolution.
  • In the UK, the judicial system has been the result of slow and gradual evolution. In India, the Judiciary has been organised and its powers have been defined by the constitution of India.
  • In the USA, the Judiciary stands organised under the provisions of the US constitution. However it has evolved into a fully developed judicial system during the past 220 years of its working.

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