Public Interest Litigation (PIL), these days, is an effective tool to promote social justice. Largely, its a form of judicial activism that aims to address the issues of social welfare through Courts of Law. Now the question is, what is PIL? It’s litigation that aims to address any public interest or issue that is for the welfare of a large number of people.
PIL’s concept is based on and in sync with the principles of Article 39A of the Constitution of India. which is to protect and deliver prompt social justice with the help of law.
It’s not, however, essential that only an aggrieved party can initiate it. Rather, anyone can initiate it. Even by the court itself by its suo-moto action. There is no definition of PIL in any statue or Law. It’s Judiciary actively interpreting the laws constructively for a greater social cause. Courts, via PIL, listen to cases that are in the interest of the public. In the last two decades, PIL has emerged as one of the most powerful tools for promoting social justice and for protecting the rights of the poor.
Who can file PIL?
Anyone, a socially conscious person, NGO or any eminent personality can file PIL. In some cases, even the court can i.e. suo-moto take action on any public issue. The locus standi to file a PIL is relieved and it is not necessary that the litigation is brought to court only by the person/party aggrieved.
When to initiate PIL?
There are a few guidelines issued by the Supreme Court in this regard. when there is a violation of any fundamental or constitutional right. Filing can also be done in when the behavior of the Government or its any of the institutions is unjust. Injuries caused & to enforce a public duty and law and provisions.
Where to file PIL?
Filing of PIL can be done the High Court or Supreme Court under Article 226 and 32 of the Constitution respectively.