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Author: Ananaya Chauhan, IV year of B.A.,LL.B from Delhi Metropolitan Education, Noida Affiliated To Guru Gobind Singh Indraprastha University, Delhi.

Equity is the basis of the law that we regard as "reasonableness." Justice makes sure that the law is reasonable as it will apply equally without any differences to everyone. Justice also helps to provide the required punishment or relief to the person concerned according to his conduct. Justice is an important element which is required to be followed by everyone in order to achieve equality, fairness, and equity. Justice is the basic requirement of each member of the society, even in the preamble of the Constitution of India Justice has been given the first priority in order to provide social, economic and political justice to every persons of the society. It is related to the value and morals of the people and also their behavior towards the society, it helps to provide for the balance in the society.

Natural justice, as the name suggests is being originated by the nature and is also regarded as the “law of nature”. In the natural sense it talks about what is right and what is wrong, it adheres to the basic principles of the nature which are not man made and cannot be changed according to the view of man. It aims to provide fairness to the persons and also to secure justice to the persons. After a many hundred years, finally there was these following

Principles of Natural Justice (PNJ)”:

  1. “Nemo in propria causa judex, esse debet” - It stands for “Rule against Bias” which states that “no one can be made a judge in its own cause”, basically it says that the judge has no right to be impartial with anyone and has to give the judgement according to the facts of the case and it should be justified. There should not be any type of bias by the judge for his own benefit.

  2. “Audi alteram partem” - It stands for “Rule of fair hearing” which means that “every person has the right to be heard in the court”. He has the right to defend himself and give his statement and he should not be unheard in the court. It is duty of the judge to act fairly and listen to both the side of parties.

Other than the two above mentioned principles, according to the recent trends a new dimension has been added to the principles of natural justice for a better and enhanced law system which is knowns as the “Duty to pass the speaking orders”.


As the name already suggests, the meaning of this principle if that the order given by the judges must speak for itself herby meaning that it must have a reason for giving such decision and also the person has the right to know about such reason and also result of the inquiry. It refers to an order which already speaks for itself by giving the proper reasons for the same. It is important so that it can be effective in order to obtain judicial review. It follows a very basic rule that must be known to everyone that, justice must not only be done, but it must also appear to be done. It also helps to have faith in the authorities that the decision provided by them are correct and in good conscience. The reasons which are to provided, should not only be “rubber-stamp” reasons but also particularized, understandable and clear explanation which has connection among the case and its facts along with the conclusion it is based on. A decision given cannot be considered a fair, just and reasonable one until and unless the reasons related to it are been provided and if not then it will violate “Articles 14 - Right to Equality” and “Article 21 - Right to Life and Personal Liberty” of the Indian Constitution. “M.J. Sivani v. State of Karnataka is a case where the court gave its judgement that that when statute prescribe that reasons must be provided, it is a condition precedent to validate an order and also it must be communicated to the party which is being affected.

“It has 3 grounds on which it depends:

  1. It helps or fulfill the party against whom order is been passed. The ability to decline to reveal reasons on the side of the request is of an extraordinary nature and it should be practiced reasonably, sparingly and just when completely legitimized by the exigencies of an uncommon situation.

  2. The duty to record reasons fills in as obstructions against discretionary action by the judicial power vested in the executive authority.

  3. The parties abused gets the opportunity to show before the appellate court the reasons which persuaded the ability to excuse his case weren't right.”


It presents decency in the regulatory forces and also help to avoid or if nothing else limits arbitrariness. It helps to provide the reasons for the right, which is the basic necessity for the judicial system to be sound and just. It is also deemed to be outstanding amongst other act of good administration. It entitles the parties with the explanation behind the decision along with the decision itself which is the most important feature of this. It offers satisfaction to the individual against whom the decision has been given and also empowers the individual against whom the decision has been given to look at and utilize his privilege to appeal effectively.

“The Supreme Court observed in Siemens Engg. Vs. Union of India, The rule requiring reasons to be given in support of an order is like the principle of ‘Audi alteram partem’, a basis principle of natural justice, which must inform every quasi-judicial process and this rule must be observed in its proper spirit and mere pretence of compliance with it would not satisfy the requirement of law.”


It has been reiterated by the courts that reasons were necessary as they were the mandate of the constitution in light of the different facts of the case. In certain cases, it is seen, if there is absence of any legislative requirement, providing a reason is a requirement by the Constitution.

The case of Anumathi Sadhukhan v. A.K. Chatterjee”, raises the validity of “Clauses 9 and 13 of West Bengal Rice Mills Control Order, 1949” because the said clause without providing any reasons authorized the authority to issue or renew a license or even cancel or suspend the license. It was challenged on the ground that such an order does not provide for speaking order and also imposed an unreasonable restriction on the fundamental rights of the people. So herein the “Calcutta High court” decided that the said validity of the law was held to be unconstitutional under “Article 19(I)(g) of the Indian Constitution” as it imposed reasonable restriction on the people and also violated the fundamental rights.


Reasons that will be required by the law, are considered to be mandatory. There is a plethora of laws which mandate them for the administrative action.

For example- If we take into consideration “Section 31 of the Arbitration and Conciliation Act, 1996”, it is necessary for the arbitrator to provide reasons for the awards given. The law states, such reasons which are mandatory to be given and if not provided will be against the law and it will vitiate the action of the administration.


If some serious bias has been cause, reasons must be mandated by “The Principles of Natural Justice”. Most of the time, such situation comes forward when a person suffers a serious bias but the law is silent on the same. Hence, it is required that judicial, administrative as well as quasi-judicial decisions by the court are given along with the reasons for the higher good of the person and maintaining the law and order even if there is not requirement of the same. The same can be observed in the case of Dev Dutta v Union of India where a person was not given promotion despite of the fact that he had good entry in the records only due to the reason the other persons had much better entry than him.

However, on investigation it came to light that the entries of good record are not required to be communicated to the person and only the bad ones have to be put in light. The SC gave its decision that the person should not suffer prejudice due to the non-communication and hence the good entry must also be communicated to the person. Also, transparency along with good governance is the third principle of the PNJ besides the other two.


Nature of Functions is another reason where reasoned decisions may be mandated which an administrative authority is exercising. It means if any authority is exercising some “quasi-judicial” functions or if it is evident that appeal or revision is required against the discretions of the authority, reasoned decisions must be provided. In the decision given by apex court in “Mahabir Prasad v. State of U.P”., it was emphasized on the same notion that if any authority is giving any decision regards to quasi-judicial order, reasons must be provided even if it is not been required by the statute.


The Principle of Natural Justice has been emphasized in order to maintain rights of the public against the arbitrary power of the authorities. The main goal is to provide justice which is fair, reasonable and just. So, accordingly if the reasons are not being provided properly it will lead to an arbitrary action and if an action is arbitrary it automatically violates “Article 14 of the constitution” which is the basis of “Principles of Natural Justice”. So giving of reasons have been made mandatory as shown by various case laws and all disciplinary matters reasons are absolutely mandatory. Hence, it is very important to provide rights to the people.


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