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The Doctrine of Repugnancy under the Constitution

September 6, 2020

If a document contains mutually inconsistent provisions, it is said to be repugnant. Repugnancy in this sense presents a problem that is faced by every legal system howsoever mature it may be. The doctrine of repugnancy in the Indian context generally refers to Article 254 of the constitution which gives supremacy to the laws made by the center. Over the period, judicial interpretation of Article 254 has considerably whittled down the supremacy of central laws over the state laws which the said Article seeks to establish. The doctrine of repugnancy as incorporated in Articles 254 has not received liberal interpretation that it deserved. It is indeed necessary to give liberal interpretation to this Article. It is sometimes extremely important to preserve the uniformity of laws in certain areas of common concern in a federal structure. The principle of supremacy of federal laws serves this purpose very well. No doubt the rights of states to take care of their local needs requires due consideration.

Author:
Dr. Ayaz Ahmad, Associate Professor, Unitedworld School of Law (UWSL)

Disclaimer: The opinions / views expressed in this article are solely of the author in his / her individual capacity. They do not purport to reflect the opinions and/or views of the College and/or University or its members.

If a document contains mutually inconsistent provisions, it is said to be repugnant. Repugnancy in this sense presents a problem that is faced by every legal system howsoever mature it may be. The doctrine of repugnancy in the Indian context generally refers to Article 254 of the constitution which gives supremacy to the laws made by the center. Over the period, judicial interpretation of Article 254 has considerably whittled down the supremacy of central laws over the state laws which the said Article seeks to establish. The doctrine of repugnancy as incorporated in Articles 254 has not received liberal interpretation that it deserved. It is indeed necessary to give liberal interpretation to this Article. It is sometimes extremely important to preserve the uniformity of laws in certain areas of common concern in a federal structure. The principle of supremacy of federal laws serves this purpose very well. No doubt the rights of states to take care of their local needs requires due consideration.

Author:
Dr. Ayaz Ahmad, Associate Professor, Unitedworld School of Law (UWSL)

Disclaimer: The opinions / views expressed in this article are solely of the author in his / her individual capacity. They do not purport to reflect the opinions and/or views of the College and/or University or its members.

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