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Seminar on Fifty Years of Basic Structure Doctrine: Challenges and Concerns

In order to celebrate the completion of 50 years of basic structure doctrine, the Institute of Law organised a seminar. On April 24, 1973, the Supreme Court of India delivered the Kesavananda Bharati judgment, and gave the basic structure doctrine in order to check the power of the Parliament to make amendments to the Indian Constitution. The doctrine has been put in use over the years in order to ensure that amendments to the text of the Constitution do not abrogate the basic features of the Constitution. The doctrine has worked as a guardrail for constituent power of the Parliament, and has played a prime role in the protection of fundamental rights, and in the avoidance of arbitrary rule. The discussion was focused on the meaning and process of amendment, the importance of substantive limitations on amending power, the genesis and application of the basic structure doctrine, and the contemporary challenges and concerns regarding the doctrine. The discussants for the seminar were Dr Vikash Kumar Upadhyay, Mr Sukrit Garg, Mr Abhas Srivastava, and Ms Shriya Bhojwani, Assistant Professors, at the Institute.