Quasi Judicial Body: Meaning, Examples, Quasi Judicial Bodies in India

By BYJU'S Exam Prep

Updated on: November 14th, 2023

Quasi Judicial Body is a person or an entity formed to reduce the court’s burden. Their powers resemble to that of the court of law. These bodies can deal with the issues for which these are formed. Some examples of Quasi Judicial Bodies in India are the National Green Tribunal (NBT), the Comptroller and Auditor General of India (CAG), the Income Tax Appellate Tribunal, the National Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission, etc.

The Quasi Judicial Bodies are different from Statutory Bodies as the former can make enact laws, while the latter can only deal with restricted issues using the existing laws. Quasi Judicial Body UPSC notes are important to cover the Indian Polity syllabus for the UPSC exam.

Quasi Judicial Meaning

The term “quasi-judicial” refers to a type of decision-making process which is performed by a governmental or administrative body rather than a court. Hence, a Quasi judicial body is a governmental or administrative agency that has the power to make decisions with the force of law. In fact, these bodies operate in a manner similar to a court of law in that they follow established legal principles and procedures, and the decision-maker is expected to be impartial.

However, unlike a court of law, the decisions made by quasi judicial bodies are not necessarily made by a judge or a panel of judges.

Examples of Quasi Judicial Bodies

Let’s try to understand the meaning of Quasi Judicial bodies with the help of a few examples in the Indian context. These bodies play a crucial role in resolving disputes, enforcing laws, and protecting the rights and interests of individuals and organisations. The following quasi judicial bodies are important in the administration of justice in the country:

Quasi-Judicial Bodies in India

A Quasi-Judicial body comprises powers and procedures like a court of law or judge. Some of the significant features of Quasi-Judicial Bodies in India are as follows:

Quasi Judicial Body PDF

  • Powers – They have capabilities similar to law-imposing bodies. Their primary role is to impose laws on administrative agencies.
  • Expertise – A judge does not head them; instead, experts in sectors like Economics, Law, Finance, etc., are also included.
  • Purpose – Quasi-Judicial Bodies in India are created for particular reasons; for example, the National river water dispute tribunal was created to award water sharing among disputing states. The Central Administrative Tribunal is made to solve the issues related to civil servants, etc.

Functions of Quasi Judicial Bodies in India

Quasi judicial bodies play an important role in the administration of justice in India, and help to ensure that disputes are resolved fairly and impartially. We have discussed some of the functions performed by these bodies in detail below.

  • Quasi-judicial bodies in India are empowered to resolve disputes related to various areas of law and administration.
  • These decision-making bodies in India are also responsible for enforcing various laws and regulations.
  • Quasi-judicial bodies in India also regulate various sectors, such as telecommunications, securities, and the environment. For eg – the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) and the National Green Tribunal (NGT).
  • In India, quasi-judicial bodies play a significant role in safeguarding the rights and interests of individuals and organisations.

Why are Quasi-judicial Bodies Important?

There are many advantages of having a quasi judicial body as they play an important role in the administration of justice in the nation. Some of the advantages are mentioned below.

  • Easy access to justice: Quasi-judicial bodies provide a less formal and more accessible alternative to the traditional court system.
  • Fair and impartial decision-making: These bodies are expected to act in an impartial manner and to make decisions based on the evidence presented.
  • Effective enforcement of laws: Quasi-judicial bodies are often responsible for enforcing specific laws and regulations.
  • Efficient dispute resolution: Such bodies provide a more efficient means of resolving disputes compared to the traditional court system.
  • Specialist knowledge: Quasi-judicial bodies often have expertise in specific areas of law, such as labour relations, human rights, or environmental protection.

Difference between Judicial and Quasi Judicial Bodies

Although Judicial and quasi judicial bodies are both involved in the administration of justice, there are some key differences between the two. Whether it is the composition of decision-makers, nature of proceedings, or focus of their jurisdiction, both bodies play a key role in the administration of justice, yet are quite different.

Judicial Bodies

Quasi Judicial Bodies

They have the authority to interpret and apply the law to make decisions that have the force of law.

They also have the authority to make decisions, but they do not have the same level of legal authority as judicial bodies.

Judicial bodies typically consist of judges or magistrates appointed by the government or elected by the people.

Quasi judicial bodies may consist of a combination of judges and experts appointed by the government or by a specialised agency.

Judicial proceedings are usually more formal and follow strict rules of procedure.

The proceedings may be less formal, but they still follow set procedures and rules of evidence.

Judicial bodies have the authority to hear and decide a wide range of legal disputes like civil, criminal, and constitutional matters.

Quasi judicial bodies often have a more specialised focus, such as environmental protection, human rights, or labour relations.

Authorities that Quasi-Judicial Bodies in India Possess

The authority of Quasi-Judicial bodies is restricted to certain areas only, which comprises of-

  • Financial markets
  • Public standards
  • Land use and zoning
  • The specific set of regulations of an agency
  • Employment law

List of Quasi-Judicial Bodies in India

Below is the list of Quasi-Judicial Bodies in India;

  • National Human Rights Commission
  • Central Information Commission
  • National Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission
  • District Consumer Disputes Redressal Forum
  • Appellate Tribunal for Electricity
  • Railway Claims Tribunal
  • Intellectual Property Appellate Tribunal
  • Banking Ombudsman
  • Income tax Ombudsman
  • State Sales tax Appellate Tribunal

There are various advantages of setting up Quasi-Judicial Bodies in India – they have low-cost compared to the conventional judicial process, straightforward procedures, and experts in the panel who can understand the technicalities of the case easily and take the required actions quickly. Plus, it helps reduce the workload of the Judiciary.

Quasi Judicial Body UPSC

The examples and meaning of Quasi Judicial Body is important to learn for all UPSC aspirants as these bodies form an important part of the Indian Polity. Questions about the work, functions, and establishment of different Quasi Judicial bodies in India are often asked in the Prelims and Mains examinations. Go through the UPSC previous year question papers and try to solve questions from this topic to analyse your learning.

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