The judicial and administrative systems are not any new concept to India. It can be traced to the Vedic period. India has one of the oldest judicial systems in the world. A study of Smritis and Shastras of various authors such as Manu, Narada, Kautilya shows that India had well developed administrative and judicial systems in the world. Their works involve a detailed explanation of the duties and powers of the ruler, how a kingdom had to be run including the penal system, taxation, family, succession etc. The Vedas, Shastras, Smritis all are an important source of Hindu law and are a part of their philosophical explanation.
Manusmriti by Manu and Arthashastra by Kautilya are some of the greatest works which have depicted the rules of functioning of states both in the administrative and judicial sphere. The study of these works will give us a clear picture of how efficient was governance in the ancient Indian era.
The author will study the principles of both Manusmriti and Arthashastra and try to analyse how the administration and judiciary functioned in the ancient period. The research paper deals with the administration and judicial system in ancient India with reference to Manusmriti and Arthashastra. The paper will give a better understanding of the views of Manu and Kautilya regarding the functioning of a state.