Precautionary Principle and its Application in Indian Judiciary

  • Devendra Shaligram and Suyash Bansal
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  • Devendra Shaligram

    Student at Jindal Global Law School, Sonipat, India.

  • Suyash Bansal

    Student at Jindal Global Law School, Sonipat, India.

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The principle of the precautionary principle was defined in the Rio Declaration under Principle 15 that “where there are threats of serious or irreversible damage, a lack of scientific uncertainty shall not be used as a reason for postponing cost-effective measures to prevent environmental degradation. This principle helps lawmakers take immediate proper preventive measures against activities harming the environment. However, in recent times, it has been observed that there has been an inconsistent approach by the court while enforcing this principle. Such inconsistency has caused a massive impact on the precedents being used to adjudicate and has resulted in enormous confusion regarding the proper application of the precautionary principle. The authors will try to explain and critically analyse the precautionary principle and its interpretation in this paper. We will be critically analysing the principle’s application in the case of Vellore and Narmada Bachao Andolan (NBA case) and observing the different interpretations given by the court. We will be analysing the reasons behind such different interpretations and also be analysing other cases where the court used the precautionary principle to show that there has been an apparent inconsistency in the approach taken by the supreme court regarding the application of the precautionary principle.


Research Paper


International Journal of Law Management and Humanities, Volume 5, Issue 1, Page 420 - 425


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