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Report No. 248

Chapter 2

Methodology:

Subject-Categorisation and Classification

2.1 Before proceeding on the identification of obsolete laws, it would be relevant to say few words about the methodology adopted and its significance in accomplishing the study. It may be added here that the Commission was convinced that for any authentic and enduring approach to the study at hand devising a methodology that would help in collating, classifying and in grouping huge gamut of laws spread in vast corpus of enactments scientifically was crucial.

The approach thus devised was to draw classification of various laws into groups and locate them under an assigned subject-category to which a class-group of laws ideally belongs. Based on detailed discussions and deliberations these 'subject-categories' were drawn and 'classification' of all the central laws into groups was done.

2.2 For drawing subject-categories, available existing literature was examined, especially relating to the US approach where what is called the 'title-method' has been adopted to bring respective classes of laws under an assigned title.

Apart from US approach what proved very relevant was a closer look in the subject-classification adopted in the VIIth Schedule of the Constitution for allocating different subjects in three lists, Union/State/Concurrent for the purpose of law making by the Union, or the State Legislature accordingly and in certain situations empowering both to draw upon the same subject for making laws of course subject to certain defined limitations in such situations.

In addition to these two important sources, literature available in various journals too was reflected upon. All these three sources proved to be of great help in devising the methodology as described above.

2.3 By taking recourse to methodology of drawing subject-categories and mapping out classification into groups existing corpus of statutes, it became easier to organize all existing Central laws numbering 1086 into 49 carefully demarcated 'subject-categories'. (Please see Appendix - I)

2.4 It may not be out of context of the study undertaken that such classification and subject-categorisation would be of much help in developing an understanding as to how many laws in how many ways cut across or overlap or contradict amongst themselves or what can be described as suffering from problem of inconsistency and / or overlapping.

Adoption of such methodology would make the task of the Commission easier in determining laws suffering from 'irrelevancy' or 'lacking nuances to meet the needs of times' thus demanding either amendments or introduction of new laws. Of course, the later two issues would form the subject matter for further course that the study would adopt.



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