08 March 2010

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Indian Legal History – Administration of Bombay 1684 to 1726 - Part 5

Indian Legal History – Administration of Bombay 1684 to 1726 - Part 5

Reality Views by sm -

1. In the year 1684 the East India company sent Dr. John from England to Bombay.

2. Dr.John was expert in civil law.

3. Under the charter of 1683, company established Admiralty Court in Bombay which took cognizance of all civil as well as criminal matters.

4. That time Dr.St. John took the evidence against the Governor child and this made Governor child upset and Governor did not believe the theory of equality before the law .He felt offended and did not like the judicial independence so in the year 1685, he reduced the powers of this court and limited it to try only maritime and admiralty matters.

5. And a new court was established in Bombay called as King’s Bench of the common pleas. And person named as Vaux became judge who was not aware about law. 

6. With this new court, both courts started to fight with each other regarding the jurisdiction of the court cases.

7. As Dr.St.John was very liberal person and believed in equality before law, the executives who thought judiciary is under them did not like Dr. John, so in the year 1687 Executives Governor, dismissed the Dr.John from his job of judge.

8. This time the persons who were obedient to the Executive and the governor were appointed as judge, and executives did not like persons like Dr. John who thought of equality before the law.

9. In the 1688, Vaux became Judge advocate by breaking the charter of 1683 which said that Judge advocate should be learned in civil law and Vaux never learned any kind of law, but he knew how to keep executives happy.

10. In the year 1690 Bombay was attacked by the Moghul Admiral Siddi.

11. After this attack the judicial system of Bombay came to an end. for the period of 1690 to 1718 

12. After the gap of 30 years in the year 1718,March 25 again company started the court in Bombay which consisted of chief justice and 9 judges , 5 were British and 4 Indian judges 

13. The court handled all cases, followed laws of England and tried to pay attention to the caste and customs of each religion also.

14. The court work as registration house also for the sale of immoveable property and charged fees also

15. The court sat once a week and decided all cases.

16. British Judges enjoyed more powers and respect than the Indian judges.

17. The courts work with speed, gave justice quickly and it was very cheap for everyone to go to court.

18. Courts followed customs of Hindus as well as Muslims when tried cases as well as considered international law and British law.

19. It was common practice to give lashes as punishment to criminals.

20. Robbers were whipped and branded with red hot iron.

21. Everyone feared to do crime, justice was deterrent.

22. That time one interesting case is that the officials falsely charged innocent person and robed his property by proving him guilty in court by producing fake papers and witnesses who were tortured. The case is known as Rama Kamati case.

Suggested Reading - 

Part 6 - Indian Legal History Administration of Justice at Calcutta - 1660 To 1726 and Charter of 1726


dimpy,  March 14, 2010  

good post