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India: IALS Library Guides

An introduction to legal research in the jurisdiction of India

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Last updated:

Dr. Priya Rai, March 2015

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This guide was created by Dr. Priya Rai, Deputy Librarian, National Law University Delhi (with contributions by Hester Swift of IALS Library).

Dr. Priya Rai

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India has one of the most ancient civilizations in the world and very well-established legal traditions. The current Indian legal system is developed on the lines of common law system of the United Kingdom.

The legal history of India is divided into four important periods: the Ancient Hindu Period, the Muslim Period, the British Period and the Post-Independence Period. 

The Ancient Hindu Period is based on Dharmashastra, consisting of the privileges, duties and obligations of a person (citizen) towards his society and country. Dharamashastra, originally written in Sanskrit, is the Indic branch of learning concerning the religious and legal duty of a citizen. It was written in several subparts by the Brahmanical community in India, who were responsible for educating people in the vedic or ancient period of India. The ancient Indian judicial system consisted of a hierarchy of courts with the King’s Court being the highest, then the Court of Chief Justice (Pradvivaka), the Council of Justices and the Village Councils of Arbitrators (Kulani), all dealing with the law on the basis of Dharmashastra.  

The Muslim Period began in the 12th century, when Muhammad Gauri invaded India and captured the sultanate in 1192 A.D. The Muslim Sultanate ruled India from 1206 A.D. to 1526 A.D. The Muslim Period is further classified in five stages: the  Slave dynasty (1206-90), the Khilji dynasty (1290-1320), the Tughlaq dynasty (1320-1413), the Sayyid dynasty (1414-51), and the Lodhi dynasty (1451-1526). The judicial system from the Muslim Period up till the British Colonial Period saw two phases: the Sultanate Period, which began in 1206, and the Mughal Period, from 1526 to mid 1700. It was headed by the Emperor’s Court, the superior court for civil and criminal matters. 

The British Colonial Period (1757-1947) is known as the foundation of the modern Indian legal system. During this period, the Privy Council exercised appellate jurisdiction and contributed to the development of different branches of law. The Government of India Act 1935 established the Federal Court of India. Appeals could be made to the Federal Court from any judgment, decree or final order of the High Courts. On January 1950, the Federal Court was converted into the Supreme Court of India.  

The main sources of modern Indian law as administered by Indian courts are divided into primary and secondary sources of law. The primary sources are legislation and law reports and the secondary sources are law digests, commentaries, encyclopaedias, directories and dictionaries which provide analysis and interpretation of the primary sources.

IALS Library's Indian holdings include legislation, law reports, a few journals, hundreds of books, Halsbury's Laws of India and other publications. Further details are given below, and everything is listed on the Library CatalogueThe collection is split between two classmarks: GK1 and GK2. GK1 is mainly (but not exclusively) used for pre-independence India and GK2 is used for most (not all) material relating to post-independence India. 

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The fountain source of law in India is the Constitution of India. The Constitution of India was framed by the Constituent Assembly established in 1946.  It took two years eleven months and eighteen days to draft the final document. Its work can be tracked through the constitutional assembly debates on the Parliament of India website. The Constituent Assembly referred to the constitutional documents of Australia, Canada, Ireland and United States of America. 

The Constitution of India was enacted by the Constituent Assembly on 26 November 1949, and came into effect on 26 January 1950.  It declares India to be a sovereign, socialist, secular, democratic republic, assuring its citizens of justice, equality, and liberty and endeavouring to promote fraternity among them.  It contains 395 articles, in Parts I to XXII, and twelve schedules. Due to provision for constitutional amendments under the Constitution, to date the text has been amended ninety-eight times by the Parliament of India.

Some important textbooks in the collection at IALS Library on the Constitution of India:

Singh, Mahendra P., V.N. Shukla's Constitution of India. 11th ed, Lucknow: Eastern Book Co., 2008.

Austin, Granville, Working a democratic constitution:  a history of the Indian experience. Delhi: OUP, 2003.

Basu, Durga Das, Shorter constitution of India. 12th ed. Nagpur : Wadhwa and Company Law Publishers, 1999.

Kagzi, Mangal Chandra Jain, Constitution of India. New Delhi: Metropolitan Book Limited, 1967.

Gledhill, Alan,The Republic of India: the development of its laws and constitution. London : Stevens, 1964.

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Judicial structure

India has a federal judicial system consisting of the Supreme Court of India at New Delhi, as apex court of the country, and twenty-one High Courts covering the states and Union Territories. The courts administer both Union and state laws. The Supreme Court of India is considered as “Guardian of Fundamental Rights” for the citizens of India. Under the Article 141 of the Constitution of India, “The law declared by the Supreme Court shall be binding on all the courts of India”. Currently, the Supreme Court has strength of thirty judges, headed by the Chief Justice.

Diagram of the Indian court system


Immediately below the Supreme Court, the twenty-one High Courts deal with the civil and criminal matters of the States and Union Territories, as listed below:

S.n. High Court State
1.       Allahabad High Court Uttar Pradesh
2.       Andhra Pradesh High Andhra Pradesh &Telangana
3.   Bombay High Court - Maharashtra, Goa, Dadra & Nagar Haveli, Daman & Diu
4.       Calcutta High Court West Bengal, Andaman & Nicobar Islands
5.       Chhattisgarh High Court Chhat tisgarh
6.      Delhi High Court Delhi
7.     Gauhati High Court Assam, Arunachal Pradesh, Manipur, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Nagaland, Tripura
8.      Gujarat High Court Gujarat
9.      Himachal Pradesh High Court Himachal Pradesh
10.     Jammu and Kashmir High Court Jammu and Kashmir
11.     Jharkhand High Court Jharkhand
12.     Karnataka High Court Karnataka
13.     Kerala High Court Kerala, Lakshadweep Islands
14.     Madhya Pradesh Madhya Pradesh
15.     Madras High Court Tamil Nadu, Pondicherry
16.     Orissa High Court  Orissa
17.     Patna High Court  Bihar
18.     Punjab and Haryana High Court Punjab, Haryana, Chandigarh
19.     Rajasthan High Court Rajasthan
20.     Sikkim High Court Sikkim
21.     Uttarakhand High Court Uttrakhand

Below the High Courts, there exists a network of subordinate courts: district courts, lower courts, Other Small Causes Courts, Village Panchayats and so on. The judgments of the High Courts are binding over these subordinate courts. Each state is divided into judicial districts presided over by a 'District and Sessions Judge'; as District Judge he presides over a civil case and as Session Judge he presides over a criminal case;  he is the highest judicial authority below a High Court Judge. Below district court level there are various other courts of civil jurisdiction. 

Quasi-Judicial Bodies (tribunals) in India
Apart from these judicial bodies, there are a number of quasi-judicial bodies, such as tribunals. Tribunals have been constituted as per relevant statutory provisions to work as an alternative forum for redress of grievances and adjudication of disputes. They include the Administrative Tribunal, the Central Excise & Service Tax Tribunal, Debts Recovery Tribunal, Intellectual Property Tribunal, Income Tax Tribunal, Armed Forces Tribunal and Railway Claims Tribunal. Lok Adalats and Village Courts have also been established to deal with matters at the lowest level.
 These bodies are formed by statutory provisions and deal with specific areas of conflict, such asadministrative issues, excise, service tax, income tax, railway, debt recovery and intellectual property issues.  The decisions of these tribunals are accessible via the hyperlinks below.

1.       Appellate Tribunal for Electricity

2.       Appellate Tribunal for Electricity

3.       Andhra Pradesh Administrative Tribunal

4.       Central Administrative Tribunal

5.       Central Excise Service Tax Appellate Tribunal

6.       Debts Recovery Tribunal-I, Chennai

7.       Debts Recovery Tribunal-II, Chennai

8.       Debts Recovery Tribunal, Coimbatore

9.       Intellectual Property Appellate Tribunal, Chennai

10.     Income Tax Appellate Tribunal

11.     Railway Claims Tribunals

Apart from the above bodies, a number of other bodies assist in the judicial process. The Delhi Judicial Academy, Delhi Legal Service Authority, Delhi Meditation Centre, Delhi State Consumer Dispute Redressal Commission, National Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission and Supreme Court Legal Services Committee are examples of such institutions.

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Case law

General background
The system of precedent - lower courts bound by decisions of higher courts, and courts bound by their own earlier decisions - is the same as in the United Kingdom. The report of a case, however old, can be referred to in support of an argument or followed in a judgment. 

Law reports
The official series for Supreme Court decisions is Supreme Court Reports (SCR), which is published by the Supreme Court of India Registry. The judgments pronounced by the High Courts of the Indian States are officially published in Indian Law Reports (ILR), which is very irregular in publication. A number of private publishers also publish law reports, with editorial enhancements, covering the Supreme Court of India, the High Courts and selected tribunals; these commercially-published reports are also acceptable to the Indian courts. 

Law reports in India may be classified in two categories: general law reports and subject-specific law reports. All India Reporter (AIR), with sub-series for the Supreme Court and the High Courts; Supreme Court Cases (SCC); Judgment Today (JT) and Supreme Court of India Almanac (Scale) are some examples of general law reports publishing judgments pronounced by the Supreme Court of India. Allahabad Law Reports, Bombay Law Reports, Madras Law Journal, Kerala Law Times, Gauhati Law Times, Lucknow Law Times, Calcutta Weekly Notes and Karnataka Law Journals are some examples of general law reports publishing the judgments of the High Courts. On the other side, a number of law reports focus on particular subject areas, for example: Arbitration Law Reporter, Banking Law Journal, Company Law Journal, Income Tax Reports, Criminal Law Journals, Corporate Law Advisor and Taxmann.

Sources available at IALS 
SCC Online has Indian cases from 1779 to present; it covers the Supreme Court of India, the High Courts, specialised commissions and tribunals, the Privy Council, the Federal Court of India and other Indian courts. It includes the online version of Supreme Court Cases (published by Eastern Book Company). SCC Online is available to authorised users via the IALS Electronic Law Library


Lexis Library has Indian Supreme Court and High Court judgments from 1950 onwards. Lexis is available to authorised users via the Electronic Law Library. To find the Indian cases on Lexis, go to the Sources tab, select ‘Browse Sources’, then ‘India’; from the Cases folder, select 'All subscribed cases'.

Both pre- and post-independence reports are held at IALS in printed format; all are listed on the Catalogue. They include the following series:

Supreme Court Reports (1950 onwards) in print

Supreme Court Journal (1950-2008) in print

The Federal Court Reports  (1939-1950)

Indian Law Reports (c.1876 to 1947): various parts, for different periods, online via LLMC Digital and/or on microfiche

All India Reporter (1914 to 1947)  online via LLMC Digital (also held on microfiche). 


Free web sources
The judgments delivered by the Supreme Court of India and the High Courts are available for public use through the Judgment Information System (JUDIS) at .

For the latest Supreme Court judgments (as well as legal articles and legislation) you can visit the SCC site:; some of these materials are only available to subscribers, however.

The World Legal Information Institute website has Supreme Court of India judgments from 1950 to date:

Subscription databases
There are many Indian subscription databases which provide Supreme Court of India and High Court judgments. They include the following:

Case-finding tools
The Supreme Court of India has compiled a citation tool called the Equivalent Citator for searching for cases published in the various law reports.

The Guide to Legal Citation for Indian Law Material is available at and can be accessed through the link Guide to Legal Citation

The citation abbreviations used for Indian journals and law reports can be referred to through the link Suggested Abbreviations of Indian Legal Journals.

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Digests and Encyclopedias

Digests play an important role in legal research, advocacy and advanced legal studies. Law digests contain subject-wise and yearly arrangements of judgments delivered by various courts of judicature. Law digests in India fall into two categories: comprehensive law digests and special law digests, the latter being based on a particular subject area. 

The Supreme Court Yearly Digest published by Eastern Book Company and AIR Yearly Reference published by All India Reporter, Nagpur, are two major yearly digests. Criminal Law Digest, Labour Law Digest, and Company Law Digest, are some example of special digests based on a specific subject area. 

A number of cumulative digests have also been published by various publishers, viz. AIR Supreme Court Millennium Digest by the All India Reporter (1950 onwards), Decennial Digest, The Quinquennial Digest, Hundred Years Digest of India Law Reports and Compete Digest of Supreme Court Digest, (EBC). 

IALS has old editions of some of the digests mentioned above (see Catalogue), but no current holdings.

Halsbury’s Laws of India is an encyclopaedic statement of Indian law. It is available at IALS Library.

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The Parliament of India is the apex law-making body. It has three sections: the President of India (Head of the State); Lok Sabha (House of People or Lower House), having 545 members; and Rajya Sabha (Council of States or Upper House), having 250 members. The President is elected by an electoral college consisting of Members of Parliament, Members of State Legislative Councils and Members of State Legislative Assemblies, for a fixed term of five years. The Members of Lok Sabha are directly elected by the citizens of the Republic of India, for five years. However the Members of Rajya are elected indirectly; they are elected for six years by Members of Lok Sabha, Members of Legislative Assemblies of the States and State Legislative Council Members, but not directly by the citizens.

The Parliament of India is responsible for making legislative rules and regulations at Union of India (central) level. However, the state Legislative Assemblies and Legislative Councils are responsible for making legislative rules and regulations applicable to their respective states. The Constitution of India empowers the central government and state governments to make laws on different subjects: the Central Government can make laws on the subjects given in the Union List and the State Governments are empowered to frame laws on the subjects given in the State List;  however, some common subjects of laws are also given in the Concurrent List, on which both the Central Government and State Governments can formulate laws, but the laws made by the Central Government would be treated as superior in case of any conflict. The Union, State and Concurrent Lists are in Schedule VII of the Constitution, as detailed below:

Union List: containing 97 subjects on which only the Union Government can make legislation;

State List: containing 66 subjects on which State Governments can make legislation;

Concurrent List: containing 47 subjects on which either the State Governments or the Union Government can make legislation. 

The laws passed by the Parliament of India are known as Central Legislation. Initially a proposal called a bill is placed before any house of the Parliament. After debate over the bill and when it has been cleared by the house of introduction, it is passed to other house. After passing by both houses, the bill is sent to President for assent. After assent by the President of India, the bill becomes an act. Bills introduced in Lok Sabha (House of People Bills) and Rajya Sabha (Council of States Bills) are available on the websites of the respective houses. 

PRS Legislative Research, India (an initiative initially funded by Google and the Ford Foundation), provides a number of evaluative documents pertaining to legislation passed by the Parliament of India: information about legislative business, parliamentary updates, bill or act summaries and monthly policy reviews.   

Central legislation
Central acts, as passed, are published in the Gazette of India; this version is the official, final and authentic document. The Gazette can be accessed through its website, at Legislation comes into force on the date of publication in the Gazette of India, or on the date mentioned in the text of the legislation.

Central acts as amended are officially published in the India Code, which is available at, going back to 1836. 

A number of commercial publishing houses provide multi-volume sets containing Central legislation. The most preferable commercial publications for referring to Indian legislation are Current Central Legislation, published by Eastern Book Company, AIR Manual (from All India Reporter) and Universal’s Encyclopaedia of Important Central Acts & Rules in 25 volumes.

State legislation
Legislation passed by the State Governments is called subordinate legislation. It is available on the web through (an initiative of PRS Legislative Research, India).

Sources available at IALS
SCC Online (see IALS Electronic Law Library) has 
Central acts; rules and regulations; circulars, notifications and instructions; it also has some state acts.

Lexis Library (see IALS Electronic Law Library) has Central acts and regulations. It also has legislation from a few Indian states: Delhi, Karnataka, Maharashtra and Tamil Nadu.

IALS Library's collection includes the following printed sources of Indian legislation:

  • Current Indian Statutes, 1958 onwards: central acts as passed, together with secondary legislation; also brief details of state legislation and a few state acts in full (GK2.E.2)
  • Acts of India,  1948 to 1957: central acts, as passed (classmark GK2.E.2)
  • India Reprint; revised legislation arranged by subject, 1948, 1949 and 1969-75 editions (GK2.E.1)
  • AIR Manual,  3rd edition, published in 22 volumes, 1960 to 1975, containing revised acts with annotations
  • General Statutory Rules and Orders: revised (amended) secondary legislation arranged by subject; published in 30 volumes, 1960 to 1980, with supplements to 1971 for some earlier volumes (GK2.E.3). Various other old revised sets of secondary legislation are also held, at the same classmark.

Pre-independence legislation is also held: see Catalogue, under classmark GK1.E.

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Law reform reports and public inquiry reports

A number of statutory bodies have been set up to evaluate and analyse laws before enactment in the Parliament. There are also a number of organizations that evaluate and interpret old laws in order to  recommend amendments. The reports, research series and other documents of these institutions are very useful for legal education and research, as detailed below. 

Law Commission of India
Law reform has been a continuing process particularly during the last 300 years or more in Indian history. Law Commissions were constituted by the Government from time to time and were empowered to recommend legislative reforms with a view to clarifying, consolidating and codifying particular branches of law where the Government felt the necessity for it. The main objective of  the Law Commission of India is “Reforming the law for maximizing justice in society and promoting good governance under rule of law”.  Law Commission of India Reports are available on its website; and IALS Library has the printed reports from the 1950s to the 1980s.

National Human Rights Commission, India
The National Human Rights Commission of India (NHRC) is an autonomous public body constituted on a statutory basis by the Protection of Human Rights Act, 1993 (TPHRA).  The NHRC is the national human rights institution, responsible for the protection and promotion of human rights, defined by the Act as "rights relating to life, liberty, equality and dignity of the individual guaranteed by the Constitution or embodied in the International Covenants". The Commission’s reports and publications are available on its website.

National Commission for Women
The National Commission for Women (NCW) is a statutory body of the Government of India, established under the provisions of the Indian Constitution. The objective is to advise the government on policy matters affecting women, represent the rights of women in India and provide a voice for their issues and concerns. The Commission regularly publishes annual reports and a monthly newsletter, RashtraMahila (National Women), in both Hindi and English.

National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR)
The National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR) was set up under the Commission for Protection of Child Rights Act, 2005. The Commission's mandate is to ensure that all laws, policies, programmes, and administrative mechanisms are in consonance with the child rights perspective, as enshrined in the Constitution of India and also the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child. The webpage of NCPCR provides access to judgments relating to child rights and guidelines, recommendations and reports relating to child rights. 

Apart from the above permanent commissions, some important commission reports are also available in the public domain on the website of the Ministry of Home Affairs:

Committee for Consultations on the Situation in Andhra Pradesh (CCSAP) Justice (Retd.) B N Srikrishna Report

The Report of the Liberhan Ayodhya Commission of Inquiry

Report of Justice Nanavati Commission Of Inquiry (1984 Anti-Sikh Riots)

Report on the Justice Mukherjee Commission of Inquiry on the alleged disappearance of Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose

Report of the Commission on Centre-State Relation

State Reorganisation Commission Report of 1955 (1.61 MB)

Justice J S Verma Committee (418.55 KB)

Security Commission for Union Territories (67 KB)

Justice Thomas Committee (345 KB)

Committee Report on Draft National Policy on Criminal Justice (45 KB)

Committee on Reforms of Criminal Justice System (345 KB)

Police Act Drafting Committee

Extension of the Rehabilitation Package to provide relief to the victims of 1984 Riots (34 KB)

Rehabilitation Package - 1984 Riots (89 KB)

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IALS Library holds the Journal of the Indian Law Institute from 1958 onwards and The Indian Journal of International Law from 1960 onwards. A few short historical runs of other journals are also held in printed format.

SCC Online (via IALS Electronic Law Library) includes articles from about twenty Indian journals, including Supreme Court Cases (journal section) and Journal of National Law University Delhi (JNLUD). Access to journal articles on SCC Online is via the search facility (not via the 'Secondary Materials' page).

Most of the academic legal journals in India are published by the law schools and advanced legal research institutions. The most popular and peer-reviewed legal journals in India are listed below:

Academy Law Review

Annual Survey of Indian Law

Cochin University Law Review

Indian Journal of International Law

Indian Journal of Public Administration

Indian Socio-Legal Journal

Journal of Constitutional and Parliamentary Studies

Journal of Indian Law Institute  (in IALS 1958 onwards)

Journal of Intellectual Property Rights

Journal of National Human Rights Commission

Journal of National Law University, Delhi

NALSAR Law Review

Journal of NLUD (available via SCC Online)

NUJS Law Review

Social Action

Srinagar Law Journal

A number of academic journals and scholarly writings published in India are available on open acess and usable under Creative Commons Licences. The Legal Information Institute of India,, provides access to fourteen academic law journals and collections of scholarly writings published in India, as listed below:

GNLU Journal of Law, Development and Politics

Indian Journal of Constitutional Law

Indian Journal of Intellectual Property Law

Journal of Intellectual Property Rights

Indian Journal of Law and Economics

Indian Journal of Law and Technology

ISIL Year Book of International Humanitarian and Refugee Law

NALSAR Environmental Law and Practice Review

NALSAR Law Research Series

NALSAR Law Review

NALSAR Media Law Review

NALSAR Student Law Review

NLUD Law Research Series

NLUD Student Law Journal

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Text books and legal commentaries

IALS Library holds several hundred books on Indian law. The full collection is detailed on the Library Catalogue; recent titles include the following:

        Biswas, Tushar Kumar, Introduction to arbitration in India: the role of the judiciary. Kluwer Law International, 2014.

Sagade, Jaya, Child marriage in India: socio-legal and human rights dimensions. New Delhi, Oxford University Press, 2012.

Noorani, Abdul Gafoor Abdul Majeed, Challenges to civil rights guarantees in India. Oxford, Oxford University Press, 2012.

Venkateswaran, Subbiah, Venkateswaran on trade marks and passing off. 5th ed. Haryana, LexisNexis Butterworths Wadhwa Nagpur, 2010.

Menon, N.R. Madhava, Rule of law in a free society. New Delhi: Oxford University Press, 2008.

Desai, S.A, Mulla’s principles of Hindu law. 20th ed. New Delhi:LexisNexis Butterworths, 2007.

Mishra, R., Mayne’s treatise on Hindu law and usage. 15th ed. New Delhi: Bharat Law House, 2006.

Singh, G.P., Principles of statutory interpretation. 10th ed. Nagpur: Wadhwa & Co., 2006.

Ranchoddas, Ratanlal and Thakore, Dhirajlal Keshavlal, The Indian Penal Code: (Act XLV of 1860). New Delhi: Wadhwa & Co., 2006.

Chawla, Monika, Gender Justice: Women and law in India. New Delhi: Deep & Deep Publications, 2006

Sagade, Jaya, Child marriage in India: socio-legal and human rights dimensions. New Delhi: Oxford University Press, 2005.

Austin, Granville, Working a democratic constitution:  a history of the Indian experience. Delhi: Oxford University Press, 2003.

Sathe, S.P. 2nd ed., Judicial activism in India. New Delhi: Oxford University Press, 2002.

Gaur, K. D., Criminal law and criminology. New Delhi : Deep & Deep Publications, 2002.

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Websites and subscription databases

Free access to law movement: the Legal Information Institute of India
The development of the movement for free access to law was initiated by representatives of Legal Information Institutes (LIIs) in 2002 during the International Conference on Law via the Internet, in Montreal. Legal Information Institutes act as providers of legal information that are independent of government and provide free access to multiple sources of essential legal information on a non-profit basis.

The Legal Information Institute of India ( is part of the global free access to law community, making Indian law more accessible to the world. LII of India provides the below-mentioned Indian law information.

Case-law - over 300,000 post independence cases form 37 courts and tribunals

Legislation - India code form 1836,+60 state and territory databases

Legal scholarship - 500+ articles from 10 Indian law journals and elsewhere

Law reform reports & bilateral treaties (800+) from the Foreign Ministry and UN Treaty Series

LII of India provides 151 databases searchable simultaneously or separately, including cases and legislation from every state or territory. Search results can be ranked by relevance, date, citation and so on. The LawCite citator tracks all citations of cases and articles to provide a free-access and non-profit, comprehensive online collection of Indian legal information.

Other suggested websites disseminating Indian legal material

      Indian Legal Information Institute (IndLII )

      Ministry of Law and Justice, Government of India

      Legally India

      Legal India

      Legal Pandit

      Law Khoj

      Indian Kanoon

      Indian Treaty Database

      Laws of India

      Justice T.P.S. Chawla Library Public Domain Resources

Commercial legal databases at IALS covering Indian material        

SCC Online has Indian cases (1779 to present)Central (Federal) Statutes; rules and regulations; circulars, notifications and instructions; some state statutes; bills  from the Parliament of India; Debates of the Constituent Assembly; articles from about twenty journals; bilateral treaties involving  India; reports of the Law Commission of India and various Indian official committees; historical trials.

Lexis Library has Supreme Court and High Court cases from 1950 to the present (select India, then 'All subscribed cases sources'); Central Acts of India; Central Acts of India - Amendments & Notifications; Central Acts of India - Rules & Regulations; Delhi State Acts; Karnataka State Acts; Maharashtra State Acts; Tamil Nadu Acts and Rules; and Jindal Global Law Review.

LLMC Digital  includes All India Reporter from 1914 to 1947. It is available onsite at IALS and offsite for academic use.

Other commercial databases

A number of other Indian commercial databases cover Indian legal information. Please note that IALS does not subscribe to any of these services.

Westlaw India is an extended part of Westlaw International, facilitating comprehensive searching of Indian case law and legislation. It is a product of Sweet & Maxwell (Thomson Reuters).  The judgements of the Supreme Court of India and High Courts, legislation and law reform reports are ready available in the database. 

Lexis India is an Indian tailor-made product of LexisNexis.  It provides judgments of the Indian Supreme Court and High Courts along with legislation and legal scholarship.  It also provides access to selected Indian academic journals, including the Journal of the Indian Law Institute.  The database is well known for providing online the commentaries on Indian law published by Wadhwa Law Company, which is now part of LexisNexis India.

Manupatra is India’s most comprehensive online legal and business database.  Manupatra contains judgments of the Supreme Court of India and High Courts of the Indian states; Commission and Committee reports; Gazette Notifications & Circulars; Bare Acts; Rules and Regulations; Ordinances;  pending cases;  and legal materials on particular subjects.  It provides comprehensive search facilities, including ‘Manu Search’ (a single search box), ‘Legal Search’ (for field searching), ‘Citation Search’ and ‘Act Search’. 

Corporate Law Advisor is a product of Corporate Law Advisor.  It covers all volumes since inception of both Corporate Law Advisor and Business Law Supplement.  It provides comprehensive search techniques like article search, case law search, notification search, circulars search, acts search, rules search and regulations search.

Economic and Political Weekly provides in-depth Indian socio-economic statistical facts and figures culled from various secondary sources. It is a portal to state-specific sites which provide statistical data for all the major socio-economic parameters of the Indian States. District-level data whereever available can also be viewed. Through this portal, exhaustive compiled data can be accessed and downloaded in MS-Excel/HTML formats.

Taxmann Online is a subject-based database and provides case law on direct taxes, indirect taxes and company law. It extends its coverage to acts, rules, forms, regulations, and circulars about tax law and company law.


IALS has P. Ramanatha Aiyar's The law lexicon (Wadhwa and Co., 1997).

Other Indian legal dictionaries include the following:

Aiyer, K.J., Judical dictionary. India: LexisNexis Butterworths, 2011.                                                 

Chakravarti, K.P., Words and phrases under the constitution. Kolkata: Eastern Law House, 2003.                  

Singh, L.P. and Majumdar, P.K., Judicial dictionary.New Delhi: Orient Publishing, 2009.                                          

Choudhary, Dansingh and Sugamchand, Law dictionary. New Delhi: Universal Law Publishing, 2009.

Saharay, H.K, Constitutional and parliamentary dictionary. Calcutta: Ajoy Law House, 1985.

Prem's judicial dictionary. Arora Law House, 1964.                                                       

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