This article will answer some of your most frequently asked questions regarding public interest litigation in India.

India is one of the nations with a written constitution. The Constitution is an ultimate legal document. It grants various rights to its citizens, known as Fundamental Rights. PIL is another type of Fundamental Right that the Indian Supreme Court has granted to the general public. There was no such concept as PIL in India prior to the 1980s. There is no legal definition of it. It is a concept that the courts have established through judicial review.PILs are not a fresh concept in Indian courts. It was created in the USA in the 1960s to give legal representation to previously unrepresented groups such as minorities, prisoners in custody, migrant workers, forced bonded labourers, and other underprivileged classes. It was founded on the premise that certain societal groups weren’t getting equitable treatment from traditional legal services. In other terms, public interest litigation refers to legal actions taken to safeguard the public interest. PIL has no official definition, although it mostly focuses on the following areas:

  • Fundamental human rights violations
  • Government policy execution
  • Other fundamental rights violations

Frequently Asked Questions 

What Does PIL Stand For?

PIL, or public interest litigation, refers to legal measures undertaken to defend the public’s interests.

What Is Public Interest Litigation (PIL)?

public interest litigation, refers to legal action taken to defend the public’s interests. This fundamental idea is present in both politics and law, and it can be seen on television, especially in the news. Public interest litigation (PIL) is a strategy or method that places a focus on the citizens of any nation. In a court of law, it is not introduced by the party who is harmed but rather by a third party or the court itself.

Who Can File A PIL In India?

Any Indian citizen may file the PIL in a court of law. The only requirement is that it must be documented in the public interest as opposed to serving any private interests. If a matter is extremely important to the general public, the court will often take suo motu cognizance. The court in those situations appoints an attorney to handle such important matters.

When Can A PIL Can Be Filed?

  • A violation of moral or fundamental rights.
  • Violation of the moral and human rights of the poor and underprivileged members of society.
  • Compelling municipal authorities to deport a public servant.
  • Implementation of central or state government policy.

What Are The Benefits Of Filing PIL?

  • By ensuring that they make informed decisions and act properly within the scope of their authority, it holds public bodies accountable.
  • By enabling judges to comprehend the law, it seeks to advance and help the legal system.
  • Public Interest Litigation empowers voiceless parties by drawing attention to a critical problem. Additionally, given that they have a platform to promote their rights.
  • Raise public awareness of major issues by participating in media coverage and public debate.
  • Because court fees are so low, smart people can come up with a workable solution.
  • Litigants can get things done and draw attention to bigger social issues like environmental protection, human rights, and consumer welfare.

What Are The Documents Required For Filing PIL In India?

You must first ask a public interest lawyer or organisation to file the petition on your behalf. The following documents are required:

  1. Identity proof
  2. Resettlement policy if any
  3. Title deeds
  4. Notice,
  5. Verification of residence
  6. Photos of the eviction
  • Complete list of all parties who have come to the court to initiate public interest litigation, together with their names and addresses.
  • Names and addresses of all government officials whose eligibility for relief are questioned.
  • Complete List of incidents leading to infringement of the concerned people’s fundamental rights.
  • Collect all relevant dates related to the eviction, including when and if an eviction notice was given, the length of stay at the specific place, and any other pertinent information.
  • The court relief requested should also be mentioned.

Is There Any Fee For Filing A PIL?

Public interest litigation tends to cost less than other court proceedings. A fee of ₹50 must be paid by each defendant listed in a Public Interest Litigation, and it must be specified in the petition as well. The cost expended, however, is determined by the lawyer appointed by the petitioner to argue on his behalf during the proceedings.

What Are The Agendas On Which A PIL Cannot Be Filed?

A detailed set of instructions on the types of cases for which Public Interest Litigation cannot be filed has been released by the Supreme Court of India. These instances are listed below:

  • Cases involving landlords and tenants.
  • Cases involving services.
  • Cases pertaining to gratuities and pensions.
  • Cases involving admittance to educational and healthcare institutions.
  • Petition for a speedy hearing of cases that are pending before the High Court or lower courts.

How Much Time Does It Take In The Hearing Of A PIL

If a matter involves the lives of numerous people or involves abuses of human rights, the court concludes the hearing quickly and settles the dispute. However, due to the overwhelming number of excessive public interest petitions filed in courts, it typically takes years to hear and resolve cases. After the final hearing of the parties, a decision is made in matters involving public interest petitions.

Do I Need Legal Assistance To File A PIL?

Vakilsearch recommends that If you want to properly understand the requirements of your PIL, you should consult and seek guidance from legal professionals. The fundamental details would be required from your end to begin the procedure.


Vakilsearch is one of the platforms which coordinate to fulfill all your legal and financial requirements with ease. If you have any questions about filing a Public Interest Litigation in India, our legal experts can provide you with the best-in-class legal assistance.

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