The Meaning and Constitutional Significance of the Rule of Law

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The Meaning and Constitutional Significance of the Rule of Law

The rule of law means different things to different people. The

meaning of the rule of law is a state of order in which events conform

to the law. The rule of law often is stated to be one of the

fundamental doctrines of principle of the UKconstitutional. Generally

it has been seen as a characteristic feature of western liberal

democracies. A widely-assumed meaning of the "rule of law" is that of

peaceful resolution of disputes within the citizenry based on law

rather than force. Facilitating such a rule of law is a fundamental

role of government.

The rule of law implies that government authority may only be

exercised in accordance with written laws, which were adopted through

an established procedure. The principle is intended to be a safeguard

against arbitrary rulings in individual cases.

According to Dicey, the rule of law is one of the fundamental

principles of The English constitution; he gave three meanings of the

concept of rule of law. Dicey summarized the rule of law under three


Primarily- Absence of Arbitrary Power or Supremacy of Law

"No man could be punished or lawfully interfered with by the

authorities except for breaches of law. In other words, all government

actions must be authorized by law." (Reference in bibliography)

Dicey states that rule of law means the absolute supremacy or

predominance of regular law as opposed to the influence of arbitrary

power or wide discretionary power. According to him Englishmen were

ruled by the law and by the law alone; a man with us may be punished

for breach of law, but can be punished for no...

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...ference in international law.

"Its object is essentially that of protecting the individual against

arbitrary interference by the public authorities in his private or

family life." (Reference in bibliography)

The European Court of Human Rights held in the Malone case, that the

English practice of interception was insufficiently grounded in law to

allow it to be justified.


In summary, constitutionalism forms an institutional foundation for

the rule of law, strikes a proper balance between the rule of law and

the rule of person, provides a minimal guarantee for the justice of

both the content and the form of law and, finally, is itself

safeguarded by the rule of law. This, in my view, constitutes a

relatively complete description of the relationship between

constitutionalism and the rule of law.
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