Posted by: Kunal | January 30, 2008

Introduction to Torts

It may sound a bit zany, but for a law aspirant the word tort is aptly named and put up into the curriculum as ‘An Introduction to Law’. You may call them ‘law for ‘Toddlers‘ , and the moment you are done with the basic principles of Rights & Duties, the burden of liability etc, you will directly enter the adolscence stage, where you are taught according to your age in the legal arena.

Tort means a “Twisted” conduct or act, or which is not in order with what is normal and reasonable. Tort is the easiest of all elements of law as it is nothing but common sense. If you are a reasonable human being (?), and if a person is playing extremely loud music at midnight and you find it “cool”, then maybe you aren’t a reasonable citizen, but if you object to it , and have a reason behind it and law of torts takes that reason and deals with it. Human beings are supposed to act in a civilized manner or what we call co-exist as a civil society.

Why is it the easiest law to be understood, because its not written down or codified anywhere, but is governed through some set principles of law the sources of which are Judicial decisions etc.

Now, all that a law aspirant has to do is, while reading torts is that,py attention to what norms are followed in a civil society and what a person is supposed to do. You are given the luxury of blowing your horn in a busy traffic, but when you are in a area with strict instructions on hoardings “ No Horns Please” (for eg. if you are inside a VIP area, or in a Wildlife Sanctuary.) & you don’t follow the norms, then you can be held liable for your acts for a tort called as ‘Nuisance’. This tort deals with ‘Unreasonable Interference’ with a person’s use or enjoyment of his personal property, now when you are reading it all you need to do is understand what is reasonable to human conduct and what is unreasonable. Plus you need to know certain exceptions to it (no formula, no long theories, no irritating definitions, just plain logic that’s it.)

In the late 19th and early 20th centuries, the law of nuisance became difficult to administer as competing property uses often posed a nuisance to each other and the cost of litigation to settle the issue grew prohibitive. As such, most jurisdictions now have a system of land use planning (e.g. zoning) that describes what activities are acceptable in a given location. Zoning generally overrules nuisance. For example, if a factory is operating in an industrial zone, neighbours in the neighbouring residential zone cannot make a claim in nuisance. Jurisdictions without zoning laws, essentially leave land use to be determined by the laws concerning nuisance.

Similarly modern environmental laws are an adaptation of the doctrine of nuisance to modern complex societies in which a person’s use of his property may harmfully affect another’s property or person far from the nuisance activity and from causes not easily integrated into historic understandings of nuisance law.

Under the common law, the only remedy for a nuisance was the payment of damages. However, with the development of the courts of equity, the remedy of an injunction became available to prevent a defendant from repeating the activity that caused the nuisance, and specifying punishment for contempt if the defendant is in breach of such an injunction.

Now that we are done with one half half of torts.

I have passed on to you a simple idea as to how to take it into your level of understanding, but please remember, National Law Schools won’t ask you the law. They require you to have a basic understanding of the principles of law, which means at this level, this is all you need to know.

In the next post we will discuss Defamation.

Till then. Go citius altius fortius (faster, higher, stronger) in our preparations

DEEPU KRISHNA
Chief Legal Faculty
LST

PS: Did you know Abdul Karim Telgi has been sentenced to 10 years of rigorous imprisonment.

Your questions

What was the nature of crime that Abdul Karim Telgi committed ?

Is it mentioned in Indian Penal Code ?

What is Rigorous Imprisonment and how different is it from Simple imprisonment?

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Responses

  1. awesum study material ……..provided by the c.l p’pl man……!

  2. What was the nature of crime that Abdul Karim Telgi committed ?
    :— corruption of the stamp
    Is it mentioned in Indian Penal Code ?
    :— no…it is in TADA
    What is Rigorous Imprisonment and how different is it from Simple imprisonment?
    :—i think it include both imprisonment and fine also

  3. 1– fake stamp paper case
    2– i think IPC talk about forgery
    3– i think he has a tough life in jail..severe punishment..his cell might be different from others,more work.. n people cant meet him.. i think so

  4. telgi has been sentenced for-fake stamp paper case,

  5. he has been sentenced for fake stamp case
    and rigourous imprisonment refers to both fine and imprisonment for minimum of two years or more

  6. then whts wrong ..!!

    yar where is the next question..

    yar B-)


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