My Lord, What is Mandamus?
“Mandamus literally means a command. The essence of Mandamus in England was that it was a royal command issued by the King’s Bench (now Queen’s Bench) directing performance of a public legal duty.
A Writ of Mandamus is issued in favour of a person who establishes a legal right in himself. A Writ of Mandamus is issued against a person who has a legal duty to perform but has failed and/or neglected to do so. Such a legal duly emanates from either in discharge of a public duly or by operation of law. The Writ of Mandamus is of a most extensive remedial nature. The object of Mandamus is to prevent disorder from a failure of justice and is required to be granted in all cases where law has established no specific remedy and where justice despite demanded has not been granted.”
– Hon’ble Justice S.B. Sinha, Union of India v. S.B. Vohra, (2004) 2 SCC 150.
Also see, D.N. Jeevaraj v. Govt. of Karnataka, [Civil Appeal No. 13785 of 2015].
Jeevaraj shall, in time, stand good for a further proposition. Lokur Saab has stated clearly, “In issues pertaining to good governance, the Courts ought to be somewhat more liberal in entertaining Public Interest Litigations. However, matters that may not be of moment or a litigation essentially directed against one organization or individual ought not to be entertained or should be rarely entertained.”