Difference between superior and inferior court

In Halsbury’s Laws of England[1] it is stated-

“The chief distinctions between superior and inferior courts are found in connection with jurisdiction. Prima facie, no matter is deemed to be beyond the jurisdiction of a superior court unless it is expressly shown to be so, while nothing is within the jurisdiction of an inferior court unless it is expressly shown on the face of the proceedings that the particular matter is within the cognizance of the particular court. An objection to the jurisdiction of one of the superior courts of general jurisdiction must show what other court has jurisdiction, so as to make it clear that the exercise by the superior court of its general jurisdiction is unnecessary. The High Court, for example, is a court of universal jurisdiction and superintendency in certain classes of actions, and cannot be deprived of its ascendancy by showing that some other court could have entertained the particular action.”

Though the above reference is to English courts the principle would squarely apply to the superior courts in India also. (M.M. Thomas v. State of Kerala[2])

[1] 4th Edn., Vol. 10, para 713

[2] 2001 (1) SCC 666

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