Statutory Authority: Meaning and Role

Statutory authority is a general term for a parliamentary authorization granted to an individual or group of individuals to perform particular powers. Either a corporate Commonwealth entity or a non-corporate Commonwealth entity can be created as a legislative authority. A statutory authority may also be a body operating under the authority granted by Parliament but administratively residing within a Commonwealth entity.

Meaning of Statutory Authority

A statutory body is a significant part of the government that has the authority to enact laws on the government's behalf with regard to specific sectors of government. For instance, the National Commission for Women (NCW) is a legally recognized entity in India that focuses on ensuring women's equality and is empowered to pass laws in this direction. An act passed by the state legislature or by the parliament creates a statutory body.

It's important to keep in mind that a statutory body is not a constitutional body, despite being extremely important to governance. Each statutory body is established by Parliament and is specifically focused on a single topic.

Role of Statutory Body

A statutory body is just a group that has the authority to monitor a company's operations, ensure that they are abiding by the rules and regulations, and determine their legal standing.

Statutory Bodies in India

A statutory body is just a group that has the authority to monitor a company's operations, ensure that they are abiding by the rules and regulations, and determine their legal standing.

  • National Human Rights Commission − The Protection of Human Rights Act, which was passed in 1993, authorized the creation of the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC). This statutory organization in India seeks to safeguard and advance the fundamental rights to life, liberty, equality, and dignity for all Indian citizens.

  • National Commission for Women − The National Commission for Women was founded under the National Commission for Women Act in 1990 to combat the persistent denial of women's rights since the beginning of time. By addressing the issues brought on by prejudice and crimes against women, this statutory organization aims to provide all women in India with the dignity, equality, and empowerment they deserve.

  • Armed Forces Tribunal − A tribunal is a sparsely populated court of law created with a particular objective in mind. Established in 2007, the Armed Forces Tribunal is a statutory body. It is the statutory organization whose primary responsibility it is to settle disputes between the Indian Navy, Indian Air Force, and Indian Army in relation to the several Acts by the Indian government linked to the armed forces.

  • National Commission for Minorities − Religious minorities, such as Muslims, Buddhists, Christians, Sikhs, Jains, and Zoroastrians (among others), as well as socioeconomic minorities who are given Scheduled Tribe or Scheduled Caste status, are all considered minorities in India. The NCM, which was founded in 1992, is a statutory organization that works to uphold and defend the rights of these minorities through appropriate policies, rules, and legislation.

Public Corporations in India

A corporation is a business or collection of businesses that is owned by its shareholders. A public corporation, which is what we are referring to here, is an organization that is owned and run by the government and has similar authority as a private business. They are statutory businesses owned by the government and are also known as public sector enterprises.

Features of Public Corporation

  • It is a business entity that was created by a unique act of the national or state legislature. The Act outlines its rights and obligations with respect to the government's departments and ministries.

  • It can purchase property in its name and is a distinct legal body with a common seal and eternal succession. It can also sign contracts and file lawsuits in its name.

  • A public corporation is entirely owned by the federal and/or state governments.

  • It has financial independence. A public firm must support itself even when the government provides the initial funding. It may also take out loans from individuals.

  • A public corporation is immune from the strict regulations that apply to the use of public funds and expenditures. Additionally, it is exempt from any audit rules that are typically applied to government departments.

  • In a public business, the board of directors is chosen by the government. The fact that the workers are also government employees is unimportant, though.

  • Even if a public corporation's main goal is public service rather than private profits, it must do business as usual.

Advantages of Statutory Corporations

  • A public corporation can operate like any other company because the government does not interfere with its day-to-day operations. It has a great deal of leeway in how it runs the business.

  • A public corporation has the ability to test out novel business ventures and make choices quickly.

  • A public corporation maintains continuity in policy and operations and is unaffected by political changes.

  • A public corporation typically enjoys particular benefits. Additionally, the law that creates it can be altered.

  • Professional managers can be hired by public enterprises, which can also provide them with better pay and benefits than government employees.

Disadvantages of Statutory Corporation

  • It takes time to create a public corporation since Parliament must enact a special law.

  • Additionally, to change the corporation's powers or objectives, the State Legislature or Parliament must amend the special statute, making it rigid.

  • Although, in theory, a public corporation might conduct normal operations, political meddling limits the corporation's internal autonomy.

  • Conflicts could occur if the Board of Directors reflects opposing viewpoints. The corporation's operations are hampered as a result. Furthermore, a lack of incentives further lowers the corporation's profitability.


Even if the concept of statutory power has obviously changed over time, it has improved since we can now clearly understand how the idea and the structure of statutory authority as a defense have changed over time. The inclusion of something like conditional authority ensures that there is a limit to the authority of the state because, in cases of conditional authority, if the state exceeds its authority in regards to the condition mentioned in the contract of the act done, a person can bring about action against the state. A system of checks and balances was also introduced, which is crucial because it prevents the state from arbitrarily overstepping its bounds.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q1.What is Statutory Corporation?

Ans. A statutory corporation is an organization established by statute to serve as a statutory body. They are corporations that, to the (in some cases limited) extent allowed by the enacting legislation, are owned by a government or controlled by a national or sub-national government. Their exact nature varies depending on the jurisdiction.

Q2.Define the term Regulatory agency?

Ans. A regulatory agency, sometimes known as a regulatory body, regulator, or independent agency, is an organization under the control of the government that has the jurisdiction to issue licenses and regulate certain types of human activity.

Q3.What is meaning of Deregulation?

Ans. Deregulation is the procedure for getting rid of or cutting back on government rules, usually in the economic realm. It is the abolition of governmental control over the economy. It became widespread in developed industrial economies in the 1970s and 1980s as a result of new trends in economic thinking regarding the inefficiencies of governmental regulation and the possibility that regulatory agencies would be controlled by the regulated industry to its advantage, harming consumers and the overall economy.

Updated on: 10-May-2023


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