This Judgment by Justice Deepak Gupta from a 2-judge bench held in Para 18 that,
18. We also are of the view that the High Court exceeded its jurisdiction in matters like this. The High Court exercise its jurisdiction only over State(s) of which it is the High Court. It has no jurisdiction for the rest of the country. Matters like the present may be pending in various parts of the country. In the present case, matter had been decided by the Delhi High Court but some other High Court may or may not have taken different view. The High Court of Madras could not have passed such order. It has virtually usurped the jurisdiction of other High Courts in the country. It is true that sometimes this Court has ordered that all similarly situated employees may be granted similar relief but the High Court does not have the benefit of exercising the power under Article 142 of the Constitution. In any event, this Court exercises jurisdiction over the entire country whereas the jurisdiction of the High Court is limited to the territorial jurisdiction of the State(s) of which it is the High Court. The High Court may be justified in passing such an order when it only affects the employees of the State falling within its jurisdiction but, in our opinion, it could not have passed such an order in the case of employees where pan India repercussions would be involved.
This effectively means that, to challenge a Central Act such as Dowry Prohibition Act 1961 which has ramifications to entire country, one can not invoke the Writ jurisdiction of a High Court. This implies that, one has to go to Supreme Court only. This is quite contrary to the obiter dicta from Kusum Ingots judgement here given by a 3-judge bench.
Union of India Vs R Thiyagarajan on 3 April 2020
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