What do you mean by delegated legislation? Give its advantages and disadvantages.

What do you mean by delegated legislation? Give its advantages and disadvantages.


  • Briefly explain delegated legislation in the introduction.
  • Discuss the positives of such legislation.
  • Then give its disadvantages.
  • Conclude with some suggestions.
Model Answer :

When law making power is delegated to executive by legislation, then it is known as delegated legislation or sub-ordinate legislation. In this case, legislature outlines the broad guidelines but while detailed provisions are added by executive.There is a Committee on Subordinate Legislation also to scrutinize and report to the house.

Delegated legislation has following advantages:

  • Technical expertise and knowledge of the fields like cyber security etc. is required in the current time which is provided by executives.
  • Due to rising number of issues, legislature cannot devote much time to each issue. So delegated legislation is preferred.
  • Certain issues require urgent guidelines like Air Pollution etc. So it is of great help when house is not in session.
  • Also it can consult a large number of stakeholders on issues involving in the law making process.
  • Certain issues like floods etc. require flexibility and interpretation of law.

But it has some disadvantages also:

  • It violates principle of separation of powers as it shifts power from legislature to executive.
  • The law making power is entrusted to legislature by constitution. So sometimes it is seen that legislature is abdicating its responsibility
  • Even bureaucrats are not experts in the fields like artificial intelligence, machine learning etc.
  • It also decreases the control of legislature over executive.

With rising number of issues and paucity of time, delegated legislation is inevitable. But the legislature should give sufficient guidance to the rule making authority as Supreme Court in Raj Narain Singh vs. Chairman P.A. Committee held that legislature can authorize an executive authority to modify the law made, but not the essential features.

Subjects : Governance