The ICJ submitted this report on the International Congress of Jurists held in New Delhi, India, on January 5-10, 1959.
This event climaxed a long and thorough endeavour to define and describe within the context of modern constitutional and legal practice the Rule of Law, a notion familiar to lawyers of many different legal systems but too often viewed as a phrase of uncertain meaning.
The ICJ regards the Rule of Law as a living concept permeating several branches of the Law and having great practical importance in the life of every human being; constitutional law, administrative law, criminal law, the organization and function of the Judiciary and of the Bar are typical of them and were therefore chosen as main subjects on the agenda of the Congress. Problems of international law were not, as such, considered at New Delhi although the Rule of Law is of course of great significance for the orderly conduct between States.
The basis of discussion in the four Committees of the New Delhi Congress was the Working Paper which is printed on pp.187-321 of this report.
Rule of law in a free society-conference report-1959-eng (full text in English, PDF)
Rule of law in a free society-conference report-1959-fra (full text in French, PDF)
Rule of law in a free society-conference report-1959-spa (full text in Spanish, PDF)ReportsSeminar and conference reports