Judicial activism has been defined as innovative interpretation of the Constitution by the Court.

This has often been criticized as the judiciary taking over the powers of the legislature. But in India, it has enjoyed support from the public, because it has concentrated on giving the disadvantaged the access to justice.

It uses the instrument of Public Interest Litigation (PIL). With public interest litigation, any person can bring a petition about a problem before the court, and not just the person affected by the problem.

PIL has often been used on behalf of people who are poor or disadvantaged and do not have the means to approach the court.

With judicial activism and PIL, courts have given judgments on pollution, the need for a uniform civil code, eviction of unauthorized buildings, stopping child labour in dangerous occupations, and other issues.