Ceteris Paribus – Legal Maxim

Literal Meaning

Other things being equal.


This Latin expression is commonly utilized for saying ‘with different things being the equivalent’. It is especially vital in the investigation of circumstances and logical results connection between two explicit factors with the end goal that other applicable elements impacting these are thought to be steady by the presumption of Ceteris Paribus.


The Latin phrase ceteris paribus which literally means “holding other things constant”. It is commonly translated as “all else being equal.” It is normally deciphered as “all else being equivalent.” A predominant suspicion in standard financial reasoning, it goes about as a shorthand sign of the impact of one monetary variable on another, gave every other variable continue as before. In the fields of financial matters and money, the expression and idea is frequently utilized when making contentions about circumstances and logical results.

Case Reference

It is universally acknowledged that judicial discretion is subjective in nature and left to itself has potential to become erratic and personality based which makes it antithetical to the spirit of Art. 14. Art. 14 applies to judicial process including exercise of judicial discretion as it applies to the executive process. Of course, the nature of Art. 14 application in this case will be on a different plane altogether and an objective analysis on that count would have to meet the Ceteris paribus (with other things the same) requirement. The disparity in capital sentencing has been unequivocally asserted in Aloke Nath Dutt and ors. v. State of West Bengal[1] and also in Swamy Shraddananda v. State of Karnataka.[2]

In the case of K. B. Nagur M. D. (Ayu.) v Union of India[3] an aspect is that presumption of constitutionality is always in favour of a legislation, unless the contrary is shown. Furthermore, a Legislature, in enacting a law, operates on a presumption, in law and practice, both, that all other forums and entities constituted under one or other Act would, in their functioning, act in accordance with law and expeditiously. As it is a settled precept in the application of economic principles, that all other things will remain the same i.e., ceteris paribus, similarly, for the proper interpretation and examination of a provision of a statute, all bodies must be presumed to act effectively and in accordance with law.

Edited by Vigneshwar Ramasubramania

Approved & Published – Sakshi Raje


[1] Aloke Nath Dutt and ors. v. State of West Bengal, (2007) 12 SCC 230

[2] Swamy Shraddananda v. State of Karnataka, AIR 2008 SC 3040

[3] K. B. Nagur M. D. (Ayu.) v Union of India, (2012) 4 SCC 483