Delegation of Power vis-à-vis Authorisation

Delegation of power is made by an authority to do an act for which the authority himself is competent, by any other officer whereas authorization is made by the authority empowered to do so under a statute or any other lawful instrument. The ordinary dictionary meaning of the word “Delegate” is to send or authorize a person as a representative to depute (Oxford Concise English Dictionary). The word ‘Delegate’ in Black’s Law Dictionary has been defined to mean to entrust another with the authority or empower another to act as an agent or a representative. The word “Authorise” as defined in Oxford Concise English Dictionary means to give an authority to a person or a body or to sanction or commission a person to do some act. The Black’s Law Dictionary defines the word “Authorise” to mean to give legal authority or to empower the authorized person to act for the person giving such an authority.
Thus, it is clear that delegation is done by an authority to a person or a body or a subordinate to do an act which the delegate is himself otherwise empowered or authorized to do under the statute or any other legal instrument. Whereas authorization would mean empowering an officer to do something for which the authority authorizing the person or body to do an act is empowered. Ranbir Singh v. State of U.P., 2018 (126) ALR 227.

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