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Introduction to Nepalese business law

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In its simplest sense, law can be understood as a rule. There may be various forms of rules such as individual rules, religious rules, family rules, social rules, economic rules, administrative rules, constitutional rules, taxation rules, rules of college, rules of games, gravitational rules, and rules of the nature and so on. In its widest sense, the law means every kind of rules that regulate the human activities.

In its narrower sense, every kind of rule does not necessarily constitute the law. The law is that kind of rule which is recognized and enforced by the state. Law is a rule made by the state. The law making body of the state is known as the legislature or the parliament. The legislature makes the laws to regulate the behavior of the citizens of the state. In this sense, law means a body of rules of conduct, action, or behavior of persons made and enforced by the state.

Every state makes certain rules for its citizen allowing them to do something and makes certain other rules forbidding (not allowing to do) them from doing something. These rules as such are called laws. In another sense, law is a body of principles and theories established by jurists and legal experts. The principles and theories are very important for the understanding of law. Therefore, they equally give sense of the law. For instance, the subject or study of science becomes incomplete without studying the theories of Charles Darwin, Albert Einstein & others, so the understanding of law is inadequate and incomplete without the knowledge of the principles and theories of law.

Such principles and theories of law provide an accurate picture of law. For instance, ‘ignorance of law is not excused’ is a universally accepted principle of law. Nobody can escape liabilities (punishment, fine, imprisonment etc) just by saying that he/she did not know the law. Here are some other recognized principles of law: ‘None is guilty unless he /she is proved to be guilty’, ‘Let the heaven fall, justice has to be done’,’ Justice must not only be done but also must be seen to have been done’, ‘Let the ten criminals go without punishment but save a single innocent person’, ‘Law cannot help those who do not heed to their rights’ ‘no consideration, no contract’ and so on. Without understanding these principles and theories of law, the nature of the law cannot be construed at all. Law is synonymous to the word ‘Dharma” i.e. duty in the Hindu philosophy and ‘Hukum” in the Islamic system. Romans call it ‘jus” and in Germany and France it is called as ‘Ritch” and ‘Droit” respectively. Whatever nomenclatures may be given in different countries, the law is essential to regulate the human activities in every society. Therefore, different societies have made law for regulating their activities. A society cannot function well without the presence of law in it. Sometimes, law represents customs and traditions prevalent in society. Customs and traditions are long habits of people and thus deserve the obedience of people.

The state respects customs and traditions of people and allows them for their observance. As human behaviors are regulated by customs and traditions, they are laws as such. Likewise, laws are conventions i.e. agreements and contracts. Agreements and contracts also regulate the activities of human beings. When we agree to do something, we are obliged to do that. It is so because we have made laws for ourselves in the form of promises. We have to fulfill our promises. Contracts are special kind of agreements. They bind the contracting parties because the terms of the contracts are laws for them. Religious precepts also guide the behavior of people. Certain of our conduct are regulated by the religion as well. We have to follow them even though we may not like to do them. For example, when we do marriage, we follow the religious rituals. In this way, law is an instrument that guides, regulates and systemizes human behavior. In its widest sense, it can be understood in terms of any rules of actions. It may include every standard, values, norms, ideals and precepts, the rules of gravity, the rules of the universe, the rules of nature and the like. Thus, we can say that law is any kind of rule that guides, regulates and systemizes human behavior. It is a body of principles and theories propagated by scholars and it is a conglomeration of rules made by the legislative organ of the state. Put all of these assertions together should be understood as the law.

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