Law is the set of rules that govern social, political, and economic institutions. It has been called the “science of justice” and “art of fair play”. Laws are created by group or individual legislatures, by the executive through decrees, and by judges in common law jurisdictions. Private individuals may also make legal agreements.
The United Nations (UN) has developed a body of international law that serves as the foundation for promoting economic development and international peace. The organization has over 500 multilateral treaties deposited with its Secretary General. Its work affects people around the world on a daily basis. Its activities include international humanitarian law and human rights law.
Law is an important part of society. While utilitarian theories were dominant until the twentieth century, they are no longer the dominant principles of law. Some of the oldest known codes of law date back to Mesopotamia, where the sun god Shamash revealed the code of laws. Today, the Indian Constitution consists of 444 articles and 12 schedules. In addition, it contains 117,369 words and more than a dozen amendments.
Regulation of law is an important part of the legal profession. Regulatory bodies oversee the provision of utilities and public services, such as water law. Privatization has shifted many services out of public hands, but private companies that have taken over these jobs have been bound by varying degrees of social responsibility. Government-regulated industries include energy, gas, water, and telecommunications.