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JUDICIARY .................................................................................................................................. 5

RULE OF LAW .......................................................................................................................... 13

JUDICIAL REVIEW .................................................................................................................... 14

JUDICIARY VS. LEGISLATURE ................................................................................................ 16

PANCHAYAT & MUNICIPALITIES .............................................................................................. 17

ELECTORAL SYSTEM AND ITS REFORM ............................................................................. 27

CENTRAL AND STATE “PUBLIC SERVICE COMMISSION ..................................................... 33

EMERGENCY PROVISIONS .................................................................................................... 37

OFFICIAL LANGUAGE .............................................................................................................. 39

IMPORTANT COMMISSIONS ................................................................................................... 41

TRIBUNALS .............................................................................................................................. 49

COUNCILS ................................................................................................................................ 49

CONSTITUTIONAL AMENDMENT ............................................................................................ 50

MISCELLANEOUS TOPICS ..................................................................................................... 56


JUDICIARY (b) has been for at least ten years an
advocate of a High Court or of two or
The Supreme Court more such Courts in succession; or
(c) is, in the opinion of the President, a
The Constitution of India has the following
distinguished jurist.
provisions regarding the Supreme Court of India:
(4) Parliament may by law regulate the pro-
Article 124: cedure for the presentation of an address
and for the investigation and proof of the
Establishment and constitution of Supreme misbehaviour or incapacity of a Judge
Court. under clause (4).
(1) There shall be a Supreme Court of India (5) Every person appointed to be a Judge of
consisting of a Chief Justice of India and, the Supreme Court shall, before he enters
until Parliament by law prescribes a larger upon his office, make and subscribe before
number, of not more than seven. the President, or some person appointed in
(2) Every Judge of the Supreme Court shall be that behalf by him, an oath or affirmation
appointed by the President by warrant according to the form set out for the
under his hand and seal after consultation purpose in the Third Schedule.
with such of the Judges of the Supreme (6) No person who has held office as a Judge
of the Supreme Court shall plead or act in
Court and of the High Courts in the States
any court or before any authority within
as the President may deem necessary for the territory of India.
the purpose and shall hold office until he
attains the age of sixty-five years: Article 125:
Provided that in the case of appointment Salaries, etc., of Judges.
of a Judge other than the Chief Justice, the (1) There shall be paid to the Judges of the
Chief Justice of India shall always be Supreme Court such salaries as may be
consulted. Provided further that determined by Parliament by law and,
(a) a Judge may, by writing under his hand until provision in that behalf is so made,
addressed to the President, resign his such salaries as are specified in the Second
office; Schedule.]
(b) a Judge may be removed from his office (2) Every Judge shall be entitled to such privi-
in the manner provided in clause (4). leges and allowances and to such rights in
respect of leave of absence and pension as
The age of a Judge of the Supreme Court shall
may from time to time be determined by
be determined by such authority and in such
or under law made by Parliament and,
manner as Parliament may by law provide.
until so determined, to such privileges,
(3) A person shall not be qualified for ap- allowances and rights as are specified in
pointment as a Judge of the Supreme the Second Schedule:
Court unless he is a citizen of India and- Provided that neither the privileges nor the
(a) has been for at least five years a Judge allowances of a Judge nor his rights in respect of
of a High Court or of two or more leave of absence or pension shall be varied to his
such Courts in succession; or disadvantage after his appointment.
Article 126: shall, while so sitting and acting, be entitled to
Appointment of acting Chief Justice. such allowances as the President may by order
determine and have all the jurisdiction, powers
When the office of Chief Justice of India is and privileges of, but shall not otherwise be
vacant or when the Chief Justice is, by reason of deemed to be, a Judge of that Court:
absence or otherwise, unable to perform the duties
of his office, the duties of the office shall be Provided that nothing in this article shall be
performed by such one of the other Judges of the deemed to require any such person as aforesaid

Court as the President may appoint for the to sit and act as a Judge of that Court unless he
consents so to do.

Article 129:

Article 127:
Appointment of ad hoc Judges. Supreme Court to be a court of record.

(1) If at any time there should not be a The Supreme Court shall be a court of record
quorum of the Judges of the Supreme and shall have all the powers of such a court
Court available to hold or continue any including the power to punish for contempt of
session of the Court, the Chief Justice of itself.
India may, with the previous consent of
Article 130:
the President and after consultation with
the Chief Justice of the High Court con- Seat of Supreme Court.
cerned, request in writing the attendance The Supreme Court shall sit in Delhi or in such
at the sittings of the Court, as an ad hoc other place or places, as the Chief Justice of India
Judge, for such period as may be neces- may, with the approval of the President, from time

sary, of a Judge of a High Court duly to time, appoint.

qualified for appointment as a Judge of the
Supreme Court to be designated by the Article 131:
Chief Justice of India. Original jurisdiction of the Supreme Court.
(2) It shall be the duty of the Judge who has Subject to the provisions of this Constitution,
been so designated, in priority to other the Supreme Court shall, to the exclusion of any
duties of his office, to attend the sittings of other court, have original jurisdiction in any

the Supreme Court at the time and for the dispute-

period for which his attendance is re-
(a) between the Government of India and one
quired, and while so attending he shall
or more States; or
have all the jurisdiction, powers and privi-

leges, and shall discharge the duties, of a (b) between the Government of India and any
Judge of the Supreme Court. State or States on one side and one or more
other States on the other; or
Article 128: (c) between two or more States, if and in so far
Attendance of retired Judges at sittings of the as the dispute involves any question (whether
Supreme Court. of law or fact) on which the existence or
Notwithstanding anything in this Chapter, extent of a legal right depends:
the Chief Justice of India may at any time, with Provided that the said jurisdiction shall not
the previous consent of the President, request any extend to a dispute arising out of any treaty,
person who has held the office of a Judge of the agreement, covenant, engagement, sanad or other
Supreme Court or of the Federal Court 2[or who similar instrument which, having been entered
has held the office of a Judge of a High Court and into or executed before the commencement of this
is duly qualified for appointment as a Judge of the Constitution, continues in operation after such
Supreme Court] to sit and act as a Judge of the commencement, or which provides that the said
Supreme Court, and every such person so requested jurisdiction shall not extend to such a dispute.


Article 132 Article 134:
Appellate jurisdiction of Supreme Court in appeals Appellate jurisdiction of Supreme Court in regard
from High Courts in certain cases. to criminal matters.
(1) An appeal shall lie to the Supreme Court (1) An appeal shall lie to the Supreme Court
from any judgment, decree or final order from any judgment, final order or sen-
of a High Court in the territory of India, tence in a criminal proceeding of a High
whether in a civil, criminal or other pro- Court in the territory of India if the High
ceeding, if the High Court certifies under Court-
article 134A that the case involves a sub- (a) has on appeal reversed an order of
stantial question of law as to the interpre- acquittal of an accused person and
tation of this Constitution. sentenced him to death; or
(3) Where such a certificate is given, any (b) has withdrawn for trial before itself any
party in the case may appeal to the Su- case from any court subordinate to its
preme Court on the ground that any such authority and has in such trial convicted
question as aforesaid has been wrongly the accused person and sentenced him
decided. to death; or
Explanation.- For the purposes of this article, (c) 8[certifies under article 134A] that the
the expression "final order" includes an order case is a fit one for appeal to the
deciding an issue which, if decided in favour of Supreme Court:
the appellant, would be sufficient for the final Provided that an appeal under sub-clause (c)
disposal of the case. shall lie subject to such provisions as may be made
in that behalf under clause
Article 133: (1) of article 145 and to such conditions as the
Appellate jurisdiction of Supreme Court in appeals High Court may establish or require.
from High Courts in regard to civil matters.- (2) Parliament may by law confer on the
(1) An appeal shall lie to the Supreme Court Supreme Court any further powers to en-
from any judgment, decree or final order tertain and hear appeals from any judg-
in a civil proceeding of a High Court in the ment, final order or sentence in a criminal
proceeding of a High Court in the territory
territory of India 7 [if the High Court
of India subject to such conditions and
certifies under article 134A.
limitations as may be specified in such law.
(a) that the case involves a substantial
question of law of general importance; Article 135:
and Jurisdiction and powers of the Federal Court
(b) that in the opinion of the High Court under existing law to be exercisable by the
the said question needs to be decided Supreme Court.-
by the Supreme Court. Until Parliament by law otherwise provides,
(2) Notwithstanding anything in article 132, the Supreme Court shall also have jurisdiction and
any party appealing to the Supreme Court powers with respect to any matter to which the
under clause (1) may urge as one of the provisions of article 133 or article 134 do not apply
grounds in such appeal that a substantial if jurisdiction and powers in relation to that matter
question of law as to the interpretation of were exercisable by the Federal Court immediately
this Constitution has been wrongly de- before the commencement of this Constitution
cided. under any existing law.
(3) Notwithstanding anything in this article,
Article 136:
no appeal shall, unless Parliament by law
otherwise provides, lie to the Supreme Special leave to appeal by the Supreme Court.
Court from the judgment, decree or final (1) Notwithstanding anything in this Chap-
order of one Judge of a High Court. ter, the Supreme Court may, in its discre-
tion, grant special leave to appeal from the provisions of this Constitution as may appear
any judgment, decree, determination, sen- to be necessary or desirable for the purpose of
tence or order in any cause or matter enabling the Court more effectively to exercise the
passed or made by any court or tribunal jurisdiction conferred upon it by or under this
in the territory of India. Constitution.
(2) Nothing in clause (1) shall apply to any
judgment, determination, sentence or or- Article 141:

der passed or made by any court or tribu- Law declared by Supreme Court to be binding
nal constituted by or under any law relat- on all courts.

ing to the Armed Forces.
The law declared by the Supreme Court shall

Article 137: be binding on all courts within the territory of

Review of judgments or orders by the Supreme
Court. Article 142:
Subject to the provisions of any law made by
Enforcement of decrees and orders of Supreme
Parliament or any rules made under article 145,
the Supreme Court shall have power to review Court and orders as to discovery, etc.
any judgment pronounced or order made by it. (1) The Supreme Court in the exercise of its
jurisdiction may pass such decree or make
Article 138: such order as is necessary for doing com-
Enlargement of the jurisdiction of the Supreme plete justice in any cause or matter pend-
Court. ing before it, and any decree so passed or
(1) The Supreme Court shall have such fur- order so made shall be enforceable through-

ther jurisdiction and powers with respect out the territory of India in such manner
to any of the matters in the Union List as as may be prescribed by or under any law
Parliament may by law confer. made by Parliament and, until provision
(2) The Supreme Court shall have such fur- in that behalf is so made, in such manner
ther jurisdiction and powers with respect as the President may by order1 prescribe.
to any matter as the Government of India (2) Subject to the provisions of any law made
and the Government of any State may by in this behalf by Parliament, the Supreme

special agreement confer, if Parliament by Court shall, as respects the whole of the
law provides for the exercise of such juris- territory of India, have all and every power
diction and powers by the Supreme Court. to make any order for the purpose of
securing the attendance of any person, the

Article 139: discovery or production of any documents,

Conferment on the Supreme Court of powers to or the investigation or punishment of any
issue certain writs. contempt of itself.
Parliament may by law confer on the Supreme
Court power to issue directions, orders or writs, Article 143:
including writs in the nature of habeas corpus, Power of President to consult Supreme Court.
mandamus, prohibition, quo warranto and (1) If at any time it appears to the President
certiorari, or any of them, for any purposes other that a question of law or fact has arisen,
than those mentioned in clause (2) of article 32. or is likely to arise, which is of such a
nature and of such public importance that
Article 140:
it is expedient to obtain the opinion of the
Ancillary powers of Supreme Court. Supreme Court upon it, he may refer the
Parliament may by law make provision for question to that Court for consideration
conferring upon the Supreme Court such and the Court may, after such hearing as
supplemental powers not inconsistent with any of it thinks fit, report to the President.
(2) The President may, notwithstanding any- (i) rules providing for the summary
thing in the proviso to article 131, refer a determination of any appeal which
dispute of the kind mentioned in the 3[said appears to the Court to be frivolous or
proviso] to the Supreme Court for opinion vexatious or brought for the purpose of
and the Supreme Court shall, after such delay;
hearing as it thinks fit, report to the Presi- (j) rules as to the procedure for inquiries
dent its opinion thereon. referred to in clause (1) of article 317.
(2) Subject to the rules made under this article
Article 144: may fix the minimum number of Judges
Civil and judicial authorities to act in aid of the who are to sit for any purpose, and may
Supreme Court. provide for the powers of single Judges
and Division Courts.
All authorities, civil and judicial, in the territory
(3) The minimum number of Judges who are
of India shall act in aid of the Supreme Court.
to sit for the purpose of deciding any case
Article 145: involving a substantial question of law as
to the interpretation of this Constitution or
Rules of Court, etc. for the purpose of hearing any reference
(1) Subject to the provisions of any law made under article 143 shall be five:
by Parliament, the Supreme Court may Provided that, where the Court hearing an
from time to time, with the approval of the appeal under any of the provisions of this Chapter
President, make rules for regulating gen- other than article 132 consists of less than five
erally the practice and procedure of the Judges and in the course of the hearing of the
Court including appeal the Court is satisfied that the appeal
(a) rules as to the persons practising before involves a substantial question of law as to the
the Court; interpretation of this Constitution the
determination of which is necessary for the disposal
(b) rules as to the procedure for hearing
of the appeal, such Court shall refer the question
appeals and other matters pertaining to for opinion to a Court constituted as required by
appeals including the time within which this clause for the purpose of deciding any case
appeals to the Court are to be entered; involving such a question and shall on receipt of
(c) rules as to the proceedings in the Court the opinion dispose of the appeal in conformity
for the enforcement of any of the rights with such opinion.
conferred by Part III; (4) No judgment shall be delivered by the
(d) rules as to the entertainment of appeals Supreme Court save in open Court, and
under sub-clause (c) of clause (1) of no report shall be made under article 143
article 134; save in accordance with an opinion also
delivered in open Court.
(e) rules as to the conditions subject to (5) No judgment and no such opinion shall be
which any judgment pronounced or delivered by the Supreme Court save with
order made by the Court may be the concurrence of a majority of the Judges
reviewed and the procedure for such present at the hearing of the case, but
review including the time within which nothing in this clause shall be deemed to
applications to the Court for such review prevent a Judge who does not concur from
are to be entered; delivering a dissenting judgment or opin-
(f) rules as to the costs of and incidental to ion.
any proceedings in the Court and as to Article 146:
the fees to be charged in respect of
proceedings therein; Officers and servants and the expenses of the
Supreme Court.
(g) rules as to the granting of bail;
(1) Appointments of officers and servants of
(h) rules as to stay of proceedings; the Supreme Court shall be made by the
Chief Justice of India or such other Judge allowances, leave or pensions, require the
or officer of the Court as he may direct: approval of the President.
Provided that the President may by rule require (3) The administrative expenses of the Su-
that in such cases as may be specified in the rule, preme Court, including all salaries, allow-
no person not already attached to the Court shall ances and pensions payable to or in re-
be appointed to any office connected with the spect of the officers and servants of the
Court, save after consultation with the Union Court, shall be charged upon the Consoli-

Public Service Commission. dated Fund of India, and any fees or other
(2) Subject to the provisions of any law made moneys taken by the Court shall form part

by Parliament, the conditions of service of of that Fund.
officers and servants of the Supreme Court

shall be such as may be prescribed by rules High Courts

made by the Chief Justice of India or by In each state there is a High Court, which
some other Judge or officer of the Court exercises powers within the territorial jurisdiction
authorised by the Chief Justice of India to of the state concerned. A High Court consists of
make rules for the purpose: a Chief Justice and such other judges as the
Provided that the rules made under this President may, from time to time, determine.
clause shall, so far as they relate to salaries, Since the number of the judges of the State High
Court name Established Jurisdiction Seat Benches

Allahabad High Court 1866 Uttar Pradesh Allahabad Lucknow

Andhra Pradesh High Court 1954 Andhra Pradesh Hyderabad
Bombay High Court 1862 Maharashtra, Goa, Dadra and Nagar Mumbai Nagpur,
Haveli, Daman and Diu Panaji,
Calcutta High Court 1862 West Bengal, Andaman and Nicobar Calcutta Port Blair
Islands (circuit bench)
Chhattisgarh High Court 2000 Chhattisgarh Bilaspur

Delhi High Court 1966 National Capital Territory of Delhi New Delhi
Gauhati High Court 1948 Arunachal Pradesh, Assam, Manipur, Guwahati Kohima, Aizwal &
Meghalaya, Nagaland, Tripura, Mizoram Imphal. Circuit Bench
at Agartala & Shillong

Gujarat High Court 1960 Gujarat Ahmedabad

Himachal Pradesh High Court 1971 Himachal Pradesh Shimla
Jammu and Kashmir High Court 1943 Jammu & Kashmir Srinagar & Jammu
Jharkhand High Court 2000 Jharkhand Ranchi
Karnataka High Court 1884 Karnataka Bangalore Circuit Benches at
Hubli-Dharwad &
Kerala High Court 1956 Kerala, Lakshadweep Kochi
Madhya Pradesh High Court 1936 Madhya Pradesh Jabalpur Gwalior, Indore
Madras High Court 1862 Tamil Nadu, Pondicherry Chennai Madurai
Orissa High Court 1948 Orissa Cuttack
Patna High Court 1916 Bihar Patna
Punjab and Haryana High Court 1947 Punjab, Haryana, Chandigarh Chandigarh
Rajasthan High Court 1949 Rajasthan Jodhpur, Jaipur
Sikkim High Court 1975 Sikkim Gangtok
Uttaranchal High Court 2000 Uttarakhand Nainital


courts has not been fixed by the constitution, it establishment and Constitution of the Supreme
varies from court to court. Appointments of the Court of India. The article lays down that the
judges of the High Court shall be made by the Supreme Court shall consist of Chief Justice of
President by warrant under his hand and seal. India and not more than such number of judges
The President consults the Chief Justice of India as Parliament may by law prescribe. It further
and the Governor of the state and the Chief Justice provides that every judge shall be appointed by
of the High Court concerned in making the the President by warrant under his hand and seal
appointment. In case, of the appointment of the after consultation with such of the judges of the
Chief Justice of the High Court, the President will Supreme Court and of the High courts in the
consult the Chief Justice of India and the Governor States as the President may deem necessary for
of the state concerned. the purpose and shall hold office until he attains
the age of 65 years. The Supreme Court judge may
Qualifications and Conditions of Service resign his office by writing in his hand addressed
A person shall not be qualified for appointment to the President. Clause (4) of article 124 provides
as a judge of High court unless he is a citizen of that a judge of Supreme court shall not be
India and has either held for at least ten years a removed from his office except by an order of the
judicial office in the territory of India or has for President passed after an address by each House
at least ten years been an advocate of a High court of Parliament supported by a majority off total
in any state. The salary allowance and other membership of that House and by a majority of
amenities enjoyed by the judges of High Courts not less than two-third of the Members of that
cannot be modified to their disadvantage during House present and voting presented to the
their tenure of office. However, the President is President in the same session for such removal on
authorised to reduce their salaries during the the ground of proved misbehaviour or incapacity.
proclamation of financial emergency. As the
Provision to article 217(1) and article 218 indicate
salaries and other expenses of the judges and the
that provisions of clauses (4) and (5) of article 124
maintenance of state High Courts are charged to
the Consolidated Fund of the state, they are to equally apply for the removal of a judge of the
subject to the vote of the state legislature. High Court.
A judge shall hold office till he attains the age Clause (5) of article 124 empowers Parliament
of sixty two years. However, he may resign his to regulate the procedure for the presentation of
office by writing to the President. He can be an address and for the investigation and proof of
removed from his office by the President, in the the misbehaviour or incapacity of a judge by law.
manner provided for the removal of a judge of A suggestion in the Constituent Assembly that the
the Supreme Court. A judge can be removed from matter may first be investigated by a judicial
his office before the expiry of his term on grounds committee was rejected. Article 124 is an attempt
of proved misbehaviour or incapacity. However, to make the judiciary totally independent of the
such an action can be taken by the President only executive or legislature so that the judiciary can
if both the House of Parliament pass a resolution
adjudicate constitutional and legal questions
by a two thirds majority of the members present
fearlessly and impartially.
in each House which should also be the majority
of the total membership of the House. Jurisdiction of High Court
How a Judge of the Supreme Court or The High Court of a state enjoys the following
High Courts can be removed? powers:-
A complex procedure for removal of judges is 1. Original: The original criminal jurisdic-
usually laid down in the constitution. The framers tion of the High Court has been completely
of Indian Constitution were conscious of the value taken away by the criminal procedure
of an independent judiciary and made elaborate Code, 1973. The original civil jurisdiction
provisions to secure the same. has been retained by the courts in respect
Article 124 of the Constitution provides for the of actions of higher value.
2. Appellate: The appellate jurisdiction of 5. The Writ Jurisdiction of High Court:
the High Court is both civil and criminal. Every High Court shall have power
Appeals from the decisions of the District throughout the territories in relation to
Judges and from those of Subordinate which it exercises jurisdiction to issue to
Judge in case of a higher value, lie direct any person or authority including the
to the High Court. On questions of fact as Government within those territories, or-
well as law when any court subordinate ders or writs including writs in the nature

to the High Court decides an appeal from of habeas corpus, mandamus, prohibition,
the decision of an inferior court, a second quo warranto and certiorari or any of

appeal lies to the High Court from the them for enforcement of the fundamental
decisions of the lower appellate court but rights guaranteed by the constitution, and

only on question of law and procedure. for any other purposes (Article 226). The
The criminal appellate jurisdiction of the power may also be exercised by any High

High Court extends to appeals from the Court exercising jurisdiction in relation to
decisions of a Sessions Judge or an Addi- the territories within which the cause of
tional Sessions Judge, where the sentence action, wholly or in part, arises for the
of imprisonment exceeds seven years and exercise of such power, notwithstanding
from the decisions of an Assistant Session that the seat of such government or au-
Judge. thority or the residence of such person is
3. Power of Superintendence: According to not within those territories.
Article 227, every High Court has the 6. Power of Appointment: According to
power of superintendence over all courts Article 229, the Chief Justice of the High
and tribunals, except those dealing with Court, is empowered to appoint officers

the armed forces functioning with its ter- and servants of the Court. The Governor
ritorial jurisdiction. Interpreting the scope may in this respect require the Court to
of this power, the Supreme Court said that consult the Public Service Commission of
all types of tribunals including the election the state. He also consults the High Court
tribunals operating within a state are sub- in the appointment, posting, and promo-
ject to the superintendence of the High tion of district judges and along with the
Courts and further, that the "superinten- state Public Service Commission in ap-
dence is both judicial and administrative.

pointing person to the judicial service of

4. Control over Subordinate Court: As the the state. The Chief Justice is also
head of the judiciary in the state, the High authorised to regulate the conditions of
Court has got an administrative control service of the staff subject to any law made

over the subordinate judiciary in the state by the state legislature in this respect. The
in respect of certain matters, besides its power of the Chief Justice to appoint any
appellate and supervisory jurisdiction over member of the staff of the High Court also
them. Article 228 empowers the High includes his power to dismiss any such
Court to transfer constitutional cases from member form the service of the court. The
lower courts. Thus, if the Court is satisfied powers of posting and promotions and
that a case pending in one of its subordi- grant of leave to persons belonging to the
nate courts involves a substantial question judicial service is also vested in the High
of law as to the interpretation of the Court. The constitution also provides for
constitution, the determination of which is charging all the administrative expenses of
necessary for the disposal of the case, it the High Court on the Consolidated Funds
shall then withdraw the case and may of the State.
either dispose of the case itself or deter-
mine the constitutional question and then Subordinate Courts
send the case back to the court where from As mentioned earlier, the judiciary of a state
it was withdrawn. consists of a high court and a hierarchy of
subordinate courts, also known as lower courts. secure the independence of the subordinate
The subordinate courts are so called because of judiciary.
their subordinate to the state high court. They The Constitution also empowers the governor
function below and under the high court at to apply the above provisions regarding
district and lower levels. subordinate courts to any class or classes of
Articles 233 to 237 in Part VI of the Constitution magistrate in the state.
make the following provisions to regulate the
organisation of subordinate courts and to ensure RULE OF LAW
their independence from the executive. The Rule of Law- is a basic requirement for a
1. Appointment of District Judges democratic government. And for the maintenance
of rule of law, there must be an independent and
The appointment, positing and promotion of
impartial judiciary. It is embodied in the concept
district judges in a state are made by the governor of rule of law that equality before the law or equal
of the state in consultation with the high court. protection of the laws is ensured to all citizens,
A person to be appointed as district judge and every citizen is protected from arbitrary
should have the following qualifications: exercise of power by the State. Thus in a state
(a) He should not already be in the service of the professing the rule of law, the aim should be to
Central or the state government. provide for a system which secures to its citizens
adequate procedure for the redress of their
(b) He should have been an advocate or a grievances against the state before forums which
pleader for seven years. are able to administer justice in an impartial
(c) He should be recommended by the high manner without any fear or favour.
court for appointment.
Rule of Law in India
The expression 'district judge' includes judge
of a city civil court, additional district judge, joint Each country has devised its own system to
district judge, assistant district judge, chief judge ensure the maintenance of the rule of law. The
of a small cause court, chief presidency magistrate, Indian Constitution embodies the modern concept
additional chief presidency magistrate, sessions of the rule of law with the establishment of a
judge, additional sessions judge and assistant judicial system which should be able to work
impartially and free from all influences. The rule
sessions judge.
of law pervades over the entire field of
2. Appointment of other Judges administration and every organ of the State is
Appointment of person (other than district regulated by the rule of law. The concept of the
judges) to the judicial service of a state are made rule of law would lose its vitality if the
by the governor of the state after consultation with instrumentalities of the state are not charged with
the State Public Service Commission and the high the duty of discharging their function in a fair and
court. just manner. It has been held that the rule of law
pervades the Constitution as its basic feature and
The expression 'judicial service' means a service cannot be taken away even by an amendment of
consisting exclusively of persons intended to fill the Constitution.
the post of district judge and other civil judicial
posts inferior to the post of district judge. Constitutional Provisions for Rule of Law
3. Control over Subordinate Courts Fundamental Rights: Indian Constitution
enshrines the fundamental rights to individuals
The control over district courts and other
which operate as limitations on the exercise of
subordinate courts including the posting, powers by the government. If there is an
promotion and leave of person belonging to the infringement of the Fundamental Rights of a
judicial service of a state and holding any post citizen, the rule of law requires that there should
inferior to the post of district judge is vested in the be a proper forum for the address of his grievances.
court. This control is vested in the high court to For this purpose, it is provided that an aggrieved
person may even move the Supreme Court directly is the self-imposed discipline of judicial restraint.
by appropriate proceedings for the enforcement of The doctrine of judicial review does not permit the
his fundamental rights. The rule of law under the court to direct or advise the executive in matters
Constitution thus serves the needs of the people. of policy or to sermonize vis-à-vis any matter
It recognises the social reality and tries to adjust which under the Constitution lies within the
itself to it from time to time avoiding the sphere of Legislature or the Executive, provided
authoritarian path. those authorities do no transgresses their

It is specifically provided that the state shall constitutional limits or statutory powers.
not deny to any person, equality before the law
Judicial Review in India

or the equal protection of law. The absence of
arbitrary power is the first essential of the rule of The phrase "judicial review" is not anywhere

law upon which the Indian constitutional system used in the Indian Constitution. But, the framers
is based. In a system governed by the rule of law, of Indian Constitution intended this power to be

discretion, when conferred upon executive exercised by the courts while interpreting any law
authorities, must be confined within clearly defined passed by the Parliament or State-legislatures.
limits. This means that decision should be made Till 1967 the Supreme Court had exercised the
by the application of known principles and rules power of judicial review with restraint. But in
and, in general, such decisions should be predictable
I sGolaknath case, 1967, the Supreme Court
and the citizen should know where he stands.
overruled previous decisions and declared that the
Directive Principles: The Indian Constitution Parliament could not amend the Constitution to
lays down in Part IV the Directive Principles of take away or abridge any of the Fundamental
State Policy. It enjoins to bring about a social order Rights. This decision resulted in a public
in which justice, social, economic and political, controversy over the sovereignty of Parliament.

shall prevail all the institutions of national life. It Then, came two other judgments of the Supreme
directs it to work for an egalitarian society where Court - the Bank Nationalization case and the
there is no concentration of wealth, where there Privy Purses case. These cases also questioned the
is plenty, where there is equal opportunity for all, supremacy of the parliament. Soon thereafter in
to education, to work, to livelihood, and where
a newly elected Lok Sabha following the 1971
there is social justice.
elections, the Parliament passed 24th , 25th and
It is true that the representatives of the people 26th constitution Amendment bills to neutralise
are charged with the responsibility of realising the

the effect of the three above-mentioned Supreme

aims and objectives of the Constitution, but left to Court judgments. In the famous Keshavanand
themselves there is a possibility that uncontrolled Bharati Case, 1973, the Supreme Court reversed
and unrestricted power might lead to an the Golaknath Case ruling and upheld Parliament's
authoritarian State. It is here that the DPSPs. come

right to amend the Constitution including the

into picture & serve as the beacon lights for both Fundamental Rights, but not the 'basic structure
the politicians as well as the judiciiary who is
or framework' of the Constitution. The Supreme
responsible for ensuring that the govt. of the day
Court holds the view that the Parliament is not
respects the rights of the people & acts as per rule
omnipotent to change the basic structure of the
of law.
JUDICIAL REVIEW Impact of the 42nd Amendment
Judicial Review means the power of the courts The 42nd Amendment enacted during the
to declare a law made by legislature beyond the Emergency made far-reaching changes to curtail
powers given to it by the Constitution as ultravires the powers of the courts and to make the Parliament
of the Constitution and hence void. Judicial review sovereign. Firstly, the 42nd Amendment stated
is a powerful weapon to restrain any that no amendment to the Constitution could be
unconstitutional exercise of power by the questioned in a Court of Law. And "for the
Legislature and the Executive. The only check on removal of the doubts, it is hereby declared that
the exercise of power by the judiciary, however, there shall be no limitation what ever on the
constituent power of Parliament to amend by way significant strides to maintain the rule of law,
of addition, variation or repeal the provisions of which is the bedrock of our Constitution.
this constitution." In this manner, through this
Amendment the Supreme Court's power to judicial Significance of Judicial Review
review of constitutional amendments was taken It is said that there is a shift from the traditional
away to establish the complete and total judicial role to judicial activism, from passivity to
sovereignty of Parliament. The Amendment stated creativity, in that the courts are taking judicial
that: notice of the changing needs of the society and
(a) A High Court cannot pronounce invalid any evolving new tools for redressing public wrongs.
Central law, Public Interest Litigation based on the enlarged
(b) The Supreme Court shall not pronounce a concept of locus standi, has developed on account
State law as unconstitutional unless a Central of judicial activism. In several matters, the Courts
law has also been challenged. have provided relief through the 'judicial review',
such as, in cases concerning the deprived or
Further, the minimum number of judges of the
disadvantaged sections of the society, prisoners,
Supreme Court who shall sit to determine the
environmental degradation, closure of polluting
constitutional validity of any Central or State law
industries in Delhi, encroachments and
shall be seven and in the case of High Court, five.
unauthorised constructions, immediate medical
It was also stated that a majority of not less than
aid by government hospitals to seriously injured
two- thirds of the judges hearing such a case must
persons, reparations to riot-victims, professional
agree before a law is declared invalid. But after
college admissions, contempt involving
this the 43rd Amendment was passed which
disobedience or imperviousness to court orders,
restored the pre-emergency position of the Supreme
corruption in high places, or malfeasance of public
Court's power of judicial review over laws passed
servants (including Ministers) involving breach of
by state legislatures and Parliament. As far as
public trust, etc.
Parliament's sovereignty with regard to amending
the Constitution is concerned, there is no change. Conclusion
The power of Parliament to amend the Constitution
exists as under the 42nd Amendment, however Undoubtedly, the maxim "the King can do no
the judgment of the Supreme Court in the Minerva wrong" or absolute immunity of the government
Mills case in May 1980 was a setback to the is not recognised in our legal system, rather
position of unlimited powers claimed by the independence and impartiality which are the two
Parliament to amend any part of Constitution. basic attributes essential for proper discharge of
This judgment recognized only limited powers of judicial functions are emphasized upon. In fact,
the Parliament to amend the Constitution without "judicial activism" is nothing but Judiciary's
altering the basic structure. insistence that the rule of law must guide the
Legislature and the Executive in enacting or
Constitutional Provisions enforcing the laws of the land. Judicial review is
Article 32 of the Constitution makes the a constitutionally embraced concept, which has
Supreme Court the ultimate guardian of the been streesed upon in cases like Minerva Mills
Fundamental Rights of the citizens and clothes it Ltd.v. Unin of India, S.P.Sampath Kumar v.
with the power to issue writs for their enforcement. Union of India. Subhesh Sharma v. Union of
Article 142 gives the Apex Court wide powers to India,etc. Judicial review, in India is a power born
proonounce orders as are necessary in the interest from the first principles of democratic
of justice for doing complete justice in any cause constitutionalism & is today an area of great
or matter before it, in addition to its powers to promise. It is an essential part of the rule of law.
make decisions under article 131 to 136. Article However, it must also be kept in view that the
142 contains no words of limitation and has actual governance of the country is certainly the
enabled the court to intervene in a wide variety sphere of the Executive which is accountable to
of cases. Starting with Union Carbide Corpn. v. Parliament. Neither the Executive nor the Judiciary
Union of India, (1991) Supreme Court has made should exceed their legitimate functions. Only
WHAT QUESTIONS ARE RAISED AGAINST of the Constitution and its interpretation is binding
JUDICIAL REVIEW? on all courts, tribunals and authorities in this
country. Under article 141 of the Constitution, the
Following are the main questions raised by the
law declared by the Supreme Court is binding on
critics of Judicial Review:
all parties. So, if there is any doubt that any
● Is the judiciary expanding its powers at the ex-
particular organ of Government has exceeded its
pense of the executive?
powers, the interpretation ultimately rests with
● Are the courts reaching the boundaries of the rule

the Supreme Court.
of separation of powers?
Even the powers granted by the Constitution
● Do the new dimensions, which the judicial review

to the Members of Parliament and the Assembly
has brought in, are attempts to tread on territory
are subject to other provisions of the Constitution.

hitherto reserved for the Executive?
They cannot act arbitrarily; nor can they deprive
● Is there a government by the Judiciary, unsup-
the citizens of their fundamental rights arbitrarily.

ported by any popular mandate?
There is a provision in the Constitution for codifying
● What is the line where the courts will stop?
the laws relating to the privileges of legislatures
These questions often agitate the minds of think- and if Parliament makes such a law that infringes
ing people. The public opinion is divided on these with Article 13 of the Constitution; validity of the
issues and the biggest question that remains unan-
same can be tested before the Supreme Court in
swered is - "whether the judiciary has exceeded the
the same manner as any other legislation. So, the
limits of its legitimate functions?"
scheme of the Constitution does not contemplate
that Parliament or a State Legislature is not at all
then the two organs of the State can function liable to be questioned for any violation of law
harmoniously. Self restraint is the key to the whole since rule of law is the corner-stone of the

issue. Constitution of India. Though Legislatures in

India have plenary powers they function within
JUDICIARY VS. LEGISLATURE limits prescribed by the material and relevant
provisions of the Constitution.
Conflict between legislature and the judiciary
has often given rise to anxiety and grave concern Main areas of conflict
to the governments at the Centre and the States. Following are the Main areas of conflict
The executive heaves a sigh of relief when the between the Legislature and the Judiciary:

conflict gets resolved or the matter is put in the (a) Existence, extent and scope of Parliamentary
cold storage after initial heat over the powers each privileges and power of Legislatures to punish
of these wings of the States enjoy under the for contempt,
Constitution subsidies. There are a number of (b) Interference in the proceedings of

cases where friction between the two has arisen. Parliament/Legislatures,

There has been a perennial conflict not only inndia
(c) Decisions given by the Presiding Officers of
but also in England about the respective rights and
Legislatures under the Anti-defection law;
privileges of Members of Parliament and the
(d) Decision given by the Presiding Officers of
The Indian Scene Legislatures in administration of their
In India, under the written Constitution, the
three organs of the Government, viz. the Conclusion
Legislature, judiciary and the executive, have to
function within their respective powers and none With an aim to reduce the conflict between the
of them can exceed its powers. Whether, any one Legislature and Judiciary, it is recommended that
of these organs has exceeded its powers or not, is the Presiding Officers should not be made party
a matter of judicial interpretation. In several personally in a suit pertaining to the administrative
decisions of the Supreme Court, it has been held matters of their Secretariats. The suit, in turn,
that the Supreme Court is the ultimate interpreter could be filed against the concerned Legislature


WHAT ARE THE POWERS, PRIVILEGES AND of privileges of Legislatures may be highly desirable,
IMMUNITIES OF MEMBERS OF LEGISLATURES? a view-point which is strongly supported by the
press and the media. It is a matter of satisfaction
The relevant provision of the Constitution relating
that there have not been too many cases where
to powers, privileges and immunities of the mem-
bers of Parliament and State Legislatures is incor-
the Legislature was called upon to exercise its
porated under Article 105 & Article 194 respectively. powers for punishing for the breach of privilege
These Articles provide that: and contempt of the House. But, the relations
(1) Subject to the provisions of the Constitution between legislature and judiciary in the context of
and to the rules and standing orders regu- privileges and immunities would continue to cause
lating the procedure of the Legislatures, there some uneasiness till the time grammar and spirit
shall be freedom of speech in the Legisla- of democratic form of government became the
ture of the Union and of every State. grain of Indian society.
(2) No member of any Legislature shall be li- Anyways, it is needless to say that the strength
able to any proceedings in any court in re- of the democracy lies in the existence of harmonious
spect of anything said or any vote given by relations among different organs of the State, in
him in the Legislature or any committee particular, Legislature and Judiciary. These relations
thereof, and no person shall be so liable in can be harmonized through informal mechanisms
respect of the publication by or under the
and mutual understanding. After all, every detail
authority of a House of such a Legislature of
relating to the functioning of democracy cannot
any report, paper, votes or proceedings.
be put in black and white.
(3) In other respects, the powers, privileges and
immunities of a House of any Legislature,
and of the members and committees of a
House of such Legislature, shall be such as & MUNICIPALITIES
may from time to time be defined by that
Legislature by law, and until so defined, shall Rural Local Bodies
be those of that House and of its members
and committees immediately before the The Constitution (73rd Amendment) Act,
coming into force of section 26 of the Con- 1992 has added a new Part IX consisting of 16
stitution (Forty-fourth Amendment) act, 1978. Articles and the Eleventh Schedule to the
It must be noted that although the Constitution Constitution. The 73rd Amendment Act
(Forty-fourth amendment) Act, 1978 omitted refer- envisages the Gram Sabha as the foundation of
ence to the British House of Commons for the pur- the Panchayati Raj System to perform functions
pose of determining the powers and privileges of and powers entrusted to it by the State
Houses of Parliament in India, in the absence of legislatures. The amendment provide for a three
enactment of any law defining them, these privi- tier Panchayati Raj System at the village,
leges, in effect, remained the same as those of the intermediate and district levels. Small states
British House of Commons at the commencement with population below twenty lakh have been
of the Constitution. given the option not to constitute the Panchayats
at the intermediate level. The Act provides that
through the Secretary of the Legislature who the Panchayat bodies will have an assured
could represent the legislature in the Court and if duration of five years, with elections mandatory
necessary, appear personally in the case. But, it is after this period. However, one thing is to be
NOT recommended to enlarge the scope of article noted that under the Amendment Act the
361 to provide the same protection to the Presiding establishment of Panchayats and the devolution
Officers as enjoyed by the President of India and of necessary powers and authority on the
the Governors of States. Some critics opine that Panchayati Raj institutions are vested in the
there was no need to codify the privileges of the State Governments. In view of this it may be
Legislature. This argument is understandable as it said that the success of the Panchayati Raj
is based on the apprehension that it will give rise institutions as a unit of democracy and thereby
to more judicial interference. On the other hand, ushering an all around development of rural
from the point of view of citizens, the codification areas will much depend on the intention and
support of the State Governments. Without (a) the Chairpersons (Chairman) of the
honest intention, these institutions would be Panchayats at the village level, in the
misused by rural rich and poor and illiterate Panchayats at the intermediate level or in
masses will remain a mute supporters as it is the case of a State not having Panchayats at
happening in Parliamentary and State Assembly the intermediate level, in the Panchayats in
elections in the Country. the district level;
The salient features of the Seventy-Third (b) the Chairpersons of the Panchayats at the

Constitutional Amendment Act may be intermediate level, in the Panchayats at the
summarised as follows: district level;

Gram Sabha: Article 243A provides that the (c) the members of the Lok Sabha and the

Gram Sabha may exercise such powers and Legislative Assembly of the State
perform such functions at the village level as the representing constituencies which comprise

legislature of a State may by law provide. The wholly or partly a Panchayat area at the
73rd amendment thus envisages the Gram Sabha level other than the village level, in such
as the foundation of Panchayati Raj System. Panchayats;
‘Gram Sabha’ means a body consisting of persons (d) the members of the Rajya Sabha and
registered in the electoral rolls relating to village Legislative Council of the State where they
comprised within the area of Panchayat at the
are registered as electors.
village level.
The Chairperson of a Panchayat and other
Constitution of Panchayats: Article 243B
members of Panchayat whether or not chosen
visualises a three-tier Panchayati Raj System. It
by direct election from territorial constituencies
provides that in every State there shall be
in the Panchayat area shall have the right to
constituted Panchayats at the village,

vote in the meetings of Panchayat.

intermediate and district levels. Small states
having a population not exceeding twenty lakhs The Chairperson of a Panchayat at the
have been given an option not to constitute the village level shall be elected in such a manner
Panchayats at the intermediate level. as the legislature of a State may by law, provide.
The Chairperson of a Panchayat at the
Composition of Panchayats: Article 243C
intermediate level or district level shall be elected
provides that, subject to the provisions of this
by, and amongst, the elected members thereof.
part the legislature of a State may by law make

provisions with respect to the composition of Disqualifications for Membership: A

Panchayats. However, the ratio between the person shall be disqualified for being chosen as,
population of the territorial area of a Panchayat and for being a member of Panchayats:
at any level and the number of seats in such (a) if he is so disqualified by or under any law

Panchayats to be filled by election shall, so far for the time being in force for the purposes
as practicable, be the same throughout the of elections to the legislature of the State
State. concerned;
All the seats in a Panchayat shall be filled by (b) if he is so disqualified by or under any law
persons chosen by direct election from territorial made by the legislature of the State.
constituencies in the Panchayat area. For this But no person shall be qualified on the
purpose each Panchayat area shall be divided ground that he is less than 25 years of age,
into territorial constituencies in such manner under clause (a), if he has attained the age of
that the ratio between the population of each 21 years.
constituencies and the number of seats allotted If any question arises as to whether a member
to it, so far as practicable, be the same throughout of a Panchayat has become subject to any of the
the Panchayat area. qualifications mentioned in clause (1) the
The legislature of a State may by law provide question shall be referred for the decision of
for representation of following persons in such authority and in such manner as the
Panchayats : legislature of a State may, by law, provide.
Reservation of Seats in Panchayats: Article Panchayats at any level in favour of backward
243D provides that in every Panchayats seats classes of citizens.
shall be reserved for the Scheduled Castes and Duration of Panchayats : According to
Scheduled Tribes. The number of seats so Article 243E every Panchayat, unless sooner
reserved shall be, as nearly as may be, in the dissolved under any law for the time being in
same proportion to the total number of seats to force, shall continue for five years from the date
be filled by direct election in that Panchayat as appointed for its first meeting. No amendment
the population of the SCs and STs in that of any law in force shall have effect of causing
Panchayat area bears to the total population of dissolution of a Panchayat at any level which
that area and such seats may be allotted by is functioning before such amendment till the
rotation to different constituencies in a expiration of its normal period of five years.
Panchayat. An election to constitute a Panchayat must
Out of total number of seats reserved under be completed :
clause (1) not less than 1/3 seats shall be (a) before the expiry of its duration;
reserved from women belonging to the SCs and
(b) before the expiration of a period of six
STs. [Clause (2)] Out of total number of seats to
months from the date of its dissolution.
be filled by direct election in every Panchayat
not less than 1/3 (including the number of seats But where the remainder of the period for
reserved for SC’s and ST’s women) seats shall which the dissolved Panchayat would have
be reserved for women. Such seats may be continued in less than six months, it shall not
allotted by rotation to different constituents in be necessary to hold any election under this
a Panchayat. [Clause (3)] clause for constituting the Panchayat for such
The office of the Chairpersons in the
Panchayats at the village or any other level shall Powers, Authority and Responsibility of
be reserved for SCs, STs, and women in such Panchayats : Article 243G, provides that subject
manner as the legislature of a State may, by law, to the provisions of this Constitution the
provide. But the number of offices of legislature of a State may, by law, endow the
Chairpersons reserved for the SCs and STs in Panchayats with such powers and authority as
the Panchayats at each level in any State shall may be necessary to enable them to function as
be, as nearly as possible, in the same proportion an institution of self government. Such law may
to the total number of such offices in the contain provision for the devolution of powers
Panchayats at each level in proportion of the and responsibilities upon Panchayats subject to
total population of the SCs and STs in the State. such conditions as may be specified therein,
However, not less than 1/3 of the total number with respect to :
of the offices of Chairperson in the Panchayat (a) the preparation of plans for economic
at each level shall be reserved for women. The development and social justice;
number of offices reserved under this clause (b) the implementation of schemes for social
shall be allotted by rotation to different development and social justice as may be
Panchayats at each level. entrusted to them including those in relation
The reservation of seats under clauses (1) to the matters listed in the Eleventh Schedule.
and (2) and the reservation of offices of The matters listed in the Eleventh Schedule
Chairperson (other than the reservation for are as follows:
women) under clause (4) shall cease to have 1. Agriculture, including agricultural exten-
effect on the expiration of the period specified sion.
in Article 334. [Clause (5)] 2. Land improvement, implementation of
Reservation for Backward Classes : The land reforms, land consolidation and soil
legislature of a State is empowered under clause conservation.
(6) to make provision or reservation of seats in 3. Minor irrigation, water management and
any Panchayat or office of Chairpersons in the watershed development.


4. Animal husbandry, dairying and poultry. tolls and fees levied and collected by the
5. Fisheries. State Government for such purposes and
6. Social forestry and farm forestry. subject to such conditions and limits;
7. Minor forest produce. (c) provide for making such grants-in-aid to the
8. Small-scale industries, including food pro- Panchayats from the Consolidated Fund for
cessing industries. the State; and
9. Khadi, village and cottage industries. (d) provide for constitution of such funds for

10. Rural housing. crediting all moneys received, by or on behalf
11. Drinking Water. of the Panchayats and also for the

12. Fuel and fodder. withdrawal of such money therefrom.
13. Roads, culverts, bridges, ferries, water-

Finance Commission : Article 243-I provides
ways and other means of communication.
for the establishment of a Finance Commission
14. Rural electrification, including distribu-

for reviewing financial position of the
tion of electricity.
15. Non-conventional energy sources. Panchayats. The Governor of a State shall within
16. Poverty alleviation programme. one year from the commencement of the
17. Education, including primary and second- Constitution (73rd Amendment) Act, 1992 and
ary schools. thereafter at the expiration of every fifth year,
18. Technical training and vocational educa- constitute a Finance Commission. The legislature
of the State may by law, provide for the
19. Audit and non-formal education. composition of the Commission, the qualifications
20. Libraries. requisite for appointment of its members and
21. Cultural activities. the manner in which they shall be selected.

22. Markets and fairs. It shall be the duty of the Finance Commission
23. Health and sanitation, including hospitals, to review the financial position of the Panchayats
primary health centres and dispensaries. and to make recommendations to the Governor
24. Family welfare. as to:
25. Women and child development.
(a) the principles which should govern :
26. Social welfare, including welfare of the
handicapped and mentally retarded. (i) the distribution between the State and the
27. Welfare of the weaker sections, and in Panchayats of the net proceeds of the

particular, of the Scheduled Castes and taxes, duties, tolls and fees leviable by the
the Scheduled Tribes. State, which may be divided between
28. Public distribution system. them under this Part and the allocation
29. Maintenance of community assets. between the Panchayats at all levels of

It is to be noted that Article 243G is subject their respective shares of such proceeds;
to the provisions of the Constitution. This means (ii) the determination of the taxes, duties, tolls
that the normal distribution of powers under and fees which may assigned to, or appro-
Article 245 and 246 cannot be effected by the priated by, the Panchayats;
State legislature while vesting with powers and (iii) the grants-in-aid to the Panchayats from
authorities upon the Panchayats. the Consolidated Fund of the State;
Powers to Impose Taxes and Funds of (b) the measures needed to improve the financial
Panchayats : Article 243H empowers a State position of the Panchayats;
legislature to make by law provision for imposing (c) any other matter referred to the Finance
taxes etc. by the Panchayats, such a law : Commission by the Governor in the interests
(a) authorize a Panchayat to levy, collect and of sound finance of the Panchayats.
appropriate such taxes, duties, tolls and fees The commission shall determine its procedure
in accordance with such procedure and and shall have such powers in the performance
subject to such limits; of its functions as the State legislature may, by
(b) assign to a Panchayat such taxes, duties, law, confer on it.
The Governor shall cause every 1. the scheduled areas referred to in clause
recommendation made by the Commission (1) and tribal areas referred to in clause (2)
together with an explanatory memorandum as of Article 244;
to the action taken thereon to be laid before the 2. the State of Nagaland, Meghalaya and
legislature of the State. Mizoram;
“The Governor shall cause every 3. the hill areas in the State of Manipur for
recommendation made by the Commission which District Councils exist under any
together with an explanatory memorandum as law for the time being in force;
to the action taken thereon to be laid before the 4. to Panchayats at the district level of the hill
legislature of the State areas of the District of Darjeeling in the
State of West Bengal for which Darjeeling
“The State Finance Commission under
Gorkha Hill Council exists under any law
Panchayatri Raj Law is designed to ensure
for the time being in force;
regional balance in the distribution of State and
5. shall affect the functions and powers of
Central Funds.”
the Darjeeling Gorkha Hill Council consti-
Audit of Accounts of Panchayats : The tuted under such law.
legislature of a State may, by law, make provision Notwithstanding anything in this
with respect to the maintenance of accounts by Constitution:
the Panchayats and the auditing of such
(a) The State Legislature of Nagaland,
Meghalaya and Mizoram may, by law,
Elections to the Panchayats : Under Article extend this Part to that State, except the
243K the superintendence, direction and control areas referred to in clause (1) if the Legislative
of the preparation of electoral rolls and conduct Assembly of that State passes a resolution to
of all elections to the Panchayats shall be vested that effect by a majority of the total
in a State Election Commission consisting of the membership of that House and by a majority
State Election Commissioner to be appointed by of not less than two-third of the members of
the Governor. Subject to the provisions of any that House present and voting;
law made by the State legislature, the conditions
(b) Parliament may, by law, extend the provisions
of service and tenure of office of the State
of Part 9 to the Scheduled areas and Tribal
Election Commissioner shall be such as the
areas referred to in clause (1) subject to such
Governor may by rule determine. The State
exceptions and modifications as may be
Election Commissioner shall not be removed
specified in such law, such law shall not be
from his office except in like manner and on like
deemed to be amendment of this Constitution
grounds as a Judge of a High Court. The for the purposes of Article 368.
conditions of service of the State Election
Continuance of Existing Laws and
Commissioner shall not be varied to his
Panchayats : Article 243N provides that not
disadvantage after his appointment.
withstanding anything in Part 9 or any provision
The Governor of State shall, when so of any law relating to Panchayats in force in a
requested by the State Election Commissioner, State immediately before the commencement of
make available to Commission such staff as may the Constitution (73rd Amendment) Act, 1992,
be necessary for the discharge of its functions. which is inconsistent with the provisions of Part
The State legislature may, subject to the 9, shall continue to be in force until amended
provisions of this Constitution, by law, make or repealed by a competent legislature or other
provision with respect to all matters relating to competent authority or until the expiration of
or in connection with elections to the Panchayats. one year from such commencement, whichever
Part not to apply to Certain Areas : Article is earlier.
243M provides that Part 9 shall not apply to the However, all the Panchayats existing
following areas : immediately before such Government shall
continue till the expiration of their duration, • to authorise a Panchayat to levy, collect and
unless sooner dissolved by resolution passed by appropriate some taxes, duties, tolls and
the Legislative Assembly of that State or in a fees;
State having a Legislative Council, by each • to assign to the Panchayat, some taxes,
House of the Legislature of the State. duties, tolls levied and collected by the State
Courts not to interfere in Electoral Matters: Government;
Article 243-O bars the interference by courts in • to provide for making grants-in-aid to the

electoral matters of Panchayats. It provides that Panchayats from the Consolidated Fund of
notwithstanding anything in this Constitution the State; and

the validity of any law relating to the delimitation • to provide for constitution of such funds for

of constituencies or the allotment of seats to Panchayats for crediting all money received
such constituencies made under Article 243K by or on behalf of Panchayats and also the

shall not be called in question in any court. withdrawal of such money therefrom.
The validity of an election to any Panchayat Article 243-I of the Constitution provides for
can be challenged only through an election constitution of a State Finance Commission
petition presented to such authority and in such (SFC) to review the financial position of
manner as provided by any law made by the Panchayats and to make recommendations to
legislature of a State. the Governor regarding the principles governing
Financial Powers of Panchayati Raj the major issues mentioned in Article 243-H.
Urban Local Bodies
Article 243-G of the Constitution of India—
The Narsimha Rao Government introduced

introduced by the 73rd Amendment—deals with

a Constitution Amendment Bill pertaining to
the question of powers, authority and
urban local bodies in the Lok Sabha on September
responsibilities of Panchayats. It reads thus :
16, 1991. With a few modifications, it was
“Subject to the provisions of the Constitution, essentially based on the 65th Amendment Bill
the legislature of the State may, by law, endow brought by the then Prime Minister, Rajiv Gandhi
the Panchayats with such powers and authority and which was defeated in the Rajya Sabha in
as may be necessary to enable them to function October 1989. The Bill was passed by both the

as institutions of self-government and such law Houses in December 1992. It received the assent
may contain provisions for the devolution of of the President on April 20, 1993 and was
powers and responsibilities upon Panchayats at published in the gazette on the same day as the
the appropriate level, subject to such conditions Constitution 74th Amendment Act, 1992.

as may be specified therein, with respect to—(a) Part IX-A has been added to the constitution.
the preparation of plans for economic This amendment has added 18 new articles and
development and social justice; and (b) the a new twelfth schedule relating to urban local
implementation of such schemes for economic bodies in the constitution.
development and social justice as may be
The objectives of 74th Constitution
entrusted to them including those in relation to Amendment Act include decentralization of
the matters listed in the Eleventh Schedule.” power and ensuring popular participation in
While Article 243-G of the Constitution planning management and delivery of civil
visualises Panchayats as institutions for self- services. It introduces some fundamental changes
government, it subjects the extent of devolution in the system of municipal governance. Duration
of powers and functions to the will of the State of elected municipal governments, participation
Legislatures. of women and weaker sections in urban affairs
As per Article 243-H of the Constitution, and enabling framework for efficient delivery of
State Legislatures have been empowered to public services were regarded as appropriate
enact laws; subject covered by constitutional provisions.


Accordingly, the 74th Constitutional other factors as he may deem fit, specify by
Amendment Act provided for: public notification for the purpose of this Part.
Definitions: Composition of Municipalities:
In this Part, unless the context otherwise (1) Save as provided in clause (2), all the seats
requires, in Municipality shall be filled by persons
(a) “Committee” means a Committee constituted chosen by direct election from the territo-
under article 243S; rial constituencies in the Municipal area
and for this purpose each Municipal area
(b) “District” means a district in a State;
shall be divided into territorial constituen-
(c) “Metropolitian area” means an area having cies to be known as wards.
a population of ten lakhs or more, comprised (2) The Legislature of a State may, by law,
in one or more districts and consisting of two provide:
or more Municipalities or Panchayats or
(a) For the representation in a
other contiguous areas, specified by the
Municipality of:
Governor by public notification to be a
Metropolitan area for the purposes of this (i) Persons having special knowledge
Part; or experience in Municipal
(d) “Municipal area” means the territorial area administration;
of a Municipality as is notified by the (ii) The members of the House of the
Governor; People and the members of the
(e) “Municipality” means an institution of self- Legislative Assembly of the State
government constituted under article 243Q; representing constituencies which
(f) “Panchayat” means a Panchayat constituted comprise wholly or partly the
article 243B; Municipal area;
(g) “Population” means the population as (iii) The members of the Council of
ascertained at the last preceding census of States and the members of the
which the relevant figures have been legislative Council of the State
published. registered as electors within the
Municipal area;
Constitution of Municipalities:
(1) There shall be constituted in every State: (iv) The Chairpersons of the
(a) A Nagar Panchayat (by whatever Committees constituted under
name called) for a transitional area, clause (5) of article 243S:
that is to say, an area in transition Provided that the persons referred to in
from a rural area to an urban area; paragraph (i) shall not have the right to vote in
(b) A Municipal Council for a smaller the meetings of the Municipality;
urban area; and (b) The manner of election of the Chairperson
(c) A Municipal Corporation for a larger of a Municipality.
urban area. Constitution and Composition of Wards
In accordance with the provisions of this Committees:
Part: (1) There shall be constituted Wards Commit-
Provided that a Municipality under this tees, consisting of one or more wards,
clause may not be constituted in such urban within the territorial area of a Municipal-
area or part thereof as the Governor may, ity having a population of three lakh or
having regard to the population of the area, the more.
density of the population therein, the revenue (2) The Legislature of a State may, by law,
generated for local administration, the make provision with respect to:
percentage of employment in non-agricultural (a) The composition and the territorial
activities, the economic importance or such area of a Wards Committee;
(b) The manner in which the seats in a (4) The offices of Chairpersons in the Munici-
Wards Committee shall be filled. palities shall be reserved for the Scheduled
(3) A member of a Municipality representing Castes, the Scheduled Tribes and women
a ward within the territorial area of the in such manner as the legislature of a State
Wards Committee shall be a member of may, by law, provide.
that Committee. (5) The reservation of seats under clauses (1)
(4) Where a Wards Committee consists of: and (2) and the reservation of offices of

Chairpersons (other than the reservation
(a) One ward. The member representing
for women) under clauses (3) shall cease
that ward in the Municipality; or

to have effect on the expiration of the
(b) Two or more wards, one of the period specified in article 334

members representing such wards in (6) Nothing in this Part shall prevent the
the Municipality elected by the Legislature of a State from making any

members of the Wards Committee, provision for reservation of seats in any
shall be the Chairperson of that Municipality or offices of Chairpersons in
Committee. the Municipalities in favour of backward
(5) Nothing in this article shall be deemed to class of citizens.
prevent the legislature of a State from Duration of Municipalities:
making any provision for the constitution (1) Every Municipality, unless sooner dissolved
of Committees in addition to the Wards under any law for the time being in force,
Committee. shall continue for five years from the date
Reservation of Seats: appointed for its first meeting and no
(1) Seats shall be reserved for the Scheduled longer:

Castes and the Scheduled Tribes in every Provided that a Municipality shall be given
Municipality and the number of seats so a reasonable opportunity of being heard before
reserved shall bear, as nearly as may be, its dissolution.
the same proportion to the total number of (2) No amendment of any law for the time
seats to be filled by direct election in that being in force shall have the effect of
Municipality as the population of the causing dissolution of a Municipality at
Scheduled Castes in the Municipal area or any level, which is functioning immedi-

of the Scheduled Tribes in the Municipal ately before such amendment, till the ex-
area bears to the total population of that piration of its duration specified in class
area and such seats may be allotted by (1).
rotation to different constituencies in a

(3) An election to constitute a Municipality

Municipality. shall be completed:
(2) Not less than one-third of the total number (a) Before the expiry of its duration
of seats reserved under clause (1) shall be specified in clause (1).
reserved for women belonging to the Sched-
uled Castes or, as the case may be, the (b) Before the expiration of a period of six
Scheduled Tribes. months from the date of its dissolution:
(3) Not less than one-third (including the Provided that where the remainder of the
number of seats reserved for women be- period for which the dissolved Municipality
longing to the Scheduled Castes and the would have continued is less than six months,
Scheduled Tribes) of the total number of it shall not be necessary to hold any election
seats to be filled by direct election in every under this clause for constituting the
Municipality shall be reserved for Municipality of such period.
women and such seats may be allotted by (4) A Municipality constituted upon the dis-
rotation to different constituencies in a solution of a Municipality before the expi-
Municipality. ration of its duration shall continue only


for the remainder of the period for which conferred upon them including those in
the dissolved Municipality would have relation to the matters listed in the Twelfth
continued under clause (1) had it not been Schedule.
so dissolved. Power to impose taxes by, and Funds of, the
Disqualification for Membership: Municipalities:
(1) A person shall be disqualified for being The Legislature of a state may, by law,
chosen as, and for being, a member of a (a) Assign to a Municipality such taxes, duties,
Municipality: tolls and fees in accordance with such
(a) If he is so disqualified by or under any procedure and subject to such limits;
law for the time being in force for the
(b) Assign to a Municipality such taxes, duties
purposes of elections to the Legislature
tolls and fees levied and collected by the
of the State concerned:
State Governments for such purposes and
Provided that no person shall be disqualified subject to such conditions and limit;
on the ground that he is less than twenty-five
(c) Provide for making such grants-in-aid to the
years of age, if he has attained the age of
withdrawal for such moneys therefrom, as
twenty-one years;
may be specified in the law,
(b) If he is so disqualified by or under any
law made by the legislature of the (d) Provide for constitution of such funds for
State. crediting all moneys received, respectively,
by or on behalf of the Muniscipalities and
(2) If any question arises as to whether a
member of a Municipality has become also for the withdrawal for such moneys
subject to any of the disqualifications therefrom, as may be speciefied in the law.
mentioned in clauses (1), the question shall Finance Commission:
be referred to for the decision of such (1) The Finance Commission constituted un-
authority and in such manner as the der Article 24-I shall also review the finan-
legislature of a State may, by law, provide. cial position of the Municipalities and
Powers, Authority and Responsibilities of make recommendations to the Governor
Municipalities: as to:
Subject to the provisions of this Constitution, (a) The principles which should govern:
the legislature of a State may, by law, endow: (i) The distribution between the State
(a) The Municipalities with such powers and and the Municipalities of the net
authority as may be necessary to enable proceeds of the taxes, duties, tolls
them to function as institutions of self- and fees leviable by the State,
government and such law may contain which may be divided between
provisions for the devolution of powers and them under this Part and the
responsibilities upon Municipalities, subject allocation between the
to such conditions as may be specified therein, Municipalities at all level of their
with respect to: respective shares of such proceeds;
(i) The preparation of plans for economic (ii) The determination of the taxes,
development and social justice;
duties, tolls and fees which may
(ii) The performance of functions and the be assigned to, or appropriated
implementation of schemes as may be by, the Municipalies;
entrusted to them including those in
(iii) The grant-in-aid to the
relation to the matters listed in the
Twelfth Schedule; Municipalities from the
Consolidated Fund of the States;
(b) The Committees with such powers and
authority as may be necessary to enable (b) The measure needed to improve the
them to carry out the responsibilities financial position of the Municipalities;
(c) Any other matter referred to the (2) Nothing in this Part shall be construed to
Finance Commission by the Governor affect the function and powers of the
in the interest of sound finance of the Darjeeling Gorkha Hill Council consti-
Municipalities. tuted under any law for the time being in
(2) The Governor shall cause every recom- force for the hill areas of the district of
mendation made by the Commission un- Darjeeling in the State of West Bengal.
der this article together with an explana- (3) Notwithstanding anything in this Consti-

tory memorandum as to the action taken tution, Parliament may, by law, extend the
thereon to be laid before the Legislature of provision of this Part to the Scheduled

the State. Areas and the tribal areas referred to in
clause (1) subject to such exception and

Audit of Accounts of Municipalities:
modifications as may be specified in such
The Legislature of a State may, by law, make
law, and no. such law shall be deemed to

provisions with respect to the maintenance of
be an amendment of this Constitution for
accounts by the Municipalities and the auditing
the purposes of Article 368.
of such accounts.
Committee for District Planning:
Elections to the Municipalities:
(1) There shall be constituted in every State at
(1) The Superintendence, direction and con-
I the district level a District Planning Com-
trol of the preparation of electoral rolls, mittee to consolidate the plans prepared
for, and the conduct of, all elections to the by the Panchayats and the Municipalities
Municipalities shall be vested in the State in the district and to prepare a draft
Election Commission referred to in Article development plan for the district as a
243K. whole.

(2) Subject to the provisions of this Constitu- (2) The Legislature of a State may, by law,
tion, the Legislature of a State may, by make provision with respect to:
law, make provision with respect to all (a) The composition of the District
matters relating to, or in connection with, Planning Committees;
elections to the Municipalities.
(b) The manner in which the seats in such
Application to Union Territories: Committee shall be filled:
The provisions of this Part shall apply to the Provided that not less than four-fifths of the

Union territories and shall, in their application total number of members of such Committee
to a Union territory, have effect as if the shall be elected by, and from amongst, the
references to the Governor of a State were elected members of the Panchayats at the district
reference to the Administrator of the Union level and of the Municipalities in the district in

territory appointed under Article 239 and proportion to the ration between the population
references to the Legislature or the Legislature of the rural areas and of the urban areas in the
Assembly of a State were references in relation district;
to a Union territory having a Legislative (c) The functions relating to district
Assembly, to that Legislative Assembly. planning which may be assigned to
Provided that the President may, by public such Committees;
notification, direct that the provisions of this (d) The manner in which the Chairpersons
Part apply to any Union territory or part thereof of such Committees shall be chosen.
subject to such exception and modification as he (3) Every District Planning Committee shall,
may specify in the notification. in preparing the draft development plan,
Part not to apply to certain areas: (a) Have regard to :
(1) Nothing in this Part shall apply to the (i) Matters of common interest
Scheduled Areas referred to in clause (1), between the Panchayats and the
and the tribal areas referred to in clause Municipalies including spatial
(2), of Article 244. planning, sharing of water and


other physical and natural (a) Have regarded to:
resources, the integrated (i) The plans prepared by the
development of infrastructure and Municipalities and the Panchayats
environmental conservation; in the metropolitan area;
(ii) The extent and type of available (ii) Matters of common interest
resources whether financial or between the Municipalities and
otherwise; the Panchayats, including co-
(b) Consult such institutions and ordinated spatial planning of the
organizations as the Governor may, area, sharing of water and other
by order, specify. physical and natural resources,
(4) The Chairperson of every District, Plan- the integrated development of
ning Committee shall forward the devel- infrastructure and environmental
opment plan, as recommended by such conservation;
Committee, to the Government of the State.
(iii) The overall objectives and priorities
Committee for Metropolitan Planning: set by the Government of India
(1) There shall be constituted in every Metro- and the Government of the State;
politan area a Metropolitan Planning Com-
(iv) The extent and nature of
mittee to prepare a draft development
investments likely to be made in
plan for the Metropolitan area as a whole.
the metropolitan area by agencies
(2) The Legislature of a State may, by law,
of the Government of India and of
make provision with respect to:
the Government of the State and
(a) The composition of the Metropolitan
other available resources whether
Planning Committee;
financial or otherwise;
(b) The manner in which the seats in such
(b) Consult such institutions and
Committees shall be filled;
organizations as the Governor may,
Provided that not less than two-thirds of the be order, specify.
members of such Committee shall be elected by, (4) The Chairperson of every Metropolitan
from amongst, the elected members of the
Planning Committee shall forward the
Municipalities and Chairpersons of the
development plan, as recommended by
Panchayats in the Metropolitan area in
such Committee, to the Government of the
proportion to the ratio between the population
of the Municipalities and of the Panchayats in
that area; Continuance of existing laws and Municipalities:
(c) The representation in such Committees Notwithstanding anything in this Part, any
of the Government of India and the provision of any law relating to Municipalities
Government of the State and of such in force in a State immediately before the
organizations and Institutions as may commencement of the Constitution (Seventy-
be deemed necessary for carrying out fourth Amendment) Act, 1992, which is
the functions assigned to such inconsistent with the provisions of this Part,
committees; shall continue to be in force until amended or
repealed by a competent Legislature or other
(d) The function relating to planning and
competent authority or until the expiration of
coordination for the Metropolitan
one year from such commencement whichever
areas which may be assigned to such
is earlier:
Provided that all the Municipalities existing
(e) The manner in which the Chairpersons
immediately before such commencement shall
of such Committees shall be chosen.
continue till the expiration of their duration,
(3) Every Metropolitan Planning Committee
unless sooner dissolved by a resolution passed
shall, in preparing the draft development to that effect by the Legislative Assembly of that
plan, State or, in the case of a State having a Legislative
Council, by each House of the Legislature of President and Vice-President held under
that State. this Constitution shall be vested in a Com-
Bar to interference by courts in electoral matters mission (referred to in this Constitution as
Notwithstanding anything in this the Election Commission).
Constitution, (2) The Election Commission shall consist of
the Chief Election Commissioner and such
(a) The validity of any law relating to the
number of other Election Commissioners,
delimitation of constituencies or the allotment

if any, as the President may from time to
of seats to such constituencies, made or
time fix and the appointment of the Chief
purporting to be made under Article 243ZA

Election Commissioner and other Election
shall not be called in question in any court;

Commissioners shall, subject to the provi-
(b) No election to any Municipality shall be sions of any law made in that behalf by
called in question except by an election

Parliament, be made by the President.
petition presented to such authority and in (3) When any other Election Commissioner is
such manner as is provided for by or under so appointed the Chief Election Commis-
any law made by the legislature of a State. sioner shall act as the Chairman of the
Thus, the 74th Constitution Amendment Election Commission.
Act] 1992 aims at constitutional guarantees to (4) Before each general election to the House
safeguard the interests of urban local of the People and to the Legislative Assem-
governments to enable them function as effective bly of each State, and before the first
democratic and self-governing institutions at general election and thereafter before each
grass-root level. It provides a constitutional biennial election to the Legislative Council
status to the structure and mandate of these of each State having such Council, the

bodies. The Act also provides for public President may also appoint after consulta-
participation through elected Municipalities, tion with the Election Commission such
Wards Committees and Planning Committees, Regional Commissioners as he may con-
with the Committee members being mostly from sider necessary to assist the Election Com-
elected representatives. mission in the performance of the func-
tions conferred on the Commission by

AND ITS REFORM (5) Subject to the provisions of any law made
The more the elections are free and fair, the by Parliament, the conditions of service
stronger the allegiance the people will have and tenure of office of the Election Com-
towards democratic institutions. Thus, the Con- missioners and the Regional Commission-

stitution of India provides for an independent ers shall be such as the President may by
Election Commission to safeguard the faith of rule determine:
people towards democracy. Specific constitu- Provided that the Chief Election Commis-
tional provisions regarding Elections are as sioner shall not be removed from his office
follows: except in like manner and on the like grounds
as a Judge of the Supreme Court and the
Article 324: conditions of service of the Chief Election Com-
Superintendence, direction and control of missioner shall not be varied to his disadvantage
elections to be vested in an Election Commis- after his appointment:
sion.- Provided further that any other Election
(1) The superintendence, direction and con- Commissioner or a Regional Commissioner shall
trol of the preparation of the electoral rolls not be removed from office except on the recom-
for, and the conduct of, all elections to mendation of the Chief Election Commissioner.
Parliament and to the Legislature of every (6) The President, or the Governor of a State,
State and of elections to the offices of shall, when so requested by the Election
on grounds of religion, race, caste or sex.- There
TORAL SYSTEM? shall be one general electoral roll for every
territorial constituency for election to either
Parliament has made a law to ensure free and House of Parliament or to the House or either
fair elections and a very comprehensive system of House of the Legislature of a State and no
elections has been developed in the country. The
person shall be ineligible for inclusion in any
experiences of the last Elections have shown the
merits and demerits of the system to the people.
such roll or claim to be included in any special
Minor changes have since been made in the sys- electoral roll for any such constituency on
tem, still our electoral process in beset with many grounds only of religion, race, caste, sex or any
problems: of them.
● First, is the mounting expenditure of elections,
incurred both by the Government on organising
Article 326:
them and, more particularly, by the parties and Elections to the House of the People and to
candidates on fighting them. The political parties the Legislative Assemblies of States to be on the
and their candidates have, therefore, come in- basis of adult suffrage.- The elections to the
creasingly to rely on business sources. The busi- House of the People and to the Legislative
ness contributions are mostly in cash and from Assembly of every State shall be on the basis of
unaccounted money. Another source is the
adult suffrage; that is to say, every person who
wealth amassed by the gangs of anti-social ele-
is a citizen of India and who is not less than
ments, smugglers, dacoits, and industrial mafias.
[eighteen years] of age on such date as may be
● Secondly, even more than money power factor
fixed in that behalf by or under any law made
which vitiates the elections is the muscle power,
acting in aid of the candidates belonging to domi-
by the appropriate Legislature and is not oth-
nant castes and communities in a constituency. erwise disqualified under this Constitution or
any law made by the appropriate Legislature on
● Thirdly, it has also been observed that due to
large number of candidates, the winner candidate
the ground of non-residence, unsoundness of
very often wins by minority votes. The percent- mind, crime or corrupt or illegal practice, shall
age of votes polled by political parties also does be entitled to be registered as a voter at any such
not correspond to their percentage of seats. The election.
majority party generally wins with minority votes.
● Fourthly, the dependence of the Election Com-
Article 327:
mission on the central and state governments for Power of Parliament to make provision with
the conduct of the polls is another serious defect respect to elections to Legislatures.- Subject to
in the existing electoral system. Many Presiding the provisions of this Constitution, Parliament
Officers at the polling booths have been caught may from time to time by law make provision
stamping the ballot papers and putting them in- with respect to all matters relating to, or in
side the ballot boxes during the night before the
connection with, elections to either House of
Parliament or to the House or either House of
● Fifthly, candidates with criminal records are con-
the Legislature of a State including the prepa-
testing elections and getting elected by using
ration of electoral rolls, the delimitation of
strong arms.
constituencies and all other matters necessary
for securing the due constitution of such House
Commission, make available to the Election or Houses.
Commission or to a Regional Commissioner
such staff as may be necessary for the dis- Article 328:
charge of the functions conferred on the
Power of Legislature of a State to make
Election Commission by clause (1). provision with respect to elections to such Leg-
Article 325: islature.-Subject to the provisions of this Consti-
tution and in so far as provision in that behalf
No person to be ineligible for inclusion in, or is not made by Parliament, the Legislature of a
to claim to be included in a special, electoral roll State may from time to time by law make
provision with respect to all matters relating to, 2. Simultaneous Elections
or in connection with, the elections to the House To curb the election expenditure, it would
or either House of the Legislature of the State help much if elections are simultaneously held
including the preparation of electoral rolls and for the Lok Sabha, State Assembly and also the
all other matters necessary for securing the due local bodies (through constitutional amendments
constitution of such House or Houses. their term can be easily made uniform). This
would drastically reduce election expenditure

Article 329: of all kinds and would incidentally promote
Bar to interference by courts in electoral development of a healthy party system at all

matters.-Not withstanding anything in this Con- levels of administrative structure.

stitution - 3. State Funding
(a) the validity of any law relating to the In addition to the simultaneous holding of

delimitation of constituencies or the allot- elections, some system of funding of electoral
ment of seats to such constituencies, made campaigns is absolutely necessary. A simple
or purporting to be made under article 327 procedure can be adopted:
or article 328, shall not be called in question
Candidates of a recognised political party
in any court;
and independents, who have received more
(b) no election to either House of Parliament or
than, say 25 per cent of the valid votes polled
to the House or either House of the Legisla-
in a particular constituency in a previous elec-
ture of a State shall be called in question
tion, should be entitled to receive a fixed
except by an election petition presented to
contribution in two installments equal to three-
such authority and in such manner as may
fourth of the limit imposed by the Election
be provided for by or under any law made

Commission on the election expenditure. The

by the appropriate Legislature.
amounts should be given directly to qualified
Electoral Reforms: Suggestions candidates seeming re-election and not to the
parties. Bossism prevails in all parties, and, if
Electoral reforms and other measures have
the funds are distributed through the parties,
become imperative to overcome the threat to
blatant discrimination would be practised. The
democracy and carry democratic process for- accounts should be indicated by machinery set
ward. To improve the drawbacks and loop- up by the Election Commission. There should

holes in the electoral system, many reforms have be limit on leaflets and posters issued and
been proposed. Some of them are as follows: advertisements contributed by the candidates
1. Independent Election Machinery and parties during the elections.

The Election Commission should have its 4. Election Time Table

own administrative machinery at the state level In order to help reduce the heavy expenses
and its powers should be considerably aug- incurred by the candidates in electioneering, the
mented. At present, the Election Commission scrutiny of nomination should be taken up on
is completely at the mercy of the Central and the day after the last date for making nomina-
State governments. It cannot even maintain the tions, the interval allowed after the scrutiny of
electoral rolls up-to-date without assistance from nominations for the withdrawal of candidatures
the state government. In these circumstances, should be reduced to 2 days and the minimum
the independence of the election system would period prescribed for the election campaign
always be under constant threat from the vested should be reduced to 15 days.
interests dominating the party in power which
5. Election Machines
in fact controls the administration. Unless, the
Commission is provided with an independent There is a need to use electronic machines in
cadre and enjoys the same degree of autonomy the voting process. The only difference here is
as the judiciary, its impartiality will remain a the voter has to press a button instead of
theoretical concept. marking a ballot paper. The use of electronic


gadgets for election purpose will in the long run ary power for unfair and improper political gains.
add to the savings. A mandatory provision should, therefore, be made
6. Speedy disposal of election disputes to hold such elections within six months from the
day of vacancy or dissolution.
Election petitions also take a long time to be
disposed of. Although, it is inquired by law that 10. Election Expenditure
the election petition should be disposed of within Expenses incurred by the candidates and the
6 months of its filing, yet seldom this is done. party be taken into consideration while ac-
The J.P committee, while agreeing that the counting for election expenditure. Having re-
election petitions should be filed only in High gard to the present costs, proper limits on
Courts also recommends that the cases should expenditure should be fixed in consultation
be so distributed among a large number of with the opposition parties. Expenditure in-
judges that they are expeditiously disposed of curred by some voluntary organisations should
(at least within the stipulated period of 6 months) also form part of the election expenses. All these
expenses must be required to be examined by
7. Proportional Representation with List
chartered accountants and any false entries
should be made rigorously punishable
The present majority system should be re-
placed by a system of proportional representa- Recommendations of Famous Committees
tion. Of all the system of representation, pro-
Tarakunde Committee (Joint Parliamentary
portional representation will be best suited to
our conditions to ensure that legislative bodies,
i.e. the Lok Sabha and the state Assembly - In August, 1974, Jaya Prakash Narayan
more correctly reflect the popular support, the appointed a committee to study and report on
different political parties enjoy in a state or in a scheme for election reform. The following
the country as a whole. The legislative bodies were the recommendations:
will mirror the correlation of the political forces 1. The Election Commission should be appointed
and trends. Seats should be allotted in propor- by the President on the advice of a Commit-
tion to the valid polled votes of the different tee consisting of the PM, the leader of the
political parties. Of the various form of the opposition in the Lok Sabha and Chief Jus-
proportional representation, the most demo- tice.
cratic and feasible for our conditions will be list 2. The Election Commission should be a three-
system. The electorate votes for the party list as member body.
a whole. 3. The minimum age for voting should be 18
8. Caretaker Government at the Centre and years.
in the States 4. The TV and Radio should be placed under the
In the case of Lok Sabha and Assembly control of autonomous statutory corporation.
elections, the Central Government as well as the 5. The Committee recommended the formation
State Governments should function only as of Voters Council in as many constituencies
caretaker governments during a minimum pe- as possible which can help in free and fair
riod immediately preceding the election and it election.
should include some leaders of the opposition Goswami Committee
parties. In January 1990, the then Prime Minister
9. Delay in Elections Vishwanath Pratap Singh convened a meeting of
Many times there is an inordinate delay in political parties in Parliament and set up the
holding by-elections or elections to Assembly after Dinesh Goswami Committee on electoral reforms
their dissolution. These create a lot of bitterness under the chairmanship of the Law Minister. The
and suspicion. Even though it is the discretion of Dinesh Goswami Committee completed its work
the Government to announce the election sched- in five months in May 1990 and made far-
ule, it will be disastrous to utilise such discretion- reaching recommendations encompassing the
Election Commission, delimitation and enrolment the cost of the exchequer, use of official
of eligible candidates including that a person media for partisan coverage of political
should not be allowed to contest elections from news, announcement or sanctioning of
more than two constituencies of the same class. financial grants in any form or making
Other important recommendations of the Com- payments out of discretionary funds and
mittee are as follows: laying of foundation stones for projects.
1. On booth capturing, the committee felt that 6. It called for a ban on transfer of officials and staff

even after the 1988 amendment of the Rep- connected with election work and giving the
resentation of the People's act the evil per- commissions observers statutory powers.

sisted and recommended a series of legisla- 7. The panel called for fixing of a six month

tive measures to eradicate booth capturing, time limit for holding by-elections.
rigging and intimidation. The recommended 8. It also said that a standing committee of

steps include ordering of repoll or counter- Parliament should be constituted to go into
manding not only on the report of the all matter from time to time as electoral
returning officer but even otherwise and reforms were a continuous process.
giving the Commission the power to appoint 9. The committee said that it was satisfied that
investigation agencies, prosecuting agencies the electronic voting machine was free from
I any scope of manipulation of temporability
and ask for the constitution of special courts.
2. The power of deciding the legal aspect of and should be used in all future general and
disqualification should be taken away from, by-elections.
the Speaker or Chairman and entrusted to Indrajit Gupta Committee
the President or Governor who will act It was in June 1998 that the Indrajit Gupta
Committee was set up to go into the central

according to the Election Commission's rec-

ommendations. Nominated members of the issue of election funding. Preceded by an all-
House should also incur disqualification, if India party meet a month earlier in May 1998,
they joined any political party at any period the Indrajit Gupta Committee finalised its re-
of time. port on December 30, 1998.
3. A person should not be allowed to contest The committee headed by the late CPI stal-
election from more than two constituen- wart stressed that the state funding of elections
cies. Age qualification for contesting elec- was fully justified - constitutionally and legally.

tions to Legislative Assemblies and Lok It observed that such funding should be con-
Sabha should be reduced to 21 years and fined to parties recognised as national or state
parties by the Election Commission. To begin
Legislative Councils and Council of States
with only a part of the financial burden of
to 25 years.

political parties may be shifted to the state. A

4. For discouraging non-serious candidates, the
greater burden could be progressively shifted to
security deposit in their cases should be the states so that ultimately all their legitimate
Rs.5,000 for Lok Sabha election and Rs.2,500 expenses become a charge on the state. The
for Assembly elections. This will be forfeited committee suggested that state funding be in
if they fail to secure one-fourth of the votes kind not cash.
instead of one sixth as at present. The
It desired the creation of a separate election
number of proposers to a nomination paper fund for meeting the expenses on state funding
filed by them should be ten, drawn from of elections. To begin with the Central Govern-
different Assembly segments. ment may contribute Rs 600 crore annually at
5. The committee has said that there should the rate of Rs 10 per elector for the total
be statutory backing for some of the im- electorate of 60 crore in the country (which has
portant provisions of the model code of since gone up to 68-70 crore). The state govern-
conduct like use of official machinery and ments all taken together may contribute a
personnel, including aircraft and ve- matching amount proportionately or Rs 600
hicles, issue of advertisement matter at crore annually according with the present fi-
nancial arrangement between the Centre and cal movement compelling the British Indian
the states whereby all capital expenses on elec- Government to consider setting up of a Public
tion items are shared by them on a 50:50 basis. Service Commission for recruitment to its ser-
The Indrajit Gupta Committee said each vices in the territory. Thus, the first Public
candidate of a recognised political party be Service Commission was set up on 1 October
provided the following: 1926 by the then British Indian Government in
● specified quantity of petrol or diesel for response to the demands of Indian politicians
vehicles used for an election campaign, that the superior Civil Services be Indianized.
● specified quantity of paper for printing elec- The functions of this Public Service Commission
tion literature and unofficial identity slips were largely advisory and, because of this limi-
for distribution to voters, tation, it failed to satisfy the demands of Indian
● postal stamps of a specified amount, political parties associated with the struggle for
● five copies of electoral roll of the constitu- freedom. The British Indian government then
ency, set up a Federal Public Service Commission and
● a set of loudspeakers for every Assembly provided for the formation of provincial level
constituency or for every Assembly segment Public Service Commission under the Govern-
of a parliamentary constituency, ment of India Act 1935.
● subject to a maximum of six such sets for the The Constituent Assembly, after indepen-
entire parliamentary constituency, dence, saw the need for giving a secure and
● one deposit-free telephone with specified autonomous status to Public Service Commis-
number of free calls for the main campaign sion both at Federal and Provincial levels for
office in every Assembly constituency/seg- ensuring unbiased recruitment to Civil Services
ment (subject to a maximum of six such as also for protection of service interests. With
telephones for the entire parliamentary con- the promulgation of the new Constitution for
stituency); and independent India on 26th January, 1950, the
● minimum arrangements for his camps out-
Federal Public Service Commission was ac-
side each polling station on the day of poll.
corded a constitutional status as an autono-
The committee noted that political parties mous entity and given the title – Union Public
must submit their annual accounts regularly to Service Commission.
the income tax authorities showing details of
receipts and expenditure. No state funding should Constitutional Provisions
be provided to any party or its candidates if
annual returns for the previous assessment year The Union Public Service Commission
have not been filed under the Income Tax Act. (UPSC) is the central recruiting agency in India.
It is an independent constitutional body in the
CENTRAL AND STATE “PUBLIC sense that it is directly created by the Constitu-
tion of India. The Constitution contains elabo-
rate provisions regarding the composition, ap-
pointment and removal of members, powers
Union Public Service Commission and functions and independence of the UPSC.
The Union Public Service Commission Apart from UPSC, the Constitution also pro-
(UPSC) is a constitutional body in India autho- vides for a State Public Service Commission
rized to conduct examinations for appointment (SPSC) for each state and a Joint State Public
to the various Civil Services of India. The Indian Service Commission (JSPSC) for two or more
Constitution (Part XIV - Services under the states. While the SPSC is created, like UPSC,
Union and the states - Article no. 315 to 323) directly by the Constitution, a JSPSC can be
provides for a Public Service Commission for the created by an act of Parliament on the request
union and a Public Service Commission for each of the legislature of the States concerned. The
state. UPSC can also serve the needs of a state on the
Indianization of the superior Civil Services request of the state Governor and with the
became one of the major demands of the politi- approval of the President of India.
There shall be a Public Service Commission (b) On the ground of misbehaviour according
for the Union and a Public Service Commission to the report of the Supreme Court which
for each State or a Joint Public Service Commis- shall hold an enquiry on this matter on a
sion for a group of States if the Parliament reference being made by the President.
provides for the establishment of such a Joint Thus, even in the case of a State Commis-
Public Service Commission in Pursuance of a sion, it is only the President who can make a
resolution to that effect being passed by the reference to the Supreme Court and make an

State Legislatures concerned. The Union Public order or removal in pursuance of the report of
Service Commission also may, with the ap- the Supreme Court. The Governor has only the

proval of the President, agree to serve the needs power to pass an interim order of suspension

of a State, if so requested by the Governor of that pending the final order of the President on
State [Art. 315]. receipt of the report of the Supreme Court [Art.

The number of members of the Commission 317(1)—(2)].
and their conditions of service shall determined If a member’s term comes to an end while
(a) by the President in the case of the Union or a reference under. Art. 317(1) is pending in the
a Joint Commission, and (b) by the Governor of Supreme Court the reference does not become
the State in the case of a State Commission; infructuous and the court must answer it.
provided that the conditions of service of a
A member shall be deemed to be guilty of
member of a Commission shall not be altered to
his disadvantage after his appointment. misbehaviour—
(i) if he is in any way concerned or interested
Appointment and Term of office of Members in any contract made on behalf of the
The appointment of the Chairman and Government of India or of a State; or

members of Commission shall be made–(a) in (ii) if he participates in any way in the profit
the case of the Union or a Joint Commission, by of such contract or agreement or in any
the President; and (b) in the case of a State benefit therefrom otherwise than as a
Commission, by the Governor of the State. Half member and in common with other mem-
of the members of a Commission shall be per- bers of an incorporated company. [Art.317
sons who have held office under the Govern- (4)].
ment of India or of a State for at least ten years The Constitution seeks to maintain the inde-

[Art. 316]. pendence of the Public Service Commission

The term of service of a member of a Com- from the Executive in several ways—
mission shall be six years from the date of his
Independence of the Commission
entering upon office, or until he attains the age

of sixty five years in the case of Union Commis- The Constitution seeks to maintain the inde-
sion or of sixty two years in the case of a State pendence of the Public Service Commission
or a Joint Commission. But a member’s office from the Executive in several ways—
may be terminated earlier, in any of the follow- (a) The Chairman or a member of a Commis-
ing ways: sion can be removed from office only in the
(i) By resignation in writing addressed to–the manner and for the grounds specified in
President in the case of the Union or a the Constitution.
Joint Commission, or the Governor in the (b) The condition of service of a member of the
case of a State Commission. Public Service Commission shall not be
(ii) By removal by the President— varied to his disadvantage after his ap-
(a) If the member is adjudged insolvent; or pointment [Proviso to Art. 318]
engages himself during his term in paid (c) The expenses of the Commission are
employment outside the duties of his of- charged on the Consolidated Fund of In-
fice; or is in the opinion of the President dia or of the State (as the case may be)
infirm in mind or body; [Art. 322].


(d) Certain disabilities are imposed upon the Functions of Public Commission
Chairman and members of the Commis-
The following are the duties for Union and
sion with respect to future employment
the State Public Service Commission—
under the Government [Art. 319].
To conduct examination for appointment to
Thus, on ceasing to hold office—
the service of the Union and the service of the
1. The Chairman of Union Public Service State respectively.
Commission shall be ineligible for further
To advise on any matter so referred to them
employment either under the Government
and on any other matter which the President or,
of India of Under the Government of a
as the case may be, the Government of a State
may refer to the appropriate Commission [Art.
2. The Chairman of a State Public Service
Commission shall be eligible for appoint-
ment as the Chairman or any other mem- To exercise such additional functions as
ber of the Union Public Service Commis- maybe provided for by an act of Parliament or
sion or as the Chairman of any other State of the Legislature of a State—as respects the
Public Service Commission, but not for service of the Union or the State and also as
respect the service of any local authority or
any other employment either under the
other body corporate constituted by law or of
Government of India or under the Govern-
any public institution [Art 321].
ment of a State;
3. A member other than the Chairman of the To present annually to the President or the
Union Public Service Commission shall be Governor, a report as to the work done by the
eligible for appointment as the Chairman Union or the State Commission, as the case may
of the Union Public Service Commission or be [Art. 323].
as the Chairman of a State Public Service It shall be the duty of the Union Public
Commission, but not for any other em- Service Commission, if requested by any two or
ployment either under “the Government more States so to do, to assist those State in
of India or under the Government of a framing and operating schemes of joint recruit-
State; ment for any services for which candidates
4. A member other than the Chairman of a possessing special qualification are required [Art.
State Public Service Commission shall be 320 (2)].
eligible for appointment as the Chairman The Public Service Commission for the Union,
or any other member of the Union Public if requested so to do by the Governor of a State,
Service Commission or a the Chairman of may, with the approval of the President, agree
that or any other State Public Service to serve all or any of the needs of the State.
Commission, but not for any other em- The additional functions relating to the Ser-
ployment either under the Government of vices of the Union can be conferred on UPSC
India or under the Government of a State. by the Parliament. It can also place the person-
In short, the bar against employment under nel system of any local authority, corporate
the Government is absolute in the case of the body or public institution within the jurisdiction
Chairman of the Union Public Service Commis- of the UPSC. Hence the jurisdiction of UPSC
sion; while in the case of the Chairman of a can be extended by an act made by the Parlia-
State Public Service Commission or of the other ment.
members of the Union or State Commission, The rules and regulations made and orders
there is scope of employment in a higher post issued by the Union executive can entrust cer-
within the Public Service Commission but not tain functions to the UPSC. This is done without
outside. any reference being made to the Parliament.
The Public Service Commission are advisory The UPSC also performs certain functions
bodies. It is open to the government to accept on the basis of the conventions. For instance, it
the recommendation or depart from it. has been conducting, since 1948, written exami-


nations for the selection of armed forces. It has or of a Sate, may specify the matters in
also been selecting scientists and technicians which either generally, or in any particu-
who are deputed to various fields. lar of cases, or in any particular circum-
To sum up, UPSC derives its functions from stances, it shall not be necessary for a
four sources namely, the Constitution, Acts of Public Service Commission to be consulted.
Parliament, executive rules and orders, and But all such regulations must be laid before
conventions. These functions of UPSC can be the appropriate Legislature and be subject

broadly classified into three categories, that is, to such modifications as may be made by
executive, regulatory and quasi-judicial. the Legislature.

The Union Public Service Commission or the (ii) It has been held by the Supreme Court that
the obligation of the Government to con-

State Public Service Commission, as the case
may be, shall be consulted— sult the Public Service Commission in any
of the matters specified above does not

(a) on all matters relating to methods of re-
cruitment to civil services and for civil confer any right upon any individual who
posts, may be affected by any act of the Govern-
(b) on the principles to be followed in making ment done without consulting the appro-
appointments to civil services and posts priate Commission as required by the
I Constitution. The reason assigned by the
and in making promotions and transfers
from one service to another and on the Court is that the consultation prescribed
suitability of candidates for such appoint- by the Constitution is to afford proper
assistance to the Government, in the mat-
ment, promotions or transfers;
ter of assessing the guilt of a delinquent
(c) on all disciplinary matters affecting a per-
officer, the merits of a claim for reimburse-

son serving under the Government of In-

ment of legal expenses and the like; and
dia or the Government of a State in a civil
that the function of the Commission being
capacity, including memorials or petitions
purely advisory, if the Government fails to
relating to such matters;
consult the Commission with respect to
(d) on any claim by or in respect of a person
any of the specified matters, the resulting
who is serving or has served under the
act of the Commission is not invalidated
Government of India or the Government
by reason of such omission and no indi-
of a State or under the Crown in India or

vidual who is affected by such act can seek

under the Government of an India State,
redress in a Court of law against the
in a civil capacity, that any costs incurred
Government for such irregularity or omis-
by him in defending legal proceedings
instituted against him in respect of acts

done or purporting to be done in the Report of Public Service Commissions

execution of his duty should be paid out
As stated already, it shall be the duty of the
of the Consolidated fund of India, or, as
Union Commission to present annually to the
the case may be, out of the Consolidated
President a report as to the work done by the
Fund of the State;
Commission and on receipt of such report the
(e) on any claim for the award of a person in President shall cause a copy thereof together
respect of injuries sustained by a person with a memorandum explaining, as respect the
while serving under the Government of cases, if any, where the advice of the Commis-
India or the Government of a State or sion was not accepted, the reason for such non-
under the Crown in India or under the acceptance, to be laid before each House of
amount of any such award [Art.320 (3)]. Parliament [Art. 323 (1)]. A State Public Service
But— Commission has a similar duty to submit an
(i) The President or the Governor, as the case annual report to the Governor and the latter has
may be, as respects the service and posts a duty to lay a copy of such report before the
in connection with the affairs of the Union State Legislature with a memorandum explain-


ing the case, if any, where the advice of the (b) Sometimes the rules laying down the quali-
Commission was not accepted by the Govern- fications for the office to which such ap-
ment [Art. 323 (2)]. pointment has been made are changed
retrospectively to fit in the appointee.
How far Commission’s advice is binding (c) Another complaint is that sometimes the
on the Government Reports are presented before Parliament
As stated earlier, the function of the Public (or State Legislature as the case may be)
Service Commission is only advisory and the long after the year under review. This,
Constitution has no provision to make it obliga- however, does not appear to be permis-
tory upon the Government to act upon the sible under the Constitution. So far as the
advice of the Commission in any case. The duty of the Commission to report to the
reason is that, under the Parliamentary system President or the Governor is concerned,
of Government, it is the Cabinet which is re- the Constitution says that it must be done
sponsible for the proper administration of the ‘annually’. Hence, his obligation cannot be
country and its responsibility is to Parliament. postponed for more than a few months
They cannot, therefore, abjure this ultimate from the end of the period under Report.
responsibility by binding themselves by the The duty of the President or the Governor
opinion of any other body of persons. On the is to present the Report to Parliament or
other hand, in matters relating to the recruit- the State Legislature “on receipt of such
ment to the Service and the like, it would be Report”. Though no specific time-limit is
profitable for the Ministers to take the advice of imposed, it is clear that it must be done as
a body of experts. soon as possible after the receipt of the
Notwithstanding the above safeguard, there annual Report and it cannot be construed
are criticisms from certain quarters that patron- that the obligation is discharged by pre-
age is still exercised by the Government by senting the Report two or three years after
resorting to some devices— the receipt or by presenting the Reports
(a) One of these is the system of making ad for two or three years in a lump. The
hoc appointments for a temporary period presentation before the Legislature must
without consulting the Public Service Com- also be annual affair, and if the President
mission, and then approaching the Com- or the Governor makes delay, it should be
mission to approve of the appointment at the concern of the appropriate Legislature
a time when the person appointed has to demand an explanation for such delay
already been in service for some time and presentation, apart from anything else. If
the recommendations of his superiors are the Legislature slumbers, the entire ma-
available to him, in addition to the expe- chinery of Parliamentary government will
rience already gained by him in the work, succumb, not to speak of any particular
which puts him at an advantage over the object of scrutiny by the Legislature.
new candidates. The Supreme Court has
been deprecating this practice of making Matters on which UPSC is not consulted
ad hoc appointment. The Supreme Court It is not necessary to consult the Commission
did not allow the services of the employees with regard to the representation given to sched-
appointed de hors the rules, although uled castes and scheduled tribes in the civil
officiating for a long period of 14 years; service. Provisions for this are made in Article
that of the ad hoc appointment by bypass- 335, which mentions that “the claims of the
ing the process of recruitment through members of the Scheduled Castes and Sched-
open competition and a temporary ap- uled Tribes shall be taken into consideration,
pointee on monthly basis during the pe- consistently with the maintenance of efficiency
riod of strike, to be regularized. of administration, in the making of appoint-
ments to services and posts in connection with National Emergency (Art.352)
the affairs of the Union or a State. “The UPSC Article 352 provides that if the President,
is not called upon of the Act of 1935, which kept after receiving a written communication of a
communal representation outside the purview Cabinet decision, is satisfied that a grave emer-
of the Federal Public Service Commission. gency exists whereby the security of India or
Besides, there are certain other matters on any part thereof is threatened by war, external
which the UPSC is not consulted. They are: aggression or armed rebellion, he may issue a

(1) Chairmanship or membership of tribunals Proclamation of Emergency for the whole of
or commission; India or part thereof. Every Proclamation of

(2) Post of the highest diplomatic nature, and Emergency is required to be laid before each

(3) Appointments to a bulk of Class III and House of Parliament, and is to cease to operate
Class IV employees, who constitute about at the expiration of one month from the date of

98 percent of the total number of the its issue by the President unless it has in the
Central government employees. meantime been approved by resolutions of both
the House. However, once approved by Par-
Further, it is not necessary for the govern-
liament, the Proclamation may continue in
ment to consult the Commission in regard to the operation for six months at a time unless re-
selection for temporary or officiating appoint-
I voked by the President earlier by a subsequent
ment to a post, if the person appointed is not Proclamation. Resolutions approving the
likely to hold the post for more than a year, and Proclamation of Emergency or its continuance
if it is necessary in public interest to make the have to be passed by either House of Parliament
appointment immediately and a reference to the by a majority of the total membership and not
Commission in this respect is likely to cause less than two third of those present and voting.

undue delay. Though the Commission is to be Also, if the Lok Sabha passes a resolution
informed of the action taken by an executive disapproving the Proclamation or its continu-
agency in this respect, there are instances where ance, it shall be revoked forthwith. If notice of
this facilitating provision has been misused, a resolution signed by not less than one-tenth of
thus violating the spirit of the law. the total membership is given to the President
EMERGENCY Speaker, a special sitting of the House shall be
PROVISIONS held within 14 days to consider it. . During the

periods of Emergency, extraordinary powers

The term 'Emergency' may be defined as "a may be assumed by the Union Government.
difficult situation arising suddenly and demand-
Executive powers of the Union during
ing immediate action by public authorities un-
der powers specially granted to them by the

Constitution or otherwise to meet such exigen- Article 353, read with article 365 provides
cies". that once Emergency is proclaimed, the execu-
tive power of the union extend to giving of
Types of Emergency directions to any State in regard to the exercise
of the executive power of the State and failure
Broadly, the Emergency provisions of the
to comply with the directions would constitute
Constitution envisage two kinds of emergencies,
enough justification for imposition of President's
viz. rule under Article 356. During the operation of
(i) a National Emergency under article 352 due Emergency, the legislative power of Parliament
to threat of war, external aggression or also extends to conferring powers and imposing
armed rebellion and duties by law on Union authorities in matters
(ii) Financial Emergency under article 360. not otherwise included in the Union List. Under
The third kind of situation, that is, the one article 354, the application of provisions relating
under article 356 arising from a failure of the to distribution of revenues articles (268 to 279)
constitutional machinery in any particular State may be suitably modified during the period of
and necessitating President's rule. the operation of Emergency. Article 358,
257 or 353, the President may hold that there has
been a failure of constitutional machinery in that
State and may take over the State Government
There have been three proclamations of Na- under article 356.
tional Emergency in India- Every Proclamation under Article 356 must
● In October 1962 at the time of the Chinese cease to operate at the expiry of two months
aggression, unless approved by resolutions of the two Houses
● In December 1971, in the wake of the war with
of the Prliament. After Parliament's approval
also, a Proclamation may continue for not more
Pakistan and
than six months at a time and not for more than
● In June 1975 on ground of internal disturbance a total of three years (except Punjab)
provides for the suspension of the provisions of How the President's Rule affects State
article 19 during emergencies while article 359 Legislatures?
authorises the President to suspend by ordering The powers of the State Legislature may
the enforcement of all the Fundamental Rights under the Proclamation become exercisable by
guaranteed in Part III of the Constitution except or on the authority of Parliament. The State
the rights of protection in respect of conviction Assembly may be dissolved or kept under sus-
for offences and protection of life and liberty pended animation. The president may take all
in articles 20 and 21. other steps that may be necessary including
The effect of the exercise of powers under suspension of the operation of any constitu-
articles 358 and 359 is that not only the tional provisions relating to any body or author-
legislature but also the executive can interfere ity in the State except the High Courts. During
with the Fundamental Rights of individuals the operation of President's rule under article
except those under articles 20 and 21. Any law 356, Parliament may confer the legislative
passed under articles 358 and 359 in order to power of the State on the President and authorise
be valid must contain a recital to the effect that
him to delegate these powers to other President
it is in relation to the Proclamation of Emer-
and other authorities (Article 357)
gency in operation. Also, all such laws shall
cease to have effect to the extent of incompe-
Financial Emergency (Art. 360)
tency under the Fundamental Rights as soon as
the Emergency ceases or the Presidential order The President is authorised by article 360 of
ceases to have effect. the Constitution to declare by a Proclamation,
Financial Emergency, if he is satisfied that the
Proclamation of President's financial stability or credit of India or of any
Rule (Art. 356) part of its territory is threatened. Such a
It is the constitutional duty of the Union to Proclamation may be revoked or varied by a
protect its States against external aggression and subsequent Proclamation. It has to be laid
internal disturbance and to ensure that the before both Houses of Parliament and ceases to
Government of every State is carried on in
accordance with the Constitution (Article 355). operate at the expiration of two months unless
If on receipt of a Report from the Governor or meanwhile approved by resolutions of the two
otherwise, the President is satisfied that the House. Once approved by Parliament, unlike
Government of the State cannot be carried on in Proclamation under article 352, it may continue
accordance with the Constitution or that the indefinitely until revoked or varied.
constitution taking over any of the functions and During the operation of Financial Emer-
powers of the State Government including those
gency, the executive authority of the Union
of the Governor and other State authorities. The
satisfaction of the President, of course, means the extends to the giving of directions to any State
satisfaction of the Union Government and to observe certain specified canons of finan-
President's rule is actually rule by the Union cial propriety and such other directions that
Government. If any State fails to comply with the President may find necessary or adequate.
directions issued by the Union under article 256, These directions may include reduction of
salaries and allowances of all those serving a Accordingly, in 1955, the president appointed
State and reserving for the President's consid- in Official Language Commission under the
eration all money Bills and other Bills under chairmanship of BG Kher. The commission
article 207 after these are passed by State submitted its report to the President in 1965.
legislatures. The President may also direct The report was examined by a committee of
reduction in salaries and allowances of all Parliament constituted in 1957 under the chair-
those serving in connection with the affairs of manship of Gobind Ballabh Pant. However,

the Union including judges of the Supreme another Official Language Commission (as en-
Court and the High Courts. visaged by the Constitution) was not appointed

in 1960.

Subsequently, the Parliament enacted the
Part XVII of the Constitution deals with the Official Language Act in 1963. The act provides

official language in Articles 343 to 351. Its for the continued use to English (even after
provisions are divided into four heads—Lan- 1965), in addition to Hindi, for all official
guages of the Union, Regional languages, Lan- purposes of the Union and also for the transac-
guage of the judiciary and texts of laws and tion of business in Parliament Notably, this act
Special directives. enables the use of English indefinitely (without
any time-limit). Further, this act was amended
Language of the Union
in 1967 to make the use to English, in addition
The Constitution contains the following to Hindi, compulsory in certain cases.
provisions in respect of the official language of
the Union. Regional Languages

1. Hindi written in Devanagari script is to be The Constitution does not specify the offi-
the official language of the Union. But, the cial language of different states. In this regard,
form of numerals to be used for the official it makes the following provisions:
purposes of the Union has to be the inter- 1. The legislature of states may adopt any
national form of Indian numerals and not one or more of languages in use in the state
the Devanagari form of numerals. or Hindi as the official language of that
2. However, for a period of fifteen years from state. Until that is done, English is to

the commencement of the Constitution

continue as official language of that state.
(i.e., from 1950 to 1965), the English lan-
Under this provision, most of the states have
guage would continue to be used for all
the official purposes of the Union for adopted the major regional language as their
official language. For example, Andhra Pradesh

which it was being used before 1950.

3. Even after fifteen years, the Parliament has adopted Telugu, Kerala-Malayalam, Assam-
may provide for the continued use of Assamese, West Bengal-Orissa-Oriya. The six
English language for the specified pur- northern states of Himachal Pradesh Uttar
poses. Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Bihar, Haryana and
4. At the end of years, and again at the end of Rajasthan have adopted Hindi. Gujarat and
ten years, from the commencement of the Punjab have and adopted Hindi in addition to
Constitution, the president should appoint a Gujarat and Punjabi respectively. Goa has
commission to make recommendations with adopted Konkani in addition to Marathi and
regard to the progressive use of the Hindi Gujarat. Jammu and Kashmir has adopted Urdu
language, strictions on the use of the English (and not Kashmiri). On the other hand, certain
language and other related issues. north-eastern States like Meghalaya, Arunachal
5. A committee of Parliament is to be consti- Pradesh and Nagaland have adopted English.
tuted to examine the recommendations of Notably, the choice of the state is not limited to
the commission and to report its views on the languages enumerated in the Eighth Sched-
them to the president. ule of the Constitution.
2. For the time being, the official language of decrees and orders passed by it. In other
the Union (i.e., English) would remain the words, the judgments, decrees and orders
link language for communications between of the high court must continue to be in
the Union and the states or between the English only (until Parliament otherwise
Union and the states or between various provides).
states. But, two or more states are free to 3. Similarly, a states legislature can prescribe
agree to use Hindi (instead of English) for the use of any language (other than En-
communication between themselves. glish) with respect to bills, acts, ordi-
Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh, Madhya nances, orders, rules, regulations or bye-
Pradesh and Bihar are some of the states laws,but a translation of the same in the
that have entered into such agreements. English language is to be published.
The Official Language Act (1963) lays down The Official Language Act of 1963 lays
that English should be used for purpose of down that Hindi translation of acts, ordinances,
communication between the Union and the orders, regulations and bye-laws published.
non-Hindi states (that is, the states that have not Under the authority of the president are deemed
adopted Hindi as there official language). Fur- to be authoritative texts. Further, every bill
ther, where Hindi is used for communication introduced in the Parliament is to be accompa-
between a Hindi and a non-Hindi state, such nied by a Hindi translation. Similarly, there is
communication in Hindi be accompanied by an to be a Hindi translation of state acts or ordi-
English translation. nances in certain cases.
3. When the President (on a demand being
The act also enables the governor of state,
made) is satisfied that a substantial pro-
with the previous consent of the president, to
portion of the population of a state desire
authorize the use of Hindi or any other official
the use of any language spoken by them
language of the state for judgments, decrees and
to be recognised by the state, then he may
orders passed by the high court of the state but
direct that such language shall also be
officially recognised in that state. This they should be accompanied by an English
provision aims at protecting the linguistic translation. For example, Hindi is used in Uttar
interests of minorities in the states. Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Bihar and Rajasthan
for this purpose.
Language of the Judiciary and Texts of However, the Parliament has not made any
Laws provision for the use of Hindi in the Supreme
The constitutional provisions dealing with Court. Hence, the Supreme Court hears only
the language of the courts and legislation are as those who petition or appeal in English. In 1971,
follows: a petitioner insisted on arguing in Hindi a
1. Until Parliament provides otherwise, the habeas corpus petition in the Supreme Court.
following are to be in the English language But, the Court cancelled his petition on the
only: ground that the language of the Court was
(a) All proceedings in the Supreme Court English and allowing Hindi would be unconsti-
and in every high court. tutional.
(b) The authoritative texts of all bills, acts,
Special Directives
ordinances, orders, rules regulations
and bye-laws at the Central and state The Constitution contain special directives
levels. to protect the interests of linguistic minorities
2. However, the governor of a state, with the and to promote the development of Hindi lan-
previous consent of the president, can guage. There are:
authorities the use of Hind or any other
official language of the state, in the pro- Protection of Linguistic Minorities
ceedings in the high court of the state, but In this regard, the Constitution makes the
not with the respect to the judgments, following provisions:
1. Every aggrieved person has the right to (b) the forms, style and expressions of these
submit a representation for the redress of languages are to be used for the enrichment
any grievance to any to the languages of the Hindi language.
used in the Union or in the state, as the
casemay be. This means that a represen- IMPORTANT COMMISSIONS
tation cannot be rejected on the ground
that it is not in the official language. (a) National commission for Scheduled

2. Every state and a local authority in the
state should provide adequate facilities for The National Commission for Scheduled

instruction in the mother-tongue at the Castes, a Constitutional body monitors the safe-
primary stage of education to children guards provided for Scheduled Castes and also

belonging to linguistic minority groups. reviews issues concerning their welfare.
The president can issue necessary direc-

The SCs constitute 16.23% of India's popu-
tions for this purpose. lation spread all over the country, with 80% of
3. The president should appoint a special them living in the rural areas. They constitute
officer for linguistic minorities to investigate more than a fifth of the population of UP,
all matters relating to the constitutional Punjab, Himachal Pradesh and West Bengal.
safeguards for linguistic minorities and to Punjab has the highest proportion of SCs to the
report to him. The president should place State population. More than half of the SC
all such report before the Parliament and population is concentrated in the five States of
send to the state government concerned. Uttar Pradesh (35.1 million), West Bengal (18.4
Development of Hindi Language million), Tamil Nadu (11.8 million), Andhra
Pradesh (12.3 million) and Bihar (13.0 million).

The Constitution imposes a duty upon the

Due to their social disability and economic
Centre to promote the spread and development
backwardness, they were grossly handicapped
of the Hindi language so that it may become the
in getting reasonable share in elected offices,
lingua franca of the composite culture of India.
Government jobs and educational institutions
Further, the Centre is directed to secure the and, therefore, it was considered necessary to
enrichment of Hindi by assimilating the forms, follow a policy of reservations in their favour to
style and expressions used in hindustani and in ensure their equitable participation in gover-

other languages specified in the Eighth Sched- nance.

ule and by drawing its vocabulary, primarily on
Functions and duties of the commission are:
sanskrit and secondarily on other languages.
• To investigate and monitor all matters relating
At present, the Eighth Schedule of the Con-

stitution specifies 18 languages (originally 14 to the safeguards provided for the Scheduled
languages). These are Assamese, Bengali, Castes under this Constitution or under any
Gujarat, Hindi, Kannada, Kashmiri, Konkani, other law for the time being in force or under
Malayalam, Manipuri, Marathi, Nepali, Oriya, any order of the Government and to evaluate
Punjabi, Sanskrit, Sindhi, Tamil, Telugu and the working of such safeguard.
Urdu. Sidhi was added by the 21st Amendment • To inquire into specific complaints with
Act of 1967 while Konkani, Manipuri and respect to the deprivation of rights and
Nepali were added by the 71st Amendment Act safeguards of the Scheduled Castes;
of 1962. • To participate and advise on the planning
In terms of the Constitution provisions, there process of socio-economic development of
are two objective behind the specification of the the Scheduled Castes and to evaluate the
above regional languages in the Eighth Schedule: progress of their development under
(a) the members of these languages are to be the Union and any State;
given representation in the Official Language • To present to the President, annually and at
Commission; and such other times as the Commission may


deem fit, reports upon the working of those simpler to have an area-approach for develop-
safeguards; ment activities and also regulatory provisions to
• To make in such reports recommendations protect their interests. In order to protect the
as to the measures that should be taken by interests of Scheduled Tribes with regard to
the Union or any State for the effective land alienation and other social factors, provi-
implementation of those safeguards and other sions of “Fifth Schedule” and "Sixth Schedule"
measures for the protection, welfare and have been enshrined in the Constitution.
socio-economic development of the Scheduled Functions of the Commission are:
Castes; and • To investigate and monitor all the matters
• To discharge such other functions in relation relating to the safeguards provided for the
to the protection, welfare and development SCs and STs under the Constitution of India
and advancement of the Scheduled Castes or under any other law and to evaluate the
as the President may, subject to working of such scapegoats.
the provisions of any law made by • To enquire into specific complaints with
Parliament, by rule specify. respect to the deprivation of the rights and
The Commission presents an annual report the safeguards of the SCs and the STs.
to the President. The President places all the • To participate and advise on the planning
reports before the Parliament along with memo- process of socio-economic development of
randum explaining the action taken on the the Scheduled Castes and the Scheduled
recommendations made by the Commission. Tribes and to evaluate the progress of their
The memorandum also contains the reasons for development under the Union and any State.
the non acceptance of any recommendation.
• To present to the President, annually and at
(b) National Commission on Scheduled such other times as the Commission may
Tribes deem fit, reports upon the working of those
The National Commission for Scheduled
• To make in such reports or recommendations
Tribes was first formed by the Government of
as to the measures that should be taken by
India in 1978 as a Non-statutory Multi-Member
Commission. Initially, the Commission was set the Union or any State for the effective
up through a resolution for both the Schedule implementation of those the protection,
Castes and Schedule Tribes. In the year 1987, welfare and socio-economic development of
the Government of India re-structured the du- the Schedule Castes and the Schedule Tribes
ties of the Commission by authorizing it to as the President may by lured specify.
advice on the Broad Policy Issues and Levels of The term Scheduled Tribes is defined in the
Development of SCs and STs. The National Constitution of India under Article 366(25) as
Commission for Scheduled Tribes (NCST) was such tribes or tribal communities or parts of
established by amending Article 338 and insert- groups within such tribes or tribal communities
ing a new Article 338A in the Constitution as are deemed under Article 342 to be Sched-
through the Constitution (89th Amendment) uled Tribes for the purposes of this Constitution.
Act, 2003. By this amendment, the erstwhile According to the Article 342(1), the Presi-
National Commission for Scheduled Castes and dent may, with respect to any State or Union
Scheduled Tribes was replaced by two separate Territory, and where it is State, after consulta-
Commissions namely- (i) the National Commis- tion with the Governor thereof, notifies tribes or
sion for Scheduled Castes (NCSC), and (ii) the tribal communities or parts thereof as Sched-
National Commission for Scheduled Tribes uled Tribes. This confers on the tribe or part of
(NCST) in 2004. it a Constitutional status invoking the safe-
Scheduled Tribes live in contiguous areas guards provided for in the Constitution, to these
unlike other communities. It is, therefore, much communities in their respective States/UTs.
Thus only those communities who have • requiring the discovery and production of
been declared as such by the President through any document;
an initial public notification will be considered • receiving evidence on affidavits;
as Scheduled Tribes. Parliament may, by law, • requisitioning any public record or copy
include in or exclude from the list of Scheduled thereof from any court or office;
Tribes, any tribe or tribal community or parts of
• issuing commissions for the examination of
thereof. The list of Scheduled Tribes is State-
witnesses and documents; and

specific. In other words, a community declared
as Scheduled Tribe in one State need not be so • Any other matter which may be prescribed.

in another State. The Commission prepares its annual report,
The Commission presents an annual report giving a full account of its activities during the

to the President. The President places all the previous financial year and forward a copy
thereof to the Central Government. Annual

reports before the Parliament along with memo-
randum explaining the action taken on the report and audit report to be laid before Parlia-
recommendations made by the Commission. ment. The Central Government shall cause the
The memorandum also contains the reasons for annual report, together with a memorandum
the non acceptance of any recommendation. of action taken on the advice tendered by the
Commission and the reasons for the non accep-
(c) National Commission for Backward tance, if any, of any such advice, and the audit
Classes report to be laid as soon as may be after they
are received before each House of Parliament.
National Commission for Backward Classes
came into effect on the 2nd April, 1993. The Act (d) National Commission for Women
provides that the Commission shall consist of

five Members, comprising of a Chairperson who The National Commission for Women was
is or has been a judge of the Supreme Court or set up as statutory body in January 1992 under
of a High Court; a social scientist; two persons, the National Commission for Women Act, 1990
who have special knowledge in matters relating to :
to backward classes; and a Member-Secretary, • review the Constitutional and Legal
who is or has been an officer of the Central safeguards for women ;
Government in the rank of a Secretary to the • recommend remedial legislative measures ;

Government of India.
• facilitate redressal of grievances and
Functions of the Commission:
• Advise the Government on all policy matters
• The Commission shall examine requests for
affecting women.
inclusion of any class of citizens as a

backward class in the lists and hear In keeping with its mandate, the Commis-
complaints of over-inclusion or under- sion initiated various steps to improve the status
inclusion of any backward class in such lists of women and worked for their economic em-
and tender such advice to the Central powerment during the year under report. The
Government as it deems appropriate. Commission completed its visits to all the States/
• The advice of the Commission shall ordinarily UTs except Lakshdweep and prepared Gender
be binding upon the Central Government. Profiles to assess the status of women and their
Powers of the Commission: empowerment. It received a large number of
complaints and acted suo-moto in several cases
The Commission shall, while performing
to provide speedy justice.
its functions have all the powers of a civil
court trying a suit and in particular, in respect It took up the issue of child marriage, spon-
of the following matters, namely:- sored legal awareness programmes, Parivarik
• summoning and enforcing the attendance of Mahila Lok Adalats and reviewed laws such as
any person from any part of India and Dowry Prohibition Act, 1961, PNDT Act 1994,
examining him on oath; Indian Penal Code 1860 and the National Com-


mission for Women Act, 1990 to make them home, often resulting in sexual assault and
more stringent and effective. It organized other forms of violence. Thus Women’s Rights
workshops/consultations, constituted expert Campaign has been launched to create aware-
committees on economic empowerment of ness among the women rights.
women, conducted workshops/seminars for The objectives of the Women’s Rights campaign
gender awareness and took up publicity cam- include:
paign against female foeticide, violence against • To empower women by generating
women, etc. in order to generate awareness in awareness of their rights so they can seek
the society against these social evils. justice and dignity within their families and
NCW has adopted a Multi-Pronged strategy to communities.
tackle the problem: • To train and build strong women who will
• Generation of legal awareness among become leaders in the movement.
women, thus equipping them with the • To formulate and develop tools and programs
knowledge of their legal rights and with a for serving the specific needs of women for
capacity to use these rights. their growth and development.
• Assisting women in redressal of their • To create space for women through strategic
grievances through Pre-litigation services. intervention wherever and whenever
• Facilitating speedy delivery of justice to needed.
women by organizing Parivarik Mahila Lok • To foster gender sensitivity within Navsarjan
Adalats in different parts of the country. through concrete policies.
• Review of the existing provisions of the • To dilute discriminatory patriarchal culture,
Constitution and other laws affecting making non-negotiable the belief and practice
women and recommending amendments of equality.
thereto, any lacunae, inadequacies or short National Commission for Women regularly
comings in such legislation's. brings out a monthly newsletter Rashtra
• look into complaints and take suo moto Mahila in Hindi and English to create aware-
notice of matters; ness about the women rights in the society.
• special studies or investigations into specific
problems or situations arising out of (e) National Human Rights Commission
discrimination and atrocities against women; The National Human Rights Commission is
• undertake promotional and educational a statutory (and not a constitutional) body. It
research so as to suggest ways of ensuring was established under a legislation enacted by
due representation of women in all spheres the Parliament, namely, the Protection, namely,
and identify factors responsible for impeding the Protection of Human Rights Act, 1993.
their advancement; The commission is the watchdog of human
• advice on the planning process of socio- rights in relating to life, liberty, equality and
economic development of women; dignity of the individual guaranteed by the
• inspect or cause to inspected a jail, remand Constitution or embodied in the international
home, women's institution or other place of covenants and enforceable by courts in India.
custody where women are kept as prisoners The specific objectives of the establishment
or otherwise and take up with the concerned of the commission are :
authorities for remedial action, if found
(a) To strengthen the institutional arrangement
necessary etc.
through which human rights Issues could be
Further NCW has launched addressed in their entirety in a more focussed
Women’s Rights campaign along with NGOs for manner;
the upliftment of dalit women. Dalit women are
positioned at the bottom of India’s caste, class (b) To look into allegations of excesses,
and gender hierarchies. As a result, many Dalit independently of the government, in a
women face exploitation both in and out of the manner that would underline the
government's commitment to protect human In addition to these, the president can also
rights; and remove the chairman or any other memer on
(c) To complement and strengthen the efforts the ground of proved misbehaviour or incapac-
that have already been made in this direction. ity. However, in these cases, the president has
Composition of the commission to refer the matter to the Supreme Court for an
inquiry. If the Supreme Court for an in thses
The commission is a multi-member body cases, the president has to refer the matter to the
consisting of a chairman should be a retired

Supreme Court for an inquiry. If the Supreme
chief justice of India, and other members should
Court, after the inquiry, upholds the cause of
be a serving or retired judge of the Supreme

removal and advises so, then the president can
Court, a serving or retired chief justice of a high
remove the chairman or a member.

court and two persons havingj knowledge or
practical experience with respect to human The salaries, allowances and other condi-

rights. In addition to these full-time members, tions of services of the chairman or or a member
the commission also has three ex-officio mem- are determinied by the Central government.
bers-the chairmen of the National Commission But, they cannot be varied to his disadvantage
for Minorities, the National Commission for Scs after his appointment.
and Sts, and the National Commission for All the above provisions are aimed at secur-
Women. ing autonomy, independence and inpartiality in
the functioning of the Commission.
The chairman and members are appointed
by the president on the recommendations of a Functions of the commission
six-members committee consisting of the prime The functions of the Commission are:
minister as its head, the Speaker of the Lok • To inquire into any violation of rights or

Sabha, the Deputy Chairman of the Rajya negligence in the prevention of such violation
Sabha, leaders of the Opposition in both the by a public servant, either suo motu or on
Houses of Parliament and the Central home a petition presented to it.
minister. Further, a sitting judge of the Supreme • To intervene in any proceeding involving
Court or a sitting chief justice of a high court allegation of violation of human rights
can be appointed only after consulation with pending before a court.
the chief justice of India. • To visit jails and detention places to study
The chairman and members hold office for

the living conditions of inmates and make

a term of five years or until they attain the attain recommendation thereon.
the age of 70 years, whichever is earlier. After • To review the constitutional and other legal
their tenure, the chairman and members are not safeguards for the protection of human rights

eligible for further employment under the Cen- and recommend measures for their effective
tral or a state government. implementation.
The president can remove the chairman or • To review the factors including acts of
any other member from the office under the terrorism that inhibit the enjoyment of
following circumstances: human rights and recommend remedial
• If he is adjudged an insolvent: or measures.
• To study treaties and other international
• If he engages, during his term of office, in
instrument on human rights and make
any paid employment outside the duties to recommendations for their effective
this office; or implementation.
• If he is unfit to continue in office by reason • To undertake and promote research in field
of of infirmity of mind or body; or of human rights.
• If he is of unsound mind and stand so • To spread human rights literacy among the
declared a competent; or people and promote awareness of the
• If he is convicted and sentanced to safeguards available for the protection of
impresoment for an offence. these rights.
• To encourage the efforts of non- the President of India. Oath of Office is admin-
governmental organisations (NGOs) working istered by the President of India according to the
in the field of human rights. form set out in the First Schedule.
• To undertake such other functions as it may CIC defines “information” as any material
consider necessary for the promotion of in any form including records, documents,
human rights. memos, e-mails, opinions, advices, press re-
leases, circulars, orders, logbooks, contracts,
(f) Central Information Commission reports, papers, samples, models, data material
held in any electronic form and information
The Right to Information (RTI) Act, 2005,
relating to any private body which can be
which came into force on 12 October 2005, accessed by a public authority under any other
marked a new and higher level of evolution of law for the time being in force.
India’s parliamentary democracy.
Powers and Functions of the Central Information
The Supreme Court has, in various judge- Commission
ments, held that the right to information is a
• The CIC is empowered to receive and inquire
part of the fundamental right to freedom of
into complaints from any person relating to
speech and expression under Article 19 (1) of
the Constitution, since the right cannot be access to information under the control of
properly exercised if the people did not have the public authorities and to decide appeals
right to information. against the decisions of designated appellate
The clearest enunciation of the fundamental
right to information was seen in the Supreme • The Commission shall impose penalties on
Court ruling in the State of U.P vs. Raj Narain erring Central Public Information Officers
in which Justice K.K. Mathew said: and recommend disciplinary action against
“The people of this country have a right to those who have, without any reasonable
know every public act, everything that is done cause, denied access to information under
in a public way, by their public functionaries. the provisions of the Act.
They are entitled to know the particulars of • The quantum of penalty liable to be imposed
every public transaction in all its bearing. The is Rs. 250 each day till the application is
right to know, which is derived from the con- received or information is furnished subject
cept of freedom of speech, though not absolute, to the total amount not exceeding Rs. 25,000.
is a factor which should make one wary, when • The decision of the Commission on an appeal
secrecy is claimed for transactions which can, is binding and is not subject to further
at any rate, have no repercussion on public
appeal in a court of law.
security… “
• The Commission may make recommendations
Thus the Right to Information (RTI) Act,
to public authorities not conforming to the
2005 is designed to set up a practical regime for
provisions or the spirit of the Act, specifying
citizens to access information available with
the steps which, in its opinion, they ought
public authorities, in order to promote transpar-
ency and accountability in their working. This to take for promoting such conformity.
Act provides for the constitution of the Central • The Commission may, during the inquiry
Information Commission (CIC) to be respon- into any complaint, examine any record
sible for the implementation of the Act. under the control of the public authority,
Central Information Commission was con- and no such record may be withheld from
stituted by the Central Government through a it on any grounds.
Gazette Notification in October 2005. The • The Commission shall recommend to the
Commission includes 1 Chief Information Com- Government every year, reforms on any
missioner (CIC) and not more than 10 Informa- “matter relevant for operationalising the
tion Commissioners (IC) who are appointed by right to access information”.
(g) Central Vigilance Commission proved misbehaviour or incapacity, however, in
The Central Vigilance Commission (CVC) is these cases, the president has to refer the matter
to the Supreme Court for an enquiry. If the
them agancy for preventing corruption in the
Supreme Court, after the enquiry, upholds the
Central government. It was established in 1964
cause of removal and advises so, then the
by an executive resolution of the Central gov-
president can remove him. He is deemed to be
ernment. Its establishment was recommended
guilty of misbehaviour, if he (a) is concerned or
by the Santhanam Committee on Prevention of

interested in any contract or agreement made
Corruption (1962-64). by the Central government, or (b) participates

Thus, originally the CVC was neither a in any way in the profit of such contract or
constitutional body nor a statutory body. Re- agreement or in any benefit or emolument

cently, in September 2003, the Parliament en- arising thereform otherwise than as a member
acted a law conferring statutory status on the and in common with the other members or an

CVC. incorporated company.
Composition The salary, allowances and other conditions
The CVC is a multi-member body consisting of services of the Central Vigilance Commis-
of a Central Vigilance Commissioner (chairper- sioner are similar to those of the Chairman of
I UPSC and that of the vigilance commissioner
son) and not more than two vigilance commis-
sioner. They are appointed by the president by are similar to those of a member of UPSC. But
warrant under his hand and seal on the recom- they cannot be varied to his disadvantage after
mendation of a three-member as its head, the his appointment.
Union minister of home affairs and the Leader Functions
of the Opposition in the Lok Sabha. They hold

The functions of the CVC are:

office for a term of four years or until they attain 1. To inquire or cause an inquiry or investi-
the age of sixty five years, whichever is earlier. gating to be conducted on a reference
After their tenure, they are not eligible for made by the Central government wherein
further empoyment under the Central or a state it is alleged that a public servant being an
employee of the Central government or its
The president can remove the Central Vigi- authorities, has committed an offence
lance Commissioner or any vigilance commis-

under the Prevention of Corruption Act,

sioner from the office under the following cir- 1988,
cumstances: 2. To inquire or cause an inquire or investi-
(a) If he is adjudged an insolvent; or gating to be conducted into any complaint

(b) If he has been convicted of an offence which against any official belonging to the below
(in the opinion of the Central government ) mentaioned category of officials wherein it
involves a moral turpitdue; or is alleged that he has commited an offence
(c) If he engages, during his term of office, in under the Prevention of Corruption Act,
any paid employment outside the duties 1988:
of his office; or (a) Member of all-India services serving
(d) If he is (in the opinion of the president), unfit in the Union and Group 'A' officers of
to continue in office by reason of the Central government; and
infirmity of mind or body; or (a) Specified level of officer of the au-
(e) If he has acquired such financial or other thorities of the Central government.
interset as is likely to affect prejudicially 3. To exercise superintendence over the func-
his official functions. tioning of Delhi Special Establishment
In addition to these, the president can also (which is a part of Central Bureau of
remove the Central Vigilance Commissioner or Investigation) in so far as it relaters to the
any vigilance commissioner on the ground of investigation of offences alleged to have


been committed uner the Prevention of audio/ video/ photo evidence from their
Corruption Act, 1988. the Delhi Special mobiles directly.
Police Establishment is required to obtain • Through the internet: by filling up the
the prior approaval of the Central govern- complaint form online they can attach audio/
ment before conducting any inquiry or video/photo evidence.
investigating into an offence committed by
• Through telephone: help line have been
officers of the rank of joint secreatry an
above in the Central government and its
authorities. • The entire complaint processing is done
4. To give directions to the Delhi Special online, in digital form, enabling fast and
Police Establishment for the purpose of accurate processing of complaints.
discharging the responsibility entrusted to • The concerned CVO will interact with the
in under the Delhi Special Police Establish- complainant directly over phone/email or in
ment Act, 1946. person, as the case may be, to take it forward.
5. to review the progress of investigations • Status of the complaint is communicated
conducted by the Delhi Special Police back to the complainant - the communication
Establishment into offences alleged to have loop becomes complete.
been committed under the prevention of
Corruption Act, 1988. (b) Awareness Campaign
6. To review the progress of applications The Commission has initiated a project to
pending with the competent authorities create awareness and educate the public on anti-
for sanction of prosecution under the Pre- corruption. The aim is to reduce people’s toler-
vention of Corruption Act, 1988. ance for corruption and reduce its social accept-
7. To tender advise to the Central govern- ability. Media agencies are being engaged to
ment and its authorities on such matters
create the campaign in the electronic and print
as are referred to it by them.
media besides various outreach activities. The
8. To exercise superintendence over the vigi-
campaign is slated to start from January, 2011.
lance administration in the ministries of
the Central government or its authorities. (c) Provision for Whistleblowers
Some initiatives taken by the CVC to com-
The provision for whistle blowers and their
bat corruption
protection is already in place since 2004 under
(a) Project Vigeye the Public Interest Disclosure & Protection of
Informers’ Resolution (PIDPIR) wherein CVC is
CVC has launched the Project Vigeye which
the designated authority to handle the “whistle
is a citizen-centric initiative, wherein citizens
blower complaints” and provide protection to
join hands with the Central Vigilance Commis-
the “whistle blowers”. Commission has been
sion in fighting corruption in India.
paying special attention to complaints received
Project Vigeye is the platform through which under this Resolution to investigate them in a
vigilance information flows freely through com- time bound manner with due protection to the
mon public, the government agencies and the complainants. A bill has been initiated in the
vigilance commission, making it possible to Parliament to convert the Resolution into an Act
achieve a step jump in improving the corruption which would further empower the CVC in
index of the nation. protecting the whistleblowers.
Salient features:
• Citizens have multiple channels to air their TRIBUNALS
grievances and complaints to CVC
Central Administrative Tribunal
• Through their mobile phones: by
downloading the mobile application from It has been established for adjudication of
the CVC website. The complaints can be disputes with respect to recruitment and condi-
better articulated with additional data like tions of service of persons appointed to public
services and posts in connection with the affairs Union Prime Minister and the Chief Ministers
of the Union or other local authorities within of States, the functions of the Council are "to
the territory of India or under the control of strengthen and mobilize the efforts and re-
Government of India and for matters connected sources of the nation in support of the plans; to
therewith or incidental thereto. This was done promote common economic policies in all vital
in pursuance of the 42nd amendment of the spheres and to ensure the balanced and rapid
Constitution of India by Articles 323A. In the development of all parts of the country" and in
statement of objects and reasons on the intro-

duction of the Administrative Tribunals Act,
(a) to review the working of the National Plan
1985, it was mentioned that the setting up of

such Administrative Tribunals exclusively would from time to time; and
(b) to recommend measures for the achieve-

go a long way in reducing the burden on the
various courts and reduce pendency and would ment of the aims and targets set out in the

also provide to the persons covered by the National Plan.
Administrative Tribunals a speedy and rela-
tively cheap and effective remedy. In addition Zonal Councils
to Central Government employees, the Govern- Zonal Councils have been established by the
ment of India has notified 45 other organiza- State Reorganization Act, 1956. They advise on
tions to bring them within the jurisdiction of the matters of common interest to each of the five
Central Administrative Tribunal. zones into which the territory of India has been
The provisions of the Administrative Tribu- divided such as Northern, Southern, Eastern,
nals Act, 1985 do not, however, apply to mem- Western and Central. It is also an extra consti-
bers of paramilitary forces, armed forces of the tutional body. Each Zonal Council consists of
Union, officers or employees of the Supreme the Chief Minister and two other Ministers of

Court, or to persons appointed to the Secretariat each of the State in the Zone and the Admin-
Staff of either House of Parliament or the istrator in the case of the Union Territory. There
Secretariat staff of State/Union Territory Legis- is also provision for holding joint meetings of
latures. Besides the Chairman, who has been a two or more zonal councils. The Union Home
sitting or retired Judge of a High Court, the
Minister is the common chairman of all the
authorized strength of CAT consists of 16 Vice-
zonal councils.
Chairmen and 49 Members.
The Zonal Councils discuss matters of com-

State Administrative Tribunals mon concern to the states and Union Territories
The 42nd Amendment Act, 1976 also pro- comprised in each Zone, such as, economic and
vided for the establishment of State Administra- social planning, border disputes, inter-state trans-
tive Tribunals with an Act of Parliament to deal port, matters arising out of the reorganization

with the cases pertaining to the conditions of of States and the like, and give advice to the
service of the State employees. SATs play the Government of the State concerned as well as
same role at state level as played by CAT at the the Government of India.
Centre. Now the whole of India is divided under six
Water Disputes Tribunal zones and the states covered under each zone
are as follows :
The Water Disputes Act, 1956 provides for
1. Eastern Zone : Bihar, Jharkhand, Orissa,
the reference of an inter-state dispute for arbitra-
West Bengal, Sikkim
tion by a Water Disputes Tribunal, whose award
would be final according to Art. 262 (2A). 2. Western Zone : Gujarat, Maharashtra, Goa,
Daman, Diu & Dadra & Nagar Haveli.
COUNCILS 3. Northern Zone : Punjab, Haryana, Himachal
Pradesh, J & K, Rajasthan, Chandigarh and
National Development Council Delhi.
It is an extra-constitutional and legal body 4. Southern Zone : Andhra Pradesh, Kerala,
which was formed in 1952. Constituted of the Karnataka, Tamil Nadu and Pondicherry.


5. Central Zone : U.P., Chhatisgarh, is, more than 50%) of the total member-
Uttaranchal and M.P. ship of the House and a majority of two-
6. North Eastern Zone : Assam, Meghalaya, thirds of the members of the House present
Nagaland, Manipur, Tripura, Mizoram, and voting.
Arunachal Pradesh. 4. Each House must pass the bill separately.
North-Eastern Council was set up under the In case of a disagreement between the two
North-Eastern Council Act, 1971. Houses, there is no provision for holding
a joint sitting of the two Houses for the
National Security Council purpose of deliberation and passage of the
On August 24, 1990, the Prime Minister Mr. bill.
V.P. Singh announced the formation of Na- 5. If the bill seeks to amend the federal
tional Security Council to take comprehensive provisions of the Constitution, it must also
and coordinated view of all matters relating to be ratified by the Constitution, it must also
the country's security. It is headed by the Prime be ratified by the legislatures of half of the
Minister and will include the Ministers of De- states by a simple majority, that is, a
fence, Finance, Home Affairs, External Affairs majority of the members of the House
present and voting.
Following are the subjects to be considered 6. After duly passed by both the Houses of
by the Council : Parliament and ratified by the state legis-
● External threats scenario, strategic defence latures, where necessary, the bill is pre-
policies. sented to the president for assent.
● Other security threats, especially those in-
7. The president must give his assent to the
volving energy, space and high tech. bill. He can neither withhold his assent to
● Internal security covering insurgency,
the bill nor return the bill for reconsidera-
counter-terrorism & counter intelligence.
tion of the Parliament.
● Patterns of alienation likely to emerge within
8. After the president’s assent, the bill be-
the country, esp. those with a social, com-
comes an Act (i.e., a constitutional amend-
munal or regional dimension.
ment act) and the Constitution stands
● Security implications of evolving trends in
the world economy on India's economic and amended in accordance with the terms of
foreign policies. the Act.
● External economic threats in areas such as Some important constitutional amendments are:
energy, commerce, food & finance. Amendments Objectives
CONSTITUTIONAL AMENDMENT 1st amendment To fully secure the consti-
tutional validity of
Procedure for amendment zamindari abolition
laws. To place reasonable
The procedure for the amendment of the
restriction on freedom of
Constitution as laid down in Article 368 is as
speech. A new constitu-
tional device, called
1. An amendment of the Constitution can be
Schedule 9 introduced to
initiated only by the introduction of a bill
protect laws that are con-
for the purpose in either House of Parlia-
trary to the Constitution-
ment and not in the state legislature.
ally guaranteed funda-
2. The bill can be introduced either by a
mental rights.“These laws
minister or by private member and does not
encroach upon property
require prior permission of the president
rights, freedom of speech
3. The bill must be passed in each House by
and equality before law.
a special majority, that is, a majority (that
2nd amendment A technical amendment Union Territory after ac-
to fix the size of each par- quisition from Portugal.
liamentary constituency
between 650,000 and 11th amendment Election of Vice President
850,000 voters. by Electoral College con-
sisting of members of both
3rd amendment Limits maximum no of Houses of Parliament, in-
seats in lok Sabha up to stead of election by a Joint

500.“States to be divided
Sitting of Parliament. In-
into constituencies such

demnify the President and
that one member of a con-
Vice President Election

stituency represents be-
procedure from challenge
tween 500000 and 750000
on grounds of existence of

any vacancies in the elec-
4th amendment Restrictions on property toral college.
rights and inclusion of
12th amendment Incorporation of Goa,
related bills in Schedule 9
of the constitution. Daman and Diu as a
I Union Territory, after ac-
5th amendment Provides for a consulta- quisition from Portugal.
tion mechanism with con-
cerned states in matters 13th amendment Formation of State of
relating to the amend- Nagaland, with special
ments to the territorial protection under Article

matters and in the re-nam-

ing of the state. 14th amendment Incorporation of
6th amendment Amended the Union and Pondicherry into the
State Lists with respect to Union of India.“Creation
raising of taxes. of Legislative Assemblies
7th amendment Reorganization of states for Himachal Pradesh,
on linguistic lines Aboli- Tripura, Manipur and

tion of Class A, B, C, D
states“Introduction of 15th amendment Raise retirement age of
Union Territories. judges from 60 to
8th amendment Clarify state's power of 62“Other minor amend-

compulsory acquisition ments for rationalizing

and requisitioning of pri- interpretation of rules re-
vate property“Include garding judges, etc.
Zamindari abolition laws 16th amendment Make it obligatory for
in Schedule 9 of the con- seekers of public office to
stitution. swear their allegiance to
9th amendment Minor adjustments to ter- the Indian Republic and
ritory of Indian Union prescribe the various
consequent to agreement obligatory templates.
with Pakistan for settle- 17th amendment To secure the constitu-
ment of disputes by de-
tional validity of acquisi-
marcation of border vil-
tion of Estates and place
lages, etc.
land acquisition laws in
10th amendment Incorporation of Dadra, Schedule 9 of the consti-
Nagar and Haveli as a tution.


18th amendment Technical Amendment to princely states which were
include Union Territories incorporated into the In-
in Article 3 and hence dian Republic.
permit reorganisation of 27th amendment Reorganization of
Union Territories. Mizoram into a Union
19th amendment Abolish Election Tribunals Territory with a legisla-
and enable trial of elec- ture and council of minis-
tion petitions by regular ters.
High Courts. 28th amendment Rationalized Civil Service
20th amendment Indemnify & validate rules to make it uniform
judgments, decrees, orders across those appointed
and sentences passed by prior to Independence and
judges. post independence.
Validate the appointment, 29th amendment Places land reform acts
posting, promotion and and amendments to these
transfer of judges except act under Schedule 9 of
those not eligible for ap- the constitution.
pointment under article 30th amendment Changes the basis for ap-
233. peals in Supreme Court of
Amendment was needed India in case of Civil Suits
to overcome the effect of from value criteria to one
judgement invalidating involving substantial ques-
appointments of certain tion of law.
judges in the state of Uttar 31th amendment Increased size of Parlia-
Pradesh. ment from 525 to 545
seats.“Increased seats
21th amendment Included Sindhi as a Na-
went to the new states
tional Language.
formed in North East In-
22nd amendment Provision to form Autono- dia and minor adjustment
mous states within the consequent to 1971 De-
State of Assam. limitation exercise.
23rd amendment Extend reservation for SC 32nd amendment Protection of regional
/ ST and nomination of rights in Telangana and
Anglo Indian members in Andhra regions of State
Parliament and State As- of Andhra Pradesh.
semblies for another ten 33rd amendment Prescribes procedure for
years i.e. up to 1980. resignation by members of
24th amendment Enable parliament to di- parliament and state
lute fundamental rights legislatures“Prescribes pro-
through amendments to cedure for verification and
the constitution. acceptance of resignation
25th amendment Restrict property rights by house speaker.
and compensation in case 34th amendment Place land reform acts and
the state takes over pri- amendments to these act
vate property. under Schedule 9 of the
26th amendment Abolition of privy purse constitution.
paid to former rulers of 35th amendment Terms and Conditions for


the Incorporation of 43rd amendment Amendment passed after
Sikkim into the Union of revocation of internal
India. emergency in the Coun-
36th amendment Formation of Sikkim as a try.
State within the Indian Repeals some of the more
Union. 'Anti-Freedom' amend-

37th amendment Formation of Arunachal ments enacted through
Pradesh legislative assem- Amendment Bill 42.

bly. 44th amendment Amendment passed after
38th amendment Enhances the powers of

revocation of internal
President and Governors emergency in the Coun-
to pass ordinances.

39th amendment Negated the judgement of Provides for human rights
Allahabad High Court safeguards and mecha-
invalidating Prime Minis- nisms to prevent abuse of
ter Indira Gandhi's elec- executive and legislative
I tion to parliament.
Amendment placed re-
Annuls some Amend-
strictions on judicial scru-
ments enacted in Amend-
tiny of post of Prime Min-
ister. ment Bill 42.
45th amendment Extend reservation for SC

40th amendment Enable Parliament to

make laws with respect to / ST and nomination of
Exclusive Economic Zone Anglo Indian members in
and vest the mineral Parliament and State As-
wealth with Union of In- semblies for another ten
dia. years i.e. up to 1990.
Place land reform & other 46th amendment Amendment to negate ju-

acts and amendments to dicial pronouncements on

these act under Schedule scope and applicability on
9 of the constitution. Sales Tax.
41th amendment Raised Retirement Age 47th amendment Place land reform acts and

Limit of Chairmen and amendments to these act

Members of Union and under Schedule 9 of the
State Public Commissions constitution.
from sixty to sixty two.
48th amendment Article 356 amended to
42nd amendment Amendment passed dur- permit President's rule up
ing internal emergency by to two years in the state of
Indira Gandhi.
Provides for curtailment
49th amendment Recognize Tripura as a
of fundamental rights,
Tribal State and enable the
imposes fundamental du-
ties and changes to the creation of a Tripura Tribal
basic structure of the con- Areas Autonomous Dis-
stitution by making India trict Council.
a "Socialist Secular" Re- 50th amendment Technical Amendment to
public. curtailment of Fundamen-


tal Rights as per Part III as 59th amendment Article 356 amended to
prescribed in Article 33 to permit President's rule up
cover Security Personnel to three years in the state
protecting property and of Punjab“Articles 352
communication infrastruc- and Article 359A
ture. amended to permit impos-
51th amendment Provide reservation to ing emergency in state of
Scheduled Tribes in Punjab or in specific dis-
Nagaland, Meghalaya, tricts of the state of Punjab.
Mizoram and Arunachal
Pradesh Legislative As- 60th amendment Professional Tax increased
semblies. from a maximum of Rs.
250/- to a maximum of
52nd amendment Anti Defection Law - Pro-
Rs. 2500/.
vide disqualification of
members from parliament 61th amendment Reduce age for voting
and assembly in case of rights from 21 to 18.
defection from one party 62nd amendment Extend reservation for SC
to other. / ST and nomination of
53rd amendment Special provision with re- Anglo Indian members in
spect to the State of Parliament and State As-
Mizoram. semblies for another ten
54th amendment Increase the salary of years i.e. up to 2000.
Chief Justice of India & 63rd amendment Emergency powers appli-
other Judges. cable to State of Punjab,
Provisions for determin- accorded in Article 359A
ing future increases with- as per amendment 59 re-
out the need for constitu- pealed.
tional amendment.
64th amendment Article 356 amended to
55th amendment Special powers to Gover- permit President's rule up
nor consequent to forma-
to three years and six
tion of state of Arunachal
months in the state of
56th amendment Transition provision to
enable formation of state 65th amendment National Commission for
of Goa. Scheduled Castes and
Scheduled Tribes formed
57th amendment Provide reservation to
and its statutory powers
Scheduled Tribes in
specified in The Constitu-
Nagaland, Meghalaya,
Mizoram and Arunachal tion.
Pradesh Legislative As- 66th amendment Place land reform acts and
semblies. amendments to these act
58th amendment Provision to publish au- under Schedule 9 of the
thentic Hindi translation constitution.
of constitution. 67th amendment Article 356 amended to
Provision to publish au- permit President's rule up
thentic Hindi translation to four years in the state
of future amendments. of Punjab.


68th amendment Article 356 amended to under Schedule 9 of the
permit President's rule up constitution.
to five years in the state of 79th amendment Extend reservation for SC
Punjab. / ST and nomination of
69th amendment To provide for a legisla- Anglo Indian members in
tive assembly and council Parliament and State As-
of ministers for Federal semblies for another ten

National Capital of Delhi. years i.e. up to 2010.

Delhi continues to be a 80th amendment Implement Tenth Finance
Union Territory. Commission recommen-

70th amendment Include National Capital dation to simplify the tax
structures by pooling and

of Delhi and Union Terri-
sharing all taxes between
tory of Pondicherry in
states and The Centre.
electoral college for Presi-
dential Election. 81th amendment Protect SC / ST reserva-
tion in filling backlog of
71th amendment Include Konkani,
I vacancies.
Manipuri and Nepali as
82nd amendment Permit relaxation of quali-
National Languages.
fying marks and other
72nd amendment Provide reservation to criteria in reservation in
Scheduled Tribes in promotion for SC / ST
Tripura State Legislative candidates.

Assembly. 83rd amendment Exempt Arunachal

73rd amendment Statutory provisions for Pradesh from reservation
Panchayat Raj as third for Scheduled Castes in
level of administration in Panchayati Raj institu-
84th amendment Extend the usage of 1971
74th amendment Statutory provisions for
national census popula-

Local Administrative bod- tion figures for state wise

ies as third level of admin- distribution of parliamen-
istration in urban areas tary seats.
such as towns and cities.
85th amendment A technical amendment

75th amendment Provisions for setting up to protect seniority in case

Rent Control Tribunals. of promotions of SC/ST
76th amendment Enable continuance of
69% reservation in Tamil 86th amendment Provides Right to Educa-
Nadu by including the tion until the age of four-
relevant Tamil Nadu Act teen and Early childhood
care until the age of six.
under 9th Schedule of the
constitution. 87th amendment Extend the usage of 1971
national census popula-
77th amendment A technical amendment tion figures for state wise
to protect reservation to distribution of parliamen-
SC/ST Employees in pro- tary seats.
88th amendment To extend statutory cover
78th amendment Place land reform acts and for levy and utilization of
amendments to these act Service Tax.


89th amendment The National Commission MISCELLANEOUS TOPICS
for Scheduled Castes and
Scheduled Tribes was bi- Separation of Powers
furcated into The National Meaning
Commission for Scheduled
Castes and The National The doctrine of separation of powers, as-
Commission for Scheduled cribed to a Frenchman, Montesquieu has come
to mean an organic separation or separation of
government powers, namely, the legislative, the
90th amendment Reservation in Assam executive, and the judicial powers. Any two of
Assembly relating to these powers should not fall in the same hands.
Bodoland Territory Area. They should not assume or combine functions
91th amendment Restrict the size of council essentially belonging to each other. This is nec-
of ministers to 15 % of essary to ward off any kind of tyrannical gov-
legislative members & to ernment. Thus, doctrine of separation of powers
strengthen Anti Defection stated in its rigid form means that each of the
laws. branches of government, namely, executive or
administrative, legislative and judicial should be
92nd amendment Enable Levy of Service
confined exclusively to a separate department
or organ of government. There should be no
Include Bodo, Dogri, overlapping either of functions or of persons.
Santali and Maithili as
A distinction may be necessary between
National Languages. essential and incidental powers of an organ of
93rd amendment To enable provision of government. Government is a living thing. Its
reservation for other back- life is dependent upon cooperation of its organs,
ward classes (O.B.C.) in which are interdependent. An organ may exer-
government as well as cise some of the incidental powers of another
private educational insti- organ. However, no organ of government is
tutions. supreme. Each organ is limited to the exercise
94th amendment To provide for a Minister of the powers confided to it under the law of
of Tribal Welfare in newly its creation, viz., the Constitution.
created Jharkhand and 'Separation' in USA
Chhattisgarh States. The Constitution of the United States is
95th amendment Extended the reservation usually quoted as the leading example of a
of seats in Lok Sabha and constitution embodying the doctrine of separa-
State Assemblies for SC tion of powers. While Constitution of the U.S.A.
and ST from sixty to sev- does not expressly provide for a separation of
enty years. power, the doctrine has been incorporated into
the Constitution by the provisions that:
96th amendment Substituted "Odia" for
● All legislative powers shall be vested in a
97th amendment Added the words "or co- ● All executive power shall be vested in Presi-
operative societies" in Ar- dent
ticle 19(l)(c) and inserted ● All judicial power shall be vested in one
article 43B i.e, Promotion Supreme Court, and in such inferior courts
of Co-operative Societies as Congress may from time to time ordain
and added Part-IXB i.e, and establish.
THE CO-OPERATIVE SO- 'Separation' in India
CIETIES. Under the Indian constitution only execu-
tive power is 'vested' in the President while has been held by the Supreme Court of India as
provisions are simply made for a Parliament one of the basic features of the Constitution,
and judiciary without expressly vesting the which cannot be impaired even by amending it
legislative and judicial powers in any person or (vide Kesavananda v. State of Kerala, 1973)
body. Moreover, India has the same system of
parliamentary executive as in England and the Anti-defection Law
Council of Ministers consisting as it does of the The Constitution (52nd Amendment) Act,

members of legislature is, like the British Cabi- 1985, amended Art. 101,102,190, and 191 of the
net, a hyphen which joins a buckle which Constitution regarding vacation of seats and

fastens the legislative part of the State to the disqualification from membership of Parliament
executive part. Even, though the Constitution of and the State Legislatures, and added a new

India does not accept strict separation of pow- Schedule (Tenth Schedule) to the Constitution
ers it provides for an independent judiciary

setting out certain provisions as to disqualifica-
with extensive jurisdiction over the acts of the tion on grounds of defection. The Tenth Sched-
legislature and the executive. ule inter alia provides that:
The Cabinet, the Supreme Court of India has (i) An elected member of Parliament or a
said, is a hyphen which joins, or a buckle which State Legislatures, who has been elected as
fastens, the Legislative part of the State to its a candidate set up by a political party, and
executive part. The Constitution in article 50, a nominated member of Parliament or a
however, specifically ordains separation of the State Legislature who is a member of a
Judiciary from the Executive. The vitality and political party at the time he takes his seat
importance of the doctrine of separation of would be disqualified on the ground of
powers lies not in any rigid separation of func- defection if he voluntarily reliiquishes his

tions, but in a working synthesis with the guar- membership of such political party or
antee of judicial independence. votes or abstains from voting in the House
Accordingly, the Indian Constitution has contrary to any direction of such party;
not recognised the doctrine of separation of (ii) An independent member of Parliament or
powers in its absolute form but the functions of a State Legislature will be disqualified if he
the different parts or branches of government joins any political party after his election;
have been sufficiently differentiated and conse- (iii) A nominated member of Parliament or a

quently it can very well be said that our Con- State Legislature who is not a member of
stitution does not contemplate assumption by a political party at the time of his nomina-
one organ or part of the State, of functions, that tion and who has not become a member
essentially belong to another. The executive of any political party before the expiry of

indeed can exercise the powers of departmental six months from the date on which he
or subordinate legislation when such powers takes his seat shall be disqualified if he
are delegated to it by the legislature. It can also, joins any political party after the expiry of
when so empowered, exercise judicial functions the said period of six months;
in a limited way. (iv) No disqualification would be incurred
where a member claims that he belongs to
Conclusion a group representing a faction arising
Though the Constitution of India does not from a split in a party or merger of a party
formally recognize the doctrine of separation of in another, provided that in the event of
powers in its absolute rigidity, framers have a split the group consists of not less than
meticulously differentiated functioned of various one-third of the members of the legislature
organs of the government. Each organ has to party and in case of a merger of not less
function within its own sphere demarcated under than two-third of the members of the
the Constitution. The principle of "checks and legislature party and in case of a merger
balances" obtaining in our democracy necessi- of not less than two-thirds of the members
tated this. The doctrine of separation of powers of the legislature party concerned;
(v) No disqualification is incurred by a person within the meaning of Article 212; and
who has been elected to the office to the (ix) Notwithstanding anything in the Constitu-
Speaker or the Deputy Speaker of the tion, no Court will have any jurisdiction in
House of the People or of the Legislative respect of any matter connected with the
Assembly of a State or to the office of the disqualification of a member of a House.
Deputy Chairman of the Council of States Paragraph 7 of the Tenth Schedule which
or the Chairman, the Deputy Chairman of bars the jurisdiction of the courts was held ultra
the Legislative Council of a State; if he vires of the Constitution by the High Court of
severe his connection with his political Punjab and Harayana, and an appeal against
party; this order was preferred by the government in
(vi) The question as to whether a member of a the Supreme Court. The Supreme Court (Kohoto
House of Parliament or State Legislature Holloian v. Zacchulliu & Others, 1991) found
has become subject to disqualification will that there were legal infirmities in the passage
be determined by the Chairman or the of the Anti-defection law inasmuch as the
Speaker of the respective House, where the Constitution Amendment Bill had not been
question is with reference to the Chairman rectified by there requisite number of State
or the Speaker himself, it will be decided by Assemblies before being presented for the
a member of the concerned House elected President's assent. Also, the Speaker's functions
by it on that behalf; under the Tenth Schedule called for a judicial
(vii) The Chairman or the Speaker of a House determination of issues under the law. The
has been empowered to make rules for process of determining the question of disquali-
giving effect to the provisions of the Sched- fication could not be considered part of the
ule. The rules are required to be laid before proceedings of the House and, as such, was not
the House and are subject to modifica- amenable to judicial review. The Supreme Court
tions/disapproval by the House; struck down Paragraph 7 of the Schedule bar-
(viii) All proceedings in relation to any question ring the jurdiction of the Courts and declared
as to disqualification of a member of a that while operating under the Anti-defection
House under the Schedule will be deemed law, the Speaker was in the position of a
to be proceedings in Parliament within the tribunal, and therefore, his decisions like those
meaning of Art. 122 or, as the case may be, of all tribunals were subject to judicial
proceedings in the Legislature of a State review.



1. Consider the following about the doctrine of following powers with the correct article men-
severability and select the correct answer: tioned in the Constitution.
i) The doctrine of severability means severing
List A List B
part of a statute which is inconsistent with
any of the constitutional provisions and A. Parliament's I. Article 266 (3)
particularly the provisions of fundamental Control over Legislation
B. Parliament's II. Article 75
ii) Supreme Court of India considered the doc-
trine of severability for the first time in Control over Executive
Kesavananda bharati Case. C. Parliament's III. Article 253
iii) The severability of the valid and invalid pro- Control over Finance
visions of a Statute does not depend on
whether provisions are enacted in same Codes:
section or different section; it is not the form (a) A-III; B-II; C-I (b) A-II; B-I; C-III
but the substance of the matter that is to be
(c) A-III; B-I; C-II (d) A-II; B-III; C-I
4. A Bill becomes an Act after being duly passed
Codes : -
by both the houses of Parliament and given an
(a) All of the above (b) i and ii assent by the President. According to the In-
(c) i and iii (d) i only dian Constitution the President has the veto
powers over the Bills passed by the Parliament.
2. Match the following: Match the followings:

List I List II ListA List B

1. Article 111 I) assent to the bills/veto (Veto powers) (provisions)
power of President to A. Absolute veto I. President returns the
the bill passed by par- Bill or part of it for the
liament reconsideration.
2. Article 123 II) ordinance making B. Suspensive veto II. President is withhold-
power of Governor. ing the assent to a Bill.
3. Article 200 III) Presidential veto over C. Pocket veto III. President is not taking
state legislation. any action for an in-
definite time.
4. Article 213 IV) ordinance making
power of President.
(a) A-II; B-I; C-III (b) A-I; B-II; C-III
Codes: (c) A-II; B-III; C-I (d) A-I; B-III; C-II
(a) 1-I, 2-IV, 3-III, 4-II
(b) 1-I, 2-IV, 3-II, 4-III 5. Consider the following statements regarding
forming of new State or altering the boundaries
(c) 1-IV, 2-I, 3-III, 4-II of an existing State
(d) 1-IV, 2-I, 3-II, 4-III A. No Bill for the purpose can be introduced
expect on the recommendation of the Presi-
3. The parliament of India consists of the Presi- dent.
dent and the two Houses known as the Coun- B. The President shall, before giving his rec-
cil of States (Rajya Sabha) and the House of the ommendation, refer the bill to the Legisla-
People (Lok Sabha). The Parliament has been tive of the State which is going to be af-
vested with different powers. Match the

Indian Polity
©Chronicle IAS Academy 1
fected by the changes proposed in the bill, interet.------------------------Article 301
for expressing its views on the changes.
C. The Legislative of the State should express Select the answer from the code given below:
its views within the period specified by the (a) Only I is correct (b) Only II is corect
President. (c) Only III is corect (d) All are correct

D. The President is bound by the views of the 8. In which of the following important matters
State Legislature. in respect of that both Houses (Rajya Sabha
And Lok Sabha) enjoy equal powers?

Which of the following statement is/are cor- I. Election and impeachment of the President
II. Election and impeachment of the Vice-

(a) A, B and C (b) A and B only President

(c) B only (d) All of them III. Approving the Proclamation of emergency
and the the Proclamation regarding failure
6. Which of the following statements regarding of constitutional machinery in States

the President of India is false?

1. The President shall be elected by the mem- Select the correct answer from below:
bers of an electoral college consisting of- (a) Only I and II (b) Only I and III
the elected members of both Houses of Par-
liament; and the elected members of the (c) Only II and III (d) All I, II and III
AC I Legislative Assemblies of the States.
9. The Council of Ministers and Cabinet are often
2. The supreme command of the Defence used interchangeably though there is a definite
Forces of the Union shall be vested in the distinction between them. Which of the follow-
President and the exercise thereof shall be ing is NOT included in the Council of Minis-
regulated by law. ters?
3. Every elected member of the Legislative As- I. The Council of Ministers is collectively re-
sembly of a State shall have as many votes sponsible to the Lower House of the Parlia-
as there are multiples of one thousand in ment.
the quotient obtained by dividing the popu-
II. It deals with all major legislative and fi-
lation of the State by the total number of
nancial matters.
the elected members of the Assembly.
III. It is a constitutional body, dealt in detail by
4. The election of the President shall be held
the Article 74 and 75 of the Constitution.
in accordance with the system of propor-

tional representation by means of the single IV. It was inserted in the Article 352 of the
transferable vote and the voting at such Constitution in 1978 by the 44th Constitu-
election shall be by open ballot. tional Amendment Act.

Select the correct answer from below:


(a) 1, 2 and 3 (b) 3 and 4 (a) Only I, II and III (b) Only II and IV
(c) Only 4 (d) None of the above (c) Only I, II and IV (d) All II, III and III

7. Which of the following pairs is/are correctly 10. The Indian Parliament exercises final control
matched? on Public Finance through …
I. Parliament can provide for grants-in-aid to (a) Public Accounts Committee
states by the Centre. Such sums are charged (b) Ministry of Finance
on the Consolidated Fund of India.---------
--------------------------Artcle 275 (c) Comptroller and Auditor General of India
II. The Centre can grant loans to states and (d) Estimates Committee
also give guarantee in respect of loans raised
by them. --------------------Article 282 11. Which of the following statements is not cor-
rect regarding the functions and powers of the
III. Parliament can impose restrictions on Iner- Comptroller and Auditor General of India?
state trade and commerce in the public

2 Indian Polity
(a) He examines the accounts of the Union 1. The Finance Commission consists of a
Government and submits his report to the Chairman and four other members to be
President. appointed by the President on the advice
of the Council of Ministers.
(b) He examines the accounts of the state gov-
ernments and submits his reports to the 2. The chairman should be a person having
Governors. specialised knowledge of Finance and the
members should have experience in public
(c) He does not exercise any administrative
control over the offices of the auditors
working in the states. 3. Finance Commission also makes recommen-
dations to the President on the matters
(d) Any information asked by the Parliament
relating to the principles that should gov-
can only be given by CAG through PAC.
ern the grant-in-aid to the states by the
12. Consider the following statements:
(i) The governor has the power to suspend, 4. Recommendations made by the Finance
remit or commute a sentence of death, if Commission are binding on the govern-
conferred by law. ment.
(ii) President has the pardoning power in re-
spect of all cases of punishment by a Court
(a) 1 and 2 (b) 2 and 4
(c) 3 and 4 (d) 1 and 3
(iii) As regards law in the concurrent sphere,
the jurisdiction of President is concurrent
with that of the governor. 15. Consider the following provisions regarding ad-
ministration of Union Territories and Acquired
(iv) The only authority for pardoning a sen- Territories:
tence of death is the President. (i) All the Union Territories are administered
by an Administrator as the agent of the
Which of the above statements are correct? President and not by a Governor acting as
(a) (ii), (iii) and (iv) the head of the state.
(b) (i), (ii) and (iv) (ii) The Government of Delhi has all the legis-
(c) (ii) and (iv) lative power in the state list except on
Public order, Police and land.
(d) All are correct.
(iii) Provisions relating to the Union Territories
13. Consider the following two statements regard- extend to the administration of Acquired
ing Consolidated Fund of India: Territories.
1. The estimates that relate to the expendi- (iv) Parliament may, by law, constitute a High
ture charged upon the consolidated fund Court for a Union Territory.
of India shall not be submitted to the vote
of the Parliament. Which of the above statements are correct?
2. Parliament is not empowered to discuss ex- (a) (i), (iii) and (iv) (b) (ii), (iii) and (iv)
penditure charged upon the consolidated (c) (i), (ii) and (iv) (d) All are correct.
fund of India.
16. Which of the following financial powers are
Which of the options is correct? enjoyed by the Governor?
(a) 1 only (i) All the demands for grants are presented
(b) 2 only before the state legislature on the recom-
mendation of the Governor.
(c) Both are correct
(ii) He is in charge of the Contingency Fund of
(d) Both are incorrect the state and can make advances out of it
to meet unforeseen expenditure.
14. Consider the following statements about the Fi-
nance Commission and select the correct ones: (iii) The supplementary grants, if any, are pre-
sented before the state legislature on the
Indian Polity 3
recommendation of the governor. the President and the Vice-President.
(iv) He can order the reduction of salaries and (ii) Will get all allowances and privileges of the
allowances of the state civil servants dur- President.
ing the President's rule in the state.
(iii) Should continue to work as the Chairman
of Rajya Sabha
(a) (i) and (iv) Which of the above statements is/are correct?
(b) (ii), (iii) and (iv) (a) (i), (ii) and (iii) (b) (i) and (ii)

(c) (i), (ii) and (iii) (c) (ii) and (iii) (d) (ii) only

(d) (i), (ii) (iii) and (iv)
21. What are the Rights Implicit under Art (19).

17. Which of the following statements regarding 1. Right of a convict to express himself before
ministers is NOT correct? media.

(a) A minister can be a member of either House 2. Right to commercial advertisement.
of the Parliament, but he is liable to vote

3. Furling of National Flag.
only in the house to which he belongs.
4. Voters have right to know / Rights to in-
(b) Deputy Minister cannot hold independent
charges but is paid salary equal to that of
Cabinet Ministers. 5. Rights to Bandh.
(c) Minister of States cannot attend cabinet
meeting unless invited.
a. 1,2,3,4,5 b. 1,2,3,4
(d) A person, not a member of any House, can
be made minister for 6 months. c. 2,3,4,5 d. 3,4,5

18. In which of the following aspects, does the Fi- 22. Which of the following statements is/are cor-
nance Commission differ from the Planning rect?
Commission? 1- Estimates Committee comprising of 30 mem-
1. Legal status bers, all from Lok Sabha, is a Committee of
Lok Sabha.
2. Composition
2- Public Accounts Committee and Commit-
3. Tenure tee on Public Undertaking which though

4. Form of organisation comprise of members from both the houses

of Parliament are also Committees of Lok
5. Functions Sabha only.
(a) 1, 2, and 5 (b) 1, 2, 3 and 5 a. 1 only B. 2 only
(c) 1, 2, 4 and 5 (d) 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5

c. Both 1 & 2 D. None

19. Consider the following regarding Article 41 of 23. Which of the following features of Indian Con-
the Constitution. It does not include…. stitution is not an aberration to federal nature
(a) Securing just and humane conditions of of it?
work. a. Absence of dual citizenship
(b) Securing right to work. b. Independent judiciary
(c) Securing public assistance in case of unem- c. All India services
d. Unequal representation of states in Coun-
(d) Provision of assistance in case of disabled cil of State
24. Match the following:
20. When the Vice-President is acting as President,
List -I List-II
(i) Will have all powers and functions of both (Schedules in the (Provisions)
4 Indian Polity
I. Sixth 1. Administration and d. 2 3 4 1
Schedule control of scheduled ar-
eas and scheduled tribes. 25. Which of the following statements is/are cor-
rect regarding the rights of minorities to estab-
II. Second 2. Administration of tribal lish and administer their own educational insti-
areas tutions?
Schedule in states of Assam, A. To choose its governing body in whom the
Meghalaya, Tripura and founder of the institute have faith and con-
Mizoram. fidence to manage the affairs of the institu-
III. Twelfth 3. Provisions as to the
Speaker B. To appoint teaching staff as also non-teach-
ing staff, and to take action if there is der-
Schedule andDeputy Speaker of
eliction of duty on the part of the employ-
State Legislative Assem-
C. To admit eligible students of their choice
IV. Fifth 4. Powers, authority and
and to set up a reasonable fee structure.
D. To use its properties and assets for the
Schedule ponsibilities of Mu-
benefit of the institution.
I II III IV Codes:
a. 2 4 3 1 (a) A, B and C (b) A, B and D
b. 1 4 3 2 (c) B, C and D (d) All of them
c. 1 3 4 2


Indian Polity 5

1 (a) 14 (c)

2 (a) 15 (c)

3 (a) 16 (a)

4 (d) 17 (d)
5 (c) 18 (d)

6 (a) 19 (a)

7 (b) 20 (b)

8 (e) 21 (b)

9 (a) 22 (c)

10 (a) 23 (b)

11 (a) 24 (b)

12 (b) 25 (b)

13 (d)

Sample Questions (Indian Polity) 1


1. What will follow if a Money Bill is substantially 4. Consider the following statements:
amended by the Rajya Sabha?
(a) The Lok Sabha may still proceed with the Attorney General of India can
Bill, accepting or not accepting the recom- 1. take part in the proceedings of the Lok
mendations of the Rajya Sabha. Sabha.

(b) The Lok Sabha cannot consider the Bill 2. be a member of a committee of the Lok
further. Sabha.

(c) The Lok Sabha may send the Bill to the 3. speak in the Lok Sabha.
Rajya Sabha for reconsideration. 4. vote in the Lok Sabha.
(d) The President may call a joint sitting for
passing the Bill. Which of the statements given above is/are
2. Which one of the following statements is cor- (a) 1 only
rect? (b) 2 and 4
(a) In India, the same person cannot be ap-
pointed as Governor for two or more States (c) 1, 2 and 3
at the same time. (d) 1 and 3 only
(b) The Judges of the High Court of the States
in India are appointed by the Governor of 5. Which of the following bodies does not/do not
the State just as the Judges of the Supreme find mention in the Constitution?
Court are appointed by the President. 1. National Development Council
(c) No procedure has been laid down in the 2. Planning Commission
Constitution of India for the removal of a 3. Zonal Councils
Governor from his/her post.
(d) In the case of a Union Territory having a Select the correct answer using the codes given
legislative setup, the Chief Minister is ap- below.
pointed by the Lt. Governor on the basis of (a) 1 and 2 only
majority support. (b) 2 only
3. Consider the following statements (c) 1 and 3 only
1. An amendment to the Constitution of In- (d) 1, 2 and 3
dia can be initiated by an introduction of a
bill in the Lok Sabha only. 6. The Parliament can make any law for whole or
2. If such an amendment seeks to make any part of India for implementing international
changes in the federal character of the treaties
Constitution, the amendment also requires (a) with the consent of all the States.
to be ratified by the legislature of all the
(b) with the consent of the majority of States.
States of India.
(c) with the consent of the States concerned.
Which of the statements given above is/are
(d) without the consent of any State.
(a) 1 only 7. The Government enacted the Panchayat Exten-
(b) 2 only sion to Scheduled Areas (PESA) Act in 1996.
Which one of the following is not identified as
(c) Both 1 and 2
its objective?
(d) Neither 1 nor 2
Indian Polity 1
(a) To provide self-governance. (a) 1 only (b) 1 and 2 only
(b) To recognize traditional rights. (c) 2 and 3 only (d) 1, 2 and 3
(c) To create autonomous regions in tribal ar-
eas. 12. In the Parliament of India, the purpose of an
adjournment motion is
(d) To free tribal people from exploitation. (a) To allow a discussion on a definite matter
of urgent public importance
8. Under the Scheduled Tribes and Other Tradi-
(b) To let opposition members collect informa-

tional Forest Dwellers (Recognition of Forest
Rights) Act, 2006, who shall be the authority to tion from the ministers
initiate the process for determining the nature (c) To allow a reduction of specific amount in

and extent of individual or community forest demand for grant
rights or both?

(d) To postpone the proceedings to check the
(a) State Forest Department
inappropriate or violent behaviour on the
(b) District Collector/Deputy Commissioner part of some members.

(c) Tahsildar /Block Development Officer /
Mandai Revenue Officer 13. Consider the following provisions under the Di-
rective Principles of State Policy as enshrined in
(d) Gram Sabha the Constitution of India:
1. Securing for citizens of India a uniform civil
9. 'Economic Justice' the objectives of Constitution
has been as one of the Indian provided in
2. Organizing village Panchayats
(a) the Preamble and Fundamental Rights.
3. Promoting cottage industries in rural areas
(b) the Preamble and the Directive Principles
of State Policy. 4. Securing for all the workers reasonable lei-
sure and cultural opportunities
(c) the Fundamental Rights and the Directive
Principles of State Policy.
Which of the above are the Gandhian Principles
(d) None of the above. that are reflected in the Directive Principles of
State Policy?
10. According to the Constitution of India, which (a) 1 , 2 and 4 only (b) 2 and 3 only
of the following are fundamental for the gover-
nance of the country? (c) 1,3 and 4 only (d) 1, 2, 3 and 4

(a) Fundamental Rights

14. Consider the following statements:
(b) Fundamental Duties 1. Union Territories are not represented in the
(c) Directive Principles of State Policy Rajya Sabha.
(d) Fundamental Rights and Fundamental 2. It is within the purview of the Chief Elec-

Dutie tion Commissioner to adjudicate the elec-

tion disputes.
11. In the areas covered under the Panchayat (Ex- 3. According to the Constitution of India, the
tension to the Scheduled Areas) Act, 1996, what Parliament consists of the Lok Sabha and
is the role/power of Gram Sabha? the Rajya Sabha only.
1. Gram Sabha has the power to prevent alien-
ation of land in the Scheduled Areas. Which of the statements given above is/are
2. Gram Sabha has the ownership of minor correct?
forest produce. (a) 1 only (b) 2 and 3
3. Recommendation of Gram Sabha is re- (c) 1 and 3 (d) None
quired for granting prospecting license or
mining lease for any mineral in the Sched- 15. Regarding the office of the Lok Sabha Speaker,
uled Areas. consider the following statements:
1. He/she holds the office during the plea-
Which of the statement given above is/are correct? sure of the President.

2 Indian Polity
2. He/she need not be a member of the House Fund of India only after passing the Ap-
at the time of his/her election but has to propriation Bill
become a member of the House within six
3. Provisions of supplementary grants and
months from the date of his/her election.
3. If he/she intends to resign, the letter of his/
4. A periodic or at least a mid-year review of
her resignation has to be addressed to the
programme of the Government against
Deputy Speaker.
macroeconomic forecasts and expenditure
by a Parliamentary Budget Office
Which of the statements given above is/are
correct? 5. Introduction Finance Bill in the Parliament
(a) 1 and 2 only (b) 3 only
Select the correct answer using the codes given
(c) 1, 2 and 3 (d) None below:
(a) 1, 2, 3 and 5 only (b) 1, 2 and 4 only
16. Which of the following are included in the origi-
nal jurisdiction of the Supreme Court? (c) 3, 4 and 5 only (d) 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5
1. A dispute between the Government of In-
dia and one or more States 19. Which of the following provisions of the Con-
stitution of India have a bearing on Education?
2. A dispute regarding elections to either 1. Directive Principles of State Policy
House of the Parliament or that of Legisla-
ture of a State 2. Rural and Urban Local Bodies

3. A dispute between the Government of In- 3. Fifth Schedule

dia and a Union Territory 4. Sixth Schedule
4. A dispute between two or more states 5. Seventh Schedule

Select the correct answer using the codes given Select the correct answer using the codes given
below: below:
(a) 1 and 2 (b) 2 and 3 (a) 1 and 2 only (b) 3, 4 and 5 only
(c) 1 and 4 (d) 3 and 4 (c) 1, 2 and 5 only (d) 1, 2, 3 4 and 5

17. Which of the following special powers have 20. In India, other than ensuring that public funds
been conferred on the Rajya Sabha by the Con- are used efficiently and for intended purpose,
stitution of India? what is the importance of the office of the
(a) To change the existing territory of a State Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG)?
and to change the name of a State 1. CAG exercises exchequer control on behalf
of the Parliament when the President of
(b) To pass a resolution empowering the Par-
India declares national emergency/finan-
liament to make laws in the State List and
cial emergency.
to create one or more All India Services
2. CAG reports on the execution of projects
(c) To amend the election procedure of the
or programmes by the ministries are dis-
President and to determine the pension of
cussed by the Public Accounts Committee.
the President after his/her retirement
3. Information from CAG reports can be used
(d) To determine the functions of the Election by investigating agencies to press charges
Commission and to determine the number against those who have violated the law
of Election Commissioners while managing public finances.

18. Which of the following are the methods of Par- 4. While dealing with the audit and account-
liamentary control over public finance in In- ing of government companies, CAG has
dia? certain judicial powers for prosecuting
those who violate the law.
1. Placing Annual Financial Statement before
the Parliament
Which of the statements given above is/are
2. Withdrawal of moneys from Consolidated correct?
Indian Polity 3
(a) 1, 3 and 4 only (b) 2 only 4. The Report of the National Commission for
Scheduled Castes.
(c) 2 and 3 only (d) 1, 2, 3 and 4
Select the correct answer using the codes given
21. The Prime Minister of India, at the time of his/
her appointment:
(a) 1 only (b) 2 and 4 only
(a) Need not necessarily be a member of one
of the Houses of the Parliament but must (c) 1, 3 and 4 only (d) 1, 2, 3 and 4
become a member of one of the Houses

within six months. 24. A deadlock between the Lok Sabha and the
Rajya Sabha calls for a joint sitting of the Par-
(b) Need not necessarily be a member of one
liament during the passage of

of the Houses of the Parliament but must
become a member of the Lok Sabha within 1. Ordinary Legislation

six months 2. Money Bill
(c) Must be a member of one of the Houses of 3. Constitution Amendment Bill

the Parliament.

(d) Must be a member of the Lok Sabha. Select the correct answer using the codes given
22. With reference to the Delimitation Commission, (a) 1 only (b) 2 and 3 only
consider the following statements: (c) 1 and 3 only (d) 1, 2 and 3
1. The orders of the Delimitation Commission
cannot be challenged in a Court of Law. 25. How do District Rural Development Agencies
(DRDAs) help in the reduction of rural poverty
2. When the orders of the Delimitation Com-
in India?
mission are laid before the Lok Sabha or
State Legislative Assembly, they cannot 1. DRDAs act as Pancyayati Raj Institutions
effect any modifications in the orders. in certain specified backward regions of the
Which of the statements given above is/are 2. DRDAs undertake area-specific scientific
correct? study of the causes of poverty and malnu-
(a) 1 only (b) 2 only trition and prepare detailed remedial mea-
(c) Both 1 and 2 (d) Neither 1 nor 2
3. DRDAs secure inter-sectoral and inter-de-

23. According to the Constitution of India, it is the partmental coordination and cooperation
duty of the President of India to cause to be for effective implementation of anti-poverty
laid before the Parliament which of the follow- programmes.
ing? 4. DRDAs watch over and ensure effective
1. The Recommendations of the Union Fi- utilization of the funds intended for anti-

nance Commission. poverty programmes.

2. The Report of the Public Accounts Com-
Which of the statements given above is/are
3. The Report of the Comptroller and Audi- (a) 1, 2 and 3 only (b) 3 and 4 only
tor General.
(c) 4 only (d) 1, 2, 3 and 4


4 Indian Polity

1 (a) 14 (d)

2 (c) 15 (b)

3 (d) 16 (c)

4 (c) 17 (b)
5 (d) 18 (a)

6 (d) 19 (a)

7 (a) 20 (c)

8 (d) 21 (a)

9 (b) 22 (c)

10 (c) 23 (c)

11 (d) 24 (a)

12 (a) 25 (b)

13 (d)

Indian Polity 1