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PALAVVANAVARA UMESHA, Research Scholar, Dept of Political Science, VSK university Ballari PH no 9035328179, Email ID HYPERLINK [email protected] t _blank [email protected] Abstract The Anti Defection Act was the Constitution in 1985 by the Rajiv Gandhi sets the provisions for disqualification of elected members on the grounds of defection to another political parties. The law was added via the 52nd Amendment Act, 1985. Schedule X of the Constitution of India, containing the Anti Defection law, was enacted after three and half decades of Indias experience with parliamentary democracy. In this amendment, articles 101, 102, 190 and 191 were changed. It laid down the process by which legislators may be disqualified on grounds of defection The Constitution of India carried no reference to political parties and their existence since multi party democracy had not evolved in 1950 and early 1960, the heat of defections and their implications were not felt. Things however, changed after the 1967 elections. The 1967 elections are thus called a watershed moment in Indias democracy. During the initial 15 years of Indian parliamentary democracy, the first Prime Minister Mr. JL Nehru led the government with Congress party majority. The phenomenon of defection became more apparent from the 4th Lok Sabha, that is, from 1967 onward. Key words Amendment, Parliament, Legislatures, India, Articles, Constitution, Schedule, Act Introduction The Constitution of India carried no reference to political parties and their existence since multi party democracy had not evolved in 1950 and early 1960, the heat of defections and their implications were not felt. Things however, changed after the 1967 elections. The 1967 elections are thus called a watershed moment in Indias democracy. Anti Defection law, its main intent is to combat the evil of political defections. This law would not have been passed if there had been no Rajiv Gandhi and his government with an unparalleled massive majority. This law was passed so that it curbs the political deflections but the ever increasing hunger of our legislatures and with our excellent legal fraternity it was not a difficult task to find some loopholes in this law and they used it to their interest. Anti Defection law, we should understand the meaning of defection. When an elected representative joins another party without resigning his present party for benefits, it is called defection. Thus a defector is one who is elected from one party and enjoys power in another party. The 52nd Amendment Act of 1985 provided for the disqualification of the members of Parliament and the state legislatures on the ground of defection from one political party to another. In this amendment, articles 101, 102, 190 and 191 were changed. It laid down the process by which legislators may be disqualified on grounds of defection. The constitution popularly referred the Anti Defection Law 52nd Amendment in 1985. Defection simply by dictionary meaning means withdrawing support or helpdespite allegiance or responsibility. In relation to politics, defection meanswithdrawing ones loyalty towards his own political party accepting otherpartys membership. Anti Defection is the law by which the persons who do defection arepunished according to the rules of the law. Methodology This paper is completely based on Secondary data, the data has been collected from varies articles, journals, Magazines and wide information is collected from Election commission of India. However the study has consulted various secondary sources which were in the form of direct interview and policy papers looking at the various contemporary debates which are available in the policy implementation. Objective of the Study To study the Indian Constitution Provisions of the act. The Highlights of Advantages, Disadvantages and analysis of act. The Know the Reasons of 91st amendment Act 2003. Provisions of The Act Under the Articles 102 (2) and 191 (2), it is mentioned that an elected member will attract disqualification, if he voluntarily offers up his membership of a political party if he votes or withdraws from voting in such House contrary to any direction issued by his party or anyone authorized to try and do so, without getting prior permission. The provisions are created with relevance to mergers of political parties. There is no disqualification to be incurred when a legislature party decides to merge with another party and such decision is supported by not less than two-thirds of its members. The Chairman or the Speaker of a House has been empowered to frame rules for giving effect to the provisions of the Tenth Schedule. The rules are set before the House and shall be subject to modifications by the House. The Tenth Schedule contains the following provisions with respect to the disqualification of members of Parliament and the state legislatures on the ground of defection A Member of Parliament/Legislature belonging to any political party shall be disqualified from his membership if he votes in the session without prior permission of his party. Any political party shall be disqualified if he quits his party at his own will. He will be disqualified from his membership if he votes against his party Whip If the member takes prior permission for voting from the party within 15 days from such voting he/she shall not be disqualified. A nominated member shall be disqualified from his membership in the Upper House if he joins any political party after six months from the date on which he assumes his position. If 2/3rd majority of any political party merges with another political party it shall not be considered as defection. A person disqualified under this Act shall not be provided any office of profit. The anti-defection law determines the size of the Council of Ministers. Speaker can start action against the members under anti-defection law. The Chairperson of Legislatures is permitted to frame the rules to implement this law. An independent member of the house shall be disqualified, if he joins any party after defection. Advantages of Anti Defection Law Provides stability to the government by preventing shifts of party allegiance The law related to defection ensures stability in the government since there arent shifts of party allegiance The purpose of the Anti Defection Law is to prevent unsteadiness within the government governing the citizens Anti Defection law provides for punitive measures against a member who defects from one party to another Anti Defection Law provide safety measures to protect the government Anti Defection Law provide safety measures to protect the opposition against the instability that arises due to defection and shift in party allegiance Personal agenda of the candidate as well as the political partys agenda A candidate is bound by the promises made by his party during the elections and he is expected to remain loyal to the party as well the citizens voting for him Disadvantages of Anti Defection Law By preventing from changing parties Reduces the accountability of the government to the parliament and the people Interferes with the members freedom of speech and expression by curbing dissent against party policies It is restraining the basic freedom of speech and expression of the parliamentarians and the people. The stability of the government is important, equally desirable is the accountability of members who in turn are accountable not only to their political parties but also to the electorate. Analysis of Anti Defection law The Anti Defection law has enabled the political parties to have stronger grip on their members which many times has resulted into preventing them to vote for the lure of money of ministerial birth. It also provides stability to the government by preventing shifts of party allegiance and ensures that candidates elected with party support and on the basis of party manifestoes remain loyal to the party. However, it is also resulted into its unintended outcome the curtailing to a certain extent the role of the MP or member of state legislature. It is culminated into absence of constructive debates on critical policy issues. The whip has become all the more powerful and has to be followed in all circumstances. The Election Commission had recommended that the decisions under the Tenth Schedule should be made by the President or Governor on the binding advice of the Election Commission. A constitutional amendment vesting the power to decide matters relating to disqualification on the ground of defection with the President/Governor acting on the advice of the Election Commission would actually help in preserving the integrity of the Speakers office. 91st Amendment Act (2003) The reasons for enacting the 91st Amendment Act (2003) are as follows 1. Demands have been made from time to time in certain quarters for strengthening and amending the Anti Defection Law as contained in the Tenth Schedule, on the ground that these provisions have not been able to achieve the desired goal of checking defections. The Tenth Schedule has also been criticised on the ground that it allows bulk defections while declaring individual defections as illegal. The provision for exemption from disqualification in case of splits as provided in the Tenth Schedule has, in particular, come under severe criticism on account of its destabilising effect on the Government. 2. The Committee on Electoral Reforms (Dinesh Goswami Committee) in its report of 1990, the Law Commission of India in its 170th Report on Reform of Electoral Laws-1990 and the National Commission to Review the Working of the Constitution in its report of 2002 have, inter alia, recommended omission of the provision of the Tenth Schedule pertaining to exemption from disqualification in case of splits. 3. The NCRWC was also of the view that a defector should be penalised for his action by debarring him from holding any public office as a minister or any other remunerative political post for at least the duration of the remaining term of the existing Legislature or until, the next fresh elections whichever is earlier. 4. The NCRWC has also observed that abnormally large Councils of Ministers were being constituted by various Governments at Centre and states and this practice had to be prohibited by law and that a ceiling on the number of ministers in a state or the Union Government be fixed at the maximum of 10 of the total strength of the popular House of the Legislature. The 91st Amendment Act of 2003 has made the following provisions to limit the size of Council of Ministers, to debar defectors from holding public offices, and to strengthen the Anti Defection law. References Kihoto Hollohan v. Zachilhu, (1993). Soli J Sorabjee, The Remedy should not be worse than the Disease, The Times of India (Sunday Review), February 1, 1985, p. 1. Madhu Limaye, Contemporary Indian Politics, 1989, p. 190. http//www.thehindu.com/news/national/What-the-Anti-Defection-Law says/article15777794.ece M Lakxmikanth, INDIAN POLITY Mc Graw Hill Education (India) Private Limited New Delhi, 4th Edition, p. 67. 1 to 67.4 http//www.india.com/topic/anti-defection-law/ Subhash c Kashyap, The Politics of Defection A study of state politics in India, New Delhi, 1969 p. 11. http//www.prsindia.org/media/articles-by-prs-team/in-parliament-part-1-961/ http//www.dnaindia.com/india/report-here-s-everything-you-need-to-know-about-anti-defection-law-1978277 http//archive.indianexpress.com/news/antidefection-law/339606 The Hindu, What the Anti-Defection Law says J. Venkatesan NEW DELHIUPDATED 12 OCTOBER 2010 1425 IST Y, dXiJ(x(I_TS1EZBmU/xYy5g/GMGeD3Vqq8K)fw9
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