banner articles

Vice President Naidu Plan to reform parl

  Jun 27, 2020

Vice President Naidu Plan to reform parliamentary institutions

Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu offered reform plan for making the functioning of parliament conform to highest standards. 

What are the ills in the functioning of the parliament today?

  • Declining number of sittings of legislatures
  • Persistent disruptions, 
  • Declining quality of debates, 
  • Growing number of legislators with criminal record, 
  • High degree of absenteeism, 
  • Inadequate representation of women, 
  • Rising money and muscle power in elections and
  • Lack of inner democracy in functioning of the political parties
  • Negative influences of poverty and economic disparities
  • Faulty ‘First Pass the Post (FPTP) election system 

What reforms are suggested?

His reform charter includes 

  • Parties must ensure attendance of at least 50% of their legislators all through the proceedings of the Houses by adopting a roster system.
  • Review of the anti-defection law and of the whip system which is “stifling reasonable dissent even on non-consequential matters”; 
  • Setting up special courts for time-bound adjudication of criminal complaints against legislators; 
  • Pre and post-legislative impact assessment; 
  • Rising number of legislators with criminal background; 
  • Governments to be responsive to opposition and opposition to be responsible and constructive while resorting to available parliamentary instruments; and 
  • Consensus on the proposal for simultaneous elections.

Referring to occasional debates over the need for a presidential form of government, Naidu said it is not an option considering that the parliamentary form is one of the features of the ‘basic structure of the Constitution’ and is accordingly beyond the power of Parliament to be amended.