fbpx

WHEN THE LAW-AND-ORDER SITUATION IS SCRAMBLED CAN ASSEMBLY BE DISSOLVED? CAN THE PRESIDENT ORDER FOR A FRESH ELECTION? LANDMARK CASES  

May 2, 2022

Part XVIII of the constitution deals with such a situation that arises in the state of India. Let’s first read those provisions: Duration of State Legislatures.—(1) Every Legislative Assembly of every State, unless sooner dissolved, shall continue for five years from the date appointed for its first meeting and no longer and the expiration of the said period of [five years] shall operate as a dissolution of the Assembly: Provided that the said period may, while a Proclamation of Emergency is in operation, be extended by Parliament by law for a period not exceeding one year at a time and not extending in any case beyond a period of six months after the Proclamation has ceased to operate. (2) The Legislative Council of a State shall not be subject to dissolution, but as nearly as possible one-third of the members thereof shall retire as soon as may be on the expiration of every second year in accordance with the provisions made in that behalf by Parliament by law. Article 174(2) (2) The Governor may from time to time (a) Prorogue the House or either House; (b) dissolve the Legislative Assembly Article 355: Duty of the Union to protect States against external aggression and internal disturbance.—It shall be the duty of the Union to protect every State against external aggression and internal disturbance and to ensure that the Government of every State is carried on in accordance with the provisions of this Constitution. Dictum: Naga Peoples Movement vs Union of India Reference in this context may be made to Article 355 of the Constitution whereunder a duty has been imposed on the Union to protect every State against external aggression and internal disturbance and to ensure that the government of every State is carried on in accordance with the provisions of the Constitution. In view of the said provision, the Union Government is under an obligation to take steps to deal with a situation of internal disturbance in a State. There can be a situation arising out of internal disturbance which may justify the issuance of a proclamation under Article 356 of the Constitution enabling the President to assume to himself all or any of the functions of the Government of the State. That would depend on the gravity of the situation arising on account of such internal disturbance and on the President being satisfied that a situation has arisen where the Government of the State cannot be carried on in accordance with provisions of the Constitution. Provisions in case of failure of constitutional machinery in State: (1) If the President, on receipt of report from the Governor of the State or otherwise, is satisfied that a situation has arisen in which the government of the State cannot be carried on in accordance with the provisions of this Constitution, the President may be Proclamation (a) assume to himself all or any of the functions of the Government of the State and all or any of the powers vested in or exercisable by the Governor or anybody or authority in the State other than the Legislature of the State; (b) declare that […]

Read more