What is anti defection law? Discuss the features of the law and other exceptions under it in detail.
The Tenth Schedule of Indian Constitution is popularly known as the Anti-Defection Act. It was included in the Constitution in 1985 by the Rajiv Gandhi government. The law sets the provisions for disqualification of elected members on the grounds of defection to another political party.
- Articles 102 (2) and 191 (2) deals with anti-defection
- The grounds on which disqualification can beï¿½incurred are as under:
Members belonging to political parties
- If Member has voluntarily given up his membershipï¿½of political party
- If he votes or abstains from voting in suchï¿½House contrary to any direction issued by theï¿½political party to which he belongs without obtaining theï¿½prior permission of such political party
ï¿½Member elected otherwise than asï¿½candidate set up by any political party
- An elected Member of a House who has beenï¿½elected as such otherwise than as a candidate set upï¿½by any political party shall be disqualified for being aï¿½member of the House if he joins any political party afterï¿½such election
- A nominated member of a House shall beï¿½disqualified for being a member of the House if he joinsï¿½any political party after the expiry of six months fromï¿½the date on which he takes his seat
Cases of split
- No member will be disqualified from the membershipï¿½of the House when he and anyï¿½other members of his legislature party constitute aï¿½group representing a faction which has arisen as aï¿½result of a split in his original political party
- This provision has since beenï¿½omitted from the Tenth Schedule by theï¿½Constitution. Consequently, it is not now permissible to claim aï¿½split in the legislature party
Cases of merger
- No member will be disqualified from theï¿½membership of the House where his original politicalï¿½party merges with another political party
The question as to whether a member of aï¿½House of Parliament or State Legislature has becomeï¿½subject to disqualification will be determined by the Chairman/Speaker of the House and his decision willï¿½be final.
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