The Constitution of India: Amendments 51-75
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The 51st to 55th Amendments: 1984-1986
51. The Constitution (Fifty-first Amendment) Act, 1984—
Article 330 has been amended by this Act for providing reservation of seats for Scheduled Tribes in Meghalaya, Nagaland, Arunachal Pradesh and Mizoram in Parliament and Article 332 has been amended to provide similar reservation in the Legislative Assemblies of Nagaland and Meghalaya to meet the aspirations of local tribal population.
52. The Constitution (Fifty-second Amendment) Act, 1985—
It amends the Constitution to provide that a Member of Parliament or a State Legislature who defects or is expelled from the party which set him up as a candidate in the election or if an independent member of the House joins a political party after expiry of six months from the date on which he takes seat in the House shall be disqualified to remain a member of the House. The Act also makes suitable provisions with respect to splits in and merger of political parties.
53. The Constitution (Fifty-third Amendment) Act, 1986—
This has been enacted to give effect to the Memorandum of Settlement of Mizoram which was signed by Government of India and Mizoram Government with Mizoram National Front on 30th June 1986.
For this purpose, a new Article 371G has been inserted in the Constitution inter alia preventing application of any Act of Parliament in Mizoram in respect of religious or social practices of Mizos, Mizos’ customary law and procedure, administration of civil and criminal practice involving decisions according to Mizos’ customary law and ownership and transfer of land unless a resolution is passed in the Legislative Assembly to that effect. This, however, will not apply to any Central Act already in force in Mizoram before the commencement of this amendment. The new Article also provides that the Legislative Assembly of Mizoram shall consist of not less than 40 members.
54. The Constitution (Fifty-fourth Amendment) Act, 1986—
This Act increases the salaries of Supreme Court and High Court judges as follows :
Chief Justice of India Rs 10,000 per month
Judges of Supreme Court Rs 9,000 per month
Chief Justice of High Court Rs 9,000 per month
Judges of High Court Rs 8,000 per month
This Act amended Part ‘D’ of the Second Schedule to the Constitution to give effect to the above increases in the salaries of judges and to make an enabling provision in Articles 125 and 221 to provide for changes in the salaries of judges in future by Parliament by law.
55. The Constitution (Fifty-fifth Amendment) Act, 1986—
This Act seeks to give effect to the proposal of Government of India to confer statehood on the Union Territory of Arunachal Pradesh and for this purpose, a new Article 371H has been inserted which, inter alia, confers, having regard to the sensitive location of Arunachal Pradesh to vest special responsibility on Governor of the new State of Arunachal Pradesh with respect to law and order in the State and in the discharge of his functions, the Governor shall after consulting the Council of Ministers, exercise his individual judgement, as to the action to be taken and this responsibility shall cease when President so directs. The new Article also provides that the new Legislative Assembly of the new State of Arunachal Pradesh, shall consist of not less than thirty members.
The 56th to 60th Amendments: 1987-1988
56. The Constitution (Fifty-sixth Amendment) Act, 1987—
Government of India has proposed to constitute the territories comprised in Goa District of the Union Territory of Goa, Daman and Diu as the State of Goa and the territories comprised in Daman and Diu districts of that Union Territory as a new Union Territory of Daman and Diu. In this context, it was proposed that the Legislative Assembly of the new State of Goa shall consist of 40 members. The existing Legislative Assembly of the Union Territory of Goa, Daman and Diu has 30 elected members and three nominated members.
It was intended to make this Assembly with the exclusion of two members representing Daman and Diu districts the provisional Legislative Assembly for the new State of Goa until elections are held on the expiry of the five year terms of the existing Assembly. It was, therefore, decided to provide that the Legislative Assembly of the new State of Goa shall consist of not less than 30 members. The special provision required to be made to give effect to this proposal is carried out by this amendment.
57. The Constitution (Fifty-seventh amendment) Act, 1987—
The Constitution (Fifty-first Amendment) Act, 1984 was enacted to provide for reservation of seats in the house of the people for scheduled tribes in Nagaland, Meghalaya, Mizoram and Arunachal Pradesh and also for reservation of seats for scheduled tribes in the legislative assemblies of Nagaland and Meghalaya by suitably amending articles 330 and 332.
Even though these states are predominantly tribal, the underlying objective of the aforesaid act was to ensure that the members of scheduled tribes in these areas do not fail to secure a minimal representation because of their inability to compete with the advanced sections of the people.
The Constitution (fifty-first amendment) act, though formally enforced, could not be fully implemented unless parallel action is taken to determine the seats which are to be reserved for Scheduled tribes in these areas. The number of seats reserved for Schedule Castes and Schedule Tribes in the Legislative Assembly of any State under article 332 of the constitution will have to be determined having regard to the provisions of article 332 (3) of the Constitution.
However, in view of the historical background with respect to the areas comprised in north-eastern states, the circumstances obtaining in these areas in the State of development of Scheduled Tribes and other relevant considerations, it was considered necessary to provide for special arrangements with regard to the reservation for Scheduled Tribes in these areas for a temporary period so as to facilitate easy transition of these areas to the normal arrangements as envisaged in the Constitution. Article 332 of the Constitution was further amended for making a temporary provision, until the re-adjustment of seats on the basis of first census after the year 2000 under article 170 of the Constitution for these states, for the determination of the number of seats reserved for Scheduled Tribes.
This amendment seeks to provide that if all the seats in the Legislative Assembly of such States in existence on the date of coming into force of this constitution amendment act are held by the members of Scheduled Tribes, all the seats except one shall be reserved for scheduled tribes and in any other case such number of seats as bears to the total number of seats a proportion not less than the number of members belonging to Scheduled Tribes in the existing assembly bears to the total number of seats in the existing assembly. The act achieves these objectives.
58. The Constitution (Fifty-eighth Amendment) Act, 1987—
There has been general demand for the publication of authoritative text of the Constitution in Hindi. It is imperative to have an authoritative text of the Constitution for facilitating its use in the legal process. Any Hindi version of the Constitution should not only conform to the Hindi translation published by the Constituent Assembly, but should be in conformity, with the language style and terminology adopted in the authoritative texts of Central Acts in Hindi.
The Constitution has been amended to empower President of India to publish under his authority the translation of the Constitution in Hindi signed by the Members of the Constituent Assembly with such modification as may be necessary to bring it in conformity with the language, style and terminology adopted in the authoritative texts of Central Acts in Hindi language. President has also been authorised to publish the translation in Hindi of every amendment of the Constitution made in English.
59. The Constitution (Fifty-ninth Amendment) Act, 1988—
The Act amends Article 365 (5) of the Constitution so as to facilitate the extension of a Presidential Proclamation issued under clause (1) of Article 356 beyond a period of one year, if necessary upto a period of three years, as permissible under clause (4) of Article 356 with respect to the State of Punjab because of the continued disturbed situation there.
The Act also amends Article 352 of the Constitution pertaining to the Proclamation of Emergency in its application to the State of Punjab and includes internal disturbance as one of the grounds for making a Proclamation in respect of the State of Punjab only. As a consequence of amendment in Article 352, Articles 358 and 359 in relation to the State of Punjab will be operative only for a period of two years from 30 March 1988, which is the date of commencement of the amendment.
60. The Constitution (Sixtieth Amendment) Act, 1988—
The Act amends clause (2) of Article 276 of the Constitution so as to increase the ceiling of taxes on professions, trades, callings and employment from Rs 250 per annum to Rs 2,500 per annum. The upward revision of this tax will help state governments in raising additional resources. The proviso to clause (2) has been omitted.
The 61st to 65th Amendments: 1989-1990
61. The Constitution (Sixty-first Amendment) Act, 1989—
The Act provides for reducing voting age from 21 to 18 years by amending Article 326 of the Constitution to provide to the unrepresented youth of the country an opportunity to give vent to their feelings and help them become a part of political process.
62. The Constitution (Sixty-second Amendment) Act, 1989—
Article 334 of the Constitution lays down that the provisions of the Constitution relating to the reservation of seats for the Scheduled Castes and the Scheduled Tribes and the representation of the Anglo-Indian community by nomination in the Lok Sabha and in the Legislative Assemblies of the States shall cease to have effect on the expiry of a period of 40 years from the commencement of the Constitution.
Although the Scheduled Castes and the Scheduled Tribes have made considerable progress in the last 40 years, the reasons which weighed with the Constituent Assembly in making provisions with regard to the aforesaid reservation of seats and nomination of members, have not ceased to exist. The Act amends Article 334 of the Constitution to continue the reservation for the Scheduled Castes and the Scheduled Tribes and the representation of the Anglo-Indians by nomination for a further period of 10 years.
63. The Constitution (Sixty-third Amendment) Act, 1989—
The Constitution (Fifty-ninth Amendment) Act, 1988 was enacted in March 1988 making certain changes in regard to making a Proclamation of Emergency in Punjab and to the duration of President’s rule in State. On reconsideration, the Government decided that the special powers in regard to the Proclamation of Emergency in Punjab as envisaged in the said amendment is no longer required. Accordingly the provision to clause (5) of Article 356 and Article 359A of the Constitution have been omitted.
64. The Constitution (Sixty-fourth Amendment) Act, 1990—
This Act amends clauses (4) and (5) of Article 356 of the Constitution with a view to facilitate the extension of the proclamation issued under clause (1) of Article 356 of the Constitution on 11th May 1987 upto a total period of three years and six months in relation to the State of Punjab.
65. The Constitution (Sixty-fifth Amendment) Act, 1990—
Article 338 of the Constitution provides for a Special Officer for the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes to investigate all matters relating to the safeguards provided for the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes under the Constitution and to report to the President on their working. The Article has been amended for the constitution of a National Commission for Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes consisting of a Chairperson, Vice Chairperson and five other Members who shall be appointed by the President by warrant under his hand and seal.
The amended Article elaborates the duties of the said Commission and covers measures that should be taken by the Union or any state for the effective implementation of the reports presented by the Commission. It also provides that the Commission shall, while investigating any matter or inquiring into any complaint have all the powers of a Civil Court trying a suit and the reports of the said Commission shall be laid before Parliament and the Legislature of the states.
The 66th to 70th Amendments: 1990-1992
66. The Constitution (Sixty-sixth Amendment) Act, 1990—
The Act protects 55 State Acts relating to land reforms and ceiling on agricultural land holdings enacted by States of Andhra Pradesh, Bihar, Gujarat, Himachal Pradesh, Karnataka, Kerala, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Orissa, Rajasthan,Tamil Nadu, Uttar Pradesh, West Bengal and administration of the Union Territory of Puducherry, from challenge in courts, by including them in the Ninth Schedule to the Constitution.
67. The Constitution (Sixty-seventh Amendment) Act, 1990—
The three year period in the case of proclamation issued on 11th May 1987 with respect to the State of Punjab was extended to three years and six months by the Constitution (Sixty-fourth Amendment) Act, 1990. This Act further amends clause (4) of Article 356 so as to further extend the period upto a total period of four years.
68. The Constitution (Sixty-eighth Amendment) Act, 1991—
The three year period in the case of proclamation issued on 17th May 1987 with respect to the State of Punjab was earlier extended to four years by the Constitution (sixty-seventh Amendment) Act, 1990. This Act further amends clause (4) of Article 356 so as to further extend the period upto a total period of five years.
69. The Constitution (Sixty-ninth Amendment) Act, 1991—
The Government of India appointed on 24th December 1987 a Committee to go into various issues connected with the administration of Delhi and to recommend measures, inter alia for the streamlining of the administrative set up.
After detailed inquiry and examination, it recommended that Delhi should continue to be a union territory and may be provided with a Legislative Assembly and a Council of Ministers responsible to such assembly with appropriate powers to deal with matters of concern to the common man. The Committee also recommended that with a view to ensuring stability and permanence, arrangements should be incorporated in the constitution to give the national capital a special status among the union territories.
This act has been passed to give effect to the above recommendations.
70. The Constitution (Seventieth Amendment) Act, 1992—
While considering the (Seventy-fourth Amendment) Bill, 1991 and the Government of National Capital Territory Bill, 1991 views were expressed in both the Houses of Parliament in favour of including also the elected members of the legislative assemblies of union territories in the electoral college for the election of the President under Article 54 of the Constitution.
Till then Article 54 relating to the election of the President provided for an electoral college consisting of only the elected Members of Parliament as well as the legislative assemblies of the states (not of union territories). Similarly, Article 55 providing for the manner of such election also speaks of legislative assemblies of states.
Accordingly, an Explanation was inserted in Article 54 to provide that reference to ‘State’ in Article 54 and 55 would include the National Capital Territory of Delhi and the Union Territory of Puducherry for constituting the electoral college for election of the President. This would enable the elected members of the Legislative Assembly created for the Union Territory of Puducherry under the provisions of Article 239A and of the proposed Legislative Assembly of the National Capital Territory of Delhi under Article 239AA to be included in the electoral college.
The 71st to 75th Amendments: 1992-1994
71. The Constitution (Seventy-first Amendment) Act, 1992—
There have been demands for inclusion of certain languages in the Eighth Schedule to the Constitution. This Act amends the Eighth Schedule to the Constitution to include Konkani, Manipuri and Nepali languages in the Eighth Schedule to the Constitution.
72. The Constitution (Seventy-second Amendment) Act, 1992—
For restoring peace and harmony in the areas of the State of Tripura where disturbed conditions prevailed, a Memorandum of Settlement was signed by the Government of India with Tripura National Volunteers on 12 August 1988.
In order to implement the said Memorandum, Article 332 of the Constitution has been amended by the Constitution (Seventy-second Amendment) Act, 1992 for making a temporary provision for the determination of the number of seats reserved for the Scheduled Tribes in the State Assembly of Tripura, until the re-adjustment of seats is made on the basis of the first Census after the year 2000 under Article 170 of the Constitution.
73. The Constitution (Seventy-third Amendment) Act, 1993—
Article 40 of the Constitution which enshrines one of the Directive Principles of State Policy lays down that the State shall take steps to organise village panchayats and endow them with such powers and authority as may be necessary to enable them to function as units of self-government.
In the light of the above, a new Part IX relating to the Panchayats has been inserted in the Constitution to provide for among other things, Gram Sabha in a village or group of villages; constitution of Panchayats at village and other level or levels; direct elections to all seats in Panchayats at the village and intermediate level, if any and to the offices of Chairpersons of Panchayats at such levels; reservation of seats for the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes in proportion to their population for membership of Panchayats and office of Chairpersons in Panchayats at each level; reservation of not less than onethird of the seats for women; fixing tenure of five years for Panchayats and holding elections within a period of six months in the event of supersession of any Panchayat.
74. The Constitution (Seventy-fourth Amendment) Act, 1993—
In many states local bodies have become weak and ineffective on account of a variety of reasons, including the failure to hold regular elections, prolonged supersession and inadequate devolutions of powers and functions. As a result, Urban Local Bodies are not able to perform effectively as vibrant democratic units of self-government.
Having regard to these inadequacies a new part IX-A relating to the Municipalities has been incorporated in the Constitution to provide for among other things, constitution of three types of Municipalities, i.e., Nagar Panchayats for areas in transition from a rural area to urban area, Municipal Councils for smaller urban areas and Municipal Corporations for larger urban areas.
75. The Constitution (Seventy-fifth Amendment) Act, 1994—
The operation of the Rent Control Legislations, as are today in various states, suffers from major weaknesses and has led to various unintended consequences. Some of the deleterious legal consequences include mounting and mending litigation, inability of the courts to provide timely justice, evolution of practices and systems to bypass the operations of rent legislations and steady shrinkage of rental housing market.
The Supreme Court taking note of the precarious state of rent litigation in the country in case of Prabhakaran Nair and others vs. State of Tamil Nadu (Civil Writ Petition 506 of 1986) and other writs observed that the Supreme Court and the High Courts should be relieved of the heavy burden of rent litigation. Tiers of appeals should be curtailed. Laws should be simple, rational and clear, litigations must come to end quickly.
Therefore, this Act amends Article 323B in Part XIVA of the Constitution so as to give timely relief to the rent litigants by providing for setting up of state-level Rent Tribunals in order to reduce the tiers of appeals and to exclude the jurisdiction of all courts, except that of the Supreme Court, under Article 136 of the Constitution.
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