Supreme Court has raised concern over frequent suspension of MPs/MLAs and also stated that if this trend is a “danger to democracy”.
Why have been some recent instances of suspension of MP/MLAs have come under criticism?
12 Rajya Sabha members were suspended in the winter session-Since the allegation of misbehaviour were from the time of monsoon session, the opposition complained that the action contravened House business rules.
It said that rules allowed suspension only for the remainder of the session, not for the next session.
Maharashtra assembly’s suspension of 12 BJP MLAs-SC noted that since suspensions are aimed at ensuring smooth conduct of House business, extending them beyond the ongoing session would be “irrational”.
What is the way forward?
Presiding officers are responsible for ensuring government’s legislative business is transacted smoothly with keen House participation. They should have a non-partisan conduct.
According to SC suspensions must be kept short and preferably for only the ongoing session.
If Legislative conduct turns unconstitutional or illegal it can also turn into a threat to separation of power.
Source– This post is based on the article “Broken houses-MP, MLAs suspensions have become cross party blunt instrument of maximalist power politics ” published in Times of India on 19th Jan 2022.