Saturday, August 29, 2009

Let’s us consult Advocate General on Amending Societies Act: Dr. JP

Lok Satta Party President Dr. Jayaprakash Narayan today suggested that the Advocate General’s expertise be tapped when the Legislative Assembly takes up the Bill to amend The Andhra Pradesh Societies Registration Act, 2001for consideration.

In separate letters to the Speaker of the Legislative Assembly and the Advocate General, Dr. JP pointed out that Article 177 of the Constitution provided for the participation of the Advocate General in the proceedings of the Legislative Assembly.

He recalled that the Government had introduced the Bill despite the Opposition contention that the House has no legislative competence to enact such a law abridging the Fundamental Rights enunciated in 19 (1) C of the Constitution. “This is not a matter of policy, but a matter of Constitutional law. Therefore, the House needs to be guided by an appropriate authority while dealing with the Bill.”

In his letter to the Advocate General, Dr. JP said that the Bill provides for the supersession of the managing committee of any society ‘which is not functioning properly, or willfully disobeys or fails to comply with any lawful order or direction issued by the Registrar and appointment of a special officer or committee to manage the affairs of the society up to three years.’

Dr. JP said that societies or unions can be regulated by a law imposing reasonable restrictions only in the interests of sovereignty and integrity of India, public order or morality. “But the restrictions sought to be imposed do not pertain to these subjects.”

Dr. JP said, “When there is a vital Constitutional question of this magnitude relating to the Fundamental Rights and Legislative competence, we need the guidance of a Constitutional expert. According to Article 177 of the Constitution, ‘The Advocate General for a State shall have the right to speak in, and otherwise take part in the proceedings of the Legislative Assembly of the State… This is a case in which your guidance and Constitutional expertise will be of great value to the House while it considers the important legislation.”

Dr. JP has shared the communication with the all floor leaders, concerned Ministers and the media.

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