Barra lateral del artículo
Contenido principal del artículo
Decisions of national importance are made by Parliamentary voting. Yet Indian Members of Parliament (MPs) vote with a remarkable lack of freedom and accountability. The introduction of the Tenth Schedule in the Constitution has crippled free expression, since it provides that MPs voting against ‘any direction’ of their Party are liable to disqualification from the legislature In addition, except for Constitutional amendments, Indian Parliamentary Procedure Rules do not require votes of MPs to be recorded unless the Speaker’s decision is contested in the House. The result is that voting in the House has become mechanical, controlled by Party politics and devoid of responsibility. This paper comments on a general theory of democratic accountability through the lens of Parliamentary voting. It suggests that the voting system adopted in the Parliament is an effective indicator to measure the level of accountability of its Members. In the context of India, this paper argues that the level of accountability will increase to a desirable extent only when there is adoption of a recorded system for every important House vote. Upon examination of India’s record thus far (through the sample of the 14th Lok Sabha) it becomes evident that the level of divisions (recorded votes) is substantially lower than other countries. This leads the paper to probe, as to why that might be the case. Part II of the paper answers that question by examining the Tenth Schedule of the Constitution. The paper scrutinizes the disproportionate influence of the Party in decision making in the Parliament. Apart from dealing with the inherent problem of the Tenth Schedule, this paper suggests two procedural changes to make parliamentary expression more meaningful. Firstly, the recording of all important votes within the Parliament and secondly, registering Party whips with the Minister of Parliamentary Affairs so that the voter knows the clear stand of every Parliamentary continuum. The focus of the paper is thus to bring back the attention of the legislators to their central function, which is deliberation on and the passage of legislation.
Tryon Edwards, A Dictionary of Thoughts: Being a Cyclopedia of Laconic Quotations from the Best Authors of the World, Both Ancient and Modern (F.B. Dickerson Co. 1908).
Adam Tomkins, Our Republican Constitution (2005).
Richard S. Katz, Democracy and Elections (1997).
M.P. Jain, Indian Constitutional Law, (6th Ed, 2010).
Subhash Kashyap, Parliamentary Procedure-Law, Privileges, Practice And Precedents (2d ed. 2006).
Glanville Austin, The Indian Constitution: Cornerstone of a Nation (1966).
Madhu Limaye, Politics After Independence (1982).
C. K. Allen, Democracy and Individual, 60 (1974).
Paul Brass, ‘Politics of India Since Independence (1990)
Zoya Hasan Parties and Party Politics in India (2002).
Deep Chand Bandhu, History of Indian National Congress, 1885-2002, (2002).
Mahendra Pratap Singh, Split in a Predominant Party: The Indian National Congress in 1969, Abhinav Publication, 1981.
Bernard Crick, In Defense of Politics (2000),
Nancy L. Rosenblum On the Side of the Angels, An Appreciation of Parties and Partisanship, (2008)
Theodore Roosevelt, American Ideals, and Other Essays Social and Political (1920)
Subhash Kashyap, Anti-defection law and Parliamentary Privileges, (2nd Ed, 2003)
Jesse Macy, Party Organization and Machinery (1904)
Lincoln Steffens, The Struggle for Self-Government; being an Attempt to Trace American Political Corruption to its Sources in Six States of the United States, (1906)
G.C. Moodie, The Government of Great Britain (1964)
J. Honvey and L. Bather, The British Constitution (1965)
Philip Norton, Government Defeats in the House of Commons, Myths and Reality, Public Law (1978)
Jeffry Jowell, and Dawn Oliver, The Changing Constitution (1985).
John Stuart Mill, Considerations on Representative Government (1882)
Kiran Jain, P.C. Jain and D.D. Chawla, Chawla’s Election Law and Practice (2004)
Marshal Geoffrey, Constitutional Conventions - The Rules and Forms of Political Accountability (1984).
Dr. Subhash Kashyap, Disqualification on Grounds of Defection, Parliamentary Procedure, Law, Privileges, Practice and Procedure, (2d ed. 2004).
Robert J Jackson, Rebels and Whips; An Analysis of Dissensions, Discipline and Cohesion in British Political Parties (1968).
Kenneth Bradshaw and David Ping, Parliament and Congress (1972)
Phillip M Williams, The French Parliament 1958-67, (1968).
Ivor Bulmor Thomas, The Growth of the British Party System, (2d ed. 1967).
Sir Ivor Jennings, Cabinet Government, (3d ed. 1959)
Cecil S Emden, People and the Constitution, (2d ed. 1956)
Samuel Rawson Gardiner, England (Augustus Hunt Shearer, 1906)
Anthony Stephen King, British Members of Parliament, A Self Portrait, (1974)
Rodney Brazier, Constitutional Reform: Reshaping the British Political System (1991)
Kay Lawson, Political Parties and Linkage: A Comparative Perspective (1980)
Clifford Norton, New Zealand Parliamentary Election Results 1946-1987, (1988)
R. Miller, New Zealand Politics in Transition (1997)
E McLeay, The Cabinet and Political Power in New Zealand (1995)
Dean Jaensch, Getting Our Houses in Order (1986)
The American Congress Reader, (Steven S Smith, Jason M. Roberts, Ryan J. Vander Wielen, 2009)
Terry L. Jordan The US Constitution and Fascinating Facts About It ( 7th ed. 2010) B. Articles, Papers and Newspaper articles
Prakash Chander, Defection of Shyamlal Nehru to the British side after being elected from the Congress Party in India, Government and Politics, 21 (1984)
R. Suryamurthy, Cash for Questions, The Tribune, December
The Parliament passes 8 Bills in 17 Minutes, January 3, 2009, http://www.merinews.com/catFull.jsp?articleID=154762
Dawn Oliver, The Parties and Parliament: Representative or Intra Party Democracy? in Jeffry Jowell, and Dawn Oliver, The Changing Constitution 114-115 (1985).
Devesh Kapur & Pratap Bhanu Mehta, The Indian Parliament as an Institution of Accountability, Democracy, Governance and Human Rights Programme, (United Nations Research Institute for Social Development, Paper n.º 23 2006) available at http://www.unrisd.org/80256B3C005BCCF9/(httpAuxPages)/8E6F C72D6B546696C1257123002FCCEB/$file/KapMeht.pdf
Ross Carter, Parliament: Caucuses, Article 9, and Open Government - If Not, Why Not?, 18 NZULR 99
Election Commission of India, Press Note - Presidential Election, 2007 – Right to Vote or not to Vote , Clarification regarding, July 17, 2007, RM/AMA – 170707 Press Note, available at http://www.ebc-india.com/downloads/election_commission_press_note_clarification_regarding_right_to_vote_in_presidential_election.pdf.
See, Why aren’t divisions electronic?, available at http://www.parliament.uk/about/how/business/divisions.cfm
Factsheet P9, Procedure Series, House of Commons Information Office, Divisions, Revised, August 2010, at 5, available at http://www.parliament.uk/documents/commons-information-office/p09.pdf [Hereinafter Factsheet P9]
Modernisation Committee, Programming of legislation and timing of votes, July 6 2000, HC 589 http://www.publications. parliament.uk/pa/cm199900/cmselect/cmmodern/589/58902.htm as cited in Factsheet P9
The 21 Principles of the Swatantra Party (1959), available at http://www.liberalPartyofindia.sabhlokcity.com/Party/21prin.doc
Jane Addams, Why the Ward Boss Rules, Outlook, 17-28, April 2, 1898 as cited in Nancy L. Rosenblum On the Side of the Angels, An Appreciation of Parties and Partisanship, 177-178 (2008).
Abhijit V. Banerjee, Selvan Kumar, Rohini Pande and Felix Su, ‘Do informed voters make better choices? Experimental Evidence from Urban India’ available at http://www.yale.edu/leitner/ resources/PMF-papers/delhi_rpmarv1-1.pdf
A. H. Somjee, ‘Party Linkages and Strife Accommodation in Democratic India’ in Kay Lawson, Political Parties and Linkage: A Comparative Perspective 204-21 (1980) as cited in Zoya Hasan Parties and Party Politics in India, 5 (2002).
John Fitzpatrick, Switch as you Wish, Brazzil, November 2001,
Politics, available at http://www.brazzil.com/p29nov01.htm
Dr. Jayprakash Narayan, Indian Elections – Campaign Finance Reforms, National Seminar on Electoral Reforms, November 17, 18, 2000 available at http://www.loksatta.org/cms/documents/advocacy/ind%20elections.pdf
Bernard Gwertzman Indian Elections More About Small RegionalParties: CFR Interview April 15, 2009, HuffPost World available at http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2009/04/15/indian-elections-more-abo_n_187154.html
Vicky Randall, Political Parties and Democratic Developmental States, 25 (5) Development Policy Review, 634-645.
Richard S. Katz & Peter Mair Changing Models of Party Organization and Party Democracy The Emergence of the Cartel Party, Party Politics January 1995 vol. 1 n.º 1 5-28 as cited in Nancy L. Rosenblum On the Side of the Angels, An Appreciation of Parties and Partisanship, 5 (2008)
Mayawati’s promise to India: BSP Manifesto, April 16, 2009. available at http://samatha.in/2009/04/16/mayawatis-promiseto-india-bsp-manifesto/
P. Ishwara Bhat, Free Legislative Choice and Anti-Defection Law- A Plea for Integrated Reading, (1994), 18 Acad. Law Rev., 65.
Dawn Oliver, The Parties and Parliament: Representative or Intra Party Democracy? in Jeffry Jowell, and Dawn Oliver, The Changing Constitution 114-115 (1985)
Times News Network Educational tribunal bill deferred after Cong MP leads opposition, The Times of India, September 1, 2010, http://articles.timesofindia.indiatimes.com/2010-09-01/india/28252954_1_hrd-minister-kapil-sibal-opposition-members-national-educational-tribunals-bill
Santosh K. Joy and Ruhi Tewari Some Cong MPs join Opposition to Stall Law on Judges’ Assets, Livemint.com, August 3, 2009. http://www.livemint.com/2009/08/03152250/Some-CongMPs-join-Opposition.html
Curtail whips, give MPs freedom: V-P, The Indian Express, November 19, 2009. http://www.indianexpress.com/news/curtailwhips-give-mps-freedom-vp/543516/
Andrew Geddis, Some Questions for the United Kingdom’s Republican Constitution, 19 Can. J.L. & Juris. 177.
Dr Subhash Kashyap, Party Whips, Parliamentary Privilege and Anti-Defection Law, 1998, The Journal of Parliamentary Affairs.
RJD Releases Poll Manifesto, The Times of India, April 5, 2009, http://articles.timesofindia.indiatimes.com/2009-04-05/india/28036813_1_poll-manifesto-dalit-muslims-sc-status
Trust vote and after: MP to vote against govt as he doesn’t understandN-deal, Sify News, July 22, 2008, available at http://sify.com/news/fullstory.php?a=jehbOMhbchi&title=MP_to_vote_against_govt_as_he_doesn_t_understand_N_deal
Philip Norton, The Changing Face of the British House of Commons in the 1970s, 5 Legis. Stud. Quart. 333, 337-342 (Aug, 1980).
Graham K. Wilson, Congress in Comparative Perspective, 2009 B.U.L. Rev. 827, 833-834.
Amalgamated Society of Railway Servants v. Osborne ,  A.C. 87.
P Ishwara Bhat See Free Legislative Choice and Anti-Defection Law- A Plea for Integrated Reading, 18 Acad. Law Rev., 65, 81 (1994).
Walter Goldstein, Europe After Maastricht, Foreign Affairs, Vol 71, n.º 5 (Winter 1992) 117, 118-32.
Anthony Seldon et al., Blair 596-97 (2004), cited in Graham K. Wilson, Congress in Comparative Perspective, 2009 B.U.L. Rev. 827, 833.
Philip Cowley & Mark Stuart, When Sheep Bark: The Parliamentary Labour Party 2001-2003, 11 (PSA Elections, Public Opinion and Parties Conference, 2003), available at http://www.essex.ac.uk/ecpr/standinggroups/parliaments/papers/cowley1.pdf.
Alan Travis, Peers in Power, Guardian (U.K.), June 29, 2000, available at http://www.guardian.co.uk/politics/2000/jun/29/lords. lordreform. cited in Graham K. Wilson, Congress in Comparative Perspective, 2009 B.U.L. Rev. 827, 833.
Philip Norton, Parliament in British Politics, 96, (2005), cited in Graham K. Wilson, Congress in Comparative Perspective, 2009 B.U.L. Rev. 827, 833.
Free Votes, Parliament Information List, Reference Service Section, July 11, 2008. Available at http://www.parliament.uk/commons/lib/research/briefings/snpc-04793.pdf
Scott Ashworth and Ethan Bueno de Mesquita, Informative Party Labels With Institutional and Electoral Variation, Journal of Theoretical Politics 20(3): 251–273.
This is evident from George Washington’s Farewell Speech: Avoid Party Politics, available at http://www.earlyamerica.com/earlyamerica/milestones/farewell/text.html
David C. King and Richard J. Zeckhauser, Congressional Vote Options, 28 Legis. Stud. Quart. 387-411 (2003).
Geoffrey C. Layman et. al. Activists and Conflict Extension in American Party Politics, Vol. 104, n.º 2, (May 2010).
Robert Weissberg, Collective vs. Dyadic Representation in The American Congress Reader, 88, 88-98 (Steven S Smith, Jason M. Roberts, Ryan J. Vander Wielen, 2009)
Karen Atkinson, Constiutional Law - Free Speech - Judicial Review of Qualifications of Legislators – Bond v. Floyd, 87 S. Ct. 339 (1966), 9 Wm. & Mary L. Rev. 245 (1967).
Michael L. Stokes When Freedoms Conflict: Party Discipline and the First Amendment, 11 J.L. & Pol. 751
James S. Wrona and L. Francis Cissna, Switching Sides: Is Part Affiliation a Tie that Binds? 28 Ariz. St. L.J. 735
From FPP to MPP, Elections, New Zealand, available at http://www.elections.org.nz/voting/mmp/history-mmp.html
Andrew Geddis and Caroline Morris, All is Changed, ChangedUtterly?--The Causes and Consequences of New Zealand’s Adoption of MMP, 32 Fed. L. Rev. 451, 470 (2004), cited in Car-ter Parliament: Caucuses, Article 9, and, Open Government – If Not, Why Not?,18 NZULR 99 (1998).
Question of Privilege: Contention as to Resignation of Mrs Manu Alamein Kopu MP McGrath J J, September 10, 1997 Chairperson of the Privileges Committee, available at http://www.crownlaw.govt.nz/uploads/Kopu.pdf; see also P.A. Joseph, Mrs Kopu’s Challenge to MMP NZLJ 413 (1997).
Desmond Morton, A Note on Party Switchers, 29 Canadian Parl. Rev. (2006), available at http://www2.parl.gc.ca/Sites/LOP/Infoparl/english/issue.asp?param=174&art=1186
Duff Conacher, Part Switch-Hitters-Part of a Bigger Problem: Dishonesty in Politics VUE Weekly, January 9, 2007, available at http://www.vueweekly.com/front/story/party_switchhitters_part_of_a_bigger_problem_dishonesty_in_politics/
Registration of Federal Political Parties in Elections Canada available at http://www.elections.ca/content.aspx?section=pol&dir=pol/bck&document=index&lang=e
John C. Courtney, Recognition of Canadian Political Parties in Parliament and in Law, 11 Can. J. Polit. Sci. , 33 (1978).
David Gessow, Crossing the Floor, Conflict of Interest and the Parliament of Canada Act, 29 Canadian Parliamentary Review (2006) available at http://www2.parl.gc.ca/Sites/LOP/Infoparl/29/2/29n2_06e_Gussow.pdf
Van Der Merwe’s Constitution Fifteenth Amendment Bill (FloorCrossing) http://www.pmg.org.za/report/20061017-van-dermerwes-constitution-fifteenth-floor-crossing-swarts-constitut
C.E.S. Frank, Free Votes in the House of Commons: A Problematic Reform, Electoral Reform, Policy Options, (1997), available at http://www.irpp.org/po/archive/nov97/franks.pdf
Deirdre McKeown & Rob Lundie, Conscience votes during the Howard Government 1996–2007, Research Paper n.º 20 2008–09, Politics and Public Administration Section, (2009), available at http://www.aph.gov.au/library/pubs/rp/2008-09/09rp20.htm#_Toc221347483
Fed: Liberal MPs defy Howard to Vote Against Migration Laws, AAP General News, August 10, 2006, available at http://www.highbeam.com/doc/1P1-127284039.html
John Warhurst, Conscience Voting in the Australian Federal Parliament, The Australian Journal of Politics and History, De-cember 2008 available at http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_go1877/is_4_54/ai_n31161559/
M.P. Gavan O’Connor’s comments during the debate on the Embryos and Human Cloning Bill, 29 August 2002, 6126, 6127 available at http://www.aph.gov.au/hansard/reps/dailys/dr290802.Pdf
Press Trust of India, ‘Anti-Defection Case: SC Relief for Amar Singh, Jaya Prada’, The Times of India November 15, 2010, available at http://articles.timesofindia.indiatimes.com/2010-11-15/india/28259130_1_anti-defection-law-party-whip-apex-court
Vital Stats, Parliament in Winter Session, 2009, available at http://www.prsindia.org/index.php?name=Sections&action=bill_details&id=5&bill_id=986&category=&parent_category=
Sonia expresses concern over poor attendance of Congress MPs, July 30, 2009, Available at http://in.news.yahoo.com/139/20090730/816/tnl-sonia-expresses-concern-overpoor-at.html
Dean Jaensch, Getting Our Houses in Order, 45 (1986) cited in John Warhurst, Conscience Voting in the Australian Federal Parliament, The Australian Journal of Politics and History, December 2008 available at http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_go1877/is_4_54/ai_n31161559/
List of bills considered and passed in the Monsoon Session 2008 of the Parliament, see http://www.prsindia.org/index.php?name=Sections&id=5&parent_category=&category=1&action=bill_details&bill_id=544
List of the Bills passed, pending and those that lapsed in the 14th Lok Sabha, see http://www.prsindia.org/docs/latest/1236071950_Summary_fourteenth_Loksabha.pdf
Factsheet P9, Procedure Series, House of Commons Information Office, Divisions, August 2010, available at http://www.parliament.uk/documents/upload/P09.pdf
Division lists of the 2010-2011 session are available at http://services.parliament.uk/LordsDivisionsAnalysis/session/2010_11C.
Cases, Statutes and Rules
P.V. Narsimha Rao v. State through CBI (1998) 4 S.C.C. 626 (India)
M.S.M. Sharma v. S.K. Sinha AIR 1959 SC 395
The Keshav Singh Presidential Reference (1965) 1 SCR 413
David v. Akers, 549 F.2d 120 (9th Cir. 1977)
Rules of Procedure and Conduct of Business in the Lok Sabha/ Rajya Sabha. available at http://parliamentofindia.nic.in/ls/rules/rules.html
Nayini Narsimha Reddy v. Dr. K Laxman & Otrs 2006 (5) S.C.C.239
S. Raghbir Singh Gill v. S. Gurcharan Singh Tohra and Others (1980) Supp. S.C.C. 53.
The Representation of the People’s Act, 2000, available at http://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/2000/2/contents
A. Neelalohithadasan Nadar v. George Mascrene and Others (1994) Supp. (2) S.C.C. 619.
Pashupati Nath Sukul v. Nem Chandra Jain, (1984) 2 S.C.C. 404.
Standing Orders 38-41 in Standing Orders of the House of Commons, (2009), available at http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm200809/cmstords/2/2.pdf
House Practice, 108th Congress, 1st Session, A Guide to the Rules, Precedents and Procedures of the House, From the U.S. Government Printing Office via GPO Access, DOCID: hp_txt-21,909-936 available at http://frwebgate.access.gpo.gov/cgi-bin/getdoc.cgi?dbname=108_house_practice&docid=hp-58
War Powers Resolution 50 USC Sec. 1545
Termination of National Emergency 50 USC Sec 1622
Kihoto Hollohon v. Zachilhu A.I.R. 1993 SC 412
Notification dated May 16, 1949 by which the Minister of ParliamentaryAffairs was made the Chief Government Whip. Available at http://mpa.nic.in/mpahandbook/parlianx1.pdf
In the matter of Santosh Gangwar v. Dr. H T Sangliana, October 3, 2008, available at http://18.104.22.168/bulletinII/2008/7.10.2008.pdf
The Constitution of India (Government of India, modified, 1st December 2007)
1958 Fra Const., article 27, available at http://www.assembleenationale.fr/english/8ab.asp#IV
1999 Swiss Const, article 161 says, “Members of the Federal Parliament vote without instructions.” Available at http://www.servat.unibe.ch/icl/sz00000_.html
New York Times v. Sullivan, 376 U. S. 254,
Bond v. Floyd 385 U.S. 116 (1966).
Ammond v. McGahn 390 F. Supp. 655 (D.N.J. 1975)
Reynolds v. Sims 377 U.S. 533, 555 (1964).
Gewertz v. Jackman, 467 F. Supp. (D.N.J. 1979)
Barley v. Luzerne County 937 F.Supp. 362 (1995)
Kucinich v. Forbes, 432 F.Supp. 1101 (N.D. Ohio 1977)
Ripon Society, Inc. v. National Republican Party 525 F.2d 567(D.C. Cir. 1975)
Democratic Party of the United States v. Wisconsin, 450 U.S. 107 (1981).
Ravi S. Naik v. Union of India AIR 1994 SC 1558
G. Viswanathan v. Speaker, Tamil Nadu Legislative Assembly 1996 (2) SCC 353
Amar Singh v. Union of India; Writ Petition (Civil) n.º 317 of 2010, decided on November 15, 2010.
Peters v Collinge  2 NZLR 554
In re the Awarua Seat Inquiry Act 1897 (1897) 16 NZLR 353
Number of House of Commons Divisions, Parliamentary Information List, SN/PC/04670, March 24, 2009, Department of Information Services available at http://www.parliament.uk/commons/lib/research/briefings/snpc-04670.pdf
Number of House of Commons Divisions, Parliamentary Information List, Department of Information Services. SN/PC/0467, July 22, 2010, available at http://www.parliament.uk/briefingpapers/commons/lib/research/briefings/snpc-04670.pdf
For a record of the fall in the number of Lok Sabha sessions see the Resume of Work done by the Lok Sabha, TO 75 3, 4,5, 6,7,8,9,10,11,12,13,14 LS 1962-2009, Lok Sabha Secretariat, New Delhi.
Resume of Work done by the Lok Sabha, To n.º 75- Vol II-XVII,
th Lok Sabha, 1971-1976.
Resume of Work done by the Lok Sabha, 3rd and, 4TH Lok Sabha, 1962-67 and 1967-70.
The Public Whip, available at http://www.publicwhip.org.uk
The Congressional voting database, available at http://projects.washingtonpost.com/congress/
Resume of Work, available at http://22.214.171.124/LssNew/secretariat/resume1414.pdf