Chidambaram One Nation One Election

Means Parliamentary Democracy Is Dead: Chidambaram

Chidambaram One Nation One Election

Congress veteran and former finance minister P Chidambaram on Friday slammed Tamil Nadu Governor RN Ravi over his “Bill is dead” remark, saying it means “Parliamentary Democracy is dead”.

Tamil Nadu Governor RN Ravi on Thursday, while interacting with the civil services aspirants, explained the role of the Governor in the Constitution, saying that he has the option to give assent or withhold a Bill passed by the Assembly, adding that the latter means that the “Bill is dead”.
In a tweet, Chidambaram said, “Governor, Tamil Nadu has given a strange & peculiar definition to the withholding of assent to Bills passed by the Legislature. He has said that it means the ‘Bill is dead’. Actually, when a Governor withholds assent for no valid reason, it means ‘Parliamentary Democracy is dead’.”

The Governor said “withholding” is a “decent language” used for rejecting a Bill.

Interacting with the civol services aspirants here, Ravi said the responsibility of the Governor is to protect the Constitution.

He also said the Governor looks into a Bill to check if it “transgresses the Constitutional limit” and if the state government has exceeded “its competence”.

“Our Constitution has created the position of Governor and defined his roles and responsibilities. The first and foremost responsibility of the Governor is to protect the Constitution of India because whether it is the Union or the State, each of these entities has to work according to the Constitution. How do you protect the Constitution? Suppose, a state makes a law that transgresses the Constitutional limit. In a legislature, a political party has a brute majority, let us say, they can pass any Bill,” he said.

“If it transgresses the Constitutional limit, the Bill passed by the Assembly does not become a law until the Governor assents to it. Assenting to is a constitutional responsibility. The Governor has to see if the Bill is exceeding the limit, and whether the state is exceeding its competence. If it does, then it is the responsibility of the Governor to not assent to the Bill,” Ravi added.

Explaining the procedure after a Bill, upon its passage, is forwarded by the Assembly to the Governor, Ravi said the latter has three options before him — assent, withhold or reserve the Bill for the President.

“The Constitution says that when a Bill passed by the Assembly is forwarded to the Governor for assent, the Governor has three options – assent, withhold the assent… Withholding does not mean that I am just holding it. Withholding has been defined by the Supreme Court by the Constitution Bench, withholding means the Bill is dead. It is a decent language used instead of using rejected. When you say withhold, it means the Bill is dead. Third, he reserves the Bill for the President,” the Tamil Nadu Governor said. (ANI)

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