Rama Krishna Sangem
“Amend Article 200 of the Constitution to specify Governors to assent or return within 30 days a Bill sent by the State government,” asked B Vinod Kumar, Vice-Chairman of Telangana State Planning Board, in a letter addressed to the Law Commission on November 23,Wednesday. Instead of the present wording of “As soon as possible,” it should be “Within 30 days” he suggested.
Vinod sent a letter to Law Commission Chairman Justice Ritu Raj Awasthi, after meeting Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao (KCR) earlier in the day. Vinod’s letter assumes significance in view of a sort of stand off between CM KCR office and Governor Tamilisai Soundararajan on clearing Bills sent by the government on various issues. Vinod, however, did not mention the name of Tamilisai.
“Of late, I am disturbed at the deliberate delays by the Honorable Governors of various state in providing assent to bills passed by their respective State legislatures. According to Artcile 200 of the Constitution of India, the Governor has the right to assent or reject the bill. I am deeply hurt at the lackadaisical attitude of Governors in not acting up on the bills . What is stopping the Governors from exercising her or his powers?” said Vinod in his letter.
The legislative assemblies of Telangana, Tamil Nadu, Kerala etc have enacted several important bills and sent the same to their respective Governors for assent. I am pained to note that the Governors are unduely delaying to act up on. This attitude of Constitutional heads is causing irreparable loss to people of the nation, said Vinod Kumar, who was an MP from Karimnagar and Warangal earlier.
“The wording of As soon as possible” mentioned in the Constitution seems very vague and lacks a specific time frame. The framers of Constitution would never have envisaged that such a situation would arise in future. I strongly urge you to look into this matter and recommend the Government of India to amend the Article 200 from As soon as possible to Within 30 days,” Vinod Kumar urged the law panel.
The Law Commission in its periodic reports to the Centre recommends changes in the Constitution as well as laws to meet the changing requirements of the country. Another alternative to Vinod Kumar’s TRS is to press for a Constitutional amendment bill directly in the Parliament. But, that is unlikely in view of the lack of numbers to the Opposition parties in Parliament.