Salient Features 91st Amendment Act

Introduction

This 91st Amendment bill was within in one day by the Lok Sabha on 16 December 2003. Then it was passed by the Rajya Sabha on 18 December. Presidential consent was given on 1 January 2004 and the Constitution (Ninety-First Amendment) Act – 2003 was notified in the Gazette of India on 2 January 2004.

It is the 91st amendment act of our Indian constitution, that made the critical rule that the size of the Council of Ministers, including the Prime Minister won’t exceed 15% total seat of Lok Sabha. Of this percentage, there can be a maximum of 81 ministers. 

The Constitution (91st Amendment) Act, 2003

Aim of the amendment

This amendment aimed to reduce the number of members serving on the Council of Ministers, prohibit traitors from holding public office and tighten the anti-betrayal regulations that had been adopted by the fifty-second amendment.

Why was this done?

When we talk about Indian politics defection has been a major issue for ages. A defector is a person, in the current case a minister who forsakes his or her party and joins another one. This usually happens because of a lack of tickets to contend.

The party that the defector ultimately joins offers them a ticket and a seat which they very much desire. Thus, they gladly betray their original party. The constitution was further strengthened by this amendment act as it added provisions for disqualification of defectors and banned them from being appointed as ministers for a period of time

Salient Features of the 91st Amendment Act.

According to Article 75, the total number of ministers in the central council of ministers, including the Prime Minister, should not exceed 15 percent of the total strength of the Lok Sabha (1A). Article 75 states that a member of any house of Parliament who has defected is ineligible for appointment as a minister (1B).

The overall number of ministers in the state council of ministers, including the Chief Minister, shall not exceed 15 percent of the total membership of the state legislature. As to Article 164, the total number of ministers cannot be less than twelve (1A). A member of any state legislative assembly who is disqualified for defection is likewise disqualified for appointment as a minister under Article 164 of the Constitution of India (1B).A person disqualified on the basis of defection is likewise banned from holding any remunerative political post or office, in whole or in part, per Article 361B.

The revision also removes the provision from the Tenth Schedule of the anti-defection statute that exempted legislators from disqualification in the case of a split by a third of the body. In other words, it suggests that a defector can’t use splits as an excuse. 1

Sections added or removed in The 91st Amendment Act

The Constitution’s (91st Amendment) Act, 2003 added clause 1A in Article 164, which states “the total number of Ministers, including the Chief Minister, in the Council of Ministers in a State shall not exceed 15% of the total number of members of the Legislative Assembly of that State.

It also mentioned that the number of Ministers, including the Chief Minister in a State shall not be less than twelve”. Similarly, changes were made to article 75. As mentioned in it, the PM shall be appointed by the president and the other Ministers shall be appointed by the President on the advice of the PM. Lastly, The total number of ministers, including the Prime Minister, in the COM shall not exceed 15% of the total strength of the Lok Sabha. 22 2 2tarta.

Conclusion

The ultimate purpose of the 91st amendment act, of 2003 was to prevent jumbo Cabinets and the resultant drain on the public exchequer. Whether it succeeded or not is a completely entire story altogether.

  1. https://blog.ipleaders.in/the-major-constitutional-amendment-in-indian-history/#The_Constitution_Ninety-first_Amendment_Act_2003
  2. https://www.drishtiias.com/daily-updates/daily-news-analysis/91st-amendment-ceiling-on-cabinet

Aishwarya Says:

I have always been against Glorifying Over Work and therefore, in the year 2021, I have decided to launch this campaign “Balancing Life”and talk about this wrong practice, that we have been following since last few years. I will be talking to and interviewing around 1 lakh people in the coming 2021 and publish their interview regarding their opinion on glamourising Over Work.

IF YOU ARE INTERESTED IN PARTICIPATING IN THE SAME, DO LET ME KNOW.

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In the year 2021, we wrote about 1000 Inspirational Women In India, in the year 2022, we would be featuring 5000 Start Up Stories.

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