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Home » Karnataka political crisis: All about the anti-defection law | India News

Karnataka political crisis: All about the anti-defection law | India News

How anti-defection law came into force
* ‘Aaya Ram Gaya Ram’ was a phrase coined in 1967 after Haryana MLA, Gaya Lal, changed parties thrice in the same day.
* The anti-defection law sought to prevent such political defections which may be due to reward of office or similar consideration.
* The 10th Schedule was inserted in the Constitution in 1985 laying down the process by which legislators may be disqualified.
* A legislator is deemed to have defected if he either voluntarily gives up membership of his party or disobeys the directives of the party leadership on a vote.
When can a MLA be disqualified?
* If the member voluntarily gives up membership of the party on whose ticket s/he is elected.
* If the member votes or abstains from voting in the House contrary to any direction of his/her party.
* Disqualification may be avoided if the party leadership condones the vote or abstention within 15 days.
What happens if an MLA is disqualified?
* If a member of the current House (15th legislative assembly) is disqualified, it means s/he cannot contest any election to the 15th House. However, s/he can contest the next assembly election (to the 16th House). Also, Article 164 (1B) of the Constitution states a member who has been disqualified cannot be made a minister till the expiry of his or her term, or till s/he is re-elected.
* If an MLA is disqualified on conviction for certain offences, he will be disqualified for a period of six years under Section 8 of the Representation of People’s (RP) Act. But Section 8 (4) of the RP Act gives protection to MPs and MLAs as they can continue in office even after conviction if an appeal is filed within three months.
Time limit
The law does not specify a time-period for the presiding officer to decide on a disqualification plea.
Resignation vs disqualification
* If an MLA is disqualified, then s/he cannot be a minister in the new dispensation without being re-elected.
* However, if an MLA resigns s/he can be inducted as a minister and get elected to either House of the legislature within six months.

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