BHUBANESWAR: The Assembly on Monday passed two Bills with minor changes.
The Odisha Zilla Parishad (Amendment) Bill, 2015 was passed with the support of the Opposition without any changes. However, the House gave assent to Odisha Municipal Laws (Second Amendment) Bill, 2015 with modification to the disqualification clause.
Introducing the Zilla Parishad (Amendment) Bill, Minister of State for Law and Panchayati Raj Arun Kumar Sahoo said the objective of the Bill is to prevent defection of an elected member of a political party to another party.
Parliament passed the anti-defection law in 1985 through 52nd amendment of the Constitution. The main intent of the law was to combat the evil of defection by elected representatives and strengthen the value of democracy.
Since elections to Zilla Parishad and urban civic bodies are held on party lines, defection of elected representatives from a party to other is seriously affecting the functioning of the elected bodies.
It is often seen that no confidence motion is moved by the elected members of zilla parishad, municipality, municipal corporation and notified area council (NAC) of the same party by switching party affiliation to another party.
“It is therefore necessary to provide measures prohibiting such defection in the existing law to curtail defection,” Sahu said.
Moving the Odisha Municipal Laws (Second Amendment) Bill, 2015 to amend the Odisha Municipal Corporation Act, 2003 and the Odisha Municipal Act, 1950, Housing and Urban Development Minister Pushpendra Singh said the Bill aims to achieve the same objectives.
After the amendment, members who have been elected on party symbol will face disqualification as per the new provisions. The same disqualification provisions will be applicable to the independent members.
In case of urban civic bodies, if a corporator or a councillor claims that he or any other members of his party constitute a group representing a faction as a result of split in the party, such group should not be less than two-third members. However, the Bill had proposed that the group defecting the party should consist of one-third members.
Supporting the two Bills, Leader of Opposition Narsingh Mishra said he has doubt whether the amendment will serve the purpose. He sought to know what will happen to a member who is not a primary member of a party but was elected on a party symbol in case of defection.