Can a person convicted for an offence and disqualified to be a member of the State legislature be appointed as Chief Minister?


A person is disqualified from being a member of State Legislature or from being appointed as a Chief Minister on the following grounds:

  • If he/ she holds any office of the profit under the central or state Government
  • If he/ she is of unsound mind
  • If he / she is an undischarged insolvent
  • If he / she has voluntarily acquired the citizenship of a Foreign country
  • If he/ she is disqualified under any other law of the parliament such as anti-defection law.

Who decides that a person is disqualified?

The question, whether a person has been subject to any of the above disqualification will be referred to the Governor who decides in consultation with the election commissioner of the state. The decision of the Governor is final.  

The Law

Supreme Court of India, in its judgment dated 10 July 2013 while arranging the Lily Thomas v. Association of India case (alongside Lok Prahari v. Association of India), decided that any Member of Parliament (MP), Member of the Legislative Assembly (MLA) or Member of a Legislative Council (MLC) who is sentenced for wrongdoing and given at least two years’ detainment, loses participation of the House with prompt impact. This is rather than the previous position, wherein indicted individuals clutched their seats until they depleted all legal cure in lower, state, and the incomparable court of India. Further, Section 8(4) of the Representation of the People Act, which permitted chose agents three months forbid their conviction, was pronounced illegal by the seat of Justice A. K. Patnaik and Justice S. J. Mukhopadhaya.

Resistance from Government

While trying to upset this choice, the Representation of the People (Second Amendment and Validation) Bill, 2013, was brought into the Rajya Sabha on 30 August by Law Minister Kapil Sibal; by the proposed correction, agents would not be excluded following conviction. The Indian government additionally recorded an audit request, which the Supreme Court excused. On 24 September, a couple of days before the feed trick decision, the administration attempted to bring the bill into impact as a mandate. In any case, Rahul Gandhi, Vice-President of the Indian National Congress, made his assessment of the law clear in a press meeting: “It’s finished drivel. It ought to be destroyed and discarded.” Members of resistance parties asserted that Gandhi’s remarks demonstrated absolute disarray inside the administration, and required the renunciation of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh. Inside 5 days, both the law and the bill were pulled back on 2 October.

Sikkim Chief Minister Case

Sikkim Chief Minister Prem Singh Tamang, more than likely, held his post as the Election Commission (EC) administered in support of himself, decreasing the time of his preclusion by very nearly five years.

Tamang had mentioned the EC to defer the rest of the time of his exclusion under Section 11 of the Representation of the People Act, 1951. The last time the EC diminished an individual’s preclusion period was in 1977.Tamang was designated Chief Minister on May 27, after his Sikkim Krantikari Morcha (SKM) vanquished the Sikkim Democratic Front (SDF) in the Assembly decisions in April. SKM is a piece of the decision NDA at the Center.

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Tamang was banned from challenging surveys following his exclusion for a long time, after he was seen as liable of misusing government assets in a dairy animals appropriation plot while he was the clergyman of creature farming during the 1990s. The preclusion time frame started on August 10, 2018 — the day he finished a year’s prison term for the situation. It was to end on August 10, 2024, however the EC, decreased it to one year and one month. As such, his exclusion finished on September 10.

Appointment of Chief Minister illegal

In spite of the fact that the Election Commission’s organization has not considered the lawfulness of whether Tamang’s swearing-in on May 27 was sound, the result of the Sunday request is that the Sikkim senator’s choice to welcome Tamang to frame the legislature and the ensuing organization of promise of office and mystery is presently illogical.

The Election Commission said that in exercise of its forces under Section 11 of the Representation of People Act, Tamang’s time of constituent exclusion was being decreased from the legal six years to one year and one month.

This implies is that when Tamang was confirmed as boss clergyman in May, his preclusion was especially in power.

An inquisitive part of the Election Commission request is that it doesn’t require the push to depict what it implies for Tamang. That answer is accessible in a significant point of reference that the Supreme Court set in 2001 out of a case including previous Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa.

In 2001, Jayalalithaa confronted preclusion as she was indicted in a debasement case including offer of government land in April 2000. She, in any case, was confirmed as boss clergyman in June 2001 by the senator as the All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam authoritative gathering chose her as the pioneer.

In September 2001, a Constitution seat of the Supreme Court held that the representative’s move was illegal and that an individual who was precluded from holding the situation of an administrator couldn’t become boss pastor. It excused the dispute that the Constitutional arrangement permitting an individual to stay boss pastor for a half year without being chosen could be applied in the event of an exclusion.

On the off chance that this point of reference is applied to Tamang, obviously he has now lost grounds to stay boss priest as the senator’s solicitation to him to frame the Sikkim government during his preclusion period is unlawful.

In 2001, the Supreme Court stated:

“Assuming perchance, for reasons unknown, the Governor designates as Chief Minister an individual who isn’t able to be an individual from the assembly or who is excluded to be such, the arrangement is in opposition to the arrangements of Article 164 of the Constitution, as we have deciphered it, and the authority of the deputy to hold the arrangement can be tested in quo warranto procedures. That the Governor has made the arrangement doesn’t give the nominee any higher option to hold the arrangement. On the off chance that the arrangement is in opposition to sacred arrangements it will be struck down. The accommodation to the opposite unsupported by any position must be dismissed.”

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Maybe one reason for the Election Commission to keep away from remark on the legitimateness of Tamang holding the central priest position is that a request testing his arrangement is pending in the Supreme Court. In any case, the Election Commission request makes it lawfully and morally unimaginable for Tamang to proceed as boss pastor of Sikkim.

The Election Commission said that Tamang didn’t move toward it to evacuate the exclusion before the decisions nor did he challenge the Assembly surveys. Regardless of this, the Sikkim Krantikari Morcha authoritative gathering chose him as boss priest, following which the senator welcomed him to shape the administration.

Lawfully, the way that Tamang didn’t challenge the decisions should serve no profit to him. Truth be told, had he recorded his designation papers, the returning official would have without a doubt dismiss it refering to the preclusion.

Second, the two point of reference that the commission has refered to help its situation to diminish the preclusion time frame were murder cases, while Tamang was indicted for debasement.

As the Supreme Court had pronounced in the Jayalalithaa’s case, minor political race as pioneer of the authoritative party doesn’t pulverize discretionary preclusion under the Representation of People Act.

Laws to restrict lawbreakers from legislative issues

The Supreme Court has declined to restrict government officials or Chief minister with criminal cases from challenging races however underlined that it is time Parliament institutes laws to guarantee that individuals with criminal cases don’t enter legislative issues.

Society has a privilege to be administered by better individuals, the adjudicators said while seeing that government officials with criminal cases must be “kept under control”. Such a law ought to be authorized as quickly as time permits, it said.

“The sooner the better, before it gets deadly to majority rules system,” a five-judge seat of the Supreme Court drove by Chief Justice of India Dipak Misra said. About 1,700 MPs and MLAs, a little over 33% of every single chosen delegate in India, deal with criminal indictments. Under the current law, government officials are prohibited from challenging races for a long time just on the off chance that they are sentenced for the wrongdoing. Additionally, there is nothing to prevent sentenced government officials from heading political parties. A lot of petitions recorded under the steady gaze of the Supreme Court had contended this should change.

The adjudicators decided that the court was not in a situation to add a preclusion to banish individuals with criminal cases from entering governmental issues or challenging races. So it can’t proclaim that ministers who have been charged of genuine offenses ought to be excluded. In any case, the court bemoaned the situation.

During disputes for the circumstance, official KK Venugopal had repudiated recommendations that the Supreme Court could acknowledge the capacity to make laws that was the benefit of the legislature. The seat had then countered him, saying it understood the possibility of separation of powers and couldn’t quick Parliament to make a law, yet the “question is what might we have the option to do to contain the decay”. The seat was hearing a PIL documented by legal counselor and BJP pioneer Ashwini K Upadhyay looking for that sentenced individuals be limited from framing political parties and turning out to be office-bearers during the period they are disqualified. Senior advocate Vikas Singh, showing up for Upadhyay, said 40 percent of the administrators are either indicted or confronting preliminary.

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“40 percent of ministers are either indicted or confronting preliminary. That is the reason there is opposition. They don’t need integrity,” he said. The supreme court had on December 1 a year ago looked for the reaction of the Center and the Election Commission on the PIL and consented to inspect the established legitimacy of segment 29A of the Representation of the People Act (RPA), 1951 (RPA), which manages the intensity of the survey board to enlist an political party.

The request said sentenced government officials, who are banned from challenging decisions, can even now run political parties and hold posts, other than choosing regarding who will end up being a minister. It has looked for a course to announce area 29A of the RPA as “self-assertive, silly and ultra-vires” to the Constitution and to approve the survey board to enrol and de-register political parties.

The solicitor has additionally looked for a course to the Election Commission to outline rules to decriminalize the constituent framework and guarantee internal gathering majority rule government, as proposed by the National Commission to Review the Working of the Constitution (NCRWC).The appeal said right now, even an individual who has been sentenced for egregious violations like homicide, assault, pirating, illegal tax avoidance, plunder, dissidence, or dacoity, can shape a political party and become its leader or office bearer. The request named a few supreme political pioneers who have been indicted for deplorable wrongdoings like homicide, assault, sneaking, tax evasion, plunder, rebellion, or dacoity, can shape a political party and become its leader or office conveyor.

The request named a few supreme political pioneers who have been indicted or have charges confined against them and are holding supreme political posts and “employing political power”. It said the expansion of political party has become a significant worry as Section 29A of the RP Act permits a little gathering of individuals to shape a political party by making an exceptionally straightforward declaration.”Presently, around 20 percent of enlisted political parties challenge political race, and staying 80 percent of parties make an unreasonable burden on the discretionary framework and open cash,” the supplication said. The supplication likewise asserted that in 2004, the survey board had proposed change to Section 29A, approving it to give adept requests managing the enrollment or de-enlistment of a political party.


Our Indian vote based system has seen a consistent increment in the degree of criminalization crawling into Indian country. This will in general upset sacred ethos strikes at the foundation of vote based type of government and causes residents to endure, there is a dire need to change the present state of affairs by calling for stricter laws from the Parliament as a legislative body. It is essential that no convict who is serving his term could be made to be a part of the lawmaking process. It will be a huge scar on democracy if this exists.

Also read The Efficiency of Courts in Administering Criminal Justice: An Overview of Problems and Solutions

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