SPECIAL COVERAGE
CHANDIGARH

LUDHIANA

DELHI


THE TRIBUNE SPECIALS
50 YEARS OF INDEPENDENCE

TERCENTENARY CELEBRATIONS
M A I L B A G

SC ruling on 9th Schedule welcome

H K Dua’s article “9th Schedule route plugged: SC saves the Constitution from politicians” (Jan 15) is timely. One must agree with the judgement that the laws inserted in the Ninth Schedule must not violate the fundamental rights and the basic structure of the Constitution.

Clearly, the laws parked in the Ninth Schedule after April 1973 can now be challenged in the court if a citizen feels that his fundamental rights have been flouted. These laws’ so-called immunity from judicial scrutiny has been done away with. This Schedule was created to provide necessary immunity to certain agrarian laws needed to introduce land reforms and abolish the zamindari system.

Until now, 284 laws have been included in this Schedule. Those opposed to such a process say, this Schedule is being used for narrow partisan ends. But those in favour of this boast about Parliament’s right to enact laws and put them in the Ninth Schedule to protect them from judicial review. In any case, it is time all the three wings - the legislature, the executive and the judiciary - worked in a manner that the laws do not violate the basic structure and really help deserving sections to reap the fruits of our social, political and economic independence.

SUDESH KUMAR SHARMA, Kapurthala


 

II

The judiciary has to function as a watchdog to prevent politicians from tinkering with fundamental rights and the basic structure of the
Constitution. We should welcome the apex court order. Otherwise, our worthy politicians can make our Constitution obsolete by making the Ninth Schedule a Mini Constitution.

The judiciary should exercise some checks on the executive to protect the common from any arbitrary action. For a layman, it is all Greek and Latin until and unless he enjoys his fundamental rights and is able to get his grievances redressed expeditiously.

Unfortunately, our Constitution has many loopholes and that’s why lawyers interpret it in many ways. A continuous clipping of politicians’ wings may de-motivate them and inspire intellectuals like Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to come forward and govern the destiny of the country without any pressures and hassles.

SUKHWINDER SINGH, Ludhiana


III

I read with interest Mr Dua’s article. He recalled in the article events of 1975 and efforts of interested groups to distort the Indian Constitution.
One feels relieved that the Supreme Court has made it clear that the executive and the legislature do not have the right to violate the basic structure of the Constitution. And we have newspapers like The Tribune raising their voice whenever there is an attempt to do so.

I. RAMAMOHAN RAO, New Delhi

IV

It really makes interesting reading as to how successive Prime Ministers starting from Indira Gandhi tried to subvert the Constitution by taking recourse to the Ninth Schedule. While Jawaharlal Nehru was guided by genuine national interest, politicians after him were guided by their petty interests.

Mr Dua’s warning that the politicians may do anything to subvert the ruling of the Supreme Court to suit their interests is also very timely. To prevent subversion of the Constitution, the media - print and electronic - and the people must keep a close watch. Otherwise, it would remain a lurking danger threatening even the basic structure of the Constitution.

ZULFIKAR ALI KHAN, Malerkotla

Cast your vote carefully 

I am an Indian living in the United States. I read The Tribune (Internet edition) every day. Since elections in Punjab are fast approaching, I have some advice for the young generation of today how important it is for them to register and vote.

This is the time when they can have their voice heard because if they do not vote, they will have no right to gripe about the party in power. The Indian Constitution has given them the right to exercise it without fear or favour.
While exercising their franchise, the voters should follow these guidelines. Look at the candidates’ credentials and record of public service during their earlier term. If they are contesting for the first time, find out their background carefully. Criminals, history-sheeters and those with doubtful integrity should not be allowed to win the elections and run the government.

Do not pick up candidate based on the party. Look at their qualifications. Voting is a privilege and we must use it wisely. The voters will decide the future of Punjab and its road map in the world. We should report any misuse of authority by politicians, bureaucrats, police or any other influential people.

VINOD NARANG, Fairfax (USA)

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