‘Get Manmohan Singh elected to Lok Sabha’Mar 20th, 2009 | By editor | Category: Kerala
KOCHI: Ernakulam MP Sebastian Paul (CPI-M Independent) has asked Congress president Sonia Gandhi to get Prime Minister Manmohan Singh elected to the Lok Sabha.
In a letter to Ms. Gandhi, Mr. Paul said Dr. Singh was being projected as the United Progressive Alliance’s Prime Minister candidate. Dr. Singh was currently not a Lok Sabha member (he is currently a Rajya Sabha member from Assam). By getting him elected by the people, he would get an opportunity to secure popular endorsement for his governance, Mr. Paul said.
“The Prime Minister is responsible to the Lok Sabha and he can continue to hold office as long as he enjoys the confidence of the Lok Sabha,” Mr. Paul, a lawyer and specialist in constitutional affairs , noted.
“Keeping the best democratic traditions in view and also to ensure the smooth working of the governmental machinery, Dr. Singh should seek election to the Lok Sabha.”
This was also necessary because of a ruling made by the Lok Sabha Speaker last year.
“Disallowing a notice of question of privilege against the Prime Minister for non-fulfilment of an assurance given to the Lok Sabha on the India-U.S. civil nuclear deal, the Speaker gave a ruling, citing Kaul and Shakdher, that since the Prime Minister was a member of the other House, the Lok Sabha cannot claim or exercise any authority over him,” he noted.
“The inability of the Lok Sabha to challenge the Prime Minister on a point of privilege is a constitutionally incomprehensible irony.”
Mr. Paul pointed out to Ms. Gandhi that it was a well-established convention in the U.K. that the Prime Minister should get elected to the House of Commons, which reflected the public opinion more truly and faithfully than the House of Lords. He recalled that Indira Gandhi, though she was a member of the Rajya Sabha when she first became Prime Minister, had immediately opted for Lok Sabha membership to uphold the best traditions of parliamentary democracy.