THE GOVERNMENT OF NATIONAL CAPITAL TERRITORY OF DELHI ACT, 1991

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The Government of National Capital Territory of Delhi Act, 1991 was enacted on January 2, 1992 and came into force on February 1, 1992. The Act is additional to the provisions provided under the Constitution dealing with the formation of Government in the National Capital Territory of Delhi and other matters dealing with the subject.

The Act provides for the establishment of Legislative Assembly, where the overall seats in the Assembly shall be seventy, taken up by persons selected by direct election who are from the territorial constituencies. To conduct election, the Capital shall be separated into single member assembly constituencies as per the provisions of Part III under the Act and the population of every constituency shall be equally divided as far as possible. The Act provides for the reservation of seats in the Legislative Assembly for Scheduled Caste and the seats reserves shall be in proportion to the seats in the Assembly as the people belonging to Schedule Caste stands to the population of the National Capital Territory and Article 334 shall be applicable to determine the reservation.

The person shall be eligible to take up the seat in the Legislative Assembly if he is an Indian citizen and create and subscribes oath or affirmation in front of an authorized person on behalf of the Election Commission in the prescribed format, he is twenty five years of age or more, he possess the eligibilities specified under any legislation made by the Parliament. The Legislative Assembly shall remain in operation for five years after appointment but, where Proclamation of Emergency is declared according to Article 352(1) of the Constitution, the duration shall be extended for a term not exceeding one year by the President by order which shall be again extended beyond six months subsequent to the end of proclamation.

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The Legislative Assembly shall select two members from the Assembly to be Speaker and Deputy Speaker. The Speaker is empowered to speak and take part in the proceedings in the Assembly. The Ministers of the Capital shall have the authority to speak and take part in the proceedings of the Assembly, but shall not have the right to vote. A member shall be excluded from the Legislative Assembly if he holds any office of profit under the Central or State Government or the Government of Union Territory except an office under the law made by the Parliament or State Legislature or the Legislative Assembly of the Capital Territory or if he is disqualified for the time being for selected to the Assembly and for being the member of the Lok Sabha or Rajya Sabha according to the provisions of Article 102 of the Constitution. The following are the powers and privileges of the members of the Assembly:

  • Freedom of speech in the Assembly;
  • Exemption from proceedings of the court for whatever held or vote given in the Assembly;
  • Exemption from liability for publicizing any report, proceedings, paper etc under the authority of such Assembly;
  • Powers, privileges and immunities enjoyed by the Legislative Assembly and members shall be enjoyed by the Lok Sabha and its members.

A bill or amendment shall not be initiated in the Legislative Assembly without the advice of the Lieutenant Governor where the bill includes provisions for the matters prescribed under the Act. The Election Commission shall delimit the constituencies as provided in the legislation. Moreover, the Lieutenant Governor is conferred with certain discretionary powers or to implement judicial functions.

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The Constitution (Sixty Ninth Amendment) Act, 1991 inserted Article 239AA which provides special provision for Delhi to confer it as the National Capital Territory of Delhi. The Amendment Act added Article 239AB which provides provision for the failure of constitutional machinery of Delhi for its proper administration. The Government of National Capital Territory of Delhi Act, 1991 was enacted to implement the provisions of the 69th Amendment Act, 1991. The Government of National Capital Territory of Delhi Act, 1991 repealed Delhi Administration Act, 1966.