The Government of Union Territories Act, 1963

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The Government of Union Territories Act, 1963 act was enacted by Parliament on 14th year of Republic of India which came into force in different Union Territories on different dates.  For Goa, Daman, Diu, Pondicherry it came into force on 13 May 1963 but other Union Territories like Himachal Pradesh, Delhi, Nagar Haveli, Dadar, Manipur and Tripura it came into force on 1st July 1963 but Mizoram the act came into force on 3 May 1972.

Section 2 of the Act defines different words used in the Act like Administrator, Article, Assembly Constituency, Election Commission, Judicial Commissioner, Scheduled Castes, Scheduled Tribes.

Part 2 of the Act explains about the legislative assemblies and their composition in Union Territories.Total number of seats in Legislative Assembly of Union Territory will be 30 and Central Government can nominate 3 persons as Legislative Assembly member but they should not be a government employee.  Section 4 of the Act speaks about the qualifications needed for membership in the legislation assembly i.e. they should be an Indian citizen and not less than 25 years of age.

Under Section 5 the total period of legislative assembly is explained.  The duration of it shall be for 5 years but exception to this is the Emergency period in the country that can be issued by the president under Article 352 which can extend for a period up to and not less than 1 year. Section 6, 7 explains about the session of Legislative Assembly prorogation, its dissolution, and duty of the speaker and deputy speaker of the assembly. Section 8 tells that when a resolution is passed on any speaker or deputy speaker for his/her removal then they cannot preside over the assembly.

Right of Administrator to send messages and address the assembly has been mentioned under Section 9 of the Act.  In section 10 it states that all the ministers have the right to speak in the assembly of the Union Territory but cannot vote in the assembly. Section 11 speaks about oath by members Section 12 tells about voting in assembly and its powers section, 13 speaks about vacation of seats.Section 14, 15, 16, 17, 18 tells about the disqualification of members, penalty for voting before taking oath, and powers, privileges of the members, salaries given to the members and extent of the legislative powers.

When there is inconsistency with laws made by parliament and law made by Legislative Assembly of Union Territory then the parliament’s law will prevail over the Union Territory law.The law further states that Administrator’s sanction is required for legislative proposals.  Administrator has to give assent to finance bill too and he can further reserve the bill for consideration of the President of India.

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Official language of Union Territory can be one or more languages or Hindi can be used for all purpose. But language that shall be used for the Acts, Bills passed by Legislative Assembly in Union territory will be English.

Part 3 of the Act states about delimitation of constituencies, assembly constituencies, duties of delimitation commission, associate members, procedure to delimitation.Special provisions for delimitation of Mizoram Legislative Assembly is also discussed under Part 3 of the Act. Representation of Arunachal Pradesh in the House of People, Goa, Daman, Diu also explained.

Part 4 discusses about Council of Ministers and their appointment by the President and their duties and salaries. Section 46 speaks about conduct of business of ministers where President allocates the work to them.

Part 5 states about the consolidated fund of Union Territory where Central Government by notification in official Gazette of India appoint Administrator to check all the payments of moneys into such fund, withdrawals of moneys and it shall be regulated by rules with the approval of President.

Section 47A explains about the money received on behalf of the Administrator shall be credited to public accounts of Union territory.  Custody of this shall be made to the Administrator with the approval of the President.Contingency fund shall be held by Administrator and he can make rules with regard to ancillary to custody of payments and withdrawal of money from this fund.

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Section 49 explains about Audit reports that should be submitted to the Administrator.  Section 50 speaks about relation of Administrator and Council of Ministers with the President.The President has the power to remove any difficulty arising out in the Union Territory and order anything but which is not inconsistent with the provisions of the said Act.Section 58 describes all the repealed sections and savings of the Act.