‘Adaptation of Laws (Amendment) Order, 2019 extending ILP to Manipur needs to be reviewed’

TMB Report

IMPHAL: Former Law Secretary and ex-MLA Laishom Ibomcha has observed that the notification of the Adaptation of Laws (Amendment) Order, 2019 extending Inner Line Permit to Manipur by the President of India notified in the official gazette of Ministry of Home Affairs, Government of India, on December 1, 2019 needs to be reviewed.

In a statement, the former Law Secretary said that the people of Manipur felt overwhelming joy on hearing the news of the notification of the Adaptation of Laws (Amendment) Order, 2019 extending Inner Line Permit in Manipur by the President. However, on minute scrutiny of the adaptation order, the said joy was short-lived. There is a serious legal flaw in the adaptation order made by the President. There is great pain and sorrow to see such legal loop holes in the sand order. It seems that Union Government had wrongly exercised such power to issue such order under clause (2) of Article 372 of Constitution of India. For matters where the President has to exercise the legislative powers under the Constitution, such casualness should not be shown by the Union Government, he said.

To point out such legal flaws in the adaptation order are not with mala-fide intention to tarnish the image of the President and the Union Government, but to protect and uphold the highest constitutional office of the President. It is due to the Union Government dealing with the matter in a hasty and casual manner without consulting and seeking proper legal advice from the appropriate legal experts, he added.

He said that the Adaptation of Laws (Amendment) Order, 2019 was issued by the President on 11th December, 2019 in exercise of the power conferred under Clause (2) of Article 372 of the constitution. The said clause (2) provides that the President may for the purpose of bringing the provisions a of any Law is force in the territory of India into accord with the provisions of the Constitution of India, by order make such adaptations and modifications of such law as may be necessary or expedient and specify the date from which the same would be effective whereupon such law will be effective there from, subject to such adaptation and modifications. However, in view of the provisions of clause 3 (a) of the Article 372, the President can exercise the powers under clause (2) not beyond three years from the commencement of the Constitution, i.e. the twenty sixth day of November, 1949. This is not an opinion but legal proposition based on factual legal provisions. In this context, Hon’ble Supreme Court in Civil Appeal No. 4918 of 1984 decided on April 19, 1994 (State of Sikkim vs Surendra Prasad Sharma and Others) observed that, “Article 372 (3) (9) makes it clear that this special power conferred on the President is transitory in nature and will not endure beyond three years from the commencement of the Constitution”.

In view of this fact, the President should not have exercised his power under the said provision as per mandate of the Constitution of India. Therefore, the present adaptation order for extension of ILP to Manipur is unconstitutional, void and has no force of law. What will be the fate of the action taken on the basis of the said impugned adaptation order is very annoying, he questioned.

Now, the only alternative action to be taken by the Union Government to tide over from the present impasse is to introduce a Bill on ILP in the current session of the Parliament for validating the impugned adaptation order by inserting a validation clause for saving all the actions taken under the said impugned adaptation order from the date of its notification.

For anything against the interest of the State Government and its people, we can’t remain as a mute spectator, we have to raise our voice to rectify such mistakes failing which our future generation will spit on our graveyards. It is my earnest appeal to all the civil societies and the stakeholders to remain calm without resorting to any agitations .We may have our trust and hope to the Union Government, he added.

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