Tuesday, May 7, 2013

India is not a post-constitutional democracy

All political parties have to be registered and state that they will conform to constitutional principles. Once this is done by them, any violation of this which is brought to the election commission's notice through complaints can be used to question the registration itself. They could be disqualified or even de-registered in case of severe violations.

To a large extent un-elected and un-electable or failed political workers get nominations as chairpersons or presidents in boards, corporations and similar authorities. sometimes like in the case of Karnataka Milk Federation (KMF) elections are held, but most likely rigged as well. Similar nomination without public scrutiny happens in case of batf and abide and an extra constitutional role for corporates in city planning is created. Corporate or business plans for growth do not have any space in this form at all!
Social justice and equity plans or other plans for a city like Bengaluru or region need to go through a metropolitan planning committee (mpc) which if formed properly is likely to have representatives from various parties and technically qualified people. To prevent a single party from dominating decisions in the mpc elected reps from all different parties and urban and rural jurisdictions shd be represented.

And if they are unaware they shd legalistically read up Part-IX (73rd CAA) and Part IX-A (74th CAA) of the Indian Constitution both of which have just completed 20 years recently.

Better days are ahead if more people know how to prepare plans with a constitutional morality, and more people inside and outside government have the capacity and the capability to conform to it and make other committees like batf or abide conform to it.

Equality before law as well as one person one vote are constitutional principles. Similarly equity in terms of resource allocation or use is just as important. In urban or rural areas any other form of influence will amount to buying favours / lobbying or even reverse clientelism (from corporates to politicians).

We need more people to commit themselves as upholders of constitutional norms. As the local government delivers facilities closest to the people all attempts to divert resources away from human development and reallocate funds to more profitable "infrastructure growth" comes into conflict with both the role of local government and constitutional norms.

We must bring back the focus on the all round development of people's and local government capacities and capability to deliver the amenities and facilities.
Separating the roles of government such as in the case of MP's vs MLA's vs corporator's / councillor's / panchayat members, and respect for all tiers of government (esp., local govt) are part of this framework of principles. So while the state govt provides the funds, functions and functionaries, the local government provides the facilities and amenities.

extra constitutional forms like govt committees for infrastructure or other corporate lobbies should not deliberately encroach on the constitutional form instead they must allow democratic decision making. Any number of committees as per law could be started but they have to confirm such principles and conform to them. These are the built in checks and balances and those who support the constitution will agree that an important role for citizens also exists for protecting the same, nurturing and helping move ahead.

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