– Hridaynarayan Dixit
Language is the best achievement of human life. Language is the medium of communication in the formation of all the societies of the world. The purpose of using language is to communicate, to explain our point of view. Language is made of sentences and sentences are made of words. Words are components of language. Within each word its meaning is hidden. Patanjali has told in Mahabhashya, ‘The same word used in a particular place in a sentence gives different meanings. Right knowledge and right use of the word gives the expected results. The power of words is great. India is the first place of origin of democracy. Here even in the Vedic period there were democratic institutions like sabhas and committees. To be polite was to speak beautifully and simply. He was considered worthy of a civilized assembly.
India is the largest oldest democracy in the world. We the people of India have adopted parliamentary democracy. Here the constitution is the supreme authority. There are three major institutions in the polity for the operation of constitutional democracy. The duties of the legislature, executive and judiciary are well defined. The executive is accountable to the legislature. Dr BR Ambedkar was the chairman of the drafting committee of the Constituent Assembly. There was a long debate in the Constituent Assembly on the recommendations of the Drafting Committee. Dr. Ambedkar had kept the draft resolution in the meeting. He made the executive accountable to the legislature. He clarified that, ‘Here the government has been made accountable to the legislature. Accountability has been given importance instead of the stability of the government. The Constituent Assembly had accepted parliamentary democracy after a long debate. The Parliament and the Legislatures had got legislative and constitutional powers. The legislature was empowered to make laws, amend laws and amend the constitution.
There is debate in law making. Debates happen. For this, everyone’s understandable language is important. In practice, the executive proposes legislation on any subject. Private Bills are also placed. By the way, the draft of law making is kept in the house by the executive. The simple language of the draft makes it convenient for the members of the House to know the usefulness and weakness of the proposed legislation. Difficult language becomes a complex question at the time of law making. In the absence of simple language, the method created also becomes complicated.
It is a matter of pleasure that recently a training program on legislative drafting has been organized for the officers of the Center and the States related to the executive ministries, statutory bodies, Parliament and State Legislatures. Inaugurating this training programme, Union Home Minister Amit Shah has said that legislative drafting is important for a democratic country. That’s why its capacity and procedure should be changed and reconsidered from time to time. There is a need for continuous enhancement of the corresponding capacity. There is no inertia in a dynamic nation. The need for new laws is felt according to the situation of the country. Similarly, there is a need to repeal the out of date laws.
Drafting work is important. Shah has said that the most powerful organ of the government is the legislature. It is a law making body. Drafting efficiency is an important method for the best conduct of parliamentary proceedings. He said that in the last nine years, remarkable work has been done in the field of law making, amendment and repeal under the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi. The government has repealed thousands of obsolete laws. In this way, the society and the government have been freed from the trap of obsolete laws. Expressing the will of the people of India in law is an important task. It is important to take care of culture in this public desire. India is a cultural nation. Keeping in mind the historical tradition and culture of India is the guiding factor for the drafters.
The constitution is the protector of all. All law making and government work is constitutional. Shah said, ‘In the operation of the governance system, the country’s social, economic development and international treaties etc. have to be taken care of.’ Shah is right. The important guiding principles in the Directive Principles of State Policy (Part III of the Constitution), of course, are not enforceable by any court. Yet the elements alleged in these are fundamental to Indian governance. It shall be the duty of the State to implement these elements in making the law. (Article 37) This efficiency is essential in the skill of law making. Equally important are the elements of promoting international peace and security, maintaining just and honorable relations between nations, promoting respect for international treaties and treaty obligations, and encouraging the settlement of international disputes by arbitration (Article 51). The Fundamental Duties (Sec. 51A) are of additional importance. The officers who draft the law on all such subjects should be equipped with all the information. The information acquired here is not enough. Proper use of your information is also necessary. It is not easy to first understand and then to explain to the understood.
Unfortunately, the language of the laws in the country is complex. The legal stakes take up valuable time of the litigants and the courts. Advocates of both the parties argue in the courts. Plaintiffs and defendants often do not know what are the basic elements of the debate? The language of law making and law should be simple, easy and comprehensible. Indian languages are rich. The vocabulary of our languages is huge. But translation of complex words and sentences does not bring simplicity. Translation is usually not enough. Instead of translation, it is necessary to explain the meaning of the whole draft.
Our constitution makers were alert. He has given definitions of many words and subjects used in the constitution (Article 366). Some examples are funny. ‘Goods’ is a generic term. It is easy to understand. But the definition of goods in the Constitution (Art. 366-12) is, ‘Goods include all articles of commerce and articles.’ Compliance. There is also a definition of existing law in 366-10. There is also a definition of a railway, ‘Railways not including any other line of communication situated wholly in any municipal area in respect of which Parliament has by law declared not to be a railway.’ But there is no definition of communalism and minority in the constitution. The scholars who write the draft have to keep in mind the sources of law making, traditions and national needs.
Technology has expanded in different areas of national life. Study of its expansion effect and weaknesses is also useful in drafting. Words also grow old under the influence of time. They do not represent a particular subject. They are no longer relevant and relevant. It becomes necessary to use Kaal Sangit instead of Kaal Vahay. Knowledge is not just information. Proper understanding of an object or subject and the use of words according to the country and time is desirable. Modi ji’s government is active from this point of view. It is welcome.
(The author is a former speaker of the Uttar Pradesh Legislative Assembly.)
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