Various initiatives, Programmes, schemes and achievements of Legislative Department during 2021
Legislative Department acts mainly as a service provider in so far as the legislative business of the Union Government is concerned. It ensures timely processing of legislative proposals of various Ministries/Departments. In this context, Legislative Department plays an important role in assisting the Ministries/Departments of the Government to achieve the policy objectives through legislation. Legislative Department provides assistance to State Governments in translation of Central Laws into the languages mention in the Eighth Schedule to the Constitution.
Important Tasks Undertaken by the Department
During the period from 1st January, 2021 to 22nd December, 2021, this Department has examined 84 Notes for the Cabinet/new legislative proposals and after consulting the concerned Ministries/ Departments, drafted/prepared the draft Bills/Ordinances. After approval of the Cabinet, 50 Bills were forwarded to Parliament for introduction during this period. Bills which were already pending before Parliament and those introduced during the period from 1st January, 2021 to 22nd December, 2021, 46 Bills have been enacted into Acts including the Constitution (One Hundred and Twenty-seventh Amendment Bill, 2021 (As the Constitution 105th Amendment Act, 2021). Total 10 Ordinances have been promulgated by the President under article 123 of the Constitution during the aforesaid period. Further, 1977 statutory rules, regulations, orders and notifications were also scrutinized and vetted by this Department during this period.
Election Laws and Electoral Reforms
To amend the Representation of the People Act, 1950 and the Representation of the People Act, 1951, the Election Laws (Amendment) Bill, 2021 has been passed by Parliament on 21.12.2021. The said Bill envisages the following:
- Linking of Electoral Roll with Aadhaar System will curb the menace of multiple enrolment of the same person in different places; Multiple qualifying dates for enrolment in the electoral roll will expand the voter base and consequently greater participation of eligible voters in the electoral process;
- Making the statutes gender neutral in line with the avowed policy of gender equality and inclusiveness vis-à-vis conduct of our elections; and
- Streamlining the process of conduct of elections with reference to requisition of staff or premises, etc.
Institute of Legislative Drafting and Research (ILI)R)
Legislative drafting is a specialised job which involves drafting skills and expertise. Apart from in-depth knowledge of laws and their regular updation, continuous and sustainable efforts are required to enhance the skills of legislative drafting. The Officers of the Central Government, State Governments and Union territory Administrations dealing with legislative proposals and the students of law need training and orientation to develop the aptitude and the skills in legislative drafting.
2.In January, 1989, with a view to increase the availability of trained officers to deal with legislative proposals as also trained Legislative Counsel in the country, the Institute of Legislative Drafting and Research (ILDR) was established as a Wing of the Legislative Department, Ministry of Law and Justice.
3. The ILDR conducts one Basic Course and one Appreciation Course in Legislative Drafting every year which are as follows:
- The Basic Course is of three months’ duration and meant for the middle level officers of the State Governments/Union territories.
- The Appreciation Course is of fifteen days’ duration for middle level officers of Central Government Ministries/Departments/Attached/Subordinate Offices and Central Public Sector Undertakings.
- There is Voluntary Internship Scheme for students of law. This Scheme is intended to motivate students in creating interest in legislative drafting skills and secure knowledge about the nature and working of the Legislative Department. The Voluntary Internship Scheme has beendevised for Law students who are studying in Third Year of Three Year LLB Course or Fourth or Fifth year of Five year LLB course, with duration from four to six weeks. The said scheme has been started from the year 2013. Due to the Covid — 19 pandemic and social distancing norms the Voluntary Internship Scheme has been temporarily suspended.
- An online Capsule course on legislative drafting was organised for three days from 23rd June, 2021 to 25th June, 2021 for middle level officers of Central Government Ministries/Departments/Attached/Subordinate Offices and 29 participants attended the course.
- One month online training in legislative drafting was organised from 8th November, 2021 to 10th December, 2021 for all the officers of State Government/State Legislative Assemblies and 40 participants were benefitted by the training.
India Code Information System (ICIS)
Each year number of legislations (both principal Acts and Amending Acts) are passed by the legislature and it is difficult for judiciary, lawyers as well as citizens to refer relevant and up to date Acts when required. Keeping all these aspects in view, India Code Information System (ICIS), a one stop digital repository of all the Central and State Legislation including their respective subordinate legislations has been developed with the help of NIC under the guidance of Ministry of Law and Justice (Legislative Department). It is an important step in ensuing legal empowerment of all citizens as well as the object of ONE NATION — ONE PLATFORM. Till date, Central Acts from theyears 1838 to 2021 total 823 Central Acts have been updated and uploaded (in ICIS) for general public.
Official Language Wing has published the Constitution of India (5 th diglot pocket edition), which was released by Hon’ble Miniser of Law & Justice Shri Kiren Rijiju during the function held at Dr. B. R. Ambedkar Auditorium on 25/11/2021. In this edition, the text of the Constitution of India has been brought up-to-date by incorporating therein all the amendments up the Constitutional (One Hundred and Fifth Amendment) Act, 2021.