On June 10, 2022, biennial elections to the Rajya Sabha are scheduled to be held to replace 57 retiring members in 15 states. Political parties are busy lining up candidates for the seats falling vacant, based on their perception about whom they would like to reward.
On February 17, 2022, the Supreme Court set aside the Punjab and Haryana High Court order staying the controversial law of the government of Haryana providing for 75% reservation for the local youth in private sector jobs paying less than Rs 30,000 a month. The Court observed that the High Court had not given sufficient reasons for stopping the Haryana law in its tracks. Without going into the merits of the matter, the Court ordered that the High Court should decide the petition before it expeditiously and not later than a period of four weeks. At the same time, the Court directed the state government not to take any “coercive steps” against employers for violating the Haryana State Employment of Local Candidates Act, 2020.
On the sidelines of Constitution Day celebrations in Parliament on November 26, 2021, which the Opposition parties boycotted, the attention somehow turned to the role of the judiciary in the Indian polity. Chief Justice of India NV Ramana, in his address during the opening ceremony of the Constitution Day function organised on the same day by the Supreme Court registry, stated that lakshman rekha drawn by the Constitution is sacrosanct. But there are times when courts are compelled to pay attention to unresolved grievances in the interest of justice.
The 82nd All India Presiding Offices’ Conference (AIPOC), held in Shimla from November 17-18, 2021, was a rather lacklustre event. There was ceremonial reiteration of the need to increase the number of sittings of legislative bodies as well as a resolution against ritualistic disruptions during Question Hour, presentation of the budget and addresses by the president/governors.
Delays in legislation are frustrating for the Opposition as well as the Presiding Officers. At the same time, a legislation carefully drafted, could be disastrous if fast-tracked, as seen in the case of the three farm laws.