Union Home Minister and Minister of Cooperation Shri Amit Shah inaugurated a training program on Legislative Drafting organized by PRIDE and ICPS for officers of Parliament, State Legislatures, various ministries, statutory bodies and other government departments in New Delhi, today. Several dignitaries including Lok Sabha Speaker Shri Om Birla, Union Minister Shri Pralhad Joshi, Shri Arjun Ram Meghwal, and Union Home Secretary were present on the occasion.
In his address, Shri Amit Shah said that legislative drafting is a crucial component of our democracy and lack of knowledge about it not only weakens the laws, but the entire democratic system and it also affects the functioning of the judiciary. He said that it is very important for any democratic country that its legislative drafting skills keep upgrading and becoming more efficient with time.
Union Home Minister paid tributes to freedom fighter Sukhdev on his birth anniversary and former Vice President Shri Bhairon Singh Shekhawat on his death anniversary.
Shri Amit Shah said that Indian democracy is acknowledged as the world’s largest democracy, and in a way, democracy was born in India as its idea emerged in India only. He said that we have incorporated the traditions of the democracy across India. Shri Shah said that the Constitution of India is considered to be most perfect Constitution in the world and the people who framed our Constitution not only incorporated the country’s traditional democratic values in it but also tried to modernize it according to the needs of contemporary times.
The Union Home Minister and Minister of Cooperation said that there are three main pillars of democracy – Legislature, Executive and Judiciary and our Constitution framers built our entire democratic governance system on these three pillars. He said that the functions of these three systems have been efficiently divided. Shri Shah said that the function of the Legislature is to consider public welfare and problems of the people and find the solutions, following legal procedures. He said that the Parliament discusses the changes being noticed across different fields globally, and accordingly formulate new laws and amend old laws to make our system more relevant. Consequently, following the spirit of the newly framed law, the executive performs its function of implementing it. Shri Shah said that the judiciary works independently in our country to interpret the law in case of a dispute. He said that our Constitution framers divided roles of these three pillars in our entire democratic system.
Shri Amit Shah said that the function of the Legislative Department is to formulate the political will of the Parliament and the Union Cabinet into law. He said that the function of the Legislative Department is to provide legal format to the political will and ways to solve the problems of the people and different needs of the country and for this reason, drafting attains great importance. Shri Shah said that if the drafting is better, it will be easier to educate about the law with minimal chances of errors by the executive. He said that if grey areas are left in the drafting, it would lead to encroachment in interpretation, while, if the drafting is complete and lucid, its interpretation would also be clear.
The Union Home Minister said that the Parliament is the most powerful organ of the government and its strength is the law. He said that legislative drafting is the most important method of governing any country in a good way. Shri Shah said that while translating Parliament’s and people’s will into law, many things have to be taken into account, such as, the Constitution, customs, culture, historical heritage, structure of governance, society, Socio-Economic Development of the country and International Treaties. Shri Shah said that Legislative Drafting is not a science or an art, but it is a skill which has to be used with spirit. He said that the focus should always be on minimizing the gray areas and the law should be clear.
Shri Amit Shah said that during the process of converting government policies into laws, it is necessary to study the old and least controversial laws. He said that writing is a skill and punctuation marks should be used with great care and skill in legislative drafting. Apart from this, the draftsman should also have good command over language because it is very important to reflect the spirit of our language. He said that every language has a limit and mere translation of the words will not work, but translation of the spirit should be done.
The Union Home Minister said that capacity building is a continuous process and it is very important to upgrade the skills of the law-drafting team in every department of the Parliament, state legislature of the states. He said that the world is changing very fast and we have to keep pace with the changing world and also mould our laws according to the needs of today. He said that if we are not so open, we will become obsolete and irrelevant.
Shri Amit Shah said that drafting should be done in as simple and clear words as possible because a law drafted in clichéd words always creates controversy. He said that the more simple and clear the law is in words, the more it remains undisputed. Shri Shah said that making such a law that the court does not need to intervene is a medal for drafting a good law. He said that our aim should be to draft the law in simple and clear language.
The Union Home Minister and Minister of Cooperation said that since Shri Narendra Modi becoming the Prime Minister, the government has worked a lot in the field of laws and since 2015 till now the Government has done the work of repealing thousands of irrelevant laws. He said that by doing this, the government led by Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi, has done the work of liberating the lawyers, society and courts from the jungle of laws. Shri Shah said that the government led by Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi has also enacted many laws in accordance with the time in the interest of the country. He said that while writing the law, one should not hesitate to express the intention of the Legislature clearly, without ambiguity, in simple and clear words.