VP Dhankhar says ‘Parliament is the North Star of Democracy’: What is the North Star?
- Vice President Jagdeep Dhankhar said Parliament is the “North Star” of democracy, “a place of discussion and deliberation to realize the aspirations and dreams of the people”.
- Last month, Chief Justice of India D Y Chandrachud had described the basic structure of the Constitution, laid down by the Supreme Court in the 1973 Kesavananda Bharati judgment, as the “North Star” that “guides and gives certain direction to the interpreters and implementers of the Constitution when the path ahead is convoluted”.
Relevance of Basic structure:
- The basic structure doctrine provides a framework for judicial review of constitutional amendments and ensures that the Constitution remains the supreme law of the land.
- It helps to protect the fundamental principles and values enshrined in the Constitution, such as the rule of law, democracy, and human rights, from being eroded or amended beyond recognition.
- The doctrine also acts as a check on the power of the legislative and executive branches, ensuring that they do not undermine the basic structure of the Constitution.
- In addition, the doctrine helps to promote the stability and continuity of the Constitution, preserving its essence and essence for future generations.
- Overall, the basic structure doctrine helps to maintain the balance of power and ensure that the Constitution remains an effective and meaningful document that serves the needs of the people.
The Problems with Basic Structure:
- The concept of implied limitations on the power of amendment in the Constitution of India is vague and uncertain. The framers of the Constitution expressed their intentions clearly and there is no scope for invoking this concept.
- The theory of basic structure, introduced in the Kesavananda Bharati case, has shifted power towards the judiciary and has been criticized as a vague and undefined concept.
- The judiciary should not consider itself as a “super legislature” during judicial review, but rather focus on maintaining the rule of law.
- Laws are meant to evolve and adapt over time, and the Constitution is an organic document. The creation of myths like the basic structure theory can create apprehensions and aspersions, and it is the duty of the nation to observe laws in obedience. Some countries run without a constitution and are still law-abiding