Under clause (4) of article 356 of the
Constitution, no Proclamation
issued under that article and approved by both
the Houses of
Parliament shall remain in force for more than three years. However,
under clause (5) of the said article, a resolution approving
continuance in force of a Proclamation issued under clause (1) of that
article beyond a period of one year cannot be passed by either House
of Parliament unless the two conditions relating to a Proclamation of
Emergency being in operation in the whole or any part of the State and
the certificate by the Election Commission that the continuation of
the Proclamation issued under clause (1) is necessary on account of
difficulties in holding general elections to the Legislative Assembly
of the State as specified in that clause are met. The three
period in the case of Proclamation issued on 11th May, 1987
respect to the State of Punjab was extended to three years and six
months by the Constitution (Sixty-fourth Amendment) Act, 1990
clause (5) of article 356 was also suitably amended by that Act in the
expectation that it would be possible to hold
elections to the
Legislative Assembly of that State. In October, 1990 it was felt that
it was not conducive to hold free and fair elections to the Punjab
State Legislative Assembly. Therefore, clause (4) of article 356 was
again amended by THE CONSTITUTION (Sixty-seventh Amendment) Act, 1990
to enable extension of President's Proclamation issued on 11th May,
1987 for a total period of four years.
2. Despite pressure from the security
forces, the terrorist violence
has been continuing in Punjab.
Therefore, the prevailing
circumstances still do not hold out prospects for fair, free
peaceful elections to the Legislative Assembly of Punjab. Clause (4)
of article 356 of the Constitution is, therefore, proposed
amended so as to facilitate the extension of the said Proclamation up
to a total period of five years in relation to the State of Punjab.
3. The Bill seeks to achieve the above objects.
The 7th March, 1991.
THE CONSTITUTION (SIXTY-EIGHTH AMENDMENT)
[12th March, 1991.]
An Act further to amend the Constitution of India.
BE it enacted by Parliament in the Forty-second
Year of the Republic
of India as follows:-
1. Short title.-
This Act may be called the Constitution
(Sixty-eighth Amendment) Act, 1991.
2. Amendment of article 356.-In article
356 of the Constitution, in
clause (4), in the third Proviso, for the words "four
words "five years" shall be substituted.