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CONSTITUTIONAL QUESTIONS AND CITIZENS' RIGHTSAn Omnibus Comprising Constitutional Questions in India and Citizens' Rights, Judges and State Accountability$
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A. G. Noorani

Print publication date: 2006

Print ISBN-13: 9780195678291

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2012

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195678291.001.0001

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Bribing Legislators During the Raj 1

Bribing Legislators During the Raj 1

Chapter:
(p.213) 34 Bribing Legislators During the Raj1
Source:
CONSTITUTIONAL QUESTIONS AND CITIZENS' RIGHTS
Author(s):

A.G. Noorani

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195678291.003.0044

This chapter discusses the legal aspects concerning the bribery of Members of the Legislative Assembly (MLA) and Members of Parliament (MP) in India. Under the Prevention of Corruption Act 1988, it is not an offence to bribe an MLA or MP. This was not so even under Prevention of Corruption Act 1947. These acts were enacted to penalize the offer to and receipt or demand of a bribe by a minister, a civil servant, or a voter as these were considered public servants. However, a Constitution bench of five judges to the Supreme Court ruled in 1984 that MLA is not a public servant and not covered by anti-corruption law. In addition, the Salmon Commission held that an MLA does not perform a public duty and that membership of parliament does not constitute public office for the purposes of the common law.

Keywords:   bribery, MLA, Members of Parliament, India, Prevention of Corruption Act 1988, Prevention of Corruption Act 1947, public servant, public office, common law

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