(1) A person shall be disqualified for being chosen as, and for being, a member of the Legislative Assembly or Legislative Council of a State —

 

(a) if he holds any office of profit under the Government of India or the Government of any State specified in the First Schedule, other than an office declared by the Legislature of the State by law not to disqualify its holder;

 

(b) if he is of unsound mind and stands so declared by a competent court; 

 

(c) if he is an undischarged insolvent;

 

(d) if he is not a citizen of India, or has voluntarily acquired the citizenship of a foreign State, or is under any acknowledgment of allegiance or adherence to a foreign State;

 

(e) if he is so disqualified by or under any law made by Parliament.

 

   Explanation. — For the purposes of this clause, a person shall not be deemed to hold an office of profit under the Government of India or the Government of any State specified in the First Schedule by reason only that he is a Minister either for the Union or for such State.

 

(2) A person shall be disqualified for being a member of the Legislative Assembly or Legislative Council of a State if he is so disqualified under the Tenth Schedule.

Debate Summary

Article 167, Draft Constitution, 1948

(1) A person shall be disqualified for being chosen as, and for being, a member of the Legislative Assembly or Legislative Council of a State.

(a) If he holds any office of profit under the Government of India or the Government of any State for the time being specified in the First Schedule other than an office declared by the Legislature of the State by law not to disqualify its holder;

(b) If he is of unsound mind and stands so declared by a competent court;

(c) If he is an undischarged insolvent;

(d) If he is under any acknowledgment of allegiance or adherence to a foreign power, or is a subject or a citizen or entitled to the rights or privileges of a subject or a citizen of a foreign power;

(e) If he is so disqualified by or under any law made by the Legislature of the State.

(2) For the purposes of this article, a person shall not be deemed to hold an office of profit under the Government of India or the Government of any State for the time being specified in the First Schedule by reason only that-

(a) He is a minister either for India or for any State for the time being specified in Part I of the First Schedule; or

(b) He is a minister for any State for the time being specified in Part III of the first Schedule is responsible to the Legislature of the State, or

where there are two Houses of the Legislature of the State, to the Lower House of such Legislature and if not less than three-fourths of the members of such Legislature or House, as the case may be, are elected.

 

Draft Article 167 (Article 190) was debated on 2nd June 1949. It laid down the grounds for disqualification of a member of the State Legislature.

 

A member proposed amending clause (1)(a) to disqualify any person holding any office of profit or shares in a company which supplies materials or has a building contract with the Government. He argued that such contracts were extremely lucrative and would result in a conflict of interest, since the member might be tempted to favour such companies. This amendment was rejected without debate.

 

The Chairman of the Drafting Committee moved an amendment to substitute clause (1) (d) to disqualify any person acquiring citizenship of or being under allegiance, acknowledgement, or adherence to a foreign State.  One member expressed concern that the use of the word ‘adherence’ was ambiguous. The Chairman responded that ‘adherence’ applied to a situation in which a person continued to obey military rule imposed by an invader, even if it was no longer necessary. The Assembly accepted this amendment.

 

Another member of the Drafting Committee wanted to substitute clause (2)(a) and (b) with the following: ‘He is a minister either for India or for any such State’. He pointed out that this followed the wording used in a similar sub-clause of Draft Article 83 (Article 102). This amendment was accepted without debate.

 

The amended Draft Article was adopted on 2nd June 1949.