In news: Jharkhand Governor Ramesh Bais has sought a “second opinion” in a case of office-of-profit that has triggered a political crisis in the State.
About Office of Profit:
- The origin of this term can be found in the English Act of Settlement, 1701.
- This was instituted so that there would not be any undue influence from the royal household in administrative affairs.
- It is a position in the government which cannot be held by an MLA or an MP.
- The post can yield salaries, perquisites and other benefits.
- According to Articles 102(1)(a) and 191(1)(a) of the Constitution, an MP or MLA is barred from holding an office of profit as it can put them in a position to gain a financial benefit. Under the RPA 1951 too, holding an office of profit is grounds for disqualification.
- The expression “office of profit” has not been defined in the Constitution or in the Representation of the People Act, 1951.
- It is for the courts to explain the significance and meaning of this concept.
- In 1964, the Supreme Court ruled that the test for determining whether a person holds an office of profit is the test of appointment.
- whether the government is the appointing authority
- whether the government has the power to terminate the appointment
- whether the government determines the remuneration
- what is the source of remuneration
- power that comes with the position
- The essence of disqualification under the office of profit law is if legislators holds an ‘office of profit’ under the government, they might be susceptible to government influence, and may not discharge their constitutional mandate fairly.
Source: The Hindu
Previous Year Question
Q.1) Consider the following statements: (2019)
- The Parliament (Prevention of Disqualification) Act, 1959 exempts several posts from disqualification on the grounds of ‘Office of Profit’.
- The above-mentioned Act was amended five times.
- The term ‘Office of Profit’ is well-defined in the Constitution of India.
Which of the statements given above is/are correct?
- 1 and 2 only
- 3 only
- 2 and 3 only
- 1, 2 and 3