Question: X, a member of the legislative assembly makes a speech in the house containing filthy and defamatory abuses against another member Z. Z files a suit for defamation against X. What defence X may take? [BJS 1975] Find the answer to the mains question only on Legal Bites. [X, a member of the legislative assembly makes a… Read More »

Question: X, a member of the legislative assembly makes a speech in the house containing filthy and defamatory abuses against another member Z. Z files a suit for defamation against X. What defence X may take? [BJS 1975] Find the answer to the mains question only on Legal Bites. [X, a member of the legislative assembly makes a speech in the house containing filthy and defamatory abuses against another member Z. Z files a suit for defamation against X. What defence X may take?...

Question: X, a member of the legislative assembly makes a speech in the house containing filthy and defamatory abuses against another member Z. Z files a suit for defamation against X. What defence X may take? [BJS 1975]

Find the answer to the mains question only on Legal Bites. [X, a member of the legislative assembly makes a speech in the house containing filthy and defamatory abuses against another member Z. Z files a suit for defamation against X. What defence X may take? [BJS 1975]

Answer

Parliamentary privileges are certain rights and immunities enjoyed by members of Parliament, individually and collectively, so that they can “effectively discharge their functions”. Parliamentary privileges are defined in Article 105 of the Indian Constitution and those of State legislatures in Article 194. When any of these rights and immunities are disregarded, the offence is called a breach of privilege and is punishable under the law of Parliament.

Certain parliamentary privileges are:

  1. Freedom of Speech: According to Article 105, clause (1), expressly protects the right to freedom of speech in Parliament. No member can be taken to task anywhere outside the four walls of the House (e.g. court of law) or cannot be discriminated against for expressing his/her views in the House and its Committees.
  2. Freedom from Arrest: It is understood that no member shall be arrested in a civil case 40 days before and after the adjournment of the House (Lok Sabha or Rajya Sabha) and also when the House is in session. It also means that no member can be arrested within the precincts of the Parliament without the permission of the House to which he/she belongs.
  3. Exemption from attendance as witnesses: The members of Parliament also enjoy freedom from attendance as witnesses.

In view of the first point, which is Article 105, clause (1), it is clear that a member of the house enjoys the freedom of speech and expression while expressing his views and opinions in the parliamentary proceedings. It provides that there shall be complete freedom of speech in Parliament. Further, Article 105 (2) confers privileges, in respect of anything said on the floor of the Parliament. The word “anything” is considered as the widest concept and it is parallel to as a whole. No action is initiated against the member, for the offence of defamation or in the context of words said in Parliament or its committees, neither civil nor criminal.

Therefore, the actions of X, a member of the legislative assembly who makes a speech in the house containing filthy and defamatory abuses against another member Z can take the defence of Parliamentary Privileges in the exercise of his freedom of speech and expression.


Important Mains Questions Series for Judiciary, APO & University Exams

  1. Constitutional Law Mains Questions Series Part-I
  2. Constitutional Law Mains Questions Series Part-I
  3. Constitutional Law Mains Questions Series Part-II
  4. Constitutional Law Mains Questions Series Part-IV
  5. Constitutional Law Mains Questions Series Part-V
  6. Constitutional Law Mains Questions Series Part-VI
  7. Constitutional Law Mains Questions Series Part-VII
  8. Constitutional Law Mains Questions Series Part-VIII
  9. Constitutional Law Mains Questions Series Part-IX
  10. Constitutional Law Mains Questions Series Part-X
Updated On 2021-06-13T11:07:20+05:30
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