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Proposed   administrative   procedure
#LM.10   :   Improving   functioning of   city   councils

Purpose : Reduce damage cuased by noisy Councilors.

  1. Background
  2. The problem : rouge council members
  3. Administrative/technical means to reduce damage created by rogue members
  4. Voting by pure majority only
  5. Draft of the law to enact procedure #LM.10

    [A note : The proposed procedure is for City Councils, but SAME procedure can be also adopted for District Panchayats, Tahsil Panchayats and Gram Panchayats. Only some terms need to change]

The purpose is to bring India's administration/courts at par with West. How? By improving record keeping in GoI-offices and reducing nexuses in GoI-offices and courts. How? We would need several laws to achieve that.

LM.10 is one of these proposed laws. (To see the list of some of the laws, please click here). The proposed law LM.10 will improve law-making at city/district level.

The   Problem

A large number of Councilors in City Councils are habitual noise makers, and disrupt the proceedings. This recudes the productivity of other members. The problem is also rampant in State Assemblies and Parliament.

My proposal LM.01, will enable citizens to DIRECTLY register their YES/NO in the City Council, and so their dependence on city councilors will reduce. Also, the procedure LM.04 allows citizens to effectively recall/replace councilors. This further reduces their dependence on city council members. But still, it is members of city councils will have significant power, and role to play. So it is important that rogue members are stopped from disrupting the proceedings of the council.

As such, solution to rogue members already exists --- the Speaker of the council has powers to use police force against the rogue members. But most Speakers are spineless, and scared of using police force against rogue members. Hence rogue members keep on disrupting the council's proceedings agains and again.


Solution to "rogue councilor" problem

Following technical means can reduce the problem
  1. Electronic Bulletim Boards :

    1. The Speaker of the Council will host an electronic internet based bulletin board.

    2. Any member can start a thread in the bulletin board, and post a proposal/question before the Mayor or any office bearer, and the Mayor will reply, and other member may comment. The member who has started the thread can delete the post of any other member (except Mayor and office bearer) if he thinks that the post is disruptive.

    3. The citizens can ONLY read the forum, and send emails to their corporators. The corporators may publish citizens' posts if he thinks appropriate.

    4. The Speaker may also start a different forum where citizens, after paying a small fee necessary to maintain web-site, can start their threads and post their own posts.

  2. Redesigning conference hall so that only the speaker can heard :

    1. The member whom the speaker allows to speak should come at the center stage in the front, and speak, and MUST NOT speak from his own seat.

    2. The conference hall should be designed in such a way, that ONLY the speaker at the center is heard by all, and any member, no matter how loudly he speaks from his seat DOES NOT get heard by anyone.

    3. The TV-camera in the hall should focus ONLY on the speaker, and MUST not be allowed to focus the member who is making noises. If TV-cameras are to focus the noise-makers, this will only encourage the members to make more and more noises.

    4. The speaker should give EQUAL time to ALL members, and members can allocate their times to other members. The member can speak ONLY for the time he has, and he obtained from other members, and no more. His full speach will be kept on the web, along with the speech he could NOT deliver due to lack of time.

    5. Any member can post a post on the speech the speaking member gave, to point out objections he has.

  3. supervision by Grand Jurors :

    1. If a member has behaved in a disruptive way inside the house, any citizen can file a complain against that member before Grand Jurors. The Grand Jurors may or may not decide to read the complain. But if over 15 out of 30 Grand Jurors agree that member's behavior in the house is prima facie disgraceful and disruptive, and needs scrutiny, they may ask for a Jury Trial.

    2. If over 8 out of 12 Jurors declare that member's behaviour was disruptive and disgraceful, the Jurors may impose a fine of upto 12 salaries, and suspension for upto 3 months.

Voting by Pure Majority

One of the reason why so many councilors end up wasting too much time in council than they need to is following
  1. Any member can place a resolution any time
  2. There may be a voting anytime
  3. If 50% of the members present vote in favor of the proposal, even if that is just 30% of ALL members, the law gets passed.
As a result, the political party that is in power is forced to keep a large number of its members in the house as stand-by, lest a damaging proposal by some opposition members would get passed. The procedure should be amended as follows :
  1. an absent should be considered as a NO
  2. the proposal would be considered as PASSED only of over 50% of members vote YES.
This will free up time of several members, and they would no longer have to get "tied" with the house. Also, the officer bearers will be able to call houses for a longer duration without being worried about surious proposal getting passed.

Draft for #LM.10

     To enact the administrative procedure #LM.10 in India, a law needs to be passed in the Parliament of India. For the the EXACT Draft (Text) of the law, please click here.

     IMO, it would be wiser for the citizens/activists to first enact the procedure #LM.01, and then pass this draft in the City Councils.

Next - LM.11 : Improving functioning of Assembly