UTs and legislative power of the Parliament

Q.  Which of the following is/are true?

1) The Union Territory of Puducherry was provided an assembly in 1963 and to Delhi in 1992.
2) The Parliament can make laws on any subject of the 3 lists in case of Union Territories.
3) The power of Parliament to make laws on all 3 lists of Union Territories does not include Union Territory of Puducherry and Delhi.

- Published on 10 Mar 17

a. 1
b. 1, 2
c. 2, 3
d. All of the above

ANSWER: 1, 2
  • Articles 239 to 241 in Part 8 of the Constitution deal with the union territories.

  • Even though all the Union Territories belong to one category, there is no uniformity in their administrative system.

  • Every Union Territory is administered by the President acting through an administrator appointed by him.

  • An administrator of a Union Territory is an agent of the President and not head of state like a Governor.

  • The President can specify the designation of an administrator; it may be Lieutenant Governor or Chief Commissioner or Administrator.

  • The President can also appoint th Governor of a state as the administrator of an adjoining Union Territory.

  • In that capacity, the Governor is to act independently of his Council of Ministers.

  • The Union Territories of Puducherry (in 1963) and Delhi (in 1992) are provided with a Legislative Assembly and a council of ministers headed by a Chief Minister.

  • But, the establishment of such institutions in the Union Territories does not diminish the supreme control of the President and Parliament over them.

  • The Parliament can make laws on any subject of the three lists (including the State List) for the Union Territories.

  • This power of Parliament also extends to Puducherry and Delhi.

  • The Legislative Assembly of Puducherry can also make laws on any subject of the State List and the Concurrent List.

  • Similarly, the Legislative Assembly of Delhi can make laws on any subject of the State List (except public order, police and land) and the Concurrent List.

  • The President can make regulations for the peace, progress and good government of the Andaman and Nicobar Islands, Lakshadweep, Dadra and Nagar Haveli, and Daman and Diu.

  • In the case of Puducherry also, the President can legislate by making regulations but only when the assembly is suspended or dissolved.

  • A regulation made by the President has the same force and effect as an act of Parliament.

  • The regulation can also repeal or amend any act of Parliament in relation to these Union Territories.

  • The Parliament can establish a high court for a union territory or put it under the jurisdiction of the High Court of adjacent state.

  • Delhi is the only union territory that has a High Court of its own (since1966).

  • The Bombay High Court has got jurisdiction over two Union Territories - Dadra and Nagar Haveli, and Daman and Diu.

  • Andaman and Nicobar Islands, Chandigarh, Lakshadweep and Puducherry are placed under the Calcutta, Punjab and Haryana, Kerala, and Madras High Courts, respectively.

  • The Constitution does not contain any separate provisions for the administration of acquired territories.

  • But, the constitutional provisions for the administration of Union Territories also apply to the acquired territories.

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