‘Civil society has no right to override Parl’
New Delhi: Delhi Chief Minister Sheila
Dikshit on Friday acknowledged the need for governments to work in
coordination with civil society on matters of social
importance but said nobody has the right to "over ride" the
people's representatives in a democracy.
Dikshit, whose government in Delhi is often lauded for
the Bhagidari initiative of consulting civil society, also
said Indian society and its aspirations were too diverse to be
represented by any single civil society group.
Enough checks and balances are in place in the system
though they may have weakened and may need strengthening or
upgrading to meet challenges of the time, She said here at a
seminar to discuss the civil society's role.
However, she said that any change that needs to be
brought about, should be done by the elected lawmakers.
"In a democracy, if a set up needs to be changed, it
needs to be done by the parliament duly elected by the people.
Others have the right to say, but no one has the right to
override Parliament, they can though overthrow it every five
years," she said.
Contending that civil society too has its limitations and
no particular group can be representative of aspirations of
all the country, she asked, "Can even five lakh
representatives in a population of one billion claim to be
representing the country or the 500-odd lawmakers who have
been directly elected?"
Amidst a debate on a strong Lokpal bill, Dikshit also
touched upon her not very good experience with the Delhi
"Our experience has been that the Lokayukta felt that he
or she must perform and must do something, so they went off
the tangent. If they looked for corruption, they couldn't find
it. Then they came to the issue that intention was not right,"