Assam Legislative Assembly
CHAPTER-XX
Question of Privilege
Breach of
Privilege how
brought to the
Notice of the
House.
158. A breach of privilege, either of a member or of the House or of a Committee thereof may with the consent of the Speaker be brought to the notice of the House:
  1. by a complaint from a member;
  2. by a petition; or
  3. by a report from a Committee:
  Provided that if the breach is committed in actual view of the House, the House may take action without complaint.
A. Complaint by a Member.
Notice of a
complaint of a
Member
* 159. A member wishing to make a complaint of a breach of privilege shall give notice in writing to the Principal Secretary at least an hour before the commencement of the sitting on the day on which it is proposed to be made. If the complaint is founded upon a document the original thereof shall accompany the notice.
Condition for the
admissibility of a
question of
privilege.
160. The right to raise a question of privilege shall be governed by the following conditions—
  1. not more than one question shall be raised at the same
  2. sitting;
  3. the question shall be restricted to a specific matter of recent occurrence;
  4. the matter requires the intervention of the House.
Presentation of
complaint.
161. If the Speaker gives his/her consent under rule 158, the member making the complaint shall after questions and before the list of business is entered upon, read his/ her complaint and may make a short statement relevant thereto. If the complaint is founded upon a document, it shall be read by the member complaining or, if so directed by the Speaker, by the Principal Secretary. The Speaker after hearing any other member if necessary, shall decide whether the complaint is in order or not:
  Provided that the Speaker may, if he/she is satisfied about the urgency of the matter, allow a question of privilege to be raised at any time.
Speaker to refer
the matter to the
Committee of
Privileges
162. If the Speaker holds the matter proposed to be discussed in order, he/she shall refer it to the Committee of Privileges for reports within a period to be specified, unless he/she is of opinion that the matter is such as may be disposed of by the House without reference to the Committee in which case the member making the complaint shall make a motion that the matter be taken into consideration forthwith or at some future time.
Power of
Speaker to
give directions.
163. The Speaker may issue such directions as may be necessary for regulating the procedure in connection with all matters connected with the consideration of the question of privilege either in the Committee of Privilege or in the House.
B. Complaint by a Petition
Complaint by
a petition.
164. When a petition complaining breach of privilege has been received and after the Speaker gives his/her consent thereto, the petition of such portion thereof as relates to breach of privilege shall be read to the House by the Principal Secretary. The House may forthwith take the petition into consideration at some future time within which it may be printed and copies of it supplied to members or refer it to the Committee of Privileges for report within a period to be specified.
C. Complaint by a Committee
Complaint by a
Committee
165. After the presentation of the report of a Committee of the House containing a complaint of breach of privilege, the Chairman or in his/her absence, any other member of the Committee may move that the question of the breach of privilege be taken into consideration forthwith or at some future time.
Substantive
Motion
166. After any of the following motions is agreed to by the House:—
  1. Motion under rule 162 that the matter be taken into consideration;
  2. Motion at the report of the Privileges Committee be taken into consideration; or
  3. Motion under rule 169 that the petition be taken into consideration; or
  4. Motion under rule 170 that the question of the breach of privilege as contained in the report of the Committee, be taken into consideration;

    any member may move a substantive motion indicating the commission of a breach of privilege and also suggesting the action to be taken by the House, and any other member may move an amendment to the said motion. After a brief discussion of the motion, and amendments, if any, the Speaker shall put the question. Complaint by a Committee. Substantive Motion.

D. Special procedure relating to complaint against Members
Notice to Member
complained against
167. Where the complaint is to be made against a member, the member should be given prior notice by the complaint petitioner or Principal Secretary of the Committee as the case may be. In case no prior notice has been given, the House may adjourn the consideration of the matter till notice is given to the member concerned or it may decline to entertain the complaint. The Member complained against shall attend the House in his/her place on the day fixed by the House or proposed by the complainant, as the case may be. If he/she is unable to attend, the House may further postpone the consideration of the matter; but if he/she, in the opinion of the House, wilfully absents himself/herself, the House may proceed with the matter in his/her absence.
Member to be
heard.
168. As soon as the question of the motion founded on the complaint is proposed by the Speaker the member complained against shall be given an opportunity to be heard in explanation or exculpation. In the case of a complaint founded upon document he/she may be given that opportunity immediately after the document is read. If the member, complained against, wants to offer an explanation at an earlier stage, it will be in the direction of the Speaker to permit him to do so..
Withdrawal of
Member
concerned
169. The House then shall proceed on to discuss the motion and the member complained against may remain in the House but shall not take part in the discussion unless call upon to offer any further explanation or apology.
E. General
Opportunity to
person
charged.
170. Except where the breach of privilege is committed in the actual view of the House or of a committee, the House shall at some proper stage of the proceedings before the sentence is passed give an opportunity to the persons charge to be heard in explanation or exculpation of the offence complained against him/her:

Provided that if the matter has been referred to the Privileges Committee and the person charged has been heard before the Committee it will not be necessary for the House to give him/her that opportunity unless the House directs otherwise.

Summoning the
party charged.
171. The Speaker may summon the party charged by notice or warrant to appear before the House or the Committee of Privileges at any stage of the proceedings.
Punishment. 172. The House, like the House of Commons in the United Kingdom, has power under Article 194 of the Constitution to inflict amongst others the following punishment:—
  1. admonition,
  2. reprimand,
  3. imprisonment, for such terms as may be decided by the House but it shall not extent beyond the prorogation or dissolution of the House whichever is earlier, and
  4. suspension or expulsion of a member for a period not exceeding 30 days or till prorogation or dissolution of the House whichever is earlier.
Groundless
complaint.
173. In case the House finds a charge of breach of privilege groundless, it may order the payment of an amount not exceeding Rs. 5000 as cost to the party charged by the party complaining.
Execution of
order of the
House.
174. The Speaker, or any person authorised by him/her in this behalf shall have the power to execute all the orders passed and sentences inflicted by the House.
Brevity of
Debate
175. The debate at all stages on question involving breach of privilege shall be brief.
Power of Speaker
to refer question
of privilege to
Committee
176. Notwithstanding anything contained in these rules, the Speaker may refer any question of privilege to the Committee of Privilege for examination, investigation and report.
F. Intimation to Speaker of arrest, detention, etc. and release of a member
Intimation to
Speaker by
Magistrate of
arrest, detention,
etc., of a member
177. When a member is arrested on criminal charge or for a criminal offence or is sentenced to imprisonment by a court or, detained under an executive order the committing judge, magistrate or executive authority, as the case may be, shall immediately intimate such fact to the Speaker indicating the reason for the arrest, detention or conviction, as the case may be, as also the place of detention or imprisonment of the member in the appropriate form set out in the Third Schedule
Intimation to Speaker on release of a member. 178. When a member is arrested and after conviction released on bail pending an appeal or otherwise released, such fact shall also be intimated to the Speaker by the authority concerned in the appropriate form set out in the Third Schedule.
Treatment of
communications
received from
Magistrate.
179. As soon as may be, the Speaker shall, after he/she has received a communication referred to in rule 177 or rule 178 read it out in the House if in Session, or if the House is not in Session direct that it may be circulated for the information of the members:
  Provided that if the intimation of the release of a member either on bail or by discharge on appeal is received before the House has been informed of the original arrest, the fact of his/her arrest as well as or his/ her subsequent release or discharge shall be intimated to the House by the Speaker.
G. Procedure regarding service of a legal process and arrest within the precincts of the Assembly
Arrest within the
precincts of
House.
180. No arrests shall be made within the precincts of the House without obtaining the permission of the Speaker
Services of
legal process.
181. A legal process, civil or criminal shall not be served within the precincts of the House without the permission of the Speaker.