PMEAC chairman Bibek Debroy. Photo: Pradeep Gaur/Mint
PMEAC chairman Bibek Debroy. Photo: Pradeep Gaur/Mint

India needs to curb tendency to excessively legislate, says Bibek Debroy

  • 'Apart from the enforcement cost, if the legislation unwarranted, it unnecessarily causes problems,' he said
  • Government’s policy think tank NITI Aayog is also identifying statutes and rules that need to be abolished for being a burden on people

India needs curb the tendency to excessively legislate, Chairman of Prime Minister Economic Advisory Council Bibek Debroy said on Friday.

“There is a great planning commission mindset in the mind of legislators because the tendency is whatever be the problem be, let’s amass a piece of legislation as if that will solve the problem," Debroy said at the Palkiwala Memorial lecture.

Planning Commission, which was wound up by the National Democratic Alliance (NDA) led government in 2014, was responsible for making five-year plans and was also responsible for advising the state and the Centre on economic and social development.

“Apart from the enforcement cost, if the legislation unwarranted, it unnecessarily causes problems," he said.

In the last five years, the Prime Minister Narendra Modi-led NDA government scrapped 1,500 archaic laws, in its effort to make the Indian legal system more contemporary. The need to scrap laws came as some of them are outdated, while duplicity being another challenge as both the central and state governments can frame laws on certain issues. For instance, the concurrent list under the constitution permits both to legislate on matters such as marriage and divorce.

Besides, government’s policy think tank NITI Aayog is also identifying statutes and rules that need to be abolished for being a burden on people, as part of the government’s efforts to improve ease of living.

Debroy further said that there is a need to fast track cases. “Fast track cases that are supposed to resolve cases those are old. In Bihar, more than half of them took more than 5 years. That’s hardly fast track" Debroy said.

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