• Vishwanath Pratap Singh (1990)
• H. D. Deve Gowda (1997)
• Atal Bihari Vajpayee (1999)

What is common amongst the three? These all were defeated Prime Ministers of India – defeated by a parliamentary motion of no confidence.

WHAT IS A MOTION OF NO CONFIDENCE?

It is alternatively known as vote of no confidence, censure motion or no-confidence motion. It is a parliamentary vote that represents the parliament’s lack of confidence in the ruling party’s ability to lead the country. The elected members of the parliament vote for this motion. A passed motion of no confidence usually results in the Government’s fall and the calling of a general election.

RESPONSE TO THE MOTION

In an existing Government, when a motion of no confidence is passed, the head of state replies in either of the two ways:
• Ask another individual, who he believes will command the confidence of parliament, to try to form a Government
• Dissolve the elected parliament and call a general election to elect a new parliament
To determine whether an individual can gain the confidence of the parliament or not, the head of state examines whether that individual has the backing of a parliamentary party or a coalition of parties and MPs. He may also be selected based on an agreement of support with enough parliamentary seats to withstand any confidence challenges against them. If this cannot be done, parliament is dissolved and a general election is called.

EXAMPLES

The first record of a motion of no confidence occurred in the United Kingdom in 1782 immediately after the British defeat in the American colonies at Yorktown. The then Prime Minister Lord North presented his resignation to King George III. In the United Kingdom, there have been 11 Prime Ministers defeated through a no-confidence motion. There has been only one (against James Callaghan) since 1925.

Unlike the British system, in Germany the Chancellor is not required to resign if he or she receives a motion of no confidence.

MOTION OF NO CONFIDENCE IS NOT IMPEACHMENT

Many people mistakenly associate a motion of no confidence with the term ‘impeachment’. The two words mean different things. Impeachment implies that a crime has been committed by a Government official. It is a rare political process. However, politicians may receive motion of no confidence. And that doesn’t imply that the person under the vote has committed a crime.
It should be noted that in modern times, votes of no confidence are relatively rare occurrences in democracies. Parties typically handle tiffs among their members without resorting to the motion of no confidence.

Read original article at: http://epaper.namoleague.com/EpaperArticle.aspx?title=The%20Right%20To%20Say%20%20No%20_648

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