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CONSTITUTIONAL LAW
OF

SRI LANKA

Full Text

SRI LANKA

Constitution of Sri Lanka

Preamble

Whereas it is the will of the people of Sri Lanka to establish and strengthen an order -

Wherein the sovereignty of the people is assured and the exercise of authority by their freely chosen representatives is in the nature of a sacred trust;

Wherein the principles of democracy, freedom, humanity, tolerance and equal opportunity shall be fully observed;

Wherein the dignity of the individual shall be upheld through the guaranteeing of human rights and fundamental freedoms and the rule of law;

Wherein the territories constituting the nation shall form one indissoluble union, the units whereof will be characterised by such boundaries and limitations on their powers and authority as may be prescribed; **

Wherein the territorial integrity, independence and unity of the nation including its sovereign rights over land, sea and air shall be safeguarded;

Wherein peace and fraternity among all communities shall be secured and provision made enabling all communities to enjoy and nurture their distinct culture, practice and profess their own religion and promote their own language, thus preserving the rich cultural and ethnic diversity characteristic of a plural society:

Now, therefore, we the people of Sri Lanka having solemnly resolved to constitute Sri Lanka into a free, sovereign, united and independent Republic:**

Cognisant of the sacrifices made by the people in the cause of sustaining the unity and sovereignty of the republic;

Mindful of our obligations to succeeding generations of Sri Lankans and the International Community;

Inspired by the vision of a Sri Lankan nation where all communities co-exist in equality, safety and contentment;

Conscious of the desire to achieve rapid, sustained and equitable development so that the people of Sri Lanka may prosper and attain their rightful place among the community of nations:

Do, on this (DAY) acting through our freely chosen representatives constituting the 10th Parliament of Sri Lanka established by us, hereby adopt, enact and give to ourselves**

This CONSTITUTION as the SUPREME LAW of the REPUBLIC OF SRI LANKA

** to be finalised.

The People, the State and Sovereignty

1. Sri Lanka is a Sovereign Republic and shall be known as the Republic of Sri Lanka. The Republic of Sri Lanka shall be an indissoluble Union of Regions.

2. (1) The territory of the Republic shall consist of Regions, the names, boundaries and areas of which are set out in the First Schedule, the Capital Territory and its territorial waters.

(2) No Regional Administration or Regional Administrations shall attempt, by direct or indirect means, to promote or otherwise advocate an initiative towards

(a) The separation or secession of such Region or Regions from the Union of Regions constituting the Republic of Sri Lanka.

(b) Alteration of the area of such Region or Regions;

(c) Alteration of the boundaries of such Region or Regions:

(d) Alteration of the name or names of such Region or Regions;

(e) Formation of a new Region by separation of territory from any Region or by uniting two or more Regions or parts of Regions or by uniting any territory with a part of any region:

Provided that nothing in this paragraph shall be read and construed as prohibiting a Regional Administration from making representations to the Central Government regarding the matters referred to in sub- paragraph (c) of this paragraph.

3. In the Republic of Sri Lanka, sovereignty is in the People and is inalienable. Sovereignty includes the powers of Government, fundamental rights and the franchise and shall be exercised and enjoyed in the following manner -

(a) The legislative power of the People shall be exercised by parliament, Regional Councils and the People at a Referendum as hereinafter provided;

(b)The executive power of the People shall be exercised by the President of the Republic acting on the advice of the Prime Minister and the Cabinet of Ministers, and the Governors acting on the advice of the respective Chief Ministers and Regional Boards of Ministers to the extent hereinafter provided;

(c) The judicial power of the people shall be exercised through courts, tribunals and institutions created and established, or recognised, by the Constitution, or created and established by law, except in regard to matters relating to the privileges, immunities and powers of Parliament and of its members, wherein the judicial power of the people may also exercised directly by Parliament according to law;

(d) The fundamental rights which are by the Constitution declared and recognised shall be respected, secured and advanced by all the organs of Government, and shall not be abridged, restricted or denied, save in the manner and to the extent hereinafter provided; and

(e) The franchise shall be exercisable at the election of Members of Parliament, and of the members of Regional Councils, and at every Referendum by every citizen who has attained the age of eighteen years, and who, being qualified to be an elector as hereinafter provided, has his name entered in the register of electors.

4. The National Flag of the Republic of Sri Lanka shall be the Lion Flag depicted in the Third Schedule.

5. The National Anthem of the Republic of Sri Lanka shall be ``Sri Lanka Matha'', the words and music of which are set out in the Fourth Schedule.

6. The National Day of the Republic of Sri Lanka shall be the fourth day of February.

** Chapter I is subject to final approval by the Parliamentary Select Committee on the Constitution.

Buddhism

7. (1) The Republic of Sri Lanka shall give to Buddhism the foremost place and accordingly it shall be the duty of the state to protect and foster the Buddha Sasana, while guaranteeing to all religions the rights granted by Articles 15 (1) and 15 (3).

(2) The State shall consult the Supreme Council in all matters pertaining to the protection and fostering of the Buddha Sasana.

(3) For the purpose of this Article ``Supreme Council'' means a Council established by law in consultation with the Maha Sangha.

Fundamental Rights and Freedoms

Inherent right to life

8. Every person has an inherent right to life and no person shall be intentionally or arbitrarily deprived of his life.

Freedom from torture or cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment

9. (1) No person shall be subjected to torture or to cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment.

(2) No restriction shall be placed on the right declared and recognised by this Article.

Freedom from arbitrary arrest, detention and punishment and prohibition of retroactive penal legislation

10. (1) No person shall be imprisoned or otherwise physically restrained except in accordance with procedure prescribed by law.

(2) No person shall be arrested except by an authorised officer acting in accordance with procedure prescribed by law under a warrant issued by a judicial officer causing such person to be apprehended and brought before a competent court:

Provided that any person authorised so to do by any law may, in the manner, and in the circumstances, prescribed by law, arrest any person without such a warrant.

(3) Any person arrested shall at the time of arrest be informed, in a language which he appears to understand, of the reason for his arrest and of his rights under paragraphs (4) and (5) of this Article.

Provided that such person, if he so requests, shall be informed in writing of the reasons of his arrest within a reasonable time.

(4) Any person arrested shall have the right to communicate with any relative or friend of his choice, and, if he so requests, such person shall be afforded means of communicating with such relative or friend.

(5) Any person arrested shall have the right to consult and retain an Attorney-at-Law shall be afforded all reasonable facilities by the State.

(6) Any person arrested shall not be detained in custody or confined for a longer period than under all the circumstances of the case is reasonable, and shall, in every case be brought before the judge of a competent court within twenty-four hours of the arrest, exclusive of the time necessary for the journey from the place of arrest to such judge, and no person shall be detained in custody beyond such period except upon, and in terms of the order of such judge.

(7) (a) Any person detained in custody or confined who is entitled, under the provisions of any law, to be released on bail or on his executing a bond, shall be so released.

(b) The amount of bail and the amount of every such bond shall be fixed with due regard to the circumstances of the case and shall not be excessive.

(8) Any person suspected of committing an offence shall be charged or indicted or released, without unreasonable delay.

(9) Any person charged with an offence shall be entitled to be heard in person or by any Attorney-at-Law of his own choosing and shall be so informed by the judge.

(10) Any person charged with an offence shall be entitled to be tried -

(a) without undue delay;

(b) at a fair trial;

(c) by a competent court;

(d) at a public hearing:

Provided that a judge may, in his discretion, whenever he considers it necessary, in proceedings relating to sexual matters, or where the interests of juveniles so require, or in the interests of national security or public order necessary in a democratic society or in the interests of order and security within the precincts of such court, exclude therefrom such persons as are not directly interested in the proceedings.

(11) Every person shall be presumed innocent until he is proved guilty;

Provided that burden of proving particular facts may, by law, be placed on the accused.

(12) No person shall be compelled to testify against himself or to confess guilt.

(13) No person shall be held guilty of an offence on account of any act or omission which did not, at the time of such act or omission, constitute such an offence, and no penalty shall be imposed for any offence more severe than the penalty in force at the time when such offence was committed:

Provided that nothing in this Article shall prejudice the trial and punishment of any person for any act or omission which at the time when it was committed, was criminal according to the general principles of law recognised by the community of nations.

(14) Any person who has once been tried by a competent court for an offence and convicted or acquitted of such offence shall not be liable to be tried for the same offence.

(15) No person shall be punished with death or imprisonment except by order of a competent court in accordance with law. The arrest, holding in custody, detention or other deprivation of personal liberty of a person, pending investigation or trial shall, if not unreasonable having regard to the circumstances, not constitute punishment:

Provided that the arrest, holding in custody, detention or other deprivation of personal liberty of a person, by reason of a removal order or a deportation order made under the provisions of the Immigrants and Emigrants Act or the Indo-Ceylon Agreement Implementation Act No. 14 of 1967 or other such law as may be enacted in substitution therefor, shall not be a contravention of this Article.

(16) All persons deprived of their liberty shall be treated with humanity and respect for the inherent dignity of the human person.

(17) No restriction shall be placed on the rights declared and recognised by this Article other than such restrictions prescribed by law as are necessary in a democratic society in the interests of national security, public order or for the purpose of securing due recognition and respect for the rights and freedoms of others.

Right to equality

11. (1) All persons are equal before the law and are entitled to the equal protection of the law.

(2) No citizen shall be discriminated against on the grounds of race, religion, language, caste, sex, political or other opinion, place of birth or any one of such grounds:

Provided that it shall be lawful to require a person to acquire within a reasonable time sufficient knowledge of any national language as a qualification for employment or office in the Public Service, Judicial Service, Regional Public Service or Local Government service or in the service of any public corporation, where such knowledge is reasonably necessary for the discharge of such employment or office:

Provided further that it shall be lawful to require a person to have a sufficient knowledge of any language as a qualification for any such employment or office where no function of that employment or office can be discharged otherwise than with a knowledge of that language.

(3) No person shall on the grounds of race, religion, language, caste, sex, political or other opinion, place of birth or any one of such grounds, be subject to any disability, liability, restriction or condition with regard to access to shops, public restaurants, hotels, places of public entertainment and places of public worship of his own religion.

(4) Nothing in this Article shall prevent special measures being taken by law, subordinate legislation or executive action where necessary for the sole purpose of the protection or advancement of disadvantaged or underprivileged individuals or groups including those that are disadvantaged or underprivileged because of race, sex, age or mental or physical disability.

(5) No restriction shall be placed on the exercise of the rights declared and recognised by this article other than such restrictions prescribed by law as are necessary in a democratic society in the interests of national security, public order or the protection of public health or for the purpose of securing due recognition and respect for the rights and freedoms of others.

Freedom of movement

12. (1) Every person lawfully resident within Sri Lanka is entitled to the freedom of movement within Sri Lanka and of choosing his residence within Sri Lanka.

(2) Every person shall be free to leave Sri Lanka.

(3) No restrictions shall be placed on the exercise of the rights declared and recognised by this Article other than such restrictions prescribed by law as are necessary in a democratic society in the interests of national security or public order or national economy or the protection of public health or morality or for securing due recognition and respect for the rights and freedoms of others.

Freedom to return to Sri Lanka.

13. Every citizen shall be entitled to return to Sri Lanka.

Right to private and family life. 14. (1) Every person has the right to respect his private and family life, his home and his correspondence and communications and shall not be subjected to unlawful attacks on his honour and reputation. (2) No restrictions shall be placed on the exercise of the right declared and recognised by this Article other than such restrictions prescribed by law as are necessary in a democratic society in the interests of national security, public order or national economy or the protection of public health or morality or for securing due recognition and respect for the rights and freedoms of others.

Freedom of thought, conscience and religion.

15. (1) Every person is entitled to freedom of thought, conscience and religion including the freedom to have or to adopt a religion or belief of his choice.

(2) No restrictions shall be placed on the rights declared and recognised by paragraph (1) of this Article.

(3) Every person is entitled to the freedom, either by himself or in association with others, and either in public or in private, to manifest his religion or belief in worship, observance, practice and teaching.

(4) No restrictions shall be placed on the rights declared and recognised by paragraph (3) of this Article other than such restrictions prescribed by law as are necessary in a democratic society in the interests of national security, public order, or for securing due recognition and respect for the rights and freedoms of others.

Freedom of speech and expression including publication and freedom of information.

16. (1) Every person is entitled to the freedom of speech and expression including publication. This right shall include the freedom to hold opinions and to receive and impart information and ideas either orally, in writing, in print, in the form of art, or through any other medium.

(2) No restrictions shall be placed on the right declared and recognised by this Article other than such restrictions prescribed by law as are necessary in a democratic society in the interests of national security, public order, the protection of public health or morality, racial and religious harmony or in relation to parliamentary privilege, contempt of court, defamation or incitement of an offence or for securing due recognition and respect for the rights and freedoms of others.

Freedom of peaceful assembly.

17. (1) Every person is entitled to the freedom of peaceful assembly.

(2) No restrictions shall be placed on the exercise of the right declared and recognised by this Article other than such restrictions prescribed by or under any law as are necessary in a democratic society in the interests of national security, public order, racial or religious harmony, the protection of public health or for the purpose of securing the due recognition and respect for the rights and freedoms of others.

Freedom of Association.

18. (1) Every person is entitled to the freedom of association.

(2) Every citizen is entitled to the freedom to form and join a trade union.

(3) No restrictions shall be placed on the exercise of the rights declared and recognised by this Article other than such restrictions prescribed by law as are necessary in a democratic society in the interests of national security, public order, racial or religious harmony, national economy or for securing due recognition and respect for the rights and freedoms of others.

Right to enjoy and promote culture and use of language.

19. (1) Every citizen is entitled by himself or in association with others to enjoy and promote his own culture and to use his own language.

(2) No restriction shall be placed on the exercise of the right declared and recognised by this Article other than such restrictions prescribed by law as are necessary in a democratic society in the interests of national security, public order, racial or religious harmony or the protection of public health or morality or for securing due recognition and respect for the rights and freedoms of others.

Freedom to engage in any lawful trade, occupation, profession, business or enterprise.

20. (1) Every citizen is entitled to the freedom to engage by himself or in association with others in any lawful occupation, profession, trade, business or enterprise.

(2) No restriction shall be placed on the exercise of the rights declared and recognised by this Article other than such restrictions prescribed by law as are necessary in a democratic society in the interests of the national economy, national security, public order, protection of public health or morality, the environment or for securing due recognition and respect for the rights and freedoms of others or in relation to -

(a) The professional, technical, academic, financial and other qualifications necessary for practising any profession or carrying on any occupation, trade business or enterprise, and the licensing and disciplinary control of the person entitled to such fundamental right; and

(b) The carrying on by the State, a State agency or a public corporation of any trade, business, industry, service or enterprise, whether to the exclusion, complete or partial, of citizens or otherwise. Right to own property. 21. (1) Every citizen is entitled to own property alone or in association with others.

(2) No person shall be deprived of his property except according to procedure established by law. No property shall be compulsorily acquired or requisitioned save for a public purpose or for reasons of public utility or public order and save by authority of a law which provides for the payment of fair compensation.

Operation of certain fundamental rights in their application to armed forces to be subject to restrictions prescribed by law.

22. The exercise and operation of the fundamental rights declared and recognised by Article 10, 11, 12, 14, 15(3), 16, 17 and 18 shall in their application to the armed forces, the police force and other forces charged with the maintenance of public order be subject to such restrictions as may be prescribed by or under any law in the interests of the proper discharge of their duties and the maintenance of discipline among them.

Derogation in times of public emergency.

23. (1) In time of public emergency the existence of which is duly proclaimed, subject to paragraphs (2) and (3), measures may be prescribed by law derogating from the exercise and operation of the fundamental rights declared and recognised in this Chapter to the extent strictly required by the exigencies of the situation and necessary in a democratic society, provided that such measures do not involve discrimination solely on the grounds of race, class, religion, gender, language, caste, national or social origin. For the purpose of this Article ``law'' includes regulations made under the law for the time being in force relating to public security.

(2) There shall be no derogation from any of the rights declared and recognised by Articles 8, 9, 10(1), 10(2), 10(10), 12, 13 and 15.

(3) There shall be no derogation from the right declared and recognised by Article 10 (6) unless at the same time legal provision is made requiring -

(i) A Magistrate having jurisdiction to be promptly informed of the arrest, and

(ii) The person arrested to be produced before such Magistrate within such time as is reasonable in all the circumstances of the case.

Existing written law and unwritten law.

24. All existing written law and unwritten law shall be valid and operative notwithstanding any inconsistency with the provisions of this Chapter.

Subjection on a Court order not to be a contravention.

25. The subjection of any person on the order of a court to any form of punishment recognised by any written law shall not be a contravention of the provisions of this Chapter.

Remedy for the infringement of fundamental rights by State action

26. Every person shall be entitled to apply to the Supreme Court as provided by Article 168 in respect of the infringement or imminent infringement, by State action, including executive or administrative action, of a fundamental right to which such person is entitled under the provisions of this Chapter, or by judicial action by courts exercising original criminal jurisdiction, of a fundamental right to which such person is entitled under Article 10:

Provided that where the person aggrieved is unable or incapable of making an application under Article 168 by reason of physical, social or economic disability or other reasonable cause, and application may be made on behalf of such a person, by any relative or friend of such person if the person aggrieved, raises no objection to such application:

Provided further that an application under this Article may be made, in the public interest, on behalf of any person or persons aggrieved, by any other person or by any incorporated or unincorporated body of persons.

Language

Official languages.

27. The Official languages of Sri Lanka shall be Sinhala and Tamil.

National languages.

28. The national languages of Sri Lanka shall be Sinhala, Tamil and English.

Use of languages in Parliament & Country.

29. A Member of Parliament or a Member of a Regional Council or a member of a local authority shall be entitled to perform his duties and discharge his functions in Parliament or in such Regional Council or local authority in any of the National Languages.

Languages of administration.

30. (1) Sinhala and Tamil shall be the languages of administration throughout Sri Lanka.

(2) Sinhala shall be the language used for the maintenance of public records by public institutions, Regional Councils and local authorities in all the Regions of Sri Lanka other than the northern and eastern regions where Tamil shall by used.

(3) Sinhala and Tamil shall be used as the languages for the maintenance of public records by public institutions, Regional Councils or local authorities in any area comprising a division of a divisional secretary where the Sinhala or Tamil linguistic minority, as the case may be, in such area exceeds one fifth of the total population of that area.

(4) In any area where Sinhala is used as a language for the maintenance of public records, a person shall be entitled -

(a) To receive communication from and to communicate and transact business with, any official in his official capacity, in either Tamil or English and to receive a response to such communication from such official in the language in which he communicated.

(b) If the law recognises his right to inspect or to obtain copies of or extracts from any official register, record, publication or other document, to obtain a copy of, or an extract from such register, record, publication or other document, or a translation thereof, as the case may be, in either Tamil or English;

(c) Where a document is executed by an official for the purpose of being issued to him, to obtain such document or a translation thereof, in either Tamil or English;

(d) To give information as regards any birth, death or marriage or with regard to the commission of an offence to a Police or peace officer in either Tamil or English.

Rights in Tamil speaking areas.

31. In any area where Tamil is used as a language for the maintenance of public records, a person shall be entitled to exercise the rights and to obtain the services referred to in sub-paragraphs (a), (b), (c) and (d) of paragraph (4) of Article 30 in Sinhala or English.

Rights of Regional Councils.

32. A Regional Council or local authority which conducts its business in Sinhala shall be entitled to receive communications from and to communicate and transact business with any official, in his official capacity, in Sinhala, and a Regional Council or a local authority which conducts its business in Tamil shall be entitled to receive communications form and to communicate and transact business with, any official in his official capacity, in Tamil:

Provided, however, that a Regional Council, local authority, public institution or any official receiving communications from or transacting business with any other Regional Council, local authority, public institution or any official functioning in an area in which a different language is used as the language of administration shall be entitled to receive communications from and to communicate and transact business in English.

Language of examinations.

33. A person shall be entitled to be examined through the medium of either Sinhala or Tamil or English at any examination for the admission of persons to the Public Service, Judicial Service, Regional Public Service, Local Government Service or any public institution, subject to the condition that he may be required to acquire a sufficient knowledge of Tamil or Sinhala, as the case may be, within a reasonable time after admission to such service or public institution where such knowledge is reasonably necessary for the discharge of his duties:

Provided that a person may be required to have a sufficient knowledge of Sinhala or Tamil or English as a condition for admission to any such service or public institution where no function of the office or employment for which he is recruited can be discharged otherwise than with a sufficient knowledge of such language.

Language of legislation.

34. All laws and subordinate legislation shall be enacted in Sinhala, Tamil and English.

In the event of any inconsistency between such texts, each text shall be regarded as equally authoritative unless parliament shall otherwise provide at the stage of enactment of any law.

Subordinate legislation.

35. All Orders, Proclamations, rules, by-laws, regulations and notifications made or issued under any written law other than by a Regional Council or a local authority, and the Gazette shall be published in Sinhala, Tamil and English.

Subordinate legislation by Regional Council or Local Authorities.

36. All Orders, Proclamations, rules, by-laws, regulations and notifications made or issued under any written law by a Regional Council or a local authority, and all documents, including circulars and forms issued by any such body or any public institution shall be published in the language used as the language of record in the respective areas in which they function, together with a translation thereof in English.

Laws and subordinate legislation already in force.

37. All laws and subordinate legislation in force immediately prior to the commencement of the Constitution, shall be published in the Gazette in Sinhala and Tamil as expeditiously as possible.

Language of Courts.

38. Sinhala and Tamil shall be the language of the courts throughout Sri Lanka.

Language of record and proceedings in Courts.

39. Sinhala shall be used as the language of the record and proceedings in courts situated in all the areas of Sri Lanka except in the Northern and Eastern Regions. In the event of any appeal from any court, the record shall also be prepared in the language of the court hearing the appeal, if the language of such court is other than the language used by the court from which the appeal is preferred:

Provided that the Minister in charge of the subject of Justice may, with the concurrence of the Cabinet of Ministers direct that the record of any court shall also be maintained and the proceedings conducted in a national language other than the language of the court.

Initiating proceedings in Courts.

40. Any party or applicant or any person legally entitled to represent such party or applicant may initiate proceedings and submit to court pleadings and other documents, and participate in the proceedings in court in Sinhala, Tamil or English.

Providing interpretations and translations in proceedings.

41. Any judge, juror, party or applicant or any person legally entitled to represent such party or applicant, who is now conversant with the language used in a court shall be entitled to provided by the State with interpretation and to translation into Sinhala, Tamil or English, to enable him to understand and participate in the proceedings before such court, and shall also be entitled to obtain in such language any such part of the record or a translation thereof, as the case may be, as he may be entitled to obtain according to law.

Permitting the use of English.

42. The Minister in charge of the subject of Justice may, with the concurrence of the Cabinet of Ministers, issue directions permitting the use of English in or in relation to the records and proceedings in any court for all purposes or for such purposes as may be specified therein. Every judge shall be bound to implement such directions:

Provided that every judge may at the request of the parties to any proceedings use English in relation to the records and proceedings where the use of such language would facilitate the expeditious conclusion of such proceedings.

Medium of instruction.

43. A person shall be entitled to be educated through the medium of either Sinhala or Tamil and if facilities are available, through the medium of English.

Right to education in any national language.

44. A person shall be entitled to be instructed in any course, department or faculty of any university in any national language of his choosing if instruction in such language at such University is reasonably practicable.

Use of one national language where medium of instruction is another national language.

45. Where one national language is a medium of instruction for or in any course, department or faculty of any University directly or indirectly financed by the State, the other national languages shall also be made media of instruction for or in such course, department or faculty for students who prior to their admission to such University, were educated through the medium of such other national language:

Provided that compliance with the preceding provisions of this paragraph shall not be obligatory if such other national language is the medium of instruction for or in any like course, department or faculty either at any other campus or branch of such University or of any other like University.

Facilities for the use of languages.

46. The State shall provide adequate facilities for the use of the languages provided for in this Chapter.

This Chapter to prevail in the event of inconsistency.

47. In the event of any inconsistency between the provisions of any law and the provisions of this Chapter, the provisions of this Chapter shall prevail.

Interpretation.

48. In this Chapter -

``court'' means any court or tribunal created and established for the administration of justice including the adjudication and settlement of industrial and other disputes or any other tribunal or institution exercising judicial or quasi-judicial functions or any tribunal or institution created and established for the conciliation and settlement of disputes:

``judge'' includes the President, Chairman, presiding officer and a member of any court;

``official'' means the President, any Minister, Deputy Minister, Governor, Chief Minister or Minister of the Board of Ministers of a region, or any officer of a public institution, local authority or Regional Council;

``public institution'' means a department or institution of the government, a public corporation or statutory institution;

``record'' includes pleadings, judgements, orders and other judicial and ministerial acts; and

``university'' includes any institution of higher education.

Citizenship

Citizenship of Sri Lanka

49. (1) There shall be one status of citizenship known as "the status of a citizen of Sri Lanka."

(2) A citizen of Sri Lanka shall for all purposes be described only as a "citizen of Sri Lanka", whether such person became entitled to citizenship by descent or by virtue of registration in accordance with the law relating to citizenship or by the operation of any law.

(3) No distinction shall be drawn between citizens of Sri Lanka for any purpose by reference to the mode of acquisition of such status, as to whether acquired by descent or by virtue of registration or by the operation of any law.

(4) No citizen of Sri Lanka shall be deprived of his status of a citizen of Sri Lanka, except under and by virtue of the provisions of sections 19, 20, 21 and 22 of the Citizenship Act:

Provided that the provisions of sections 23 and 24 of that Act shall also be applicable to a person who became entitled to the status of a citizen of Sri Lanka by virtue of registration under the provisions of section 11, 12 or 13 of that Act.

(5) Every person who immediately prior to the commencement of the Constitution was a citizen of Sri Lanka, whether by descent or by virtue of registration in accordance with any law relating to citizenship or by the operation of any law, shall be entitled to the status and to the rights of a citizen of Sri Lanka as provided in the preceding provisions of this Article.

(6) The provisions of all existing written law relating to citizenship and all other existing written laws wherein reference is made to citizenship shall be read subject to the preceding provisions of this article.

Directive Principles of State Policy and

Fundamental Duties

Directive Principles of State Policy

50. The following principles shall guide the state in making laws and the governance of Sri Lanka-

(a) The State shall strengthen national unity recognising the plural and multi-ethnic character of Sri Lankan society and by promoting co- operation and mutual trust, confidence and understanding among all sections of the people of Sri Lanka.

(b) The State shall assist the development of the cultures and languages of the people.

(c) The State shall safeguard and strengthen the democratic structure of government and the democratic rights of the people.

(d) The State shall establish a just, equitable and moral social order the objectives of which include-

(i) The full realisation of the fundamental rights and freedoms of all persons,

(ii) Securing and protecting effectively a social order in which social, economic and political justice shall inform all institutions of national life;

(iii) The elimination of economic and social privileges, disparity and exploitation;

(iv) The equitable distribution of the material resources of the community and the social product;

(v) The realisation of an adequate standard of living for all citizens and their families including adequate food, clothing, housing and medical care;

(vi) Ensuring social security and welfare;

(vii) Raising the moral, cultural and educational standards of the people and facilitating the full development of the human personality;

(viii) The creation of the necessary economic and social environment to enable people of all religious faiths to make a living reality of their religious principles.

(e) The State shall develop the whole country by means of appropriate public and private economic activity.

(f) The State shall protect and preserve and improve the environment and safeguard the reefs, shores, forests, lakes, watercourses and wildlife of Sri Lanka.

(g) The State shall protect and preserve every monument or place or object of artistic or historic interest declared by or under law to be of national importance.

(h) The State shall promote international peace, security and co- operation, and the establishment of a just and equitable international economic and social order, and shall respect, and foster respect for, international law and treaty obligations in dealings with and among nations.

(i) The State shall strengthen, respect and foster respect for, international instruments relating to human rights and humanitarian law to which Sri Lanka is a signatory.

Fundamental duties

51. It shall be the duty of every citizen to-

(a) uphold and protect the sovereignty, unity and integrity of Sri Lanka;

(b) uphold and defend the Constitution and its ideals and institutions;

(c) foster national unity and promote harmony amongst all the people of Sri Lanka;

(d) respect the rights and freedoms of others;

(e) value and preserve the rich heritage of our composite culture;

(f) protect and improve the environment and conserve its riches;

(g) safeguard and preserve artistic or historical objects and places of national importance;

(h) safeguard and protect public property and combat its waste or misuse;

(i) refrain from directly or indirectly participating in bribery or corruption;

(j) uphold the rule of law and abjure violence;

(k) work conscientiously in a person's chosen occupation.

Principles of State Policy and Fundamental duties not justifiable.

52. (1) The provisions of this Chapter do not confer or impose legal rights or obligations, and are not enforceable in any court or tribunal. No question of inconsistency with such provisions shall be raised in any court or tribunal.

(2) In this Chapter, the expression "State" includes a regional administration and a Regional Council.

The Central Executive - The President of the Republic

President of the Republic.

53. There shall be a President of the Republic of Sri Lanka, who is the Head of the State, and the Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces.

Election of President

54. (1) Subject to the provisions of the Constitution, any citizen who is qualified as an elector may be elected by Parliament to the office of President of the Republic of Sri Lanka, in accordance with the provisions of paragraph (3) of this Article and with such procedure as may be provided for by law or standing orders, and by at least two- thirds of the whole number of Members of Parliament (including those not present) voting in his favour; and the person so elected shall assume office as President of the Republic of Sri Lanka upon his taking the following oath or making the following affirmation before the Chief Justice or, in the absence of the Chief Justice, any other Judge of the Supreme Court:

"I ....... do solemnly declare and affirm/swear that I will be faithful and bear true allegiance to the Republic of Sri Lanka, that I will uphold the Constitution of Sri Lanka and shall faithfully perform the duties and functions of the office of President of the Republic of Sri Lanka in accordance with the Constitution and with the law."

(2) Upon the assumption of office, the President shall cease to hold any other office created or recognised by the Constitution and if he is a Member of Parliament or a Regional Council shall vacate his seat in Parliament or Regional Council, as the case may be. The President shall not hold any other office or place of profit whatsoever.

(3) The election of the President shall, whenever such election is contested, be according to the principle of the single transferable vote and Parliament shall by law or Standing Orders provide for all matters relating to the procedure for the election of the President by Parliament and all other matters necessary or incidental thereto.

Powers of President.

55. In addition to the powers and functions expressly conferred on or assigned to him by the Constitution or by any written law, the President shall have the power -

(a) to make the statement of government policy in Parliament at the commencement of each session of Parliament;

(b) to preside at ceremonial sittings of Parliament;

(c) to summon, prorogue and dissolve Parliament;

(d) to appoint the Prime Minister, the other Ministers of the Cabinet and Deputy Ministers, and Governors of Regions;

(e) to receive and recognise, appoint and accredit Ambassadors, High Commissioners, Plenipotentiaries and other diplomatic agents;

(f) to keep the Public Seal of the Republic, and to make and execute under the Public Seal, the Acts of Appointment of the Prime Minister and other Ministers of the Cabinet of Ministers, the Governors of Regions, the Chief Justice and other Judges of the Supreme Court, the Court of Appeal and the Regional High Court, such grants and dispositions of lands and immovable property vested in the Republic as heirs by law required or empowered to do, and to use the Public Seal for sealing all things whatsoever that shall pass that Seal;

(g) to declare war and peace;

(h) to appoint as President's Counsel, Attorneys-at-Law who have reached eminence in the profession and have maintained high standards of conduct and professional rectitude;

(i) to declare a state of emergency within a Region and to dissolve a Regional Council, in accordance with the provisions of the Constitution; and

(j) to do all such acts and things, not being inconsistent with the provision of the Constitution or written law as by international law, custom or usage he is required or authorised to do.

Grant of Pardon

56. (1) The President may in the case of any offender, convicted of any offence in any Court within the Republic of Sri Lanka -

(a) grant a pardon either free or subject to lawful conditions;

(b) grant any respite, either indefinite or for such period as the President may think fit, of the execution of any sentence passed on such offender;

(c) substitute a less severe form of punishment, for any punishment imposed on any such offender;

(d) remit the whole or any part of any punishment imposed, or of any penalty or forfeiture otherwise due to the Republic, on account of such offence:

Provided that where any offender shall have been condemned to suffer death by the sentence of any Court, the President shall cause a report to be made to him by the Judge who tried the case and shall forward such report to the Attorney-General with instructions that after the Attorney-General has advised thereon, the report shall be sent together with the Attorney-General's advice to the Minister in charge of the subject of Justice, who shall forward the report with his recommendation to the President.

(2) The President may in the case of any person who is or has becomes subject to any disqualification specified in any law relating to the election of members of Parliament -

(a) grant a pardon, either free or subject to lawful conditions; or

(b) reduce the period of such disqualification.

Immunity of President from suit

57. While any person holds office as President, no proceedings shall be instituted or continued against him in any court or tribunal in respect of anything done or omitted to be done by him in his official capacity.

Salary Allowances and Pension of the President

58. (1) Parliament shall by resolution determine the salary, allowances and pension entitlement of the holders of the office of President. Such pension shall be in addition to any other pension to which such person is entitled by virtue of any prior service.

(2) The salary, allowances and pension of the President shall be charged on the Consolidated Fund.

(3) Parliament may by resolution increase, but shall not reduce, the salary, allowances or pension entitlement of the holder of the office of President.

Term of office and vacation of office by President

59. (1) Subject to the provisions of paragraph (2) of this Aarticle, the President shall hold office for period of five years:

Provided that, notwithstanding the expiration of this period, the President shall remain in office until the next President assumes office.

(2) No person who has been twice elected to the Office of President by Parliament shall be qualified thereafter to be elected to such office by Parliament.

(3) The Office of President of the Republic of Sri Lanka shall become vacant -

(a) upon the death of the President; or

(b) on the President resigning his office by a writing addressed to the Speaker; or

(c) on a unanimous decision by a committee consisting of the Speaker, Prime Minister and Leader of the Opposition that the President is permanently incapable of discharging the functions of his office by reason of mental or physical infirmity; or

(d) on Parliament passing by at least two-thirds of the whole number of members of Parliament (including those not present) voting in its favour a resolution of no-confidence against the President, introduced by any Member by a written notice, addressed to the Speaker and signed by such Member and by at least half the total number of members of Parliament.

President to act on the advice of the Prime Minister

60. (1) The President shall always, except on the appointment of the Prime Minister and as otherwise required by the Constitution, act on the advice of the Prime Minister, or of such other Minister to whom the Prime Minister may have given authority to advise the President on any particular function assigned to that Minister.

(2) No institution administering justice and likewise no other institution, person or authority shall have the power or jurisdiction to inquire into, pronounce upon or in any manner call in question any act or omission on the part of the President on the ground that the provisions of paragraph (1) of this Article have not been complied with.

Temporary vacation of office of President

61. (1) Whenever the President is prevented by illness or any other cause from performing the duties of his office, or is absent from Sri Lanka, or during any period in which the office of President of the Republic of Sri Lanka is otherwise vacant, the Chief Jusutice shall act in the office of the President of the Republic of Sri Lanka unless another person is elected by Parliament to act in such office; such person shall, before assuming office, take the oath in the form and manner prescribed in Article 54.

(2) Any person acting in the office of the President of the Republic of Sri Lanka shall not continue to act after the President or some other person having a prior right to act in such office has notified that he has assumed or is about to assume or resume such office.

(3) The provisions of the Constitution relating to the President shall apply, in so far as they can be applied to an acting President.

The Central Executive -

The President and the Cabinet of Ministers

Responsibility of the President

62. The President shall be responsible to Parliament for the due execution and performance of the powers and functions of his office under the Constitution and under any other law, including the law for the time being relating to public security.

Cabinet of Ministers

63. (1) There shall be a Cabinet of Ministers charged with the direction and control of the matters for which they are responsible and shall be collectively responsible to Parliament on all such matters.

(2) Of the Ministers, one who shall be the Head of the Cabinet of Ministers shall be the Prime Minister. The President shall appoint as Prime Minister the Member of Parliament who, in the President's opinion, is most likely to command the confidence of Parliament and such member shall assume office as Prime Minister upon taking the following oath or making the following affirmation:-

"I,.........................,do solemnly declare and affirm/swear that I will be faithful and bear true allegiance to the Republic of Sri Lanka and that I will uphold the Constitution of Sri Lanka and shall faithfully perform the duties and functions of the Office of Prime Minister in accordance with the Constitution and with the law.

Appointment of a Prime Minister on the death or resignation of a Prime Minister.

64. Subject to the provisions of Article 63, upon the death or the resignation of the Prime Minister, or where the Prime Minister is deemed to have resigned, the President shall appoint a Prime Minister, who shall assume office as Prime Minister upon taking the oath or making the affirmation as referred to in Article 63.

Ministers of Cabinet and their subjects and functions.

65. (1) The Prime Minister shall determine the number of Ministers and Ministries and the assignment of subjects and functions to Ministers.

(2) The President shall, on the advice of the Prime Minister, appoint from among the members of Parliament Ministers to be in charge of the Ministries so determined.

(3) The Prime Minister may at any time change the assignment of subjects and functions and recommend to the President changes in the composition of the Cabinet of Ministers. Such changes shall not affect the continuity of the Cabinet of Ministers, including the continuity of its responsibility to Parliament.

Deputy Ministers

66. (1) The President may, on the advice of the Prime Minister, appoint from among the Members of Parliament, Deputy Ministers to assist the Ministers in the performance of their duties pertaining to Parliament and to their departments and to exercise and perform such powers and duties of the Ministers under written law as may be delegated to such Deputy Ministers under paragraph (2) of this Article.

(2) A Minister may, by notification published in the Gazette, delegate to his Deputy Minister any of the powers or duties conferred or imposed on the Minister by any written law, and it shall be lawful for the Deputy Minister to exercise or perform any power or duty delegated to him under this paragraph notwithstanding anything to the contrary in the written law by which that power or duty is conferred or imposed on the Minister.

Tenure of office of the Ministers and Deputy Ministers.

67. A Minister or a Deputy Minister shall continue to hold office throughout the period during which the Cabinet of Ministers continues to function under the provisions of the Constitution unless he -

(a) is removed by a writing under the hand of the President or

(b) resigns his office by a writing under his hand addressed to the President; or

(c) save in the circumstances set out in Article 68 ceases to be a Member of Parliament.

Cabinet of Ministers after dissolution of Parliament.

68. The Cabinet of Ministers functioning immediately prior to the dissolution of Parliament shall, notwithstanding such dissolution, continue to function during the period intervening between dissolution and the conclusion of the General Election.

Dissolution of the Cabinet of Ministers.

69. (1) On the death or resignation of the Prime Minister or when the Prime Minister is deemed to have resigned, the Cabinet of Ministers shall stand dissolved and the other Ministers shall cease to hold office.

(2) The provisions of paragraph (1) of this Article shall not operate if the death or resignation of the Prime Minister occurs in the period referred to in Article 68 and in that event, the Cabinet of Ministers shall continue to function with the other Ministers as its members until the expiration of that period. The President shall appoint one from among such Ministers to be the Prime Minister.

(3) If on the death or resignation of the Prime Minister in the period referred to in Article 68 there is no other Minister, the President shall exercise and perform the powers and functions of the Cabinet of Ministers functioning under Article 68 until the conclusion of the General Election.

Resignation of the Prime Minister.

70. The Prime Minister shall be deemed to have resigned.

(a) at the conclusion of a General Election or

(b) if Parliament rejects the Appropriation Bill or the Statement of Government Policy or Parliament passes a vote of no-confidence in the Government.

Acting Ministers and Acting Deputy Ministers.

71. Whenever a Minister or a Deputy Minister is unable to perform the functions of his office, the President may appoint any Member of Parliament to act in place of such Ministers or Deputy Minister.

Secretary to the Cabinet of Ministers.

72. There shall be a Secretary to the Cabinet of Ministers who shall be appointed by the President. The Secretary shall, subject to the directions of the Prime Minister, have charge of the office of the Cabinet of Ministers, and shall discharge and perform such other duties and functions as may be assigned to him by the Prime Minister or the Cabinet of Ministers.

Secretaries to Ministries.

73. (1) There shall be for each Ministry a Secretary who shall be appointed by the President.

(2) The Secretary to a Ministry shall, subject to the direction and control of his Minister, exercise supervision over the departments of Government or other institutions in the charge of his Minister.

(3) For the purpose of this Article the Office of the Secretary General of Parliament, the Elections Commissioner, the Elections Commission, the Department of the Auditor-General, the Office of the Secretary to the Cabinet of Ministers, the office of the Parliamentary Commissioner for Administration (Ombudsman) and the Office of the Commission to Investigate Allegations of Bribery or Corruption shall be deemed not to be departments of Government.

(4) The President may transfer any Secretary to a Ministry to any other post in the Public Service.

Official Oath.

74. No person appointed to any office referred to in this Chapter shall enter upon the duties of his office unless he takes or makes the special oath or affirmation prescribed for his office or where no such oath or affirmation is prescribed, the oath or affirmation set out in Schedule

The Central Legislature - Parliament

Parliament.

75. (1) There shall be a Parliament which shall consist of 196 members elected by the electors of the several electoral districts constituted in accordance with the provisions of the Constitution, and 29 members elected in accordance with Article 112.

(2) Unless parliament is sooner dissolved, every Parliament shall continue for six years from the date appointed for its first meeting and no longer, and the expiry of the said period of six years shall operate a dissolution of Parliament.

Official Oath.

76. Except for the purpose of electing the Speaker, no Member shall sit or vote in Parliament until he has taken and subscribed the following oath, or made and subscribed the following affirmation, before Parliament;-

``I . . . . . do solemnly declare and affirm-swear that I will uphold and defend the Constitution of the Republic of Sri Lanka.''

Speaker, Deputy Speaker and Deputy Chairman of Committees.

77. (1) Parliament shall, at its first meeting after a General Election, elect three Members to be respectively the Speaker, the Deputy Speaker and Chairman of Committees (hereinafter referred to as the ``Deputy Speaker'') and the Deputy Chairman of Committees thereof.

(2) A Member holding office as the Speaker or the Deputy Speaker or the Deputy Chairman of Committees shall vacate such office -

(a) if he ceases, save upon a dissolution of Parliament, to be a Member of Parliament; or

(b) if he resigns his office by writing under his hand addressed to the President.

(3) Whenever the office of Speaker, Deputy Speaker or Deputy Chairman of Committees becomes vacant, Parliament shall at its first meeting after the occurrence of the vacancy, elect another Member to be the Speaker, the Deputy Speaker or the Deputy Chairman of Committees, as the case may be.

(4) The members holding office respectively as Speaker, Deputy Speaker and Deputy Chairman of Committees immediately prior to the dissolution of Parliament shall, unless they vacate office earlier and notwithstanding such dissolution, continue to hold such office until the conclusion of the General Election.

(5) The Speaker, or in his absence the Deputy Speaker, or in their absence the Deputy Chairman of Committees, shall preside at sittings of Parliament. If none of them is present, a Member elected by Parliament for the sitting shall preside at that sitting of Parliament.

Secretary -General of Parliament.

78. (1) There shall be a Secretary -General of Parliament who shall be appointed by the President and who shall hold office during good behaviour.

(2) The salary of the Secretary -General shall be determined by Parliament, shall be charged on the Consolidated Fund and shall not be diminished during his term of office.

(3) The members of the staff of the Secretary -General shall be appointed by him with the approval of the Speaker.

(4) The salaries of the members of the staff of the Secretary- General shall be charged on the Consolidated Fund.

(5) The office of the Secretary -General shall become vacant -

(a) upon his death;

(b) on his resignation in writing addressed to the President;

(c) on his attaining the age of sixty years, unless Parliament otherwise provides by law;

(d) on his removal by the President on account of ill health or physical or mental infirmity; or

(e) on his removal by the President upon an address of Parliament.

(6) Whenever the Secretary -General is unable to discharge the functions of his office, the President may appoint a person to act in the place of the Secretary -General.

Vacation of seats.

79. The seat of a Member shall become vacant -

(a) upon his death;

(b) if, by a writing under his hand addressed to the Secretary- General of Parliament, he resigns his seat;

(c) upon his assuming the office of President consequent to his election to such office, by Parliament;

(d) if he becomes subject to any disqualification specified in Article 101 and 102;

(e) if he becomes a member of the Public Service or a Regional Public Service or an employee of a public corporation or, being a member of the Public Service or a Regional Public Service or an employee of a public corporation, does not cease to be member of such service or an employee of such corporation, before he sits in Parliament;

(f) if, without the leave of Parliament first obtained, he absents himself from the sittings of Parliament during a continuous period of three months;

(g) if his election as a Member is declared void under the law in force for the time being;

(h) upon the dissolution of Parliament; or

(i) upon a resolution for his expulsion being passed in terms of Article 93.

Privileges and Powers of Parliament and its members.

80. The privileges, immunities and powers of Parliament and of its members may be determined and regulated by Parliament by law, and until so determined and regulated, the provisions of the Parliament (Powers and Privileges) Act, shall, mutatis mutandis, apply.

Remuneration and allowances of Members.

81. Ministers, Deputy Ministers and Members, including the Speaker, the Deputy Speaker and the Deputy Chairman of Committees, shall be paid such remuneration or allowance as may be provided by Parliament, by law or by resolution, and the receipt thereof shall not disqualify the recipient from sitting or voting in Parliament.

Power to act notwithstanding vacancies

82. Parliament shall have power to act notwithstanding any vacancy in its membership, and its proceedings shall be valid notwithstanding that it is discovered subsequently that a person who was not entitled so to do sat or voted or otherwise took part in the proceedings.

The Central Legislature - Parliament - Procedure and Powers

Sessions of Parliament

83. (1) The President may, from time to time, by Proclamation summon, prorogue and dissolve Parliament.

(2) Parliament shall be summoned to meet once at least in every year.

(3) A Proclamation proroguing Parliament shall fix a date for the next session, not being more than two months after the date of the Proclamation:

Provided that, at any time while Parliament stands prorogues, the President may by Proclamation -

(i) summon Parliament for an earlier date, not being less than three days from the date of such Proclamation, or

(ii) subject to the provisions of this Article, dissolve Parliament.

(4) All matters which, having been duly brought before Parliament, have not been disposed of at the time of the prorogation of Parliament, may be proceeded with during the next session.

(5) (a) A Proclamation dissolving Parliament shall fix a date or dates for the election of Members of Parliament, and shall summon the new Parliament to meet on a date not later than three months after the date of such Proclamation.

(b) Upon the dissolution of Parliament by virtue of the provisions of paragraph (2) of Article 75 the President shall forthwith by Proclamation fix a date or dates for the election of Members of Parliament, and shall summon the new Parliament to meet on a date not later than three months after the date of such Proclamation.

(c) The date fixed for the first meeting of Parliament by a Proclamation under sub-paragraph (a) or sub-paragraph (b) may be varied by a subsequent proclamation, provided that the date so fixed by the subsequent Proclamation shall be a date not later than three months after the date of the original Proclamation.

(6) If at any time after the dissolution of Parliament, the President is satisfied that an emergency has arisen of such a nature that an earlier meeting of Parliament is necessary, he may by Proclamation summon the Parliament which has been dissolved to meet on a date not less than three days from the date of such Proclamation and such Parliament shall stand dissolved upon the termination of the emergency or the conclusion of the General Election, whichever is earlier.

Adjournment

84. Parliament may adjourn from time to time as it may determine by resolution or Standing Order, until it is prorogued or dissolved.

Voting

85. (1) Save as otherwise provided in the Constitution, any question proposed for decision by Parliament shall be decided by the majority of votes of the Members present and voting.

(2) The person presiding shall not vote in the first instance but shall have and exercise a casting vote in the event of an equality of votes.

Quorum

86. If at any time during a meeting of Parliament the attention of the person presiding is drawn to the fact that there are fewer than twenty Members present, the person presiding shall, subject to any Standing Order, adjourn the sitting without question put.

Standing Orders

87. (1) Subject to the provisions of the Constitution, Parliament may by resolution or Standing Order provide for -

(i) the election and retirement of the Speaker, the Deputy Speaker and the Deputy Chairman of Committees, and

(ii) the regulation of its business, the preservation of order of at its sittings and any other matter for which provision is required or authorised to be so made by the Constitution.

(2) Until Parliament otherwise provides by law or by resolution, the Standing Orders of Parliament, in force immediately prior to the commencement of the Constitution, shall, mutatis mutandis, be the Standing Orders of Parliament.

Legislative Power

88. Notwithstanding anything in this Constitution, Parliament shall have power to make law, repealing or amending any provision of the Constitution, or adding any provision to the Constitution:

Provided that Parliament shall not make any law -

(a) suspending the operation of the Constitution or any part thereof; or

(b) repealing the Constitution as a whole unless such law also enacts a new Constitution to replace it

Publication and Passing of Bills

89. (1) Every Bill shall be published in the Gazette at least fourteen days before it is placed on the Order Paper of Parliament.

(2) The passing of a Bill or a resolution by Parliament shall be in accordance with the Constitution and the Standing Orders of Parliament. Any one or more of the Standing Orders may be suspended by Parliament in the circumstances and in the manner prescribed by the Standing Orders.

Certificate of Speaker

90. The Speakers shall endorse on every Bill passed by Parliament a certificate in the following form:

``This bill (here state the short title of the Bill) has been duly passed by Parliament.''

Such certificate may also state the majority by which such Bill was passed:

Provided that where by virtue of the provisions of Article 94 or Article 95 or Article 96 or Article 164(2) a special majority is required for the passing of a Bill, the Speaker shall certify such Bill only if such Bill has been passed with such special majority: Provided further that where by virtue of Article 95, the Bill or any provision thereof requires the approval of the People at a Referendum, such certificate shall further state that the Bill or such provision shall not become law until approved by the People at a Referendum.

When Bill becomes law

91. (1) Subject to the provisions of paragraph (2) of this Article, a Bill passed by Parliament shall become law when the certificate of the Speaker is endorsed thereon.

(2) Where the Cabinet of Ministers has certified that any Bill or any provision thereof is intended to be submitted for approval by the People at a Referendum or where the Supreme Court has determined that a Bill or any provision thereof requires the approval of the People at a Referendum such Bill or such provision shall become law upon being approved by the People at a Referendum in accordance with paragraph (2) of Article 97 only when the President certifies that the Bill or provision thereof has been so approved. The President shall endorse on every Bill so approved a certificate in the following form:

``This Bill/provision has been duly approved by the People at a Referendum.''

Every such certificate shall be final and conclusive, and shall not be called in question in any court.

Validity of Acts not to be questioned

92. Subject to the provisions of Article 165, where a Bill becomes law upon the certificate of the President or the Speaker, as the case may be, being endorsed thereon, no court or tribunal shall inquire into, pronounce upon or in any manner call in question, the validity of such Act or of any provision contained therein on any ground whatsoever.

Imposition of Civic disability

93. (1) Where a Special Presidential Commission of Inquiry established under the Special Presidential Commission of Inquiry Law and consisting of a member or members each of whom is a Judge of the Supreme Court, Court of Appeal, High Court or the District Court recommends that any person should be made subject to civic disability by reason of any act done or omitted to be done by such person before or after the commencement of the Constitution, Parliament may by resolution passed by not less than two-thirds of the whole number of Members (including those not present) voting in its favour -

(a) impose civic disability on such person for a period not exceeding seven years; and

(b) expel such person from Parliament, if he is a Member of Parliament.

Where a Special Presidential Commission of Inquiry consists of more than one member, a recommendation made by the majority of such members, in case of any difference of opinion, shall be, and shall be deemed for all purposes to be, the recommendation of such Commission of Inquiry.

(2) No such resolution shall be entertained by the Speaker or placed on the Order Paper of Parliament unless introduced by the Prime Minister with the approval of the Cabinet of Ministers.

(3) The Speaker shall endorse on every resolution passed in accordance with the preceding provision of this Article a certificate in the following form:

``This resolution has been duly passed by Parliament in accordance with the provisions of Article 93 of the Constitution''.

Every such certificate shall be conclusive for all purposes and shall not be questioned in any court, and no court or tribunal shall inquire into, or pronounce upon or in any manner call in question, the validity of such resolution on any ground whatsoever.

(4) In this Article, ``District Court'' means a District Court created and established by existing law and includes a court that may be created by Parliament to exercise and perform powers and functions corresponding or substantially similar to the powers and functions exercised and performed by the District Court.

The Central Legislature - Amendment of the Constitution

Amendment or repeal of the Constitution must be express.

94. (1) No bill for the amendment of any provision of the Constitution shall be placed on the Order Paper of Parliament unless the provision to be repealed, altered or added, and consequential amendments, if any, are expressly specified in the Bail and is described in the long title thereto as being an Act for the amendment of the Constitution.

(2) No Bill for the repeal of the Constitution shall be placed on the Order Paper of Parliament unless the Bill contains provisions replacing the Constitution and is described in the long title thereof as being an Act for the repeal and replacement of the Constitution.

(3) If in the opinion of the Speaker, a Bill does not comply with the requirements of paragraph (1) or paragraph (2) of this Article, he shall direct that such bill be not proceeded with unless it is amended so as to comply with those requirements.

(4) Notwithstanding anything in the preceding provisions of this Article, it shall be lawful for a Bill which complies with the requirements of paragraph (1) for paragraph (2) of this Article to be amended by Parliament provided that the Bill as so amended shall comply with those requirements.

(5) A Bill for the amendment of any provision of the Constitution or for the repeal and replacement of the Constitution shall become law if the number of votes cast in favour thereof amounts to not less than two thirds of the whole number of Members (including those not present) and upon a certificate by the President or Speaker, as the case may be, being endorsed thereon in accordance with the provisions of Article 90, or 91.

(6) No provision in any law shall, or shall be deemed to, amend, repeal or replace the Constitution or any provision thereof, or be so interpreted or construed, unless enacted in accordance with the requirements of the preceding provisions of this Article.

(7) In this Chapter, ``amendment'' includes repeal, alteration and addition.

Approval of certain Bills at a referendum.

95. Notwithstanding anything to the contrary in the provisions of Article 94 -

(a) a Bill for the amendment or the repeal and replacement of or which is inconsistent with any of the provisions of Articles 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9 and 15 or this Article; and

(b) a Bill for the amendment or for the repeal and replacement of or which is inconsistent with the provisions of paragraph (2) of Article 75 which would extend the duration of Parliament to over six years, shall become law if the number of votes cast in favour thereof, amounts to not less than two-thirds of the whole number of Members (including those not present) is approved by the People at a Referendum and a certificate endorsed thereon by the President in accordance with Article

91. Bills inconsistent to the Constitution.

96. (1) A Bill which is not for the amendment of any provision of the Constitution or for the repeal and replacement of the Constitution, but which is inconsistent with any provision of the Constitution may be placed on the Order Paper of Parliament without complying with the requirements of paragraphs (1) or paragraph (2) of Article 94.

(2) Where the Cabinet of Ministers has certified that a Bill is intended to be passed by the special majority required by this Article or where the Supreme Court has determined that a Bill requires to be passed by such special majority, such Bill shall become law only if the number of votes cast in favour thereof amounts to not less than two- thirds of the whole number of Members (including those not present) and a certificate by the President and the Speaker, as the case may be, is endorsed thereon in accordance in the case provisions of Article 90 or Article 91.

(3) Such a Bill when enacted into law shall not, and shall not be deemed to, amend, repeal or replace the Constitution or any provision thereof, and shall not be so interpreted or construed, and may thereafter be repealed by a majority of the votes of the Members present and voting.

Referendum

Submission of Bills to People by Referendum.

97. (1) The president shall submit to the people by Referendum every Bill or any provision in any Bill which the Cabinet of Ministers has certified as being intended to be submitted to the people at a Referendum, or which the Supreme Court has determined as requiring the approval of the People at a Referendum, if the number of votes cast in favour of such Bill, amounts to not less than two-thirds of the whole number of Members (including those not present).

(2) Any Bill or any provision in any Bill submitted to the people at a Referendum shall be deemed to be approved by the People if approved by an absolute majority of the valid votes cast at such Referendum:

Provided that when the total number of valid votes cast does not exceed two-thirds of the whole number of electors entered in the register of electors, such Bill shall be deemed to be approved by the People only if approved by not less than one third of the whole number of such electors.

Submission of matters of national importance to people by referendum.

98. The President may, subject to the provisions of Article 97, submit to the People at a Referendum any matter which in the opinion of the President is of national importance.

Parliament to provide for procedure.

99. (1) Every Referendum shall be conducted by the Elections Commission and the Commissioner of Elections shall communicate the result thereof to the President.

(2) Parliament shall by law provide for all matters relating to the procedure for the submission of Bills and of matters of national importance to the People by Referenda, the register of electors to be used at a Referendum, the creation of offences relating thereto and the punishment therefor, and all other matters necessary or incidental thereto.

Franchise and the Elections

Right to be an elector.

100. Every person shall, unless disqualified as hereinafter provided, be qualified to be an elector at the election of Members of Parliament and of Members of a Regional Council and to vote at any Referendum:

Provided that no such person shall be entitled to vote unless his name is entered in the appropriate register of electors.

Disqualification to be an elector.

101. No person shall be qualified to be an elector at an election of Members of Parliament or Members of a Regional Council or to vote at any Referendum if he is subject to any of the following disqualification, namely

(a) if he is not a citizen of Sri Lanka;

(b) if he has not attained the age of eighteen years on the qualifying date specified by law under the provisions of Article 114; or

(c) if he is under any law in force in Sri Lanka found or declared to be of unsound mind;

(d) if he is serving or has during the period of seven years immediately preceding completed serving of a sentence of imprisonment (by whatever name called) for a term not less than six months imposed after conviction by any court for an offence punishable with imprisonment for a term not less than two years or is under sentence of death or is serving or has during the period of seven years immediately preceding completed the serving of a sentence of imprisonment for a term not less than six months awarded in lieu of execution of such sentence:

Provided that if any person disqualified under this paragraph is granted a free pardon such disqualification shall cease from the date on which the pardon is granted;

(e) if a period of seven years has not elapsed since

(i) the last of the dates, if any, of his being convicted of any offence under section 66 or 76 of the Parliamentary Elections Act, No. 1 of 1981, or of such offence under the law for the time being relating to Referenda or the election of the President, or of Members of Parliament or of Members of Provincial Councils or Regional Councils, as would correspond to an offence under either of the said two sections;

(ii) the last of the dates, if any, of his being convicted of a corrupt practice under the Parliamentary Elections Act, No. 1 of 1981, or of such offence under the law for the time being relating to Referenda or the election of the President or of Members of Parliament or of Members of Provincial Councils or Regional Councils, as would correspond to the said corrupt practice;

(iii) the last of the dates, if any, being a date after the commencement of the Constitution, of a report made by a Judge finding him guilty of any corrupt practice under the Parliamentary Elections Act, No. 1 of 1981 of 1981, or under any law for the time being relating to Referenda, or of Members of Parliament or of members of Provincial Councils or Regional Councils'

(iv) the last of the dates, if any, of his being convicted or being found guilty of bribery under the provisions of the Bribery Act or of any future act as would correspond to the Bribery Act;

(f) if a period of five years has not elapsed since -

(i) the last of the dates, if any of his being convicted of an offence under the provisions of sections 77 to 82 (both inclusive) of the Local Authorities Elections Ordinance or for such offence under any future law as would correspond to any offence under the said sections' or

(ii) the last of the dates, if any of his being convicted of an offence under the provisions of sections 2 and 3 of the Public Bodies (Prevention of Corruption) Ordinance or of such offence under any future law as would correspond to the said offence;

(g) if a period of three years has not elapsed since -

(i) the last of the dates, if any of his being the Parliamentary Elections Act, No. 1 of 1981, or of such offence under the law for the time being relating to Referenda, or of Members of Parliament or of members of Provincial Councils or Regional Councils as would correspond to the said illegal practice;

(ii) the last of the dates, if any, being a date after the commencement of the Constitution, of a report made by a Judge finding him guilty of any illegal practice under the Parliamentary Elections Act, No. 1 of 1981, or under any law for the time being relating to Referenda, or of Members of Parliament or of members of Provincial Councils or Regional Councils;

(h) if a resolution for the imposition of civic disability upon him has been passed in terms of Article 93 and the period of such civic disability specified in such resolution has not expired;

(i) if a period of seven years has not elapsed since

(i) the date of his being convicted of any offence under the provisions of sections 188 to 201 (both inclusive) of the Penal Code or for such other offence under any future law as would correspond to any offence under the said sections; or

(ii) the date of his being convicted of an offence of contempt against, or in disrespect of, the authority of any Special Presidential Commission of Inquiry consisting of such member or members as are specified in Article 93 by reason of -

(1) the failure of such person, without cause which in the opinion of such commission is reasonable, to appear before such commission at the time and place mentioned in any summons which such commission is empowered by law to issue; or

(2) the refusal of such person to be sworn or affirmed, or the refusal or failure of such person, without cause which in the opinion of such commission is reasonable, to answer any question put to such person touching the matters directed to be inquired into by such commission; or

(3) the refusal or failure of such person, without cause which in the opinion of such commission is reasonable, to produce and show to such commission any document or thing which is in the possession or power of such person and which in the opinion of such commission is necessary for arriving at the truth of the matters to be inquired into by such commission;

(j) if the period of his disqualification imposed under Article 158 has not elapsed.

Qualification for election as Member of Parliament. 102. (1) Every person who is qualified to be a elector shall be qualified to be elected as a member of Parliament unless he is disqualified under the provisions of paragraph (2).

(2) No person shall be qualified to be elected as a Member of Parliament or to sit and vote in Parliament - (a) if he is or becomes subject to any of the disqualification specified in Article 101;

(b) if he -

(i) stands nominated as a candidate for election for more than one electoral district at a General Election, (ii) stands nominated as a candidate for election by more than one recognised political party or independent group in respect of any electoral district,

(iii) stands nominated as a candidate for election for an electoral district and before the conclusion of the election for that electoral district,, stands nominated as a candidate for election for any other electoral district, (iv) being a member of Parliament, except in the circumstances referred to in Article 83 (6) or Article* stands nominated as a candidate for election for any electoral district;

(c) if he is the President of the Republic;

(d) if he is the Governor of a Region;

(e) if he is -

(i) a Judicial Officer; (ii) the Parliamentary Commissioner for Administration (Ombudsman);

(iii) the Secretary General of Parliament or a member of his staff;

(iv) a member of the National Public Service Commission, or the Finance Commissioner the National Police Commission or a Regional Judicial Service Commission or a Regional Public Service Commission or a Regional Police Commission;

(v) the Commissioner of Elections or a member of the Election Commission;

(vi) the Auditor General;

(vii) a public officer holding any office created prior to November 18, 1970, the initial of the salary scale of which was, on November 18, 1970, not less than Rs. 6,720 per annum or such other amount per annum as would, under any subsequent revision of salary scales, correspond to such initial;

(viii) a public officer holding any office created after November 18, 1970, the initial of the salary scale of which is, on the date of creation of that office, not less than the initial of the salary scales applicable, on that date, to an office referred to in item

(vii) or such other amount per annum as would, under any subsequent revision of salary scales, correspond to the first mentioned initial;

(ix) an officer in any public corporation holding any office created prior to November 18, 1970, the initial of the salary scale of which was, on November 18, 1970, not less than Rs. 7,200 per annum or such other amount per annum as would, under any subsequent revision of salary scales, correspond to such initial, (x) an officer in any public corporation or of any Regional Public Service, holding any office created after November 18, 1970, the initial of the salary scale of which is, on the date of creation of that office, not less than the initial of the salary scale applicable on that date to an office referred to in item (ix) or such other amount per annum as would, under any subsequent revision of salary scales, correspond to the first mentioned initial, (xi) a member of the Regular Force of the Army, Navy or Air Force, or (xii) a police officer or a public officer exercising police functions;

(f) if he has any such interest in any such contract made by or on behalf of the State or a public corporation as Parliament shall by law prescribe;

(g) if he is an undischarged bankrupt or insolvent, having being declared bankrupt or insolvent;

(h) if during the preceding seven years he has been adjudged by a competent court or by a Special Presidential Commission of Inquiry to have accepted a bribe or gratification offered with a view to influencing his judgement as a Member of Parliament or as a member of the legislature prior to the commencement of the Constitution.

(3) For the purposes of sub paragraph (h) of paragraph (2) of this Article, the acceptance by a Member of Parliament of any allowance or other payment made to him by any trade union or other organisation solely for the purpose of his maintenance shall be deemed not to be the acceptance of a bribe or gratification.

Election to be free equal and secret

103. The voting for the election of the Members of Parliament and of Members of Regional Councils and at any Referendum shall be free, equal and by secret ballot.

Commissioner of Elections

104. (1) There shall be a Commissioner of Elections who shall be appointed by the President and who shall hold office during good behaviour.

(2) The salary of the Commissioner of Elections shall be determined by Parliament, shall be charged on the Consolidated Fund and shall not be diminished during his term of office. (3) The office of the Commissioner of Elections shall become vacant.

(a) upon his death;

(b) on his resignation in writing addressed to the President;

(c) on his attaining the age of sixty years;

(d) on his removal by the President on account of ill health or physical or mental infirmity; or

(e) on his removal by the President upon an address of Parliament.

(4) Whenever the Commissioner of Elections is unable to discharge the functions of his office, the President may appoint a person to act in the place of the Commissioner of Elections.

(5) The President may in exceptional circumstances permit a Commissioner of Elections who has reached the age of sixty years to continue in office for a period not exceeding twelve months.

Election Commission

105. (1) There shall be an Election Commission consisting of the Commissioner of Elections and such number of Deputy Commissioners and Assistant Commissioners as may be determined by Parliament.

(2) The members of the Election Commission shall be appointed by the President.

(3) The Commissioner of Elections shall be the Chairman of the Election Commission.

(4) The President may remove a member of the Election Commission other than its Chairman, on a recommendation made by the Chairman.

(5) A member of the Election Commission other than the Chairman may resign from the Commission by letter addressed in that behalf to the President.

Powers duties and functions of Election Commission:

106. The Election Commission shall exercise, perform or discharge all such powers, duties or functions as may be conferred or imposed on or assigned to it by the law for the time being in force relating to election of Members of Parliament and of Members of Regional Councils, and to Referenda, or by any other written law.

Delimitation Commission

107. (1) Within three months of the commencement of the Constitution the President shall for the delimitation of electoral districts for the election of Members of Parliament, establish a Delimitation Commission consisting of three persons appointed by him who he is satisfied are not actively engaged in politics. The President shall appoint one of such persons to be the Chairman.

(2) If any member of the Delimitation Commission shall die or resign or if the President is satisfied that any such member has become incapable of discharging his functions as such, the President shall, in accordance with the provisions of paragraph (1) of this Article, appoint another person in his place.

Electoral districts

108. (1) The Delimitation Commission shall divide Sri Lanka into not less than twenty and not more than twenty-five electoral districts, and shall assign names thereto.

(2) Each region of Sri Lanka may itself constitute an electoral district or may be divided into two or more electoral districts.

(3) Where a region is divided into a number of electoral districts the Delimitation Commission shall have regard to the existing administrative districts so as to ensure as far as is practicable that each electoral district shall be an administrative district or a combination of two or more administrative districts or two or more electoral districts together constitute an administrative district.

(4) The electoral districts of each region shall together be entitled to return four members, (independently of the number of members which they are entitled to return by reference to the number of electors whose names appear in the registers of electors of such electoral district), and the Delimitation Commission shall apportion such entitlement equitably among such electoral districts.

(5) In the event of a difference of opinion among the members of the Delimitation Commission, the opinion of the majority thereof shall prevail and shall be deemed to be the decision of the Commission, where each member of the Commission is of a different opinion, the opinion of the Chairman shall be deemed to be the decision of the Commission. Any dissentient member may state his reasons for such dissent.

(6) The Chairman of the Delimitation Commission shall communicate the decisions of the Commission together with the reasons, if any, stated by a dissentient member to the President.

Proclamation of names & c., of electoral districts.

109. The President shall by Proclamation publish the names and boundaries of the electoral districts and the number of members, which each such electoral district is entitled to return by virtue of the provisions of paragraph (4) of Article 108 in accordance with the decision of the Delimitation Commission. The electoral districts specified in the Proclamation shall come into operation at the next ensuing General Election of Members of Parliament and shall thereafter be the electoral districts of Sri Lanka for all the purposes of the Constitution and of any law for the time being in force relating to the election of Members of Parliament.

Number of members to be returned by the several electoral districts and their apportionment among such electoral districts.

110. (1) The several electoral districts shall together be entitled to return one hundred and ninety-six members.

(2) The apportionment of the number of members that each electoral district shall be entitled to return shall, in the case of thirty-six members, be determined in accordance with the provisions of paragraph (4) of Article 108.

(3) The apportionment of the number of members that each electoral district shall be entitled to return out of the balance number of one hundred and sixty members shall be determined in accordance with the succeeding provisions of this Article.

(4) The total number of electors whose names appear in the registers of electors of all the electoral districts shall be divided by one hundred and sixty. The whole number, resulting from such division (any fraction not being taken into account) is hereinafter referred to as the ``qualifying number''.

(5) The total number of electors whose names appear in the register of electors of each electoral district shall be entitled to return such number of members as is equivalent to the whole number resulting from the division of the total number of such electors in that electoral district by the qualifying number and the balance number of such electors, if any, after such division shall be dealt with, if necessary, in accordance with paragraph (6) of this Article.

(6) Where the total number of members to be returned by all the electoral districts ascertained by reference to the qualifying number in accordance with paragraph (5) of this Article is less than one hundred and sixty members, the apportionment of the entitlement among the electoral districts of the balance number of members shall be by reference to the balance number of such electors and in the case of any electoral district not entitled to return a single member according to the determination made under paragraph (5), the total number of electors whose names appear in the register of electors of such electoral district, the electoral district having the highest of such balance number of such electors or such total number of such electors, being entitled to return one more member and so on until the total number of members to be returned number one hundred and sixty.

(7) Where in making an apportionment under paragraph (6) of this Article an equality is found to exist between two or more balance number of such electors or two or more total number of such electors or any combination of them and the addition of one such elector would entitle one electoral district to return an additional member, the determination of the electoral district to which one such elector shall be deemed to be added shall be determined by lot.

(8) The Commissioner of Elections, as soon as possible after the certification of the registers of electors for all the electoral districts, shall, by Order published in the Gazette certify the number of members which each electoral district is entitled to return by virtue of the Proclamation under Article 109 and this Article.

(9) For the purposes of this Article ``the register of electors'' means the register of electors for the time being in operation on the basis of which an election is being held.

Proportional representation.

111. (1) At any election of Members of Parliament the total number of members which an electoral district is entitled to return shall be the number specified by the Commissioner of Elections in the Order published in accordance with the provisions of paragraph (8) of Article 110.

(2) Every elector at an election of Members of Parliament shall, in addition to his vote, be entitled to indicate his preferences for not more than three candidates nominated by the same recognised political party or independent group.

(3) Any recognised political party or any group of persons contesting as independent candidates (hereinafter referred to as an ``independent group'') may for the purpose of any election of Members of Parliament for any electoral district, submit one nomination paper setting out the names of such number of candidates as is equivalent to the number of members to be elected for that electoral district, increased by three.

(4) Each elector whose name appears in the register of electors shall be entitled to only one vote notwithstanding that his name appeared in the electoral register in more than one electoral district.

(5) The recognised political party or independent group which polls the highest number of votes in any electoral district shall be entitled to have the candidates nominated by it, who has secured the highest number of preferences, declared elected.

(6) (a) Every recognised political party and independent group polling less than one twentieth of the total votes polled at any election in any electoral district shall be disqualified from having any candidates of such party or group being elected for that electoral district.

(b) The votes polled by the disqualified parties and independent groups, if any, shall be deducted from the total votes polled at the election in that electoral district and the number of votes resulting from such deduction is hereinafter referred to as the ``relevant numbers of votes.''

(7) The relevant number of votes shall be divided by the number of members to be elected for that electoral district reduced by one, if the number resulting from such division is an integer, that integer, or if that number is an integer and fraction, the integer immediately higher to that integer and fraction is hereinafter referred to as the `` resulting number''.

(8) The number of votes polled by each recognised political party and independent group (other than those parties or groups disqualified under paragraph (6) of this Article) beginning with the party or group which polled the highest number of votes shall then be divided by the resulting number and the returning officer shall declare elected from each such party or group, in accordance with the preferences secured by each of the candidates nominated by such party or group (the candidate securing the highest number of preferences being declared elected first, the candidate securing the next highest number of preferences being declared elected next and so on) such number of candidates (excluding the candidate declared elected under paragraph (5) of this Article) as is equivalent to the whole number resulting from the division by the resulting number of the votes polled by such party or group. The remainder of the votes, if any, after such division, shall be dealt with if necessary, under paragraph (9) of this Article.

(9) Where after the declaration of the election of members as provided in paragraph (8) of this Article there are one or more members yet to be declared elected, such member or members shall be declared elected by reference to the remainder of the votes referred to in paragraph (8) to the credit of each party or group after the declaration made under that paragraph and the votes polled by any party or group not having any of its candidates declared elected under paragraph (8), the candidate nominated by the party or group having the highest of such votes, who has secured the highest or next highest number of preferences being declared elected a member and so on until all the members to be elected are declared elected.

(10) (a) Where the number of votes polled by each recognised political party or independent group is less than the resulting number referred to in paragraph (7) of this Article the party or group which has polled the highest number of votes shall be entitled to have the candidate, nominated by that party or group (excluding the candidate declared elected under paragraph (5) of this Article) who has secured the highest number of preferences declared elected and if there are one or more members yet to be declared elected, the party or group having the next highest number of votes polled shall be entitled to have the candidate nominated by that party or group who has secured the highest number of preferences declared elected and so on, until all the members to be elected for that electoral district are declared elected under the provisions of this paragraph.

(b) After the determination under paragraph (a) if there are one or more members yet to be declared elected in respect, of that electoral district the provisions of that paragraph shall mutatis mutandis, apply to the election of such members.

(11) Where under paragraph (5) or (9) or (10) of this Article an equality is found to exist between the votes polled by two or more recognised political parties or two or more independent groups or any combination of them and the addition of a vote would entitle the candidate of one such party or group to be elected, the determination of the party or group to which such additional vote shall be deemed to have been given shall be made by lot.

(12) For the purposes of this Article the number of votes polled shall be deemed to be the number of votes counted other than rejected votes.

(13) (a) Where a Member of Parliament ceases, by resignation, expulsion or otherwise, to be a member of a recognised political party or independent group on whose nomination paper (hereinafter referred to as the "relevant nomination paper") his name appeared at the time of his becoming such Member of Parliament, his seat shall become vacant upon the expiration of a period of one month from the date of his ceasing to be such member.

Provided that in the case of the expulsion of a Member of Parliament his seat shall not become vacant if prior to the expiration of the said period of one month he applies to the Supreme Court by petition in writing, and the Supreme Court upon such application determines that such expulsion was invalid. Such petition shall be inquired into by three Judges of the Supreme Court who shall make their determination within two months of the filing of such petition. Where the Supreme Court determines that the expulsion was valid the vacancy shall occur from the date of such determination.

(b) Where the seat of a Member of Parliament (other than a Member declared elected under Article 112) becomes vacant as provided in Article 79 (other than paragraph (g) of that Article) or by virtue of the preceding provisions of this paragraph the candidate from the relevant recognised political party or independent group who has secured the next highest number of preferences shall be declared elected to fill such vacancy.

In this paragraph, "nomination paper" when used in relation to a recognised political party or independent group, includes a list submitted by that recognised political party or independent group under paragraph (2) of Article 112.

Election of Members of Parliament on the basis of the total number of votes polled at a General Election

112. (1) After the one hundred and ninety six members referred to in Article 110 have been declared elected at a General Election of Members of Parliament, the Commissioner of Elections shall forthwith apportion the balance twenty nine seats among the recognised political parties and independent groups contesting such General Election in the same proportion as the proportion which the number of votes polled by each such party or group at such General Election bears to the total number of votes polled at such General Election and for the purposes of such apportionment, the provisions of paragraphs (4), (5), (6) and (7) of Article 110 shall, mutatis mutandis, apply.

(2) Every recognised political party or independent group contesting a General Election shall submit to the Commissioner of Elections within the nomination period specified for such election a list of persons qualified to be elected as Members of Parliament, from which it may nominate persons to fill the seats, if any, which such party or group will be entitled to, on such apportionment. The Commissioner of Elections shall cause every list submitted to him under this Article to be published forthwith in the Gazette and in one Sinhala, Tamil and English newspaper upon the expiry of the nomination period.

(3) Where a recognised political party or independent group is entitled to a seat under the apportionment referred to in paragraph (2), the Commissioner of Elections shall by a notice, require the secretary of such recognised political party or group leader of such independent group to nominate within one week of such notice, persons qualified to be elected as Members of Parliament (being persons whose names are included in the list submitted to the Commissioner of Elections under this Article or in any nomination paper submitted in respect of any electoral district by such party or group at that election) to fill such seats and shall declare elected as Members of Parliament, the persons so nominated.

(4) The Commissioner of Elections shall before issuing the aforesaid notice determine whether the number of members belonging to any community, ethnic or otherwise, elected to Parliament under Article 111 is commensurate with the national population ratio and request the Secretary of such recognised political party or group leader of such independent group in so nominating persons to be elected as Members of Parliament to ensure as far as practicable, that the representation of all communities is commensurate with their national population ratios.

(5) Where the seat of a Member of Parliament elected under this Article becomes vacant, as provided for in Article 79 or subparagraph (a) of paragraph (13) of Article 111, the provisions of Paragraphs (3) and (4) of this Article shall, mutatis mutandis, apply to the filling of such vacancy.

For the purposes of this Article the number of votes polled at a General Election shall be deemed to be the number of votes actually counted and shall not include any votes rejected as void.

Penalty for sitting and voting in Parliament or Regional Council when disqualified.

113. Any person who -

(a) having been elected a Member of Parliament or a Member of a Regional Council but not having been at the time of such election qualified to be so elected, shall sit or vote in Parliament or such Regional Council, or

(b) shall sit or vote in Parliament or a Regional Council after his seat therein has become vacant or he has become disqualified from sitting or voting therein, knowing or having reasonable grounds for knowing that he was so disqualified or that his seat has become vacant, as the case may be, shall be liable to a penalty of five hundred rupees for every day upon which he so sits or votes to be recovered as a debt due to the Republic by an action instituted by the Attorney-General in the District Court of Colombo.

Parliament may make provision in respect of elections.

114. (1) Parliament may by law make provision for

(a) the registration of electors;

(b) the prescribing of a qualifying date on which a person should be resident in any electoral district to be entered in the register of electors of that electoral district;

(c) the prescribing of a qualifying date on which a person should have attained the age of eighteen years to qualify for the purposes of registration as an elector;

(d) the preparation and revision of registers of electors;

(e) the procedure for the election of Members of Parliament and of Members of Regional Councils;

(f) the creation of offences relating to such elections and the punishment therefore;

(g) the grounds for avoiding such elections, and where an election has been held void the manner of holding fresh elections;

(h) the form and manner in which vacancies shall be filled when all the candidates whose names appearing in the nomination paper of a recognised political party or independent group have been exhausted by election or otherwise;

(i) the manner of determination of disputed elections and such other matters as are necessary or incidental to the election of Members of Parliament and of Members of Regional Councils.

Provided that no such law shall add to the disqualification's specified in Articles 101 and 102.

(2) Until Parliament by law makes provision for such matters, the Parliamentary Elections Act. No. 1 of 1981 and the Provincial Councils Elections Act No. 1 of 1988 as amended from time to time, shall, subject to the provisions of the Constitution, mutatis mutandis, apply, to the election of Members of Parliament and to the election of Members of Regional Councils.

Public Officer or an Officer of a public corporation not to function during period of election.

115. When a public officer or an officer of a public corporation is a candidate at any election of Members of Parliament or of Members of a Regional Council, he shall be deemed to be on leave from the date on which he stands nominated as a candidate until the conclusion of the election. Such a public officer or an officer of a public corporation shall not during such period exercise, perform or discharge any of the powers, duties of functions of his office.

Constitutional Council

Constitutional Council.

116. (1) There shall be a Constitutional Council which shall consist of the following:

(a) the Speaker;

(b) the Prime Minister;

(c) the Leader of the Opposition;

(d) the Chairman of the Chief Minister's Conference;

(e) seven Members of Parliament nominated by the Committee of Selection of Parliament, reflecting as far as practicable the different ethnic and interest groups;

(f) two retired Judges of the Supreme Court or of the Court of Appeal nominated by the Speaker.

(2) The Speaker shall be the Chairman of the Constitutional Council.

(3) A member referred to in sub paragraph (e) of paragraph (1) of this Article shall unless he earlier resigns from office by a letter addressed to the Chairman of the Committee of Selection or is removed from office by such Committee or ceases to be a Member of Parliament, hold office to a period of six years.

Appointment of members of certain Commissions and Public bodies to be on the recommendation of the Constitutional Council.

117. (1) No person shall be appointed as a member of any of the commissions and public bodies specified in Schedule A or as a member of any other public body as Parliament may determine by law, except on the recommendation of the Constitutional Council.

(2) It shall be the duty of the Constitutional Council to recommend to the President, persons for appointment as members of the Commissions or public bodies referred to in Schedule A and in such law whenever the occasion for such appointment arises, and such recommendations shall reflect as far as practicable the different ethnic and interest groups.

Appointment to certain offices to be with the approval of the Constitutional Council.

118. (1) No person shall be appointed to any of the offices specified in Schedule B or as a member of any other public body as Parliament may determine by law, except with the approval of the Constitutional Council.

(2) It shall be the duty of the President to submit for approval to the Constitutional Council, names of persons for appointment to any of the offices referred to in Schedule B or such law whenever the occasion for such appointment arises.

Secretary to the Constitutional Council and procedure at meetings of the Council.

119. (1) There shall be appointed a Secretary to the Constitutional Council appointed by the Council.

(2) The Constitutional Council shall meet as often as may be necessary to perform the duties imposed on such Council by the provisions of this Chapter and such meetings shall be summoned by the Secretary to the Constitutional Council.

(3) The Chairman shall preside at all meetings of the Constitutional Council and in the absence of the Chairman from any meeting of the Constitutional Council, the Prime Minister shall preside at such meeting. In the absence of both Chairman and Prime Minister from any meeting of the Constitutional Council, a member elected by the members present at such meeting shall preside at such meeting.

(4) The quorum for any meeting of the Constitutional Council shall be seven.

(5) The Constitutional Council shall endeavour to make every recommendation or approval it is required to make, by unanimous decision. In the absence of a unanimous decision, the decision of the majority shall prevail.

(6) In the event of an equality of votes on any question for decision at any meeting of the Constitutional Council, the member presiding at such meeting shall have a casting vote.

(7) Subject to the preceding provisions of this Article, the Constitutional Council may regulate the procedure in regard to its meetings and the transaction of business at such meetings.

Other duties and functions of the Constitutional Council.

120. The Constitutional Council shall also perform and discharge such other duties and functions as are prescribed by this Constitution or by law.

Schedule A

(a) the Public Service Commission,

(b) the Commission to Investigate Allegations of Bribery or Corruption,

(c) the Official Languages Commission,

(d) the University Grants Commission,

(e) the Election Commission,

(f) the Finance Commission.

Schedule B

(a) the Attorney General,

(b) the heads of the army, navy and air force and the police force,

(c) the Commissioner of Elections,

(d) the Parliamentary Commissioner for Administration (Ombudsman),

(e) the Auditor-General.

The Judiciary - Institutions for the Administration of Justice

Establishment of Courts etc.

145. (1) Subject to the provisions of the Constitution, the institutions for the administration of justice which protect, vindicate and enforce the rights of the people shall be -

(a) the Supreme Court of the Republic of Sri Lanka, which shall be the highest and final Superior Court of record in the Republic;

(b) the Court of Appeal of the Republic of Sri Lanka;

(c) the High Court established for each Region; and

(d) such courts of First Instance, tribunals or institutions as Parliament may from time to time ordain and establish.

(2) Subject to the provisions of the Constitution, all courts, tribunals and institutions created and established by existing written law for the administration of justice and for the adjudication and settlement of industrial and other disputes, shall be deemed to be courts, tribunals and institutions created and established by Parliament. Parliament may replace or abolish, or amend the powers, duties, jurisdiction and procedure of, such courts, tribunals and institutions.

(3) The Supreme Court, the Court of Appeal, the Regional High Courts and the courts, tribunals and institutions referred to in this Chapter shall have and exercise such powers and jurisdiction conferred on such Courts, Tribunals and Institutions by the Constitution, or subject to the provisions of the Constitution, by existing law as well as any such powers and jurisdiction, appellate or original, as Parliament may by law vest and ordain.

(4) The Supreme Court of the Republic of Sri Lanka and the Court of Appeal of the Republic of Sri Lanka shall each be a superior court of record and shall have all the powers of such court including the power to punish for contempt of itself, whether committed in the court itself or elsewhere, with imprisonment or fine or both as the court may deem fit. The power of the Court of Appeal shall include the power to punish for contempt of any other court, tribunal or institution referred to in sub-paragraphs (c) and (d) of paragraph (1) of this Article, whether committed in the presence of such court or elsewhere: Provided that the preceding provisions of this Article shall not prejudice of affect the rights now or hereafter vested by any law in such other court, tribunal or institution to punish for contempt of itself.

(5) Parliament may by law provide for the creation and establishment of courts, tribunals, or institutions for the adjudication and settlement of matters relating to the discipline of bhikkhus or any dispute between bhikkhus or any other dispute relating to the performance of services in, or in relation to, temples. Such law may, notwithstanding anything to the contrary in this Constitution make provision:

(a) for the appointment, transfer, dismissal and disciplinary control of the member or members of such courts, tribunals or institutions by President or by such other person or body of persons as may be provided for in such law;

(b) for the exclusion of the jurisdiction of any other institution referred to in paragraph (1) of this Article in relation to such matters and disputes.

In this paragraph the expressions ``bhikku'' and ``temple'' shall have the same meanings as in the Buddhist Temporalities Ordinance, as at the commencement of the Constitution.

The Supreme Court and the Court of Appeal

Constitution of the Supreme Court.

146. (1) The Supreme Court shall consist of the Chief Justice and not less than six and not more than ten other judges who shall be appointed as provided for in Article 149.

(2) The Supreme Court shall have power to act notwithstanding any vacancy in its membership. No act or proceeding of the court shall, or shall be deemed to be, invalid by a reason only of any such vacancy or any defect in appointment of a judge.

(3) The several jurisdictions of the Supreme Court shall be ordinarily exercised at Colombo, unless the Chief Justice otherwise directs.

(4) The jurisdiction of the Supreme Court may be exercised in different matters at the same time by the several judges of that Court sitting apart:

Provided that its jurisdiction shall, subject to the provisions of the Constitution, ordinarily be exercised at all times by not less than three judges of the court sitting together as the Supreme Court.

(5) The Chief Justice may, -

(a) of his own motion; or

(b) at the request or two or more judges hearing any matters; or

(c) on the application on a party to any appeal, proceeding or matter, if the question involved is in the opinion of the Chief Justice, one of general and public importance,

direct that such appeal, proceeding or matter be heard by a Bench comprising of five or more judges of the Supreme Court.

(6) The judgement of the Supreme Court shall, when it is not a unanimous decision be the decision of the majority.

(7) Any party proceedings in the Supreme Court in the exercise of its jurisdiction shall have the right to be heard in such proceedings either in person or by representation by an Attorney-at-law.

(8) The Supreme Court may in its discretion, grant to any other person or his legal representative, such hearing as may appear to the court to be necessary in the exercise of its jurisdiction.

(9) The Registrar of the Supreme Court shall be in charge of an officer designated the Registrar of the Supreme Court who shall be subjected to the supervision, direction and control of the Chief Justice.

(10) Subject to the provisions of this Constitution, Parliament may by law confer any additional jurisdiction and powers on the Supreme Court and may vary or remove any jurisdiction of power vested in the Supreme Court by any written law other than by this Constitution.

Rules of the Supreme Court.

147. (1) Subject to the provisions of the Constitution and of any law the Chief Justice with any three Judges of the Supreme Court nominated by him, may, from time to time, make rules regulating generally the practice and procedure of the Court including:

(a) rules as to the procedure for hearing appeals and other matters pertaining to appeals including the terms under which appeals to the Supreme Court, Court of Appeal, and the Regional High Courts are to be entertained and provision for the dismissal of such appeals for non-compliance with such rules;

(b) rules as to the proceedings in the Supreme Court, Court of Appeal, and the Regional High Courts in the exercise of the several jurisdictions conferred on such Courts by the Constitution or by any law, including the time within which such matters may be instituted or brought before such Courts and the dismissal of such matters for non- compliance with such rules;

(c) rules as to the stay of proceedings;

(d) rules providing for the summary determination of any appeal or any other matter before such Court by petition or otherwise, which appears to the Court to be frivolous and vexatious or brought for the purpose of delay;

(e) the preparation of copies of records for the purpose of appeal or other proceedings in the Supreme Court, Court of Appeal, and the Regional High Courts;

(f) the admission, enrolment, suspension and removal of attorneys- at-law and the rules of conduct and etiquette for such attorneys-at- law;

(g) the attire of Judges, attorneys-at-law, officers of Court and persons attending the Courts in Sri Lanka whether established by the constitution, or by Parliament or by existing law;

(h) the manner in which panels of jurors may be prepared, and the mode of summoning, empanelling and challenging of jurors;

(i) proceedings of Fiscal and other ministerial officers of such Courts and the process of such Courts and the mode of executing the same;

(j) the binding effect of the decisions of the Supreme court;

(k) all matters of practice and procedure including the nature and extent of costs that may be awarded, the manner in which such costs may be taxed and the stamping of documents in the Supreme Court, Court of Appeal, Regional High Courts, and Courts of First Instance not specially provided by or under any law.

(2) Every rule made under this Article shall be published in the Gazette and shall come into operation on the date of such publication or on such later date as may be specified in such rule.

(3) All rules made under this Article shall as soon as convenient after their publication in the Gazette be brought before Parliament for approval. Any such rule which is not so approved shall be deemed to be rescinded as from the date it was not so approved, but without prejudice to anything previously done thereunder.

(4) the Chief Justice and any three Judges of the Supreme Court nominated by him may amend, alter or revoke any such rules of Court and such amendment, alteration or revocation of the rules will operate in the like manner as set out in the preceding paragraph with reference to the making of the rules of Court.

(5) All rules made under Article 136 of the 1978 Constitution and in force immediately prior to the commencement of the Constitution shall, mutatis mutandis, be deemed to be rules made and approved under this Article. The rules relating to the Court of Appeal shall, mutatis mutandis, apply to the Regional High Courts in the exercise of their respective appellate, revisionary and writ jurisdictions, and to appeals from Regional High Courts to the Supreme Court and the Court of Appeal.

(6) For the avoidance of doubts it is hereby declared that in the event of any inconsistency between a rule made under this Article and the provision of any law, the provisions of such law shall prevail.

Constitution of the Court of Appeal.

148. (1) The Court of Appeal shall consist of the President of the Court of Appeal and not less than six and not more than eleven judges who shall be appointed as provided in Article 149.

(2) The Court of Appeal shall ordinarily exercise its jurisdiction at Colombo: Provided however, that the Chief Justice may, from time to time when he deems it so expedient direct that the Court of Appeal shall hold its sittings and exercise its jurisdiction in any region, judicial zone or district specified in the direction.

(3) The jurisdiction of the Court of Appeal may be exercised in different matters at the same time by the several judges of the Court sitting apart:

Provided that -

(a) its jurisdiction in respect of -

(i) judgements and orders of a Regional High Court pronounced at a trial at Bar, shall be exercised at least three judges of the Court; and

(ii) other judgements and orders of a Regional High Court, shall be exercised by at least two judges of the Court;

(b) its jurisdiction to try election petitions in respect of the election to membership of Parliament or a Regional Council, shall be exercised by the President of the Court of Appeal or any judge of that court nominated by the President or two or more of such judges nominated by the President of whom such President may be one;

(c) its jurisdiction in respect of other matters shall be exercised by a single judge of the court unless the President of the Court of Appeal by general or special order, otherwise directs.

(4) In the event of any difference of opinion between two judges constituting the Bench, the matter shall be considered by a Bench of three judges.

(5) The judgement of the Court of Appeal shall, when it is not an unanimous decision, be the decision of the majority.

(6) The Registry of the Court of Appeal shall be in charge of an officer designated the Registrar of the Court of Appeal who shall be subject to the supervision, direction and control of the President of the Court of Appeal.

(7) Subject to the provisions of this Constitution, Parliament may by law confer any additional jurisdiction and powers on the Court of Appeal and may vary or remove any jurisdiction or power vested in the Court of Appeal by any written law other than by this Constitution.

The Independence of the Judiciary

Appointment, resignation and removal of Judges of the Supreme Court and Court of Appeal.

149. (1) The Chief Justice shall be appointed by the President by warrant under his hand.

(2) The President of the Court of Appeal and every other Judge of the Supreme Court and Court of Appeal shall be appointed by the President of the Republic by warrant under his hand after ascertaining the views of the Chief Justice.

(3) The Chief Justice and every such Judge shall hold office during good behaviour, and shall not be removed except by an order of the President made after an address of Parliament supported by a majority of the total number of Members of Parliament (including those not present) has been presented to the President for such removal on the ground of proved misbehaviour or incapacity:

Provided that no resolution for the presentation of such an address shall be entertained by the Speaker or placed on the Order Paper of Parliament unless -

(a) notice of such resolution is signed by not less than one-third of the total number of Members of Parliament and sets out full particulars of the alleged misbehaviour or incapacity; and

(b) an inquiry has been held by a Committee consisting of three persons who hold or have held office as a Judge of the Supreme Court or the Court of Appeal and appointed by the speaker to inquire into allegations of misbehaviour or incapacity made against such Judge, and such Committee has determined that a prima facie case of misbehaviour or incapacity has been established against such Judge. In the case of an inquiry in respect of the Chief Justice, the Committee shall consist of three persons each of whom hold, or have held, office as a Judge in the highest court of any Commonwealth country.

(4) Parliament shall by law or by Standing Orders provide for all matters relating to the presentation of such an address including the procedure for the passing of such resolution, the holding of inquiries by a Committee of Parliament for the investigation and proof of the alleged misbehaviour and incapacity and the right of such Judge to appear before and be heard by such Committee in person or by representative.

(5) Every person appointed to be or to act as Chief Justice, President of the Court of Appeal or a Judge of the Supreme Court or Court of Appeal shall not enter upon the duties of his office until he takes and subscribes or makes and subscribes before the President, the oath or the affirmation set out in the ... Schedule.

(6) A Judge of the Supreme Court or of the Court of Appeal shall be entitled to hold office until he reaches the age of sixty five years:

Provided however any such judge may opt to retire on completion of such period of service as would entitle him to the grant of a pension under the Minute on Pensions or resign his office by a writing under his hand addressed to the President, prior to reaching such age.

Salaries of Judges of the Supreme Court and the Court of Appeal

150. (1) The salaries of the Judges of the Supreme Court and of the Court of Appeal shall be determined by Parliament and shall be charged on the Consolidated Fund.

(2) The salary payable to, and the pension entitlement of, a Judge of the Supreme Court and a Judge of the Court of Appeal shall not be reduced after his appointment.

Acting appointments

151. (1) If the Chief Justice or the President of the Court of Appeal is temporarily unable to exercise, perform and discharge the powers, duties and functions of his office by reason of illness, absence from Sri Lanka or any other cause, the President shall appoint, another judge of the Supreme Court, or of the Court of Appeal, as the case may be, to act in the office of Chief Justice, or President of the Court of Appeal, as the case may be, during such period.

(2) If any Judge of the Supreme Court or of the Court of Appeal is temporarily unable to exercise, perform and discharge the powers, duties and functions of his office, by reason of illness, absence from Sri Lanka or any other cause, the President may appoint another person to act as a Judge of the Supreme Court, or Court of Appeal, as the case may be, during such period.

Performance or discharge of other duties or functions by Judges.

152. (1) A Judge of the Supreme Court or Court of Appeal may be required by the President of the Republic to perform or discharge any other appropriate duties or functions under any written law.

(2) No Judge of the Supreme Court or Court of Appeal shall perform any other office (whether paid or not) or accept any place of profit or emolument, except as authorised by the Constitution or by written law or with the written consent of the President.

(3) No person who had held office as a permanent Judge of the Supreme Court or of the Court of Appeal may appear, plead, act or practice in any court, tribunal or institution as an attorney-at-law at any time after retirement or resignation without the written consent of the President or accept any place of profit in the public service.

Regional High Court Judges

153. (1) Every Judge of a Regional High Court shall be appointed by the President of the Republic by warrant under his hand after ascertaining the views of the Chief Justice, and shall be removable, and be subject to disciplinary control, by the President on the recommendation of the National Judicial Service Commission.

(2) Every person appointed as a Judge of a Regional High Court shall not enter upon the duties of his office until he takes and subscribes, or makes and subscribes, the oath or affirmation set out in... Schedule.

(3) The Judge of a Regional High Court shall be entitled to hold office until he reaches the age of sixty five years:

Provided however that any such Judge may opt to retire on completion the period of service which entitles him for the grant of a pension under the Minute on Pensions, or resign from his office by writing under his hand addressed to the President, prior to reaching such age.

(4) A Regional High Court Judge may be transferred by the President on the recommendation of the Chief Justice.

National Judicial Service Commission

154. (1) There shall be a National Judicial Service Commission (in his Chapter referred to as the ``Commission'') appointed by the President of the Republic which shall consist of the Chief Justice who shall be the chairman and two other Judges of the Supreme Court, appointed by the President, one of whom shall have been a judicial officer with original Court experience.

(2) The quorum for any meeting of the Commission shall be two members.

(3) The Commission shall have power to act notwithstanding any vacancy in its membership, and no act or proceeding by the Commission shall, or be deemed to be, invalid by reason only of any such vacancy or any defect in the appointment of a member.

(4) A Judge appointed as a member of the Commission shall, unless he earlier resigns his office or is removed therefrom as hereinafter provided or ceases to be a Judge of the Supreme Court, hold office for a period of five years from the date of his appointment, but shall be eligible for reappointment.

(5) The President may for cause assigned remove from office any member of the Commission appointed by him.

(6) The President may grant to any member of the Commission leave from his duties, and may appoint a person qualified to be a member of the commission to be a temporary member for the period of such leave.

(7) A member of the Commission may be paid such salary or allowance as may be determined by Parliament. Any salary or allowance payable to a member shall be charged on the Consolidated Fund and shall not be diminished during his term of office. The salary so payable shall be in addition to the salary or other emoluments attached to, and received from, his substantive appointment.

(8) The Commission may -

(a) advise a Regional Judicial Service Commission whenever such Regional Judicial Service Commission seeks the advice of the Commission on any matter relating to the exercise by such Regional Judicial Service Commission of the power conferred on it by this Constitution;

(b) make rules regarding schemes for recruitment and procedure for the appointment of scheduled public officers;

(c) determine the principles and procedure to be followed by Regional Judicial Service Commissions in the exercise of the powers of appointment, transfer, dismissal and disciplinary control of Judicial Officers and scheduled regional public officers conferred on such Commissions by the Constitution, including formulation of schemes of recruitment, and principles to be followed in making promotions and transfers, relating to such Judicial Officers and scheduled regional public officers;

(d) determine the principles to be followed by Regional Public Service Commissions in giving directions to judicial officers as to the proper and efficient administration of the Courts to which such judicial officers are appointed;

(e) make provision for such matters as are necessary or expedient for the exercise, performance and discharge of the powers, duties and functions of such Commission.

Secretary to the National Judicial Service Commission

155. There shall be a Secretary to the Commission who shall be appointed, for a period not exceeding three years, by the Judicial Service Commission. The Secretary shall be appointed from among senior judicial officers appointed by Regional Judicial Service Commissions.

Appointment, transfer, disciplinary control of Judicial Officers and scheduled Public Officers.

156. (1) The transfer from one Region to another, of judicial officers appointed by Regional Judicial Service Commissions, and notwithstanding, anything to the contrary in Chapter XIX, the appointment, transfer, dismissal and disciplinary control of scheduled public officers, is vested in the Commission.

(2) The Commission may, by Order published in the Gazette, delegate to the Secretary to the Commission the power to make all transfers, other than transfers involving increase of salary, of scheduled public officers or to make acting appointments in such cases and subject to such limitations as may be specified in the Order.

(3) The Chairman of the Commission or any Judge of the Supreme Court, or Court of Appeal authorised by the Chairman of the Commission, shall have full power and authority to inspect any Court of First Instance or the records, registers or other documents maintained in such court and to hold such inquiry as may be necessary.

(4) In this Article

``appointment'' includes an acting or temporary appointment;

``scheduled public officer'' means the Registrar of the Supreme Court, the Registrar of the Court of Appeal, the Fiscal, or any public officer employed in the Registry of the Supreme Court, or the Court of Appeal, included in a category specified in the Fifth Schedule or in such other categories as may be specified by Order made by the Minister in charge of the subject of Justice, and approved by Parliament and published in the Gazette.

Interference with National Judicial Service Commission or Regional Judicial Service Commission, an offence.

157. Every person who, otherwise than in the course of his duty directly or indirectly by himself or by any other person, in any manner or indirectly by himself or by any other person, in any manner whatsoever, influences or attempt to influence any decision of the Commission or of any member thereof, or a Regional Judicial Service Commission or of any member thereof, shall be guilty of an offence and shall on conviction, by the High Court after trial without a jury, be liable to a fine not exceeding one thousand rupees or to imprisonment for a term not exceeding one year or to both such fine and imprisonment:

Provided that nothing in this Article shall prohibit any person from giving a certificate or testimonial to any applicant or candidate for any judicial office.

Interference with Judiciary an offence

158. (1) Every Judge, presiding officer, public officer or other person entrusted by law with judicial powers or functions under this Chapter or with similar functions under any law enacted by Parliament shall exercise and perform such powers and functions without being subject to any direction or other interference proceeding from any other person except a superior court, tribunal, institution or other person entitled under law to direct or supervise such judge, presiding officer, public officer or such other person in the exercise or performance of such powers or functions.

(2) Every person who, without legal authority, interferes or attempts to interfere with the exercise or performance of the judicial powers of functions or any judge, presiding officer, public officer or such other person as is referred to in paragraph (1) of this Article, shall be guilty of an offence punishable by the High Court on conviction after trial without a jury with imprisonment of either description for a term which may extend to a period of one year or with fine or with both such imprisonment and fine and may, in addition, be disqualified for a period not exceeding seven years from the date of such conviction from being an elector and from voting at a Referendum or at any election of Members of Parliament or of Members of a Regional Council or any local authority or from holding any public office and from being employed as a public officer or as an officer in a regional Public Service.

Immunity of members of Commission

159. No suit or proceedings shall lie against any member of the Commission for any act which in good faith is done or is purported to be done by him in the performance of his duties or discharge of his functions under the Constitution.

Fiscal

160. There shall be a Fiscal who shall be the Fiscal for the whole Island and shall exercise supervision and control other Deputy Fiscal attached to all Courts.

The Judiciary -

Jurisdiction of the Supreme Court and

Court of Appeal

The Supreme Court

Jurisdiction of the Supreme Court with respect to Bills

161. The Supreme Court shall have sole and exclusive jurisdiction to determine any question as to whether any Bill or any provision thereof is inconsistent with the Constitution:

Provided that -

(a) in the case of a Bill described in its long title as being for the amendment of any provision of the Constitution, or for the repeal and replacement of the Constitution, the only question which the Supreme Court may determine is whether such Bill requires approval by the People at a Referendum by virtue of the provisions of Article 95;

(b) where the Cabinet of Ministers certifies that a Bill, which is described in its long title as being for the amendment of any provision of the Constitution, or for the repeal and replacement of the Constitution is intended to be passed with the special majority required by Article 94 and submitted to the People by Referendum, the Supreme Court shall have and exercise no jurisdiction in respect of such Bill;

(c) where the Cabinet of Ministers certifies that a Bill which is not described in its long title as being for the amendment of any provision of the Constitution, or for the repeal and replacement of the Constitution, is intended to be passed with the special majority required by Article 96, the only question which the Supreme Court may determine is whether such Bill requires approval by the People at a Referendum by virtue of the provisions of Article 95 or whether such Bill is required to comply with paragraphs (1) and (2) of Article 94; or

(d) where the Cabinet of Ministers certifies that any provision of any Bill which is not described in its long title as being for the amendment of any provision of the Constitution or for the repeal and replacement of the Constitution is intended to be passed with the special majority required by Article 96 the only question which the Supreme Court may determine is whether any other provisions or such Bill requires to be passed with the special majority required by Article 96 or whether any provision of such Bill requires the approval by the People at a Referendum by virtue of the provisions of Article 95 or whether such Bill is required to comply with the provisions of paragraph (1) and (2) of Article 94.

Ordinary exercise of Jurisdiction of Supreme Court with respect to Bills.

162. (1) The jurisdiction of the Supreme Court to ordinarily determine any such question as aforesaid may be invoked by the President by a written reference addressed to the Chief Justice, or by any citizen by a petition in writing addressed to the Supreme Court. Such reference shall be made, or such petition shall be filed, within one week of the Bill being placed on the Order Paper of Parliament, and a copy thereof shall at the same time be delivered to the Speaker. In this paragraph ``citizen'' includes a body, whether incorporated or unincorporated or, if not less than three-fourths of the members of such body are citizens.

(2) Where the jurisdiction of the Supreme Court has been so invoked no proceedings shall be had in Parliament in relation to such Bill until the determination of the Supreme Court has been made, or the expiration of a period of three weeks from the date of such reference or petition, which ever occurs first.

(3) The Supreme Court shall make and communicate its determination to the President and to the Speaker within three weeks of the making of the reference or the filing of the petition, as the case may be.

Special exercise of Jurisdiction of Supreme Court with respect to Bills

163. (1) In the case of a Bill which is, in the view of the Cabinet of Ministers, urgent in the national interest, and bears an endorsement to that effect under the hand of the Secretary to the Cabinet of Ministers -

(a) the provisions of Article 89 (1) and Article 162, shall subject to the provisions of paragraph (2) of this Article, have no application;

(b) the President shall by a written reference addressed to the Chief Justice, require the special determination of the Supreme Court as to whether the Bill or any provision thereof is inconsistent with the Constitution. A copy of such reference shall at the same time be delivered to the Speaker;

(c) the Supreme Court shall make its determination within twenty- four hours (or such longer period not exceeding three days as the President may specify) of the assembling of the Court, and shall communicate its determination only to the President and the Speaker.

(2) The provisions of paragraph (2) of Article 162 shall, mutatis mutandis, apply to such Bill.

Determination of Supreme Court in respect of Bills.

164. (1) The determination of the Supreme Court shall be accompanied by the reasons therefor, and shall state whether the Bill or any provisions thereof in inconsistent with the Constitution and if so, which provision or provisions of the Constitution.

(2) Where the Supreme Court determines that the Bill or any provision thereof is inconsistent with the Constitution, it shall also state -

(a) whether such Bill is required to comply with the provisions of paragraphs (1) and (2) of Article 94, or

(b) whether such Bill or any provision thereof may only be passed by the special majority required under the provisions of paragraph (2) of Article 96; or

(c) whether such Bill or any provision thereof requires to be passed by the special majority required under the provisions of paragraph (2) of Article 96 and approved by the People at a referendum by virtue of the provisions of Article 95,

and may specify the nature of the amendments which would make the Bill or such provision cease to be inconsistent.

(3) In the case of a Bill endorsed as provided in Article 163, if the Supreme Court entertains a doubt whether the Bill or any provision thereof is inconsistent with the Constitution, it shall be deemed to have been determined that the Bill or such provision of the Bill is inconsistent with the Constitution and the Supreme Court shall comply with the provisions of paragraphs (1) and (2) of this Article.

(4) Where any Bill or any provision of any Bill has been determined to be inconsistent with the Constitution, such Bill or such provision shall not be passed except in the manner stated in the determination of the Supreme Court:

Provided that it shall be lawful for such Bill to be passed after such amendment as would make the Bill cease to be inconsistent with the Constitution.

Power of review of Acts passed after commencement of the Constitution

165. (1) The Supreme Court shall, on its jurisdiction being invoked under paragraph (2) and subject to the provisions of this Article, have sole and exclusive jurisdiction to determine whether any Act of Parliament passed after the commencement of this Constitution or any provision thereof is inconsistent with any provision of Chapter III of this Constitution and where it so determines, to declare that Act or provision void to the extent of that inconsistency, without prejudice to anything previously done thereunder.

(2) The jurisdiction of the Supreme Court to determine any such question as aforesaid, may be invoked by any citizen by a petition in writing addressed to the Supreme Court filed within two years of the enactment of the Bill by Parliament. In this paragraph ``citizen'' includes a body, whether incorporated or unincorporated, if not less than three fourths of the members of such body are citizens.

(3) Save as otherwise provided in Article 161, 162, 163 and this Article, no Court or Tribunal created and established for the administration of justice or other institution, person or body of persons shall in relation to any Bill, have power or jurisdiction to inquire into or pronounce upon, the constitutionality of such Bill or its due compliance with the legislative process on any ground whatsoever.

Jurisdiction of the Supreme Court in respect of statutes of Regional Councils

166. (1) The Supreme Court shall have sole and exclusive jurisdiction to determine any question as to whether in Statute passed by a Regional Council or any provision thereof is inconsistent with the Constitution.

(2) The jurisdiction of the Supreme Court to ordinarily determine any such question as aforesaid shall be invoked by a Regional Attorney General by a petition in writing addressed to the Supreme Court, in every case where such Regional Attorney General has communicated an opinion to the Governor, the Chief Minister and the Board of Ministers of the Region, prior to the passing of that Statute, that the draft statute or any provision thereof is inconsistent with the Constitution, and the Statute has been passed despite such opinion.

(3) Where the jurisdiction of the Supreme Court has been so invoked in respect of a Statute, such Statute shall be inoperative until the Supreme Court has made a determination thereon as to its consistency with the Constitution.

(4) The Supreme Court shall make and communicate its determination to the President and to the Speaker of the Regional Council making such statute.

(5) Whenever any question as to whether a Statute passed by a Regional Council or any provision thereof is inconsistent with the Constitution arises in the course of any proceedings in any Court or tribunal or other institution empowered by law to administer justice or to exercise judicial or quasi-judicial functions, such question shall forthwith be referred to the Supreme Court for determination. The Supreme Court may direct that further proceedings be stayed pending the determination of such question.

(6) Where the Supreme Court determines that a Statute is inconsistent with any provision of the Constitution it may declare such Statute or provision thereof void to the extent of such inconsistency.

Constitutional Jurisdiction in respect of the interpretation of the Constitution.

167. (1) The Supreme Court shall have sole and exclusive jurisdiction to hear and determine any question relating to the interpretation of the Constitution, and accordingly, whenever any such question arises in the course of any proceedings in any Court or tribunal or other institution empowered by law to administer justice or to exercise judicial or quasi-judicial functions, such question shall forthwith be referred to the Supreme Court for determination. The Supreme Court may direct that further proceedings be stayed pending the determination of such question.

(2) The Supreme Court may, when determining such matter, also make any such consequential Order as the circumstances of the case may require.

Jurisdiction regarding fundamental and language rights.

168. (1) The Supreme Court shall have sole and exclusive jurisdiction to hear and determine any question relating to the infringement or imminent infringement by State action including executive or administrative action, of any fundamental right or language right declared and recognised by Chapter III or Chapter IV or by judicial action by courts exercising original criminal jurisdiction, of a fundamental right declared and recognised under Article 10.

(2) Where any person alleges that any such fundamental right or language right relating to such person has been infringed or is about to be infringed by State action including executive or administrative action, or by judicial action he may himself or by an Attorney-at-law or a person or a body of persons in terms or Article 26, on his behalf, within three months thereof, in accordance with such rules of Court as may be in force, apply to the Supreme Court by way of petition in writing addressed to such Court praying for relief or redress in respect of such infringement. Such application may be proceeded with only with leave to proceed first had an obtained from the Supreme Court, which leave may be granted or refused as the case may be by not less than two Judges of such Court.

(3) Where in the course of hearing in any Court, of an application for orders in the nature of a writ of habeas corpus, Certiorari, prohibition, mandamus or quo warranto, it appears to such Court that there is prima facie evidence of an infringement or imminent infringement of the provisions of Chapter III or Chapter IV by a party to such application, such Court shall forthwith refer such matter for determination by the Supreme Court.

(4) The Supreme Court shall have power to grant such relief or make such directions as it may deem just and equitable in the circumstances in respect of any petition or reference referred to in paragraphs (2) or (3) of this Article or refer the matter back to the Court if, in its opinion, there is no infringement of a fundamental right or language right.

Provided that in the case of an infringement of a fundamental right by judicial action no order for compensation or costs shall be made against a judicial officer who had acted bona fide and the Supreme Court may order the State to pay any compensation or costs.

(5) Where at the hearing of a petition or reference referred to in paragraph (2) or (3) there are any disputed questions of fact, the Supreme Court may refer such questions to the Human Rights Commission or other appropriate body or person for inquiry and report.

(6) The Supreme Court shall hear and finally dispose of any petition or reference under this Article as expeditiously as possible and in any event, not later than three months of the filing of the petition or the making of the reference, as the case may be. In computing the period of three months, any period taken for inquiry and report by the Human Rights Commission or any other body or person referred to in paragraph (5) shall be excluded.

Consultative jurisdiction.

169. (1) If at any time it appears to the President of the Republic that a question of law or fact has arisen or is likely to arise which is of such nature and of such public importance that it is expedient to obtain the opinion of the Supreme Court, upon it he may refer that question to that Court for consideration and the Court may, after such hearing as it thinks fit, within the period specified in such reference or within such time as may be extended by the President, report to the President its opinion thereon.

(2) Every proceeding under paragraph (1) of this Article shall be held in private unless the Court for special reasons otherwise directs.

Jurisdiction in respect of Validity of Referendum.

170. The Supreme Court shall have to power hear and determine and make such orders as are provided for by law on any legal proceeding relating to the validity of a referendum.

Jurisdiction in respect of Parliamentary Privilege.

171. The Supreme Court shall have, according to law, the power to make cognisance of, and punish, any person for the breach of the privileges of Parliament.

Appellate Jurisdiction.

172. (1) The Supreme Court shall, subject to the Constitution, be the final Court of civil and criminal appellate jurisdiction for and within the Republic of Sri Lanka for the correction of all errors in fact or in law which shall be committed by the Court of Appeal in any case or by a Regional High Court in the exercise of its appellate or revisionary jurisdiction or by or any Court of First Instance, tribunal or other institution from which a right of appeal direct to the Supreme Court has been provided by law and the judgements and orders of the Supreme Court shall in all cases be final and conclusive in all such matters.

(2) The Supreme Court shall, in the exercise of its jurisdiction, have sole and exclusive cognisance by way of appeal, where any appeal lies in law to the Supreme Court, from any order, judgement, decree, or sentence made by -

(a) the Court of Appeal, or

(b) Regional High Court in the exercise of appellate or revisionary jurisdiction, and it may affirm, reverse or vary any such order, judgement, decree or sentence of the Court of Appeal, or a Regional High Court or of any court of first instance, tribunal or institution where a right of appeal direct to the Supreme Court has been provided by law, and may issue such directions to any Court of First Instance, tribunal or institution or order a new trial or further hearing in any proceedings as the justice of the case may require, and may also call for and admit fresh or additional evidence if the interests of justice so demands and may in such event, direct that such evidence be recorded by the Court of Appeal, a Regional High Court or any Court of First Instance.

Right of Appeal.

173. (1) An appeal shall lie to the Supreme Court from any final order, Judgement, decree or sentence of

(a) the Court of Appeal or

(b) a Regional High Court in the exercise of appellate or revisionary jurisdiction,

In any matter or proceedings, whether civil or criminal, which involves a substantial question of law, if the Court of Appeal, or the Regional High Court, as the case may be, grants leave to appeal to the Supreme Court ex mero motu or at the instance of any aggrieved party to such matter or proceedings;

(2) The Supreme Court may, in its discretion, grant special leave to appeal to the Supreme Court from any final or interlocutory order, judgement, decree, or sentence made by the Court of Appeal, or by a Regional High Court in the exercise of its appellate or revisionary jurisdiction, in any matter or proceedings, whether civil or criminal, where such Court has refused to grant leave to appeal to the Supreme Court, or where in the opinion of the Supreme Court, the case or matter is fit for review by the Supreme Court.

Provided that the Supreme Court shall grant leave to appeal in every matter or proceedings in which it is satisfied that the question to be decided is of public or general importance.

(3) An appeal shall lie directly to the Supreme Court on any matter and in the manner specifically provided for by any other law passed by Parliament.

In this paragraph, ``law'' includes existing law.

Review of judgements and orders of Supreme Court.

174. The Chief Justice may, on application made within a reasonable time, by an aggrieved party direct that any judgement pronounced, or order made, by the Supreme Court be reviewed by a fuller bench of judges where the question involved relates to the interpretation of the Constitution and which question had not been considered in such judgement or order.

Right of the Attorney-General to be heard.

175. The Attorney-General shall be noticed and have the right to be heard in all proceedings in the Supreme Court in the exercise of its jurisdiction under Articles 161, 162, 163, 165, 166, 167, 168, 169, 170 and 171 of the Constitution.

Supreme Court to give priority to the hearing of certain matters.

176. The Supreme Court shall give priority to the hearing and determination of any matter in respect of which its jurisdiction under this Chapter is invoked and shall, subject to any stipulation as to time specified by Articles 161 to 172 in this Chapter, dispose of such matter as expeditiously as possible.

The Court of Appeal

Jurisdiction of the Court of Appeal

177. (1) The Court of Appeal shall have and exercise subject to the provisions of the Constitution or of any law, an appellate jurisdiction for the correction of all errors in fact or in law which shall be committed by a Regional High Court in the exercise of its original jurisdiction and by any Court of First Instance, tribunal or other institution and sole and exclusive cognisance, by way of appeal, revision and restitutio in integrum, of all causes, suits, actions, prosecutions, matters and things of which such Court, tribunal or other institution may have taken cognisance;

Provided that no judgement, decree or order of any court shall be reversed or varied on account of any error, defect or irregularity, which has not prejudiced the substantial rights of the parties or occasioned a failure of justice.

(2) The Court of Appeal shall also have and exercise all such powers and jurisdiction, appellate and original, as Parliament may by law vest or ordain.

Powers in Appeal

178. (1) The Court of Appeal may in the exercise of its jurisdiction affirm, reverse, correct or modify any order, judgement, decree or sentence according to law or it may give directions to such Court, tribunal or other institution or order a new trial or further hearing upon such terms as the Court of Appeal shall think fit.

(2) The Court of Appeal may further receive and admit new evidence additional to, or supplementary of, the evidence already taken in such Court touching the matters at issue in any original case, suit, prosecution or action, as the justice of the case may require.

Powers to issue writs other than writs of habeas corpus.

179. Subject to the provisions of the Constitution, the Court of Appeal shall have full power and authority to inspect and examine the records of any Court of First Instance or tribunal or other institution, and grant and issue according to law, orders in the nature writs of certiorari, prohibition, mandamus and quo warranto against the judge of any Court of First Instance or tribunal or other institution or any other person;,

Provided that Parliament may by law provide that in such category of cases as may be specified in such law, the jurisdiction conferred on the Court of Appeal by this Article shall be exercised by the Supreme Court and not by the Court of Appeal.

Powers to issue writs of habeas corpus. 180. The Court of Appeal may grant and issue orders in the nature of writs of habeas corpus to bring up before such Court.

(a) the body of any person to be dealt with according to law; or

(b) the body of any person illegally or improperly detained in public or private custody, and to discharge or remand any person so brought up or otherwise deal with such persons according to law;

Provided that it shall be lawful for the Court of Appeal to require the body of such person to be brought up before the most convenient Court of First Instance and to direct the judge of such Court to inquire into and report upon the acts of the alleged imprisonment or detention and to make such provision for the interim custody of the body produced as to such court shall seem right; and the Court of Appeal shall upon the receipt of such report, make order to discharge or remand the person so alleged to be imprisoned or detained or otherwise deal with such person according to law, and the Court of First Instance shall conform to, and carry into immediate effect, the order so pronounced or made by the Court of Appeal;

Provided further, that if provision be made by law for the exercise by any court of jurisdiction in respect of the custody and control of minor children, then the Court of Appeal, if satisfied that any dispute regarding the custody of any such minor child may more properly be dealt with by such court, direct the parties to make application in that court in respect of the custody of such minor child.

Powers to bring up and remove prisoners.

181. The Court of Appeal may direct:-

(i) that a prisoner detained in any prison be brought before a court-martial or any Commissioners acting under the authority of any commission from the President of the Republic for trial or to be examined relating to any matters pending before any such court-martial or Commissioners respectively; or

(ii) that a prisoner detained in prison be removed from one custody to another for purpose of trial.

Power to grant Injunctions

182. The Court of Appeal shall have the power to grant and issue injunctions to prevent any irremediable mischief which might ensure before a party making an application for such injunction could prevent the same by bringing an action in any Court of First Instance:

Provided that it shall not be lawful for the Court of Appeal to grant an injunction to prevent a party to any action in any court from appealing to or prosecuting an appeal to the Court of Appeal or to prevent any party to any action in any court from insisting upon any ground of action, defense or appeal, or to prevent any person from suing or prosecuting in any court, except where such person has instituted two separate actions in two different courts for and in respect of the same cause or action, in which case the Court of Appeal shall have the power to intervene by restraining him from prosecuting one or other of such actions as to it may seem fit.

Election petitions:

183. The Court of Appeal shall have and exercise jurisdiction to try election petitions in respect of the election to the membership of Parliament or to a Regional Council in terms of any law for the time being applicable in that behalf.

Inspection of Records:

184. The Court of Appeal may, ex memo motu or on any application made, call for, inspect and examine any record pertaining to the exercise of original jurisdiction by a Regional High Court and any record of any Court of First Instance and in the exercise of its revisionary powers may make any order thereon as the interests of justice may require.