Pro tempore

Pro tempore

Literal Meaning

For the Time Being.

Explanation & Origin

Pro tempore is a Latin phrase which best translates to “for the time being” in English. This phrase is often used to describe a person who acts as a locum tenens (placeholder) in the absence of a superior. Legislative bodies can have one or more pro tempore for the presiding officer. These positions ostensibly goes to legislators experienced in floor debate who are familiar with the content and application of relevant rules and precedents and who have a reputation for fairness among their colleagues.

For the time being is the literal translation. And it can also mean temporary  Legislative bodies can have one or more pro tempore for the post of presiding officer. These positions ostensibly go to legislators experienced in floor debate who are familiar with the content and application of relevant rules and precedents and who have a reputation for fairness among their colleagues. Pro-tem speaker is a temporary speaker appointed for a limited period of time to conduct the works in the lower House of Parliament after the General elections. 

Illustration

Virendra Kumar has been sworn in as pro-tem speaker of 17th Lok Sabha.

Case Reference

In the case of The State Of Andhra Pradesh … vs Mohd. Khutubuddin Khan And Anr[1] it was observed that Sri Bahauddin Khan Saheb, Deputy Director of Customs being confirmed as per the opinion of the Public Service Commission, Sri Kutubuddin Khan Saheb, H. C. S., Deputy Director of Customs is held and declared to be senior to the officer mentioned first.”From these documents, it is apparent that the respondent was not confirmed in the ‘substantive pro tempore’ post but despite it, it was conceded that he was senior to another person who was his junior though confirmed. It is difficult to hold, as the learned advocate for the respondent contends, that the order of the Chief Civil Administrator under Exhibit P-5 should be deemed to be a confirmation because it ‘pro tanto’ amounts to that when he is directed to be placed above a confirmed person in order of seniority. If that was the intention, the order would have said so. Whatever be the significance of the order vis-a-vis the question of confirmation, what we have to determine, as already indicated, is whether an appointment ‘sub pro tempore’ confers a right to the post on the respondent. Mr. Gangadhara Rao, the learned advocate for the 1st appellant, contends that, under the Rules since the respondent has no lien over the post, it should he deemed to be a temporary post and as such, the Government Is justified in reverting him without assigning any reasons. From these documents, it is apparent that the respondent was not confirmed in the ‘substantive protempore’ post but despite it, it was conceded that he was senior to another person who was his junior though confirmed. It is difficult to hold, as the learned advocate for the respondent contends, that the order of the Chief Civil Administrator under Exhibit P-5 should be deemed to be a confirmation because it ‘pro tanto’ amounts to that when he is directed to be placed above a confirmed person in order of seniority. If that was the intention, the order would have said so. Whatever be the significance of the order vis-a-vis the question of confirmation, what we have to determine, as already indicated, is whether an appointment ‘sub pro tempore’ confers a right to the post on the respondent. Mr. Gangadhara Rao, the learned advocate for the 1st appellant, contends that, under the Rules since the respondent has no lien over the post, it should he deemed to be a temporary post and as such, the Government Is justified in reverting him without assigning any reasons. An officer holding a substantive appointment may be deputed to fill a temporary or permanent appointment without losing lien on his substantive or ‘substantive pro tempore’ appointment or even his officiating appointment so long as it is not resumed by an officer having a superior lien.

In the case of Shri Avtar Singh Hit And Ors. vs The Delhi State And Ors[2] it was observed Nomination of office-bearers When a member of the Committee is to be elected as President, Senior Vice-President, Junior Vice-President, General Secretary or Joint Secretary, the pro tempore Chairman in the matter of election of President and President in the matter of Election of other office bearers shall call upon the members present at the meeting to nominate candidates for the vacant office. Provided that if any objection is raised under sub-section (3) of section 16 to the nomination of any candidate, the pro tempore Chairman or the President, as the case may be may make summary enquiry and shall not enter the name of the candidate in the list if he is not satisfied that the candidate fulfils the qualifications laid down in the said sub-section.

In the case of Purushottamlal Kaushik vs. Vidyacharan Shukla[3]  it was observed According to the learned counsel for the petitioner, the disqualification under Section 8(2) is attracted as soon as the conviction and sentence of imprisonment for not less than two years is recorded irrespective of the fact whether the sentence is executed or it remains suspended and continues for the specified period since his release. In other words, the two termini for fixing the total period of disqualification are the date of such conviction and the date of release, the total period being extended by deferring the date of release, if there be suspension of sentence after it is passed; and there is no other consequence of suspension of sentence. At any rate, disqualification commences automatically as soon as such conviction is made, there being nothing to arrest it till either the conviction is set aside or the specified period expires after the date of release. On the other hand, learned counsel for the respondent has advanced a two-fold argument. He contends that the word ‘convicted’ in Section 8(2)refers to the final conviction by the last Court where an appeal or revision has been filed and not conviction by the trial Court or a ‘pro tempore’ conviction liable to be set aside in appeal. On this basis, he urges that the disqualification under Section 8(2) could never be attracted where the trial Court’s conviction is challenged in appeal and is later set aside. Section 8(3) relied on by learned counsel for the petitioner to show that it is merely an exception to Section 8(2) for the benefit of sitting members is explained by Shri Rajendra Singh as indicating that no order of suspension by the appellate court is needed by a sitting member even though it becomes necessary for a person who is not a sitting member on the date of his conviction. The other argument of Shri Rajendra Singh is that an order of suspension under Section 389, Cr. P. C. has the effect of arresting the operation of Section 8(2) and consequently the disqualification.

Edited by Vigneshwar Ramasubramania

Approved & Published – Sakshi Raje

Reference

[1] AIR 1964 AP 491, (1966) IILLJ 350 AP

[2] AIR 2000 Delhi 196

[3] AIR 1980 MP 188

 

Previous articleRemedy for the lost passport
Next articlePublici Juris
Hello. We are team members of Law Times Journal. Editorial members at Law Times Journal is a team of writers led by Vedanta Yadav. Want to become a writer at Law Times Journal? Send your current work/resume with title "Resume-Editor" at vedantayadav@lawtimesjournal.in