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Indian parliament: essay on indian parliament.

essay on indian parliament

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Indian Parliament: Essay on Indian Parliament!

The Parliament of the Indian Union consists of two Houses: the Rajya Sabha (Council of States) and the Lok Sabha (House of the People).

These two houses and the President together constitute the Parliament of India. The object behind the creation of the Rajya Sabha is to provide for a second chamber so that legislation passed by one House can be reviewed and altered if needed by the other.

Rajya Sabha is a continuing chamber as it is a permanent body not subject to dissolution. One-third of its members retire at the end of every two years and elections are held for the vacant positions. A member of Rajya Sabha has a six year term, unless he resigns or is disqualified.

Lok Sabha is the lower or the popular chamber of the Indian Parliament. Under the Constitution not more than 525 members are to be chosen by direct election from territorial constituencies in the States and not more than 20 members to represent the Union Territories. In addition, two members of the Anglo-Indian community may be nominated by the President if he is of the opinion that the community is not adequately represented in the Lok Sabha.

The President has the right to summon, prorogue and dissolve the Parliament. The power to dissolve and to prorogue is exercised by the President on the advice of his Council of Ministers. The dissolution brings the life of Lok Sabha to an end while prorogation merely terminates a session. Adjournment does not put an end to the existence of a session but merely postpones further transaction of business for a specified time, whereas prorogation puts an end to all business except Pending Bills.

Each house of Parliament has its own presiding officers. Lok Sabha has a Speaker as its principal presiding officer and a Deputy Speaker to assist him and officiate as presiding officer in his absence. The Rajya Sabha is presided over by the Chairperson, assisted by a Deputy Chairperson. The latter performs all the duties and functions of the former in case of his/her absence.

The Speaker of the Lok Sabha enjoys very wide and extensive powers. The Speaker presides over the sitting of the Lok Sabha and conducts the proceedings, maintains order and decorum in the House and decides points of order, interprets and applies rules of the House.

The Speaker represents the whole House and it is on his impartiality that the success of parliamentary polity depends. Whenever the Speaker is absent, the Deputy Speaker presides over the deliberations of the House and exercise all the powers of the Speaker under the Rules of Procedure.

The Vice-President of India is the ex-officio Chairperson of the Council of States; but during any period when the Vice-President acts as President or discharges the functions of the President, he does not perform the duties of the office of the Chieftain of the Council of States. The Chairperson of the Rajya Sabha is assisted by a Deputy Chairperson chosen from the Council of States from amongst its members.

Powers and Functions of the Parliament:

Under the cabinet system of government, the first function of Parliament is to select the group which will form the government, support, and sustain it in power as long as it enjoys its confidence. The second function of the Parliament is to make laws for the country. The third function of Parliament is to control the purse of the nation. The fourth function of Parliament is the scrutiny and control of administration.

The fifth function of Parliament is to serve as a kind of Constituent Assembly when necessary to amend the Constitution through the procedure laid down for the purpose. The sixth function of Parliament is to serve as an electoral college to elect the President and the Vice-President.

Privileges and Immunities of Parliament and Its Members:

Both the Houses of Parliament as well as of a State Legislature have similar privileges under the Constitution. The privileges of each House may be divided into two groups: (i) those enjoyed by the members individually and (ii) those which belong to each House of Parliament as a collective body.

Privileges of Individual Members:

(i) freedom from arrest:.

Section 135A of the C.P. code, as amended by Act 104 of 1976 exempts a member from arrest during the continuance of a meeting of the Chamber or Committee of which he is a member or of a joint sitting of the Chambers or Committee, and during a period of 40 days before and after such meeting or sitting, in civil or original cases.

This privilege also means that no member can be arrested within the precincts of the Parliament without the permission of the House to which he belongs. A member can be arrested outside the walls of the House on cases under Preventive Detention or Maintenance of Internal Security or any other such Act.

It is, how­ever, the duty of the arresting officer that he should immediately inform the presiding officer of the House to with the member belongs about arrest, bail or release of the member concerned. The main idea behind this privilege is that the members of the House should not be unnecessarily detained by the executive government and the constituents are not denied proper representation.

(ii) Freedom of Attendance as Witnesses:

According the English practice, a member cannot be summoned, without the leave of the House, to give evidence as a witness while Parliament is in session.

(iii) Freedom of Speech:

While an ordinary citizen’s right of speech is subject to the restrictions specified in Art. 19 (2) such as the law relating to defamation, a member of Parliament cannot be made liable in any court of law in respect of anything said in Parliament or any Committee thereof.

The freedom of speech is, however, subject to the rules framed by the House under its powers to regulate its internal procedure. The dignity of the House must be preserved. The Constitution itself imposes another limitation upon the freedom of speech in Parliament, namely, that no discussion shall take place in Parliament with respect to the conduct of any judge of the Supreme Court or a High Court in the discharge of his duties except upon a motion for presenting an address to the President praying for the removal of the judge.

Collective Privileges :

Previleges are certain rights belonging to each House of Parliament. Both the House of Parliament as well as of a state legislature have similar previleges under the Constitution of India. Clauses (1) (2) of Article 105 deal with two matters, viz., freedom of speech and right of publicaiton.

(i) The right to publish debates and proceedings and the right to restrain publication by others.

(ii) The right to exclude others.

(iii) The right to regulate the internal affairs of the House, and to decide matters arising within its walls.

(iv) The right to punish Parliamentary misbehavior.

(v) The right to punish members and outsiders for breach of its privileges.

Parliamentary Committees :

As a deliberative body, Parliament cannot cope with detailed serious work amidst a large number of members in a dispassionate manner. Specially in modern times, there is too much of a burden on the Parliament. Thus the committee system comes in useful for it enables detailed discussion of various matters in small groups something that is cumbersome and non-productive in a large group.

The committees make parliamentary work smooth, efficient and expeditious. They also provide a certain expertise to the deliberations of Parliament. It must, however, be noted that committees are subordinate bodies created by Parliament to assist in its legislative work.

Nature of Parliamentary Committees :

A parliamentary committee is a committee which is appointed or elected by the House or nomi­nated by the Speaker and which works under the direction of the Speaker and presents its report to the House or to the Speaker.

Parliamentary committees are of different types. Broadly speaking there are (1) Ad Hoc Committees, and (2) Standing or Non-Ad Hoc Committees. Ad Hoc Committees may be constituted from time to time, by either House, to inquire into and report on specific subjects, or they may be committees set up to advise the House, such as those appointed to consider and report on a specific Bill. The Standing Committees may be classified according to their functions. The Committees may also be classified in the following manner.

1. There are consultative committees for different ministries which provide a forum for discussion on the policies and working of the ministries.

2. There are the select committees or joint select committees on individual bills for investigation or inquiry.

3. Sometimes, the Parliament may appoint a committee for a specific purpose or to study a particular question like the Committee for the Welfare of Scheduled Castes and Tribes.

4. There are committees to enquire into various matters like the Committee of Petitions and Committee of Privileges. The committees to scrutinise are the Committee of Government Assurances and Committee on Subordinate Legislation.

5. Some committees are of administrative character relating to business of the House like (a) Committee on Absence of Members from the sittings of the House, (b) Business Advisory Committee, and (c) Rules Committee.

6. A few committees are concerned with the facilities of members of Parliament like the House Committee and Library Committee.

7. Finally, the most important committees are the three financial committees (a) the Estimates Committee, (b) the Public Accounts Committee, and (c) the Committee on Public Undertak­ings.

The Ad Hoc Committees:

The usual ad hoc committees are Select/Joint Committees on Bills and the Railway Convention Committee. The Committee on the Draft Five Year Plans, Committee on the Conduct of a member, Study Committee on Sports etc,. are some of the ad hoc committees constituted in the past.

Select Committees:

Select Committees are appointed on individual Bills and for making some investigation, inquiry or compilation. Members of a Select Committee are appointed or elected by the House itself or nominated by the Speaker. The willingness of the members desired to serve on the committee is ascertained before a proposal for appointment or nomination is made.

The Chairman is appointed by the Speaker from among its members, but if the Deputy Speaker happens to be a member of the committee, he shall be appointed Chairman. One-third of the total membership consti­tutes the quorum and a majority vote determines the decision of a committee. The chairman is entitled to a casting vote in case of a tie.

Joint Committee:

In order to avoid duplication of proceedings a Bill may be referred to a Joint Committee composed of members of both Houses. A Joint Committee also saves time and helps to bring about and develop good understanding, an appreciative spirit and co-operation between the representatives of both the Houses.

A motion for the appointment of a joint commit and reference of a Bill to such a committee after being carried out in the originating House is transmitted to the other House for its concurrence. The member-in-charge of a Bill indicates the number and names of the members constituting the committee from the House to which he belongs as also the number of the members from the other House. The proportion of members from the House of the People and the Council of States is two to one.

The Standing Committees:

Lok Sabha has the following 18 Standing Parliamentary Committees with membership indicated against each. Business Advisory Committee (15); Committee of Privileges (15); committee on absence of Members from the Sitting of the House (15); Committee on Estimates (30); Committee on Government Assurances (15); Committee on Paper Laid on the Table (15); Committee on Petitions (15); Committee on Private Members’ Bills and Resolutions (15); Committee on Public Account (22); Committee on Public Undertakings (22); Committee on Subordinate Legislation (15); Committee on the Welfare of Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes (30); General Purpose Committee (29); House Committee (12); Joint Committee on Offices of Profit (15); Joint Committee on Salaries and Allowances of Members of Parliament (15); Library Committee (9); Rules Committee (15).

No member is to be appointed or nominated or elected to a Committee unless he is willing to serve on it.

The Speaker, Lok Sabha, nominates members to Business Advisory Committee, Committee of Privileges, Committee on Absence of Members from the Sitting of the House, Committee on Govern­ment Assurances, Committee on Papers Laid on the Table, Committee on Petitions, Committee on Private Members’ Bills and Resolutions, Committee on Subordinate Legislation, General Purpose Committee, House Committee and Rules Committee in pursuance of the provisions of rules govern­ing these Committees.

Ten members of Lok Sabha and five members of Rajya Sabha are nominated by the Speaker, Lok Sabha, and the Chairman, Rajya Sabha, respectively, to the Joint Committee on Salaries and Allowances of Members of Parliament.

As far as possible, different Parties and Groups are represented on a committee in proportion of their respective strength in the House. As such a Committee is a microcosm of the whole House.

Members of Rajya Sabha are also associated with the Committee on Public Accounts, Committee on Public Undertakings and Committee on the Welfare of Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes, for which necessary Motions are moved in and adopted by both the Houses. The Joint Committee on Offices of Profit consists of 15 members-10 elected from Lok Sabha and five elected from Rajya Sabha. It is constituted in pursuance of a motion moved in and adopted by both the Houses. It continues in office for the duration of a Lok Sabha.

Casual vacancies in a Parliament Committee are filled by appointment or election by the House on a motion made, or nomination by the Speaker, as the case may be and any member appointed, elected or nominated to fill such vacancy shall hold office for the unexpired portion of the term for which the member in whose place he is appointed, elected or nominated would have held office.

A member may resign from the Committee by writing under his hand addressed to the Speaker.

If a member remains absent from two or more consecutive sittings of the Committee without the permission of the Chairman of the Committee, he may be discharged from the Committee by the House Speaker.

The Chairmen of all the Parliamentary Committees are appointed by the Speaker, from amongst the members of the Committee. In case, the Speaker is a member of the Committee, he is ex officio Chairman of that Committee. In Gase the Speaker is not a member of the Committee, but the Deputy Speaker is, he is appointed as Chairman of that Committee.

The Joint Committee on Salaries and Allowances of Members of Parliament elects its own Chairman. In case of the Committee on Public Accounts, as per established convention a member belonging to major Opposition Parties/Groups is appointed Chairman of the Committee by rotation.

Parliamentary Committees hold office for a period of one year or for a period specified by the Speaker/by the motion or until a new Committee is nominated. The members nominated to the Joint Committee on Salaries and Allowances of Members of Parliament, hold office for a period of one year from the date of their nominations.

One-third of the total number of members of the Committee is required for the quorum to consti­tute a sitting of the Committee. In the absence of the required quorum, the Chairman either suspends the sitting until there is quorum or adjourns the sitting to some future day. In the event of a Committee being adjourned for-two successive sittings on account of lack of quorum, the Chairman has to report the fact to the Speaker when the Committee has been appointed by him or else to the House.

Estimates Committee:

The Estimates Committee consists of 30 members—all from Lok Sabha— who are elected by Lok Sabha every year from among its members according to the principle of proportional representation by means of single transferable vote. This system of election ensures that each Party/Group is represented on the Committee in proportion to its strength in Lok Sabha.

The Chairman of the Committee is appointed by the Speaker from amongst the member of Lok Sabha elected to the Committee.

The functions of the Committee are—(a) to report what economies, improvements in organisation, efficiency or administrative reform, consistent with the policy underlying the estimates, may be effected; (b) to suggest alternative policies in order to bring about efficiency and economy in administration; (c) to examine whether the money is well laid out within the limits of the policy implied in the estimates; and (d) to suggest the form in which estimates shall be presented to Parliament.

The Committee may examine such of the estimates as may deem fit to the Committee or are specifically referred to it by the House or the Speaker. Public Undertakings allotted to the Committee on Public Undertakings either under the Rules of Procedure of Lok Sabha or by the Speaker are outside the purview of the Estimates Committee.

The Committee does not go against the policy approved by Parliament; but where it is established on evidence that a particular policy is not leading to the expected or desired results or is leading to waste, it is the duty of the Committee to bring to the notice of the House that a change in policy is called for.

The examination by the Committee of the estimates for the Ministries/Departments of Government is a continuing exercise throughout the financial year and the Committee reports to the House as its examination proceeds. It is not incumbent on the Committee to examine the entire estimates in any one year. The Demands for Grants may be finally voted even though the Committee has made no report.

Public Accounts Committee:

The Public Accounts Committee consists of 15 Members elected by Lok Sabha every year from amongst its members according to the principle of proportional repre­sentation by means of single transferable vote. Seven members of Rajya Sabha elected by the House in like manner are associated with the Committee. This system of election ensures that each Party/ Group is represented on the Committee in proportion to its respective strength in the two Houses.

The chairman of the committee is appointed by the Speaker from amongst the members of Lok Sabha elected to the Committee.

The term of office of the members of the Committee is one year.

The Public Accounts Committee examines the accounts showing the appropriation of the sums granted by Parliament to meet the expenditure of the Government of India, the annual Finance Accounts of the Government of India and such other accounts laid before the House as the Commit­tee may think fit.

Apart from the Reports of the Comptroller and Auditor-General of India on Appro­priation Accounts of the Union Government, the Committee examines two Reports of the Comptrol­ler and Auditor-General on Revenue Receipts—one relating to Direct Taxes and the other relating to Indirect Taxes.

The Committee, however, does not examine the accounts relating to such public undertakings as are allotted to the Committee on Public Undertakings.

While scrutinising the Appropriation accounts of the Government of India and the Reports of the Comptroller and Auditor-General thereon, it is the duty of the Committee to satisfy itself that the moneys shown in the accounts as having been disbursed were legally available for, and applicable to, the service or purpose to which they have been applied or charged; that the expenditure conforms to the authority which governs it; and that every re-appropriation has been made in accordance with the provisions made in this behalf under rules framed by competent authority.

An important function of the Committee is to ascertain that money granted by the Parliament has been spent by Government “within the scope of the demand”. The function of the Committee extends “beyond the formality of expenditure to its wisdom, faithfulness and economy”. The Committee thus examines cases involving losses, nugatory expenditure and financial irregularities.

While scrutinising the Reports of Comptroller and Auditor-General on Revenue Reports, the Committee examines various aspects of Government’s tax administration. The Committee, thus, examines cases involving under-assessments, tax-evasion, non-levy of duties, misclassifications etc., identifies loopholes in the taxation laws and procedures and makes recommendations in order to check leakage of revenue.

If any money has been spent on a service in excess of the amount granted by the House for the purpose, the Committee examines the same with reference to the Facts of each case, the circum­stances leading to such an excess, and makes such recommendations as it may deem fit.

Such excesses are thereafter required to be brought up before the House by Government for regularisation in the manner envisaged in Article 115 of the Constitution. In order to facilitate speedy regularisation of such expenditure by Parliament, the Committee presents a consolidated report relating to all Ministries/Departments expeditiously in advance of other reports.

Committee on Public Undertakings:

The Committee on Public Undertakings consists of 15 members elected by Lok Sabha every year from amongst its members according to the principles of proportional representation by means of single transferable vote. Seven members of Rajya Sahba elected by that House in like manner are associated with the Committee. This system of election ensures that each party/group is represented on the Committee in proportion with respective strength of the Houses.

The Chairman of the Committee is appointed by the Speaker from amongst members of Lok Sabha elected to the Committee. The term of office of the members of the Committee is one year.

The functions of the Committee are to examine the Reports and Accounts of the Public Under­takings specified in the Fourth Schedule of the Rules of Procedure and Conduct of Business in Lok Sabha and the reports of the Comptroller and Auditor-General thereon, if any, and to examine, in the context of the autonomy and efficiency of the public undertakings, whether the affairs of the Public undertakings are being managed in accordance with the sound business principles and prudent commercial practices.

The Committee may also examine such subjects or matters which may be specifically referred to it by the House or by the Speaker. The Committee is, however, barred from examining and investigating matters of major Government policy as distinct from business or com­mercial functions of public undertakings or matters for the consideration of which machinery is established by any special statute under which a particular undertaking is established.

Committee on the Welfare of Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes:

The Committee consists of 20 members elected by Lok Sabha every year from amongst its members according to the principle of Proportional representation by means of single transferable vote. Ten members of Rajya Sabha elected by that House in like manner are associated with the Committee.

This system of election ensures that each Party/Group is represented on the Committee in proportion to its respective strength in the two Houses.

The Chairman of the Committee is appointed by the Speaker from amongst the members of Lok Sabha elected to the Committee.

The important functions of the Committee inter alia are to consider the reports submitted by the Commissioner of Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes, to examine the representation of Sched­uled Castes and Scheduled Tribes in services of Central Government Departments, Central Public Undertakings, Nationalised Banks etc., and to review the working of welfare programmes for Sched­uled Castes and Scheduled Tribes in the Union Territories.

The Committee also examines such other matters as may deem fit to the Committee or are specifically referred to it by the House or the Speaker. The Committee can also examine the implementation of various programmes for the wel­fare of Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes by State Governments provided funds are made available partly or wholly by the Central Government.

Business Advisory Committee:

As the membership of the Committee is limited and there are quite a large number of Opposition groups, it is not possible for the Speaker to nominate members from each and every group. Normally this committee meets three or four times in a session and makes recommendations regarding the plan of House’s work, which are generally accepted by the House.

However, in order to make the Committee as broad-based as possible certain prominent unattached members and members of some of the Opposition groups, who do not find representation in the Committee, are invited by the Speaker to attend its sitting. The invited members have neither the right to vote nor are they counted for the purpose of a quorum.

The function of the Business Advisory Committee is to recommend the time that should be allocated for discussion of the stage or stages of such Government Bills or other business which the Speaker in consultation with the Leader of the House may direct to be referred to the Committee. The Committee can indicate in the proposed timetable the different hours at which the various stages of Bill or other business should be completed.

Committee on Private Members’ Bills:

The Deputy Speaker is invariably its member and as far as possible every section of opinion of the House is represented therein. The functions of the Committee are ; to examine and classify all Private Members’ Bills according to their nature, urgency and importance; to allot time to Private Members’ Bill and resolution; to examine Private Members’ Bill seeking to amend the Constitution before their introduction in the House; to examine a Private Members’ Bill which is opposed in the House on the ground that the Bill initiates legislation outside the legislative competence of the House and to perform such other functions as may be assigned to it by the Speaker from time to time.

Committee on Petitions:

Article 350 entitles a citizen to submit representation for the r dress of grievance to any officer or authority in the Union or a State. It is also considered an inherit right of a citizen to present a petition to Parliament ventilating public grievances and offering suggestions on matters of public importance. Rules of the Lok Sabha (160-67) provide for such petition to be presented.

The Committee on Petitions examines the merits of the petitions and makes recommendations to the House after taking such evidence as it may deem necessary. No minutes of dissent can be appended to the Report of the Committee.

Committee on Government Assurances:

It is meant to scrutinize the assurances, promises, undertakings etc. given by Ministers from time to time and to report on the extent to which such assurances etc. have been implemented and to see whether such implementation has taken place within the minimum time necessary for the purpose. The Council of States has no such Committee.

Committee on Privileges:

The Committee is set up to examine every question involving breach of privilege of the House or of the member of any Committee thereof, referred to it by the House or by the Speaker. Also to determine with reference to the facts of each case whether a breach of privilege is involved and make suitable recommendations in its report.

In this committee the deputy speaker is the chairman who presides over its meetings.

Committee on Subordinate Legislation:

This Committee is set up to scrutinize and report to the House whether the powers to make regulations, rules, sub-rules, by-laws etc., conferred by the Constitution or delegated by Parliament are being properly exercised by the executive within the scope of such delegation.

Committee on Absence of Members from the Sittings of the House:

This Committee is set up to consider application from members for leave of-absence from the sittings of the House and examine every case where a member has been absent for a period of 60 days or more, without permissions, from the sittings of the House.

Rules Committee:

This Committee is set up to consider matters of procedure and conduct of business in the House and recommend any amendments or additions to the Rules of Procedure and Conduct of Business in Lok Sabha that are considered necessary.

Committee Dealing with Facilities:

There are three committees dealing with provisions of facilities to members-the General Purposes Committee, the House Committee and the Library Com­mittee. The function of the General Purposes Committee is to consider and advice on such matters concerning the affairs of the House as may be referred to it by the Speaker. The House Committee deals with matters of accommodation, food and medical aid for members.

The functions of the Library Committee are: to consider and advise on such matters concerning the Library as may be referred to it by the Speaker, to consider suggestions for the improvement of the Library, and to assist members in fully utilising the services provided by the Committee.

Committee on Papers Laid on the Table:

This Committee is set up to examine all papers laid on the Table of the House by Ministers (other than those which fall within the purview of the Committee on Subordinate Legislation or any other Parliamentary Committee) and to report to the House— (a) whether there has been compliance of the provisions of the Constitution, Act, rule or regulation under which the paper has been laid; (b) whether there has been any unreasonable delay in laying the paper; (c) if there has been such delay, whether a statement explaining the reasons for delay has been laid on the Table of the House and whether those reasons are satisfactory; (d) whether both the Hindi and English versions of the paper have been laid on the Table; (e) whether statement explaining the reasons for not laying the Hindi version has been given and whether such reasons are satisfactory; and (f) such other functions in respect of the papers laid on the Table as may be assigned to it by the Speaker from time to time.

Joint Committee on Salaries and Allowances of Members of Parliament:

This Committee is set up to make rules, after consultation with the Central Government to provide for travelling and daily allowances, medical, housing, telephone, postal, water, electricity, constituency and secretarial facilities etc. to members of both Houses. This committee has 15 members nominated by the speaker to look into the cases regarding the violation of privileges of members of Parliament and recommend suitable action.

Joint Committee on Offices of Profit:

The function of this Committee is to examine the composition and character of the Committees appointed by the Central and State Governments and to recommend what offices should disqualify and what offices should not disqualify a person for being chosen as, and for being, a member of either House of the Parliament under Article 102 of the Constitution. It is also to scrutinise from time to time the Schedule to the Parliament (Prevention of Disqualification) Act, 1959 and to recommend any amendments in the said Schedule, whether by way of addition, omission or otherwise.

Consultative Committees:

In 1954, the Government decided to establish Informal Consultative Committees for the various Ministries. But the Opposition parties and groups did not take kindly to the Consultative Committees. As a result of discussion between the Government and the opposition at different levels in 1969, it was decided to delete the word ‘Informal’ from their nomenclature.

Mutually agreed “guidelines” were also formulated to regulate their functioning. The Government, however, did not accept the suggestion of the Opposition for the formation of the Parliamentary Committees in place of Consultative Committees.

Members of both Houses of Parliament are nominated on the Consultative Committees for various Ministers by the Minister of Parliamentary Affairs on the basis of preference indicated by the members themselves or by the party leaders. Members of the Opposition parties are nominated in proportion to their numerical strength in Parliament.

Every Opposition party or group has, thus, its fixed quota of representation on the Consultative Committees and these parties and groups are free to nominate their members on more than one Committee within the quota allotted to them. The Minister concerned presides over the meetings of the Consultative Committee attached to his Ministry.

The Committee provide a forum of informed discussions between the members, Ministers and-senior officials of the Government on the problems and policies of the Government relating to administration in a manner which is not practicable on the floor of the House. The deliberations of these Committees are informal and no reference to the discussions held in the meetings is made on the floor of the House and it is binding on the Government as well as the members of the Committees.

Members of these Committees are free to discuss any matter which can appropriately be discussed in Parliament. The practice is to invite suggestions and items for discussion from members and thereupon agenda with notes is prepared and circulated among members. The Committees cannot summon witnesses, send for or demand the production of any files, or examine any official records.

The Chairman of the Committee may, however, furnish any additional information required by members. But the Consultative Committees, it is widely felt, do not function as committees, and still less discharge the functions of consultation except in a purely formal sense. The committee, attached to a Ministry, does not meet by itself without the Minister to discuss or deliberate. It is convened by the Minister. Polemics and partisanship are as present in the committees’ deliberations as they are in Parliament itself.

Working of the Parliament :

Article 118 empowers each House of Parliament to make rules for regulating its procedure and conduct of its business. This rule-making power of the Houses is, however, subject to the Provisions of this Constitution. Parliament may for the purpose of the timely completion of financial business, regulate by law the procedure and conduct of business, in each Houses of Parliament in relation to any financial matter or to any Money Bill (Article 119).

The business of Parliament shall be transacted in Hindi or in English. However, the Chairman of the Rajya Sabha or the Speaker of the Lok Sabha, as the case may be, may permit any member who cannot adequately express himself in Hindi or in English to address the House in his mother-tongue.

The New Parliament after Election:

At the commencement of the first session after each general election to the Lok Sabha and at the commencement of first session in each year, the President addresses both the houses of Parliament in a joint session. The President’s address at the com­mencement of the first session of the year is a regular feature. The Parliament takes up the regular business after the address of the President.

Conduct of Business:

Oath or affirmation by members:.

Every member of either House of Parliament shall, before taking his seat, make and subscribe before the President, or some person appointed in that behalf by him, an oath or affirmation according to the form set out for the purpose in the Third Schedule (Article 99).

Voting in Houses, Power of Houses to Act Notwithstanding Vacancies and Quorum:

Save as otherwise provided in this Constitution, all questions at any sitting of either House or joint sitting of the Houses shall be determined by a majority of votes of the members present and voting, other than the Speaker or person acting as Chairman or Speaker [Article 100(1)].

The Chairman or Speaker, or person acting as such, shall not vote in the first instance, but shall have and exercise a casting vote in the case of an equality of votes.

Either House of Parliament shall have power to act notwithstanding any vacancy in the member­ship thereof, and any proceedings in Parliament shall be valid notwithstanding that it is discovered subsequently that some person who was not entitled so to do sat or voted or otherwise took part in the proceedings [Article 100(2)].

Until Parliament by law otherwise provides, the quorum to constitute a meeting of either House of Parliament shall be one-tenth of the total number of members of the House [Article 100(3)].

If at any time during a meeting of a House there is no quorum, it shall be the duty of the Chairman or Speaker, or person acting as such, either to adjourn the House or to suspend the meeting until there is a quorum [Article 100(4)].

Delegated Legislation :

An inevitable consequence of extension in the activities of the State, particularly when it aims to establish a socialistic society, is the sizable increase in legislation. Since it is not possible for the legislature to enact measures so numerous and so comprehensive, delegation of authority to the Executive becomes not only necessary but quite inescapable. In fact, it would not be incorrect to say that today; the volume of delegated legislation greatly exceeds the Acts of Parliament.

Delegated legislation is usually concerned with minor matters to give effect to the provisions of the Statutes. But it is not always so. There are instances both in India and other countries, where important powers, such as the power to determine matters of principle, to impose taxation, to amend Acts of Parliament, to create new offences and prescribe penalties have been delegated.

These are, no doubt, abnormal instances of legislative delegation of authority, but they are by no means rare. The rules and regulations thus made have the force of law and they cannot be challenged in courts unless they are ultra virus of the parent Acts.

The rules framed there under are very often vexatious to the citizens as the administrative officers concerned with the framing of the rules exalt administrative convenience and the national advantage at the expense of the individual and his freedom. To safeguard against the abuse of power it is, therefore, for Parliament to keep a watchful and even jealous eye on delegated legislation at all its stages.

The usual safeguards are: defining the limits of delegation, laying down a special procedure for rule making, giving adequate publicity to the proposed rules, requiring the rules made to be laid on the table of the House and the process of scrutiny.

Two Rules of the Procedure of the Lok Sabha (House of the People) set down important provisions. Rule No. 70 states that “a Bill involving proposals for the delegation of legislative power shall further be accompanied by a memorandum explaining such proposals and drawing attention to their scope and stating also whether they are of normal or exceptional character.”

Rule No. 222 prescribes “Each regulation, ‘rule’, ‘sub-rule’, ‘bye-law’, etc, framed in pursuance of the legislative function delegated by Parliament to a subordinate authority and which is required to be laid before the House shall subject to such rules as the Speaker may in consultation with the Leader of the House prescribe, be numbered centrally and published in the Gazette of India immediately after they are promulgated.

The scrutiny of delegated legislation by Parliament itself is of recent origin. In some respects India has established certain advantageous precedents with regard to subordinate legislation. The Speaker has invariably appointed a member of the Opposition as chairman of the committee on Subordinate Legislation. Since the membership of this Committee is not open to Ministers, it has functioned as a well-knit business committee free from official influence, party spirit and party whip.

Government Bills:

Government bills are piloted by members of the Council of Ministers. The decision on government bills is taken by the Cabinet and its Parliamentary Affairs Committee. The order of government business in the house is decided by consultations between the leaders of the House and the Speaker, or the Chairman, as the case may be.

Method of Passing Laws:

A bill other than money bills may be introduced in either house of Parliament. It has to be passed in identical form and consented by both houses before it can be presented for the President’s assent. Money bills can be introduced only in the lower house. All legislative proposals must be brought in the form of Dills before Parliament.

First Reading:

The legislative process starts with the introduction of the bill in either house of Parliament. After a bill has been introduced, it is published in the official Gazette. But, even before introduction, a bill might, with the permission of the Speaker, be published in the Gazette.

Second Reading:

The Second Reading consists of consideration of the bill in two stages. The first stage consists of a general discussion on the bill as a whole.

The second stage of the second reading consists of clause by clause consideration of the bill as introduced or as reported by the Select Committee or Joint Select Committee.

Third Reading:

After the various stages of the second reading are completed, the member-in- charge can move that the bill be passed. This stage is called the third or the final reading of the bill. At this stage, debate is confined to arguments either in support of the bill or in rejection, without referring to the details thereof further than is absolutely necessary.

After the bill is passed by one house, it is sent to the other house for concurrence with a mes­sage to that effect. In the other house also it goes through the three stages. In regard to money bills, the Lok Sabha has got the exclusive power to legislate and the Rajya Sabha can only recommend amendments therein and must return such a bill to the Lok Sabha within fourteen days from the date of its receipt.

Assent of the President:

When a bill is passed by both houses, the Secretariat of the house obtains the assent of the President and the bill becomes an Act.

The President can give his assent or withhold his assent to a bill. The President can also return the bill-except, of course, a money bill—with his recommendations to the house for reconsideration, and if the houses pass the bill again with or without amendments, the bill has to be assented to by the President.

Financial Powers :

The power to authorise the raising and spending of money rests with the Lok Sabha. The initiative must, of course, come from the Executive in the form of the Budget. In the words of the Constitution, the President shall, in respect of every financial year, cause to be laid before both the Houses of Parliament a statement of the estimated receipts and expenditure of the Government of India for that year, referred to as the ‘annual financial statement; A distinction is made between votable expendi­ture and expenditure charged on the Consolidated Fund of India, while the former is voted upon, the latter is not subject to voting, although it is included in the statement of expenditure laid before the House and can be discussed.

Vote on Account :

The process of voting of Demands continues for a long time while day to day expenditure of the government departments cannot wait till the Budget is finally passed. To meet this difficulty, a new device was introduced in 1950 known as the ‘Vote on Account’.

The passing of the Vote on Account followed by the appropriation (Vote on Account Act) authorizes the Government to draw on the Consolidated Fund of India, generally for a period of two months. The Vote on Account which is usually passed without debate enables the house to consider the budget at leisure.

Parliamentary Methods to Control the Executive :

The rules of procedure and conduct of business in Parliament provide that unless the presiding officer otherwise directs, the first hour of every sitting shall be available for the asking and answering of questions. This first hour is known as the Question Hour.

The primary object of an ‘adjournment motion’ is to draw the attention of the house to a recent matter of urgent public importance having serious consequences.

A member may with the previous permission of the Speaker call the attention of a minister to any matter of public importance and request the Minister to make a statement on the subject. The minis­ter may either make a brief statement immediately or he may ask for time to the statement at the later hour or date. The main purpose of a ‘calling attention’ is to seek an authoritative statement from the concerned Minister on a matter of urgent public importance.

Committee System to Control Government :

Parliament has established a series of committees with necessary powers to scrutinise the working of the different departments of the government.

The Parliamentary Committees ensure an effective and comprehensive examination of all the proposed policies. Very often, the Committees provide an ideal context for discussing controversial and sensitive matters in a non-partisan manner, away from the glare of publicity.

Related Articles:

  • Functions of the Parliament and Parliamentary Committees of India
  • How the Union Parliament makes Laws? (8 Feature of Law Making)

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Functions of the Parliament - UPSC Polity Notes

India has a parliamentary system of government. The Union Parliament is the supreme legislative body in the country. In this article, you can read all about the functions of the Parliament for the polity and governance segments of the UPSC syllabus .

The Indian Parliament is a bicameral legislature consisting of two houses – the Lok Sabha and the Rajya Sabha. The members of the Lok Sabha (House of the People) are directly elected by the people through the voting process. The members of the Rajya Sabha (Council of States) are elected by the members of the states’ legislative assemblies. The Parliament consists of the two Houses and the President of India.

Functions of Parliament

essay on indian parliament

The functions of the Parliament are mentioned in the Indian Constitution in Chapter II of Part V. The functions of the Parliament can be classified under several heads. They are discussed below:

Legislative Functions

  • The Parliament legislates on all matters mentioned in the Union List and the Concurrent List.
  • In the case of the Concurrent List, where the state legislatures and the Parliament have joint jurisdiction, the union law will prevail over the states unless the state law had received the earlier presidential assent. However, the Parliament can any time, enact a law adding to, amending, varying or repealing a law made by a state legislature.
  • If Emergency is in operation, or any state is placed under President’s Rule (Article 356) , the Parliament can enact laws on items in the State List as well.
  • As per Article 249 , the Parliament can make laws on items in the State List if the Rajya Sabha passes a resolution by ⅔ majority of its members present and voting, that it is necessary for the Parliament to make laws on any item enumerated in the State List, in the national interest.
  • As per Article 253 , it can pass laws on the State List items if it is required for the implementation of international agreements or treaties with foreign powers.
  • According to Article 252 , if the legislatures of two or more states pass a resolution to the effect that it is desirable to have a parliamentary law on any item listed in the State List, the Parliament can make laws for those states.

Executive Functions (Control over the Executive)

In the parliamentary form of government, the executive is responsible to the legislature. Hence, the Parliament exercises control over the executive by several measures. 

  • By a vote of no-confidence , the Parliament can remove the Cabinet (executive) out of power. It can reject a budget proposal or any other bill brought by the Cabinet. A motion of no-confidence is passed to remove a government from office.
  • The MPs (Members of Parliament) can ask questions to the ministers on their ommissions and commissions. Any lapses on the part of the government can be exposed in the Parliament.
  • Adjournment Motion : Allowed only in the Lok Sabha, the chief objective of the adjournment motion is to draw the attention of the Parliament to any recent issue of urgent public interest. It is considered an extraordinary tool in Parliament as the normal business is affected.
  • The Parliament appoints a Committee on Ministerial Assurances that sees whether the promises made by the ministers to the Parliament are fulfilled or not.
  • Censure Motion: A censure motion is moved by the opposition party members in the House to strongly disapprove any policy of the government. It can be moved only in the Lok Sabha. Immediately after a censure motion is passed, the government has to seek the confidence of the House. Unlike in the case of the no-confidence motion, the Council of Ministers need not resign if the censure motion is passed.
  • Cut Motion: A cut motion is used to oppose any demand in the financial bill brought by the government.

Financial Functions

Parliament is the ultimate authority when it comes to finances. The Executive cannot spend a single pie without parliamentary approval.

  • The Union Budget prepared by the Cabinet is submitted for approval by the Parliament. All proposals to impose taxes should also be approved by the Parliament.
  • There are two standing committees (Public Accounts Committee and Estimates Committee) of the Parliament to keep a check on how the executive spends the money granted to it by the legislature. You can also read on parliamentary committees .
  • Also see: Money Bills .

Amending Powers

The Parliament has the power to amend the Constitution of India. Both Houses of the Parliament have equal powers as far as amending the Constitution is concerned. Amendments will have to be passed in both the Lok Sabha and the Rajya Sabha for them to be effective.

Read about the important amendments in the Indian Constitution here .

Electoral Functions

The Parliament takes part in the election of the President and the Vice President . The electoral college that elects the President comprises of, among others, the elected members of both Houses. The President can be removed by a resolution passed by the Rajya Sabha agreed to by the Lok Sabha.

Judicial Functions

In case of breach of privilege by members of the House, the Parliament has punitive powers to punish them. A breach of privilege is when there is an infringement of any of the privileges enjoyed by the MPs.

  • A privilege motion is moved by a member when he feels that a minister or any member has committed a breach of privilege of the House or one or more of its members by withholding facts of a case or by giving wrong or distorted facts. Read more on privilege motion .
  • In the parliamentary system, legislative privileges are immune to judicial control.
  • The power of the Parliament to punish its members is also generally not subject to judicial review.
  • Other judicial functions of the Parliament include the power to impeach the President, the Vice President, the judges of the Supreme Court , High Courts, Auditor-General, etc.

Other powers/functions of the Parliament

  • Issues of national and international importance are discussed in the Parliament. The opposition plays an important role in this regard and ensures that the country is aware of alternate viewpoints.
  • A Parliament is sometimes talked of as a ‘nation in miniature’. 
  • In a democracy, the Parliament plays the vital function of deliberating matters of importance before laws or resolutions are passed.
  • The Parliament has the power to alter, decrease or increase the boundaries of states/UTs.
  • The Parliament also functions as an organ of information. The ministers are bound to provide information in the Houses when demanded by the members.

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Functions of the Parliament – Indian Polity:- Download PDF Here

UPSC Questions related to Functions of the Parliament

What are the main functions of the parliament.

The major functions of the Parliament can be classified under several heads like legislative, executive, judicial, electoral, etc.

What is the role of Parliament in law-making?

The Parliament makes laws for the whole country. It can also amend the Constitution and reject/change draft laws.

How does Parliament make laws?

A bill becomes a law after it is passed by both Houses of the Parliament and receives the presidential assent.

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Parliament of India, Houses, Functions, Powers & Significance_1.1

Parliament of India, Houses, Functions, Powers & Significance

The Parliament of India is the supreme legislative body of the Republic of India. Read all about the Parliament of India, its Background, Houses, Functions, Powers & Significance for the UPSC Exam.

parliament of India

Table of Contents

Parliament of India

India’s Parliament is its top legislative body. The two Houses that make up the Indian Parliament are the Lok Sabha (House of the People) and the Rajya Sabha (Council of States). The President has the authority to prorogue any House of Parliament, call a session of that House, and dissolve the Lok Sabha. The Indian Constitution went into effect on January 26 of that year.

The Parliament is an important part of Indian Polity which an important subject in  UPSC Syllabus . Students can also go for UPSC Mock Test to get more accuracy in their preparations.

Parliament of India Background

The Parliament of India is the legislative branch of the Indian government; the executive and judicial branches are the other two. In India’s democratic system, the “Parliamentary form of government” grants the Indian parliament a significant role. A true democracy must have a representative, effective, and efficient legislature.

The legislature also helps citizens keep politicians responsible. In fact, this is the fundamental tenet of representative democracy. The legislature’s tasks include more than just passing laws. It is the centre of all democratic political processes. The legislature is the most representative body in the government. The legislature is more representative and may even be more responsive to popular expectations simply because there are members from a variety of social backgrounds.

Houses of Parliament of India

The Houses of Parliament of India, also known as the Sansad Bhavan, is the building that houses the two chambers of the Indian Parliament – the Lok Sabha (House of the People) and the Rajya Sabha (Council of States). The building is located in New Delhi, the capital of India, and is one of the most iconic landmarks of the city.

Rajya Sabha

The Upper House sometimes referred to as the Second Chamber or House of Elders, is comprised of representatives from the Indian Union’s states and union territories. The Rajya Sabha is referred to as the permanent House of Parliament because it never disbands entirely. The Indian Constitution’s IV Schedule addresses the allocation of Rajya Sabha seats to the states and UTs.

Rajya Sabha Composition

Rajya Sabha is limited to 250 members, of whom 12 are president-nominated and 238 are representatives of states and UTs (elected indirectly). There are presently 245 members of the House, of whom 229 are from the states, 4 are from UTs, and 12 were nominated by the president.

Rajya Sabha Election of Representatives

The representatives for each state are chosen by the members of the state legislative assembly. The MPs from each UT in the Rajya Sabha are indirectly chosen by members of an electoral college constituted specifically for the purpose. Only three UTs (Delhi, Puducherry, and Jammu & Kashmir) are represented in the Rajya Sabha (others do not have adequate populations).

Rajya Sabha Power & Function

The president’s list of candidates includes members with distinctive expertise or practical experience in the humanities, sciences, literature, or social services. Without holding elections, it is intended to provide famous individuals a seat in the parliament. The Rajya Sabha is crucial for reviewing and changing laws that the Lok Sabha proposes.

In order for a piece of legislation to become law, it must pass the Rajya Sabha. It can also propose laws. In the Rajya Sabha, the States are represented. As a result, it needs to be considered before making any choices that would affect the States. Any item that the Union Parliament requests be removed or transferred from the State list must receive the Rajya Sabha’s approval.

Also Read: Union Legislature

The Lower House sometimes referred to as the First Chamber or Popular House is where all Indians are represented.

Lok Sabha composition

A maximum of 550 people may serve in the Lok Sabha , of which 530 must be state lawmakers and 20 must come from UTs. Currently, there are 543 members of the Lok Sabha, 530 of them are from the states and 13 from the UTs. The President had also recommended two representatives from the Anglo-Indian community before the 95th Amendment Act of 2009, however, this provision was only valid until 2020.

Lok Sabha Election of Representatives

The state representatives are chosen directly by the residents of the states’ territorial districts. The Union Territories (Direct Election to the House of People) Act of 1965 provides for the direct election of UT residents to the Lok Sabha.

Lok Sabha Power and Function

One of the most important responsibilities of the Lok Sabha is choosing the executive, a group of individuals who work together to implement the laws established by the Parliament. The term “government” is frequently used to refer to this executive.

Both Houses are required to approve every ordinary law. But in the event of a dispute between the two Houses, a joint session of both Houses is called to reach a decision. Due to its superior strength, the Lok Sabha’s position has a higher chance of success in such a conference. The Lok Sabha has greater power over finances. Once the government’s budget or any other financial action has been passed by the Lok Sabha, the Rajya Sabha cannot reject it. The Rajya Sabha can only amend it or postpone it for 14 days; the Rajya Sabha may or may not adopt these ideas.

The Lok Sabha has authority over the Council of Ministers. If the majority of Lok Sabha members vote “no confidence” in the Council of Ministers, the Prime Minister and every other minister are required to resign. This power is absent from the Rajya Sabha.

Despite not being a member of either House and not participating in sessions, the President of India is a crucial component of the Parliament. The head of state is the person with the highest position of authority in the country. The elected Members of Parliament (MPs) and Members of the Legislative Assemblies (MLAs) elect the President of India.

President Power

A bill adopted by both Houses of Parliament cannot become law without the President’s consent. He has the power to convoke and prorogue both Houses when they are not in session, dissolve the Lok Sabha, and make ordinances.

Parliament of India Functions

The Parliament of India performs several important functions, including:

Legislative Functions

Executive functions.

  • Financial Function

Electoral Functions

Judicial functions, amending powers.

All topics listed in the Union List and the Concurrent List are subject to legislative action by the Parliament. The union legislation shall take precedence over the states on the Concurrent List, where the state legislatures and the Parliament share jurisdiction unless the state law had previously acquired presidential assent. However, the Parliament has the authority to add to, modify, adjust, or revoke a state legislature-enacted law at any moment.

The Parliament may also pass laws on items on the State List if an Emergency is in effect or if any state is subject to President’s Rule (Article 356). According to Article 248, the Rajya Sabha must pass a resolution by a 2/3 majority of its members present and voting stating that it is necessary for the Parliament to pass laws on any matter listed in the State List in order to protect the interests of the country.

In accordance with Article 253, it may make laws pertaining to State List items if they are necessary for the execution of treaties or international agreements with foreign countries. According to Article 252, the Parliament may enact laws for those states if the legislatures of two or more states pass a resolution stating that it is desirable to have a parliamentary law on any matter specified in the State List.

The executive under a parliamentary system of government answers to the legislature. As a result, the Parliament uses a variety of tools to exert influence over the government.  The Parliament has the authority to overthrow the Cabinet (Executive) by a vote of no confidence. It has the right to reject any law introduced by the Cabinet, including budget proposals. A motion of no-confidence is adopted to overthrow a government.

The ministers can be questioned by the MPs (Members of Parliament) on their commissions and omissions. Any mistakes made by the government may be brought to light in Parliament. The main goal of an adjournment motion, which is only permitted in the Lok Sabha, is to bring the Parliament’s attention to any current matter of urgent public interest. Given that it has an impact on routine business; it is seen as an extraordinary tool in Parliament. The Ministerial Assurances Committee, which the Parliament appoints, monitors whether the ministers’ promises to the Parliament are kept.

Members of the opposition parties in the House introduce a motion of censure to express their vehement disagreement with any government policy. Only in the Lok Sabha can it be moved. The government is required to ask the House for its confidence as away once a motion of censure is approved. The Council of Ministers need not quit if the censure motion is approved, unlike in the case of the no-confidence motion. A cut motion is used to oppose any demand made by the government in the financial bill.

Financial Functions

When it comes to money, Parliament is the final arbiter. Without parliamentary authorization, the Executive is not allowed to spend a single pie. The Cabinet presents the Union Budget to the Parliament for approval. The Parliament must also accept any tax enactment ideas. The Parliament’s Public Accounts Committee and Estimates Committee are two permanent committees that monitor how the executive uses funds provided by the legislature.

The election of the President and Vice President includes participation from the Parliament. The elected members of both Houses make up part of the Electoral College, which chooses the President. A Rajya Sabha resolution that is approved by the Lok Sabha can remove the President.

The Parliament has the authority to punish members of the House who violate a privilege. When one of the rights afforded by MPs is violated, it is a breach of privilege. When a member believes that a minister or another member has violated the privilege of the House or one or more of its members by withholding relevant facts from a case or by providing false or distorted information, the member may file a privilege motion.

Legislative privileges in a parliamentary system are unaffected by judicial oversight. In general, judicial review does not apply to the Parliament’s ability to punish its members. The Parliament also has the authority to remove judges from the Supreme Court, High Courts, Auditor-General, and other judiciary positions.

The Indian Constitution may be amended by the Parliament. The power to modify the Constitution is equally split between the two Houses of Parliament. For amendments to take effect, they must be approved by both the Lok Sabha and the Rajya Sabha.

Parliament of India Significance

Important issues both domestically and internationally are discussed in the parliament. In this sense, the opposition is crucial in ensuring that the nation is aware of opposing viewpoints. People from a variety of ethnic, racial, linguistic, and ideological backgrounds can take part in the creation of laws and policies because of the parliamentary system of government.

In a democracy, the Parliament is in charge of debating significant matters before legislation or resolutions are passed, and it is usually referred to as a “mini-nation”. The state and UT limits may be altered, shrunk, or increased at the discretion of the Parliament. The House of the People is a resource for information as well.

Parliament of India UPSC

Achieving the constitutional objectives depends on Parliament, a crucial political and constitutional institution that provides the basis for ideals like democracy and people’s representation. Students can read all the details related to UPSC by visiting the official website of StudyIQ UPSC Online Coaching.

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Parliament of India FAQs

What is called the parliament of india.

Legislature of the Union, which is called Parliament, consists of the President and two Houses, known as Council of States (Rajya Sabha) and House of the People (Lok Sabha).

Who is the head of Parliament?

Prime Minister is head of Parliament.

Who is the first Parliament of India?

The First Lok Sabha was constituted on 17 April 1952 after India's first general election.

How many members are there in Parliament?

Article 81 of the Constitution of India 1949 has specified maximum strength of members of parliament in the Lok Sabha to be 552.

What are the types of Parliament in India?

In our country, the Parliament consists of two Houses. The two Houses are known as the Council of States (Rajya Sabha) and the House of the People (Lok Sabha).

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The role of the Indian Parliament

February 02, 2021 06:32 pm | Updated 06:32 pm IST

One of the Indian Parliament’s roles is to hold the government  accountable ; a work that is still in progress.

Colonial India, commencing with the Montagu- Chelmsford reforms of 1919 and followed by the Government of India Act 1935, witnessed a limited adult franchise with about 15% of the adult population entitled to vote, subject to wealth, property, and other criteria. The mandate of the handful of electorates was further fractured on communal lines under the system of separate electorates. However, the representative Constituent assembly took it upon itself to create a socially and politically united electorate that could elect the Lower House of the  Parliament , representative of the united and inclusive aspirations of the demography.

Mudit Gupta, Top Unacademy Educator

Mudit Gupta, Top Unacademy Educator

Role of Indian Parliament

The  Parliament  of India, a fine blend of the legislature and the executive, with the  government  holding office till the time it commands confidence in the popular House, is the place to deliberate upon the policies and legislations proposed by the government.

Debate, deliberation and discussion

In India’s seven-decade long history as a republic, only 14 private members’ bills have turned into enforceable codes. Consequently, the sheer proportion of bills introduced and passed by ministers calls for a check over the  government  through debates and deliberations. In extreme scenarios, the expulsion of opposition MPs by the presiding officer of the respective House has allowed the ruling dispensation to steer bills through the House without much impediment. An uptick in the number of ordinances being promulgated is also a repercussion of the continual adjournments.

Anti-defection law and voting system

On the flip side, during the smooth functioning of the Houses, the rules of procedure mandate the presiding officer to divide the time amongst parties for debates on the basis of their strength in the respective Houses. It is then that the leader of the party allocates time internally to its members. Moreover, the insertion of the Tenth Schedule through the 52nd Constitutional Amendment Act, 1985, has rendered the individual positioning of an MP toothless. It is the political posturing of the party whip in the House that prevails over the interest of a constituency, represented by its respective MP. Moreover, a major chunk of the bills in the Parliament is passed using ‘voice voting’, when compared to the much more reliable ‘division voting’ that can record the response of each member, including abstentions.

Parliamentary committees

In-house bill discussions are supplemented by parliamentary committees. These offer an arena for across the spectrum and off the camera political consultations. However, this parliamentary tool of furthering the process of deliberation has taken a back seat in recent times. A quick comparison highlights that during the 15th Lok Sabha, 71% of the bills were referred to the committees. In contrast, the 16th Lok Sabha referred only 21% of the bills.

Way forward

The daunting task undertaken by the Constituent assembly to unite the fractured mandate has come a long way in ensuring the democratic fabric of the Nation. The road ahead can be demystified by amending the rules of procedure of both the Houses of  Parliament  under Article 118 of the Indian Constitution, making it mandatory to refer bills to the parliamentary committees and prescribing appropriate action against unruly members. Moreover, relevant amendments to the Constitution of India, including the Tenth Schedule, can go a long way in fulfilling the task of upholding the Constitution that we, the people of India gifted to ourselves in 1949.

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  • Indian Politics Essay

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Essay on Indian Politics

The functioning of the political system is crucial for the smooth development of any country. India is no different. From being the largest democracy in the world and having the Prime Minister as the supreme leader of the country, Indian politics has its own charisma. 

In the given below Indian politics essay, one can read all about the Indian political system, it's functioning, and the problems faced by it. For India, political scenarios and events play an important role. 

The Various Shades of Indian Politics  

India is the largest democracy in the world. Almost 1 out of every 6 humans in the world is an Indian. With such an enormous and diverse population, there are a number of political ideologies and political parties which are present and functioning all over the country. The constitution of India gives the right to every citizen of the country to form political parties and contest elections in the country. Although, Politics in India is not only limited to just political parties but has become central to all walks of life among everyone. Politics is said to be the art of influencing the will of the state. We have seen various pressure groups, advocacy groups, interests groups, etc which work in tandem with the political organizations. The work of the political parties is not just limited to winning elections, but it is the duty of every citizen of the country to ensure that our representatives remain responsive to the demand of the people and fulfill their electoral promises. 

Political parties in India are generally of two major categories, these are National Parties and Regional parties. The National parties are those political organizations that have a substantial presence in most parts of the country while the Regional parties are those parties that are limited to just one state or a few states where they have some influence. The regional parties are generally formed on the lines of language as the states in India have been organized on the basis of language. The various political interest groups work along with these political parties to lobby for their interest and make sure that the issues which are of concern to the common people are brought to the attention of our leaders. The Media also plays a very vital role in the functioning of a democracy and has been recognized as the fourth pillar of a democracy. 

Long Essay on Indian Politics

The functioning of the political system is crucial for the smooth development of any country. India is no different. From being the largest democracy in the world and having the Prime Minister as the supreme leader of the country, Indian politics has its own charisma. In the given below Indian politics essay, one can read all about the Indian political system, it's functioning, and the problems faced by it. For India, political scenarios and events play an important role. 

Through this essay on Indian politics, one can get enlightened about working in the country's political system. The entire country revolves around the Indian political system. Every decision and law is taken into account for the development of the country. 

An Indian politician is somebody who is elected from his/her constituency. Every politician has their constituency from where they are elected. They then actively delve into politics. Since independence, India has strived forward thanks to the laws implemented by politicians. Indians can take pride in the fact that they are the largest democracy in the world. The PM or prime minister heads the country. He is the head of the government formed at the center. Likewise, the president is head of the central and the state government. 

The Indian parliament consists of the upper and lower house. The upper house is known as the Rajya Sabha and the lower house is called the Lok Sabha. The upper house consists of members who represent the states of the country. The lower house consists of members elected to represent the people of the country. The Supreme Court or SC is the protector of the constitution of India. Indian politics comprises three pillars that consist of the central leadership, state leadership, and the village or panchayat raj. The panchayat ray is still prominent in several villages and most rural parts of the country. Thanks to the 73rd constitutional amendment, local governance is acceptable. India is a democratic country where the leaders are elected through elections held once in four years. 

The party with the largest vote bank after the election can claim their victory. To vote in India, one must be an Indian citizen, and above 18 years of age. They need to obtain an election card. Anybody can contest in the elections in India. The individual should be an Indian citizen and have completed 25 years of age. Additionally, there are a few more conditions to be met that most candidates become eligible for. In India, there are no criteria for contesting elections. Hence, it is not surprising to note that many legislators have little to no education. One can use NOTA when they feel that their constituent candidate is not well-educated or is worthy of the position. 

In this paragraph on Indian politics, one learns about the lack of educational qualifications for the politicians. In most of the developed and developing countries, the politicians are an educated lot. Education and corruption cannot go hand in hand. The opposition needs to be proactive and take a tough stance on the ruling of the government. The country's few significant parties include BJP, Indian National Congress, CPI, AAP, BSP, and the SP. 

It is safe to say that the political scenario can be changed for the greater good of the country and society. 

Short Essay on Indian Politics

The information given below is suitable for the Indian politics essay 10th class syllabus. Students can make use of it during their examinations. In this short essay on Indian politics, one can read about the nuances of Indian politics. 

Indian politics is compared to a great circus where different political parties fight till the end. Most of the elections are marred by corruption on a large scale. Sadly, the country's political climate decides on the communal, social, and economic condition of the country. In this paragraph on Indian politics, one finds out that when the political situation is unstable, then it gives rise to unwanted problems like civil wars and revolutions, as seen in Libya, Syria, and Egypt. 

Indian politics has seen it all, right from the birth of the two single largest parties in India, the partition, emergency period, India-Bangladesh war, and the terror attacks. It is a colorful game indeed with plenty of good and bad happening side-by-side. One can hope that India progresses and matures with time. Hopefully, it will be for the greater good and development of the nation. The essay about Indian politics has shown that the freedom of choosing the kind of ideology one wants to take itself lies in Indian democracy.

Conclusion 

To conclude the Indian politics essay in English, the Indian political scenario has seen it all. Rulers of dynamic capabilities and charismatic character have taken over the realms of the country. 

Likes of Jawaharlal Nehru and Narendra Modi have adorned the coveted position of this country, which is a moment of pride for any Indian. 

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FAQs on Indian Politics Essay

1. What can one learn from the essay on Indian Politics?

The Indian politics essay reveals the existing Indian political system in the country. It is similar to a game of snake and ladders. Friends become one's enemies, and sworn enemies share the dais during election rallies.

It is becoming a common sight today. Indians can be proud of the fact that they are the largest democracy existing in the world. In Indian politics, the prime minister is the head, and power is equally divided between the central and state governments.

2. Does it help Indian Politics in electing educated ministers?

The main issue plaguing the Indian political system is the lack of education. Even ministers occupying senior positions in the country are devoid of quality education. One can blame the lack of criteria when electing the minister.

This has been going on for decades, and quick changes must be imminent for the betterment of the country. It would help in routing problems like corruption that is the root cause of all issues in the country.

3. What is Politics?

Politics is a very wide subject that does not have one definite answer, for most people it is about winning elections and getting the key to state power. However, according to one of the widely accepted definitions, Politics is the art of influencing the will of the state, which means that not only the political parties and the politicians but every citizen has an active role to play in the politics of this country.

4. Which is a democracy?

According to the famous definition given by Abraham Lincoln, Democracy is a form of government that is for the people, by the people, and of the people. This is good to give a basic sense of the idea of democracy but in the more general sense, it is people deciding what is good for them and taking an active part in the decision-making process of the country.

5.  What is the difference between a democracy and a republic?

Democracy is the form of government in which it is considered that the people will be deciding how to govern themselves. While in a Republic, the people give the franchise of their mandate to a selected candidate who represents them in the seat of governance. So the Republic is the enshrinement of the will of the people into a system that selects the people who govern them while democracy makes them responsive to the people who vote for them.

6. How can the write ups along with important questions for Indian Politics be downloaded from Vedantu?

The Online resources at Vedantu can easily be accessed using 4 steps:

Open the Website of Vedantu on your Laptop or you can log in to the Vedantu App through your phone.

Search the subject of Civics along with the particular topic which you are looking for or essays which you may want to find.

Click on Download PDF to download the solution in PDF format.

Enter OTP and then the solutions will be sent to your email id

You can avail all the well-researched and good quality chapters, sample papers, syllabus on various topics from the website of Vedantu and its mobile application available on the play store.

7.  What is the importance of elections in Indian democracy?

Elections play a very vital role in any functioning democracy in the world. Elections are the litmus test on how democracy has been working because without a free and fair election process, No true democracy can survive and if the election process is not free and fair then the belief of people will turn away from democratic politics. However, elections should not be seen as the endgame of democracy as a public partition in the development process must be ensured to keep democracy vibrant.

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Sessions of Parliament

Sessions of Parliament

The Sessions of Parliament lie at the very core of the functioning of the Indian Parliament. They help organize and manage the multitude of tasks that the Parliament has to perform as the supreme legislative body of the country. This article of NEXT IAS aims to study in detail the Sessions of Parliament, their meaning, types, and related procedures, including summoning, prorogation, adjournment, quorum, voting, and other related concepts.

Meaning of Session of Parliament

A ‘ Session of Parliament’ is the period during which the houses of the Parliament convene to conduct parliamentary businesses. In other words, a session represents the active period when the legislature is in operation, carrying out its functions.

Meaning of Session of Indian Parliament

  • A “Session of Indian Parliament” refers to a period during which both Houses of the Indian Parliament (the Lok Sabha and the Rajya Sabha) meet to conduct parliamentary businesses.
  • These sessions of the Indian Parliament provide a platform for the elected representatives to debate, discuss, and enact laws that shape the country’s governance and development.
: The sessions of the Indian Parliament are governed by the and the in Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha.

Types of Sessions of Indian Parliament

There is no fixed Parliamentary Calendar in India. Article 85 of the Constitution only stipulates that:

  • The President shall from time to time summon each House of the Parliament to meet at such time and place as he thinks fit.
  • Thus, the Parliament should meet at least twice a year.
  • The President may from time to time prorogue the Houses or either House and dissolve the House of the People i.e. the Lok Sabh.

By Convention, there are, usually, three sessions of the Indian Parliament in a year – Budget Session, Monsoon Session, and Winter Session.

Budget Session

  • The Budget Session is the longest and most important session of the Parliament.
  • However, other legislative business and debates also take place during this session.
  • The Budget Session is generally held from February to May.

Monsoon Session

  • The name “Monsoon Session” derives from the fact that it coincides with the Monsoon Season (Seasonal Rains) in India.
  • The primary focus of the “Monsoon Session” is to conduct legislative business, including the passage of bills, discussions on important national issues, and scrutiny of government policies.
  • The Monsoon Session is generally held from July to September.

Winter Session

  • Similar to the Monsoon Session, the primary objective of the Winter Session is to transact legislative business and prioritize urgent matters and bills.
  • The Winter Session is generally held from November to December.

Special Sessions of Indian Parliament

In addition to the three regular sessions, the President of India can summon Special Sessions of Parliament, if necessary. These special sessions are typically called to address urgent or extraordinary matters that require the attention of the legislature.

Components of Sessions of Indian Parliament

Various components of a session of Indian Parliament can be seen as follows.

  • A session of Parliament consists of many meetings , usually, each lasting for a day.
  • A session can be defined in terms of a meeting as a broader timeframe, encompassing all the meetings held during a specific period.

Each meeting of a day consists of 2 sittings:

  • Morning Sitting : It is held from 11 AM to 1 PM , and
  • Post-Lunch Sitting : It is held from 2 PM to 6 PM .

Procedures Used During Sessions of Parliament

From beginning to end, various procedures are employed during the sessions of Parliament. These procedures help conduct the sessions in a planned and smooth way.

The procedures employed during sessions of Parliament are discussed in detail in the sections that follow.

  • The summoning of Parliament in India refers to the formal process of calling all members of both houses, the Lok Sabha and the Rajya Sabha, to meet for a session.
  • The power to summon Parliament rests with the President of India . However, he has to do this based on the recommendation of the Cabinet Committee on Parliamentary Affairs.
  • Once the final decision is taken by the Committee, the President of India issues the official summon, calling the Members of Parliament (MPs) to assemble for the Parliamentary Session.
  • During a session, the House meets every day to transact business.
  • In other words, the Parliament should meet at least twice a year.

Adjournment

The term “ Adjournment ” means to suspend the work in a sitting for a specified time, which may be hours, days or weeks.

Adjournment Sine Die

  • In other words, when the House is adjourned without naming a day for reassembly, it is called Adjournment Sine Die.
– The as well as lies with the of the House i.e. Speaker or Chairman.
– The Presiding Officer of the House before the date or time to which it has been adjourned or at any time after the House has been Adjourned Sine Die.

Prorogation

  • Thus, a ‘session’ of Parliament can be defined as the period spanning between the first sitting of a House and its prorogation (or dissolution in the case of the Lok Sabha).
  • The Presiding Officer (Speaker or Chairman) declares the House Adjourned Sine Die when the business of a session is completed.
  • However, the President can also prorogue the House while in session.

Difference between Adjournment and Prorogation

The specific differences between Adjournment and Prorogation can be seen in the following table:

It and a of the House. It not only a but a of the House. 
It is of the House.It is of India. 
It before the House and the same can be resumed when the House meets again.It also before the House. , on prorogation and fresh notices have to be given for the next session. 
  • The period spanning between the prorogation of a House and its reassembly in a new session is called ‘recess’.
  • This is, basically, the time gap between the two consecutive sessions.

Dissolution

  • A Dissolution ends the very life of the existing House, and a new House is constituted after general elections are held.
  • Thus, only the Lok Sabha is subject to dissolution.
  • Automatic Dissolution – It occurs on the expiry of its tenure of five years or the terms as extended during a National Emergency.
  • Once the President decides to dissolve the Lok Sabha, the dissolution is irrevocable.

Rules Regarding Lapsing of Bills Upon Dissolution of Lok Sabha

  • In order to be pursued, they must be reintroduced in the newly constituted Lok Sabha.
  • However, some pending bills and all pending assurances that are to be examined by the Committee on Government Assurances do NOT lapse on the dissolution of the Lok Sabha.
  • The position with respect to the lapsing of bills is as follows:
– A bill pending in the Lok Sabha, whether originating in the Lok Sabha or transmitted to it by the Rajya Sabha.
– A bill passed by the Lok Sabha, but pending in the Rajya Sabha. 
– A bill not passed by the two Houses due to disagreement and for which the President has notified the holding of a joint sitting before the dissolution of Lok Sabha.
– A bill is pending in the Rajya Sabha but not passed by the Lok Sabha.
– A bill passed by both Houses but pending assent of the President.
– A bill passed by both Houses but returned by the President for reconsideration of Houses.
  • The term ‘ Quorum ’ refers to the minimum number of members required to be present in the House before it can transact any business.
  • For the Lok Sabha, Quorum = 545/10 = 54.5 ≡ 55 a. Thus, at least 55 members must be present in the Lok Sabha for it to be able to transact any business.
  • For the Rajya Sabha, Quorum = 250/10 = 25 a. Thus, at least 25 members must be present in the Rajya Sabha for it to be able to transact any business.
  • If there is no Quorum during a meeting of the House, it is the duty of the Presiding Officer either to adjourn the House or to suspend the meeting until there is a Quorum in the House.

Voting in House

  • Any matter at any sitting of either House or joint sitting of both the Houses of Parliament is decided by a specific type of majority of votes as per the nature of the matter.
  • The Presiding Officer of a House does not vote in the first instance but exercises a casting vote in the case of an equality of votes.
  • The proceedings of a House are to be valid irrespective of any unauthorised voting or participation or any vacancy in its membership.

Methods of Voting

The various methods adopted for voting in the Lok Sabha are explained below:

  • In the Voice Vote method, the members who are in favour of the motion being voted upon say ‘Aye’ and those against the motion say ‘No’.
  • The presiding officer listens to the volume of the voices voting “Aye” and “No” and makes a determination based on which side is louder.
  • Thus, this decision is subjective and relies on the officer’s judgment.

Under the Division method of voting, votes are recorded by either of the following three methods:

  • By operating the Automatic Vote Recording Equipment,
  • By distributing ‘Ayes’ and ‘Noes’ slips in the House,
  • By members going into the Lobbies.

Secret Ballot

  • The Secret Ballot method of voting is used during certain key procedures to ensure the confidentiality of each member’s vote.
  • In an Open Voting, the individual results are shown in 3 colours: Green for ‘Ayes’, Red for ‘Noes’ and Yellow for ‘Abstain’ on the Individual Result Display Panel.
  • In Secret Ballot Voting , on the other hand, the Individual Result Display Panel flashes only a white light to show that the vote has been recorded.

Recording of Votes by Distribution of Slips

Members are given two slips: ‘Aye’ and ‘No’. Members choose either of the two slips as per their decision. These slips are, then, collected and total ‘Ayes’ and total ‘Noes’ are counted.

Physical Count of Members in their Places Instead of a Formal Division

  • If in the opinion of the Speaker, a Division is unnecessarily claimed, he/she may ask the members who are for ‘Ayes’ and those for ‘Noes’, respectively, to rise in their places and on a count being takes, he/she may declare the determination of the House.
  • In such a case, the particulars of the voting of the members are not recorded.

Casting Vote

  • If in a Division, the number of ‘Ayes’ and ‘Noes’ is equal, the question is decided by the casting vote of the Speaker.
  • As per the Constitutional provisions, the Presiding Officer of the House cannot vote in the first instance. He/she has only a casting vote which he/she must exercise in the case of equality of votes.

Lame-duck Session

  • Lame-duck Session refers to the last session of the preceding Lok Sabha after a new Lok Sabha has been elected.
  • Those members of the preceding Lok Sabha who could not get re-elected to the new Lok Sabha are called lame-ducks.

Language in Parliament

  • Though English was to be discontinued as a floor language the expiration of fifteen years from the commencement of the Constitution (that is, in 1965), but the Official Languages Act of 1963 allowed English to be continued along with Hindi.
  • It is to be noted that the Presiding Officer can permit a Member of Parliament to address the House in his/her mother tongue, which can be other than Hindi or English.

The Session of Parliament is a critical component of the country’s democratic governance. It provides a platform for elected representatives to debate, discuss, and enact laws that shape the nation’s development and address the concerns of its citizens. They are the primary vehicles, which enable the smooth and effective functioning of the Parliament, thus helping the country’s democratic progress and the realization of its developmental aspirations.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Who presides over the joint session of the parliament.

The President of India presides over the Joint Session of the Parliament.

In India’s Parliament, how many sessions are there?

There are a total of 3 sessions in the Indian Parliament.

Is it mandatory to conduct all three sessions of Parliament?

The Constitution of India provides for three sessions of the Parliament in a year, but it is not mandatory to conduct all three sessions. Also, there is no minimum number of days that the Parliament is required to meet in a year.

Which is the longest session of the Parliament?

The Budget Session is the longest session of the Parliament.

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Lok sabha: composition, system of elections & more, local self-government in india, funds for union government: consolidated fund, contingency fund & public account of india, budgetary process in india, vice president of india, presiding officers of indian parliament, leave a reply cancel reply.

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538 Words Essay on Indian parliament (free to read)

essay on indian parliament

In India, the legislature at the central level is called Parliament. The Indian Parliament is bicameral. It consists of two houses. The lower house is called the Lok Sabha or the House of the people. The upper house is called the Rajya Sabha or the council of States.

The President of India is an integral part of the Indian Parliament. The two houses of Parliament are constituted in different ways. They do not enjoy equal powers. The first elected Parliament came into being in April 1952.

Lok Sabha, as the name itself signifies, is the body representative of the people. It consists of members of directly elected by the people. The maximum strength of Lok Sabha has been fixed at 552. Out of these, 530 members are elected by the people from different states and to 20 members are elected from the union territories. Besides, the President has the power to nominate two members of the Anglo Indian community in the Lok Sabha if it does not have adequate representation. The term of Lok Sabha is five years.

The Minimum qualifying age for membership of the house is 25 years. The Lok Sabha elects its Speaker and Deputy Speaker f r om among its own members. The speaker presides over its meetings.

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Rajya Sabha is the Upper House of Parliament. Its maximum strength can be 250 members. Of these 12 members are nominated by the President of India, the remaining 238 members are representatives of various states and union territories. The elected members from each state are elected by the members of Legislative Assembly of that state. The members from union territories are elected according to the procedure laid down by the Parliament.

The members nominated by the President are the people who are eminent in the fields of art, literature, science or social service. No members of Rajya Sabha can be under 30 years of age. Rajya Sabha is a parliament house. It is never dissolved as a whole. Each member of the Rajya Sabha is elected for 6 years, one third; of its members retire, after every two years.

The vice President of India is the ex-officio Chairman of Rajya Sabha. It (Rajya Sabha) also elects a vice-chairman from among its members. He or she presides over the meeting of the Rajya Sabha in case the Chairman is not present.

The Parliament has the power to legislate on all subjects that are under the Jurisdiction of the central government. It passes ordinary and financial bills. The Lok Sabha exercises more powers in respect to money bills than the Rajya Sabha. The Parliament has also the power to amend the Constitution. It is also essential that the ordinance promulgated by the President is approved by the Parliament as soon as it meets. The proclamation of emergency by the President must by approved by the Parliament.

The Parliament also exercises control over the executive. It is the place where the government has to give an account of its policies. The Parliament house is one of the most important buildings in New Delhi. This magnificent building has the brightest clusters of architectural gems. It is a place which is visited by the people from inside as well as outside the country.

Related Articles:

  • Short Essay on the Parliament of India
  • Paragraph on Rajya Sabha or the Council of the States of India
  • Free sample essay on Indian Parliament
  • Short Essay on Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha

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Essay on Indian Politics

Students are often asked to write an essay on Indian Politics in their schools and colleges. And if you’re also looking for the same, we have created 100-word, 250-word, and 500-word essays on the topic.

Let’s take a look…

100 Words Essay on Indian Politics

Introduction to indian politics.

Indian Politics is a broad subject which involves the activities related to governance of India. It includes a multitude of political parties, each with their unique ideologies and agendas.

Political Structure

India, known as the largest democracy in the world, has a federal structure. It is divided into central and state governments, each with their own jurisdictions and responsibilities.

Political Parties

Major political parties in India include the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), Indian National Congress (INC), and various regional parties. They play a vital role in shaping the country’s policies.

Role of Politics

Politics in India is crucial for law-making, maintaining law and order, and ensuring the welfare of the citizens. It impacts every aspect of society.

250 Words Essay on Indian Politics

Introduction.

Indian politics, a complex and multifaceted arena, is a vibrant blend of democratically elected representatives, political parties, and their ideologies. It is a reflection of the nation’s diverse socio-cultural fabric, with its roots deeply entrenched in the democratic ethos of the world’s largest democracy.

The Political Structure

India follows a federal structure, with power distributed between the central government and individual states. The President is the head of state, while the Prime Minister is the head of government. The Parliament, consisting of the Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha, is the legislative body, and the judiciary ensures the constitution’s supremacy.

Political Parties and Ideologies

Indian politics is characterized by a multitude of political parties, each with unique ideologies. The Indian National Congress (INC) and the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) are two prominent national parties. The ideologies of these parties range from secularism and socialism to nationalism and Hindutva, providing a broad spectrum of political thought.

Role of Caste and Religion

Caste and religion significantly influence Indian politics. Political parties often use these factors to mobilize voters, leading to identity-based politics. This can sometimes result in social divisions, highlighting the need for political maturity and responsible leadership.

Indian politics, while dynamic and diverse, faces challenges such as corruption, criminalization of politics, and the misuse of power. However, the democratic structure provides mechanisms for checks and balances. The future of Indian politics lies in strengthening these mechanisms, promoting inclusive politics, and ensuring the welfare of all citizens.

500 Words Essay on Indian Politics

The democratic framework.

India, the world’s largest democracy, operates under a federal structure of government, although the word is not used in the Constitution itself. The President of India is the ceremonial head of state, while the Prime Minister is the head of government and runs the country’s day-to-day operations. The Indian political structure also comprises the Rajya Sabha (Council of States) and the Lok Sabha (House of the People), forming a bicameral parliament.

Political Parties and Coalition Politics

Indian politics is characterized by a multi-party system. The Indian National Congress and the Bharatiya Janata Party are two of the major national parties. However, regional parties also play a pivotal role in the political sphere. Coalition politics has become a norm in Indian politics, reflecting the diversity of the country. It ensures that various regional and community interests are adequately represented, enhancing the democratic spirit.

Politics of Socio-Economic Development

Indian politics has always been closely linked with socio-economic development. Policies and schemes aimed at poverty alleviation, rural development, and social upliftment have been key political agendas. However, these initiatives often face challenges due to corruption, bureaucratic inefficiencies, and disparities in implementation.

Identity Politics

Identity politics, based on religion, caste, language, or regional identity, is a significant aspect of Indian politics. While it has led to empowerment of marginalized communities, critics argue that it has also resulted in increased polarization and social divisions.

Politics and Corruption

Corruption remains a pervasive issue in Indian politics, undermining the democratic ethos. Despite numerous anti-corruption movements and legislation, the problem persists. It is a pressing challenge that needs to be addressed to ensure transparency and accountability in the political system.

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New Parliament Building For New India

  • 31 May 2023
  • 13 min read
  • GS Paper - 2
  • GS Paper - 1
  • Government Policies & Interventions
  • Indian Heritage Sites

This editorial is based on ‘India’s new Parliament, and why it is needed’ which was published in Indian Express on 29/05/2023. It talks about the need of New Parliament building and its features.

For Prelims: Parliament , Central Vista project , Lok Sabha , Rajya Sabha , Sengol

For Mains: Need for new parliament building, Symbolism in Elements of Parliament

In a significant milestone during the 75th year of Independence, Prime minister of India unveiled new Parliament building. Designed and constructed by Indians, this architectural marvel encapsulates the culture, pride, and spirit of the entire nation and looks forward to fulfilling the longstanding need of Indian democracy to have more spacious parliament as the number of seats and MPs will increase in the coming time.

The new parliament building, developed as a part of Central Vista Redevelopment project , takes care of infrastructural hurdles in parliamentary functioning.

Prime minister inaugurated the parliament and placed ‘Sengol’ , the symbol of power transfer to India from the British.

What was the Need for the New Parliament Building?

  • With the number of Lok Sabha seats fixed at 545 since the 1971 Census -based delimitation, the building's seating arrangements have become cramped and cumbersome.
  • During joint sessions, the limited seating capacity exacerbates the problem. Moreover, the lack of space for movement poses a significant security risk. It is likely to increase substantially after 2026 as the freeze on total number of seats is only till 2026.
  • Heritage Grade-I comprises buildings and precincts of national or historic importance, embodying excellence in architectural style, design, technology and material usage and/or aesthetics.
  • They may be associated with a great historic event, personality, movement or institution . They have been and are the prime landmarks of the region. All natural sites shall fall within Grade-I.
  • Ad hoc constructions and modifications have strained the building's infrastructure. The addition of essential services like water supply, air conditioning, and CCTV cameras has led to seepage issues, impacting the building's aesthetics.
  • Moreover, outdated communication structures and inadequate fire safety measures raise concerns about the safety of occupants.
  • Old parliament was built when Delhi was in Seismic Zone-II, the current Parliament building now falls within Seismic Zone-IV.
  • This shift raises significant structural safety concerns, necessitating the construction of a new building that meets modern seismic standards.
  • Over time, the conversion of inner service corridors into offices has resulted in poor-quality workspaces.
  • Sub-partitions further reduce the already limited space, adversely affecting the productivity and well-being of employees.

What are the Significant Features of the New Parliament Building?

  • The new Parliament building, standing alongside the existing one, encompasses a built-up area of approximately 65,000 sq m. Its triangular shape ensures efficient utilization of space, accommodating the evolving needs of a growing nation.
  • The new building includes a larger Lok Sabha Hall with a capacity of up to 888 seats and a larger Rajya Sabha hall with up to 384 seats.
  • Joint sessions of Parliament can now accommodate up to 1,272 seats, facilitating inclusive and robust democratic proceedings.
  • A state-of-the-art Constitutional Hall serves as the heart of Indian democracy, placing citizens at the center of governance.
  • The building also offers ultra-modern office spaces equipped with cutting-edge communication technology, promoting efficiency and security.
  • The new Sansad Bhavan stands as a " Platinum-rated Green Building," reflecting India's dedication to environmental sustainability.
  • The new Parliament building seamlessly integrates the vibrance and diversity of modern India, incorporating regional arts, crafts, and cultural elements.
  • Recognizing the importance of accessibility, the new Parliament building prioritizes divyang (differently-abled) individuals.
  • It ensures that people with disabilities can move freely within the premises , fostering inclusivity and equal participation.
  • The public entrances lead to three galleries - the Sangeet Gallery which exhibits dance, song, and musical traditions of India; the Sthapthya Gallery depicts the architectural heritage of the country, and the Shilp Gallery showcases distinct handicraft traditions of different states.
  • The Lok Sabha and the Rajya Sabha chambers boast a digitised voting system, well-engineered acoustics, and state-of-the-art audiovisual systems to ensure effective legislative proceedings.
  • The Ministers’ chambers can be accessed through corridors running parallel to the triangular boundary of the building.
  • The Lok Sabha hall’s interior, inspired by India's national bird, the peacock, and the Rajya Sabha hall, representing the lotus, India's national flower, embody the rich symbolism of the nation.
  • Installation of Sengol, the symbol of power transfer, is symbolic tribute to power transfer to India.

What is its Overarching Central Vista Redevelopment Project?

  • The Central Vista Redevelopment Project is a project that aims to revamp the Central Vista, India’s central administrative area located near Raisina Hill, New Delhi.
  • The area was originally designed by Sir Edwin Lutyens and Sir Herbert Baker during British colonial rule and was retained by Government of India after independence. The redevelopment of the project is being overseen by Ar. Bimal Patel.
  • Central Vista of New Delhi houses Rashtrapati Bhawan, Parliament House, North and South Block, India Gate, National Archives among others.
  • In December 1911, King George V made an announcement in Delhi Durbar (a grand assembly) to shift the capital of India from Calcutta to Delhi.
  • Constructing a triangular Parliament building next to the existing one.
  • Constructing Common Central Secretariat.
  • North and South Block to be repurposed as museums.

What is the Historical Significance of Sengol?

  • The Sengol is derived from the Tamil word "Semmai" which means "Righteousness".
  • The Cholas ruled over parts of Tamil Nadu, Kerala, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Odisha, and Sri Lanka from the 9th to 13th century CE.
  • The ceremony was usually performed by a high priest or a guru who blessed the new king and conferred him with the Sengol.
  • Before Independence there was a question that, ‘What is the ceremony that should be followed to symbolise transfer of power from British?’
  • C. Rajagopalachari suggested Chola ritual of handing over ‘Sengol’ as suitable ceremony for power transfer as it would reflect India’s ancient civilisation and culture, as well as its unity in diversity.
  • The Sengol was presented to PM Nehru by Thiruvavaduthurai Adheenam (a 500-year-old Saivaite monastery) on August 14, 1947.
  • A golden sceptre was crafted by Vummidi Bangaru Chetty , a famous jeweller in Madras (now Chennai).
  • The Nandi, with its unyielding gaze as the beholder of “Nyaya”, is hand-carved at the top.
  • It remained at Anand Bhavan Museum for over seven decades.
  • It has been placed near the Speaker’s seat in the new Parliament building, accompanied by a plaque that will explain its history and meaning.
  • It signifies that India’s democracy is rooted in its ancient traditions and values and that it is inclusive and respectful of its diversity and plurality.

How did the Old Parliament Building Come into Being?

  • The old parliament building's construction began in 1921 and was completed in 1927 and was designed by the architects Edwin Lutyens and Herbert Baker.
  • The building was originally called the Council House and housed the Imperial Legislative Council, the legislature of British India.
  • The parliament building's circular shape was inspired by the Colosseum , the Roman historical monument.
  • A few Indian elements, such as jaalis and chhatris, were added to the design.

India's new Parliament building is a state-of-the-art facility that showcases India's rich cultural heritage while providing modern amenities for effective legislative proceedings. The government plans to use both the buildings in conjunction for smooth functioning of parliamentary affairs.

It not only reflects India's cultural diversity but also paves the way for an inclusive and efficient democratic process. As the nation embarks on this new chapter, the new Parliament building becomes a beacon of hope and unity, inspiring generations to come.

The new parliament building, developed as a part of Central Vista Redevelopment project, takes care of infrastructural hurdles in parliamentary functioning. Discuss.

essay on indian parliament

essay on indian parliament

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India’s New Parliament: Need and Significance

Syllabus: Parliament – Structure, Functioning, Conduct of Business, Powers & Privileges and Issues Arising out of these

  Source: IE

  • In the 75th year of Independence, India’s new Parliament building, embodying the culture, pride and spirit of the entire nation, was recently inaugurated by the PM of India.
  • 19 opposition parties boycotted the inauguration event, accusing the central government of sidelining President Droupadi Murmu – the country’s first tribal head of state.

essay on indian parliament

The old Parliament:

  • At the coronation of George V as Emperor of India in 1911 , the announcement of the transfer of the seat of GoI from Calcutta to the ancient Capital of Delhi was made.
  • The GoI Act 1919 provided for a bicameral legislature for India and the need for the new was felt.
  • The parliament building’s construction took six years (and Rs 83 lakhs) – from 1921 to 1927, and its circular shape is believed to be inspired by the Chausath Yogini temple at Mitawli village in MP’s Morena district.

Need for a new Parliament building:

  • Existing Parliament is old: The existing Parliament house (which will be converted into a ‘Museum of Democracy’ after the new Parliament becomes operational) is almost a century-old Heritage Grade-I building, showing signs of distress and over-utilization.
  • The present building was never designed to accommodate a bicameral legislature for a full-fledged democracy.
  • The Central Hall has seating capacity only for 440 persons and when the Joint Sessions are held , the problem of limited seats amplifies.
  • The number of Lok Sabha seats is likely to increase significantly from the current 545 after 2026.
  • Distressed infrastructure: The addition of services like water supply, sewer lines, etc., has led to seepage of water at several places and impacted the aesthetics of the building.
  • Safety concerns: For example, fire safety, structural safety (Delhi is currently in Seismic Zone-IV), etc.
  • Obsolete communication structures: Communications infrastructure and technology is antiquated in the existing Parliament, and the acoustics of all the halls need improvement.
  • Inadequate workspace for employees.

The new Parliament:

  • It is part of the Central Vista Project – the ongoing redevelopment project to revamp India’s central administrative area (designed by Sir Edwin Lutyens and Sir Herbert Baker during British colonial rule) located near Raisina Hill, New Delhi.
  • It is designed by Ahmedabad-based HCP Design, Planning and Management under architect Bimal Patel and has been built by Tata Projects Ltd.

essay on indian parliament

Main features of the new Parliament building:

  • A “ Platinum-rated Green Building ” with about 65,000 sq m built-up area, which will be divyang friendly.
  • The triangular shape ensures the optimum utilisation of space.
  • A larger Lok Sabha hall (888 seats) based on the peacock theme (India’s national bird) and a larger Rajya Sabha hall (384 seats) based on the lotus theme (India’s national flower).
  • The Lok Sabha may accommodate up to 1,272 seats for joint sessions of Parliament.
  • A state-of-the-art Constitutional Hall symbolically and physically puts the Indian citizens at the heart of our democracy.
  • A Central Lounge that will complement the open courtyard (with a banyan – the national tree) will be a place for members to interact with each other.
  • Ultra-modern state-of-the-art features like a digitised voting system, well-engineered acoustics and audiovisual systems in the two chambers.

Interior decorations:

  • Murals depicting maps of ancient India-protected monuments of ASI and UNESCO, etc.
  • 3 ceremonial entrance halls with huge brass images of Mahatma Gandhi , Chanakya, Gargi, Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel, B.R. Ambedkar, and the Chariot Wheel from the Sun Temple at Konark are on display.
  • Reflecting the cultural diversity of India in line with the “Made in India” initiative Tripura’s epitome bamboo wood flooring and carpets from UP’s Mirzapur embellished the new Parliament.
BinnenhofThe Hague, Netherlands
National Parliament HouseDhaka, Bangladesh
The CapitolWashington DC, US
The Great Hall of the PeopleBeijing, China
The National Assembly ComplexAbuja, Nigeria
The Palace of ParliamentBucharest, Romania
The ReichstagBerlin, Germany

Significance of the new Parliament: Symbol of the vision and aspirations of India, the spirit of change and continuity and will witness the making of India as ‘ Aatmanirbhar Bharat ’.

Expectations from the new Parliament:

  • The trend of increasing disruptions and long periods of deadlock is antithetical to the spirit of Parliament – law-making through debate, discussion, and consensus.
  • Hence, the new Parliament offers an opportunity to seriously introspect on Parliamentary conduct and make Parliament more efficient and productive.

Conclusion: The new Parliament should not only be the fountainhead/epitome of architectural excellence but should also work as a lighthouse to guide India in its ambitious journey of ‘new India@100’; ‘Ek Bharat, Shrestha Bharat’, etc.

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New Parliament building

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India’s president inaugurates newly elected parliament and sets out economic reforms as a key agenda

Image

FILE -In this photograph released by India’s Presidential Palace, India’s new president Draupadi Murmu, salutes as she receives a guard of honor during her swearing in ceremony in New Delhi, India, July 25, 2022. India’s president on Thursday inaugurated a new parliament session after the national election, listing priorities of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government in coming years, including fast-tracking economic reforms and boosting small and medium enterprises to create jobs.( India’s Presidential Palace via AP, File)

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi addresses the media as he arrives to attend the first day of the Parliament session of the 18th Lok Sabha in New Delhi, India, Monday, June 24, 2024. (AP Photo)

Former Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla, who is nominated by the ruling National Democratic Alliance (NDA) for the post of Speaker again, arrives in an open vehicle to attend the second day of the Parliament session of the 18th Lok Sabha in New Delhi, India, Tuesday, June 25, 2024. (AP Photo)

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NEW DELHI (AP) — India’s president inaugurated a new parliament on Thursday after national elections, listing the priorities of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government in coming years, including fast-tracking economic reforms and boosting small and medium-size enterprises to create jobs.

President Draupadi Murmu said India’s economy grew the fastest among the world’s major nations at an average of 8% over the past four years.

The International Monetary Fund has put India’s growth forecast at 6.8% for 2024-25.

Modi’s government was elected to a record third term despite failing to win a majority on its own. Modi is dependent on his Hindu nationalist party’s coalition partners to govern the country for another five years.

The government will present its 2024-25 budget next month, setting out its vision of making India a developed country by 2047, Murmu said in a speech to the lawmakers.

In India, the presidency is largely a ceremonial position and the prime minister governs the country.

The new parliament includes some unexpected winners, including Sikh separatist leader Amritpal Singh and Sarabjeet Singh Khalsa, the son of one of the assassins of then Prime Minister Indira Gandhi in 1984. They were elected from northern Punjab state.

Image

Punjab suffered a bloody insurgency in the 1980s that led to Gandhi’s killing by her Sikh bodyguards at her official residence in New Delhi. Her assassination triggered bloody rioting by her Hindu supporters against Sikhs in northern India.

Another new lawmaker is Sheikh Abdul Rashid from Indian-controlled Kashmir. He was arrested in 2019 on terror-funding charges and is currently in jail.

Rashid’s Awami Ittehad Party has petitioned a Delhi court to allow him to participate the oath-taking ceremony in Parliament. Separatist groups have been fighting for the independence of Kashmir or its merger with Pakistan.

In January, the government unveiled a short-term budget ahead of the elections that boosted spending on infrastructure projects and homes for poor villagers and cut the fiscal deficit by reducing subsidies.

The Modi government announced plans to provide skills for young people and boost small and medium enterprises to create jobs. It faced criticism from the opposition during the election campaign for not creating enough jobs despite offering billions of dollars in subsidies to boost manufacturing.

The government plans to build 20 million affordable houses over the next five years, adding to the 30 million already built. The government allocated $145 billion for infrastructure projects.

The government’s budget last year totaled $550 billion and focused on ramping up capital spending to spur economic growth.

India attracted $596 billion in foreign direct investment over the past nine years.

Last year, India surpassed the United Kingdom to become the world’s fifth-largest economy with a GDP of $3.7 trillion. The government expects the economy to become the third largest in the next three years with a GDP of $5 trillion.

essay on indian parliament

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