NIOS Political Science (317) Notes|Chapter-11|Parliament of India

NIOS Political Science (317) Notes|Chapter-11|Parliament of India. Important questions for NIOS Political Science 317 Questions Answers brings you latest queries and solutions with accordance to the most recent pointers SOS . Students will clear all their doubts with regard to every chapter by active these necessary chapter queries and elaborate explanations that area unit provided by our specialists so as to assist you higher. These queries can facilitate students prepare well for the exams thanks to time constraint . NIOS Political Science (317) Notes|Chapter-11|Parliament of India.

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NIOS Political Science (317) Notes|Chapter-31|Parliament of India

 Intext Questions & Answers

 Q. 1. What can be the maximum strength of Rajya Sabha?

 Ans.: 250 

Q. 2. How many members the President nominates in Rajya Sabha?

 Ans.: 12

 Q. 3. Who can vote to elect the members of Rajya Sabha?

 Ans.: Members of State Assemblies

 Q. 4. What is the tenure of a member of Rajya Sabha?

 Ans.: 6 years –1/3 entire every 2 years

 Q. 5. What is the minimum age for becoming a member of Rajya Sabha? 

Ans.: 30 years

 Q. 6. Who is the ex-officio Chairman of Rajya Sabha?

 Ans.: The Vice-President 

Q. 7. What is the maximum permissible membership of Lok Sabha? 

Ans.: 550 

Q. 8. Which State sends the maximum number of members to Lok Sabha?

 Ans.: Uttar Pradesh 

Q. 9. How many Anglo-Indian members may be nominated by the President in Lok Sabha?

 Ans. Two 

Q. 10. For which section of the society seats are reserved in the Lok Sabha? 

Ans.: Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes

 Q. 11. Who can vote in Lok Sabha elections?

 Ans.: All the Indian citizens of 18 years of age and above

 Q. 12. Who can dissolve the Lok Sabha? 

Ans. President

 Q. 13. Who elects the Speaker of Lok Sabha? 

Ans.: Members of Lok Sabha 

Q. 14. What is the name of the list on which only the Parliament can make laws? 

Ans. :Union List

 Q. 15. Who makes laws on the subjects mentioned in the State List? 

Ans.: State Legislatures

 Q. 16. How many States can request the Parliament to make law on some subject mentioned in the State list?

 Ans.: Two or more State Legislatures

 Q. 17. Who Can admit a new State in the Indian Union?

 Ans.: The Parliament

 Q. 18. What is a Government Bill?

 Ans.: A bill moved by a Minister in the Government is a Government bill. 

Q. 19. What is a Private Member’s Bill? 

Ans.: A bill moved by Member of Parliament but not a minister, is called Private member’s bill.

 Q. 20. When are the Private Member’s Bills discussed? 

Ans.: Private Member’s bills are discussed only on Fridays 

Q. 21. Which bill cannot be introduced in Rajya Sabha? 

Ans.: Money bills cannot be introduced in Rajya Sabha.

 Q. 22. When is the joint sitting of the two Houses of Parliament held? 

Ans.: Joint Sitting of the two Houses is held to remove the deadlock between the two Houses over a non-money bill. 

Q. 23. What constitutes quorum in either House of Parliament? 

Ans. : One-tenth of the strength of a House. 

Q. 24. Fill in the blanks:

 1. Budget can only be introduced in the ______________ 

Ans.: Lok Sabha 

2. Only______________ can create a new All-India service 

Ans.: Rajya Sabha

 3. Each member of Parliament gets a sum of Rs______________ as Local Development Fund every year.

 Ans.: Rs. 2 crore 

Terminal Exercise

 Q. 1. Describe the composition of Rajya Sabha and method of election of its members? 

Ans.: The Parliament has two Houses-Rajya Sabha and Lok Sabha. Rajya Sabha or the Upper House of the Parliament is a permanent body as it cannot be dissolved. The membership of the Rajya Sabha cannot exceed 250. Out of these, the President nominates 12 members on the basis of their excellence in literature, science, art and social service and the rest are elected. At present its total membership is 245. 

Rajya Sabha is the body representing States in the Indian Union. The elected members of the States’ Legislative Assemblies elect the members of the Rajya Sabha on the basis of proportional representation through the single transferable vote system. But all the States do not send an equal number of members to the Rajya Sabha. Their representation is decided on the basis of the population of respective States. Thus the bigger State gets bigger representation and the smaller ones have lesser representation While the big State like UP has been assigned 31 seats, the smaller states like Sikkim and Tripura send only one member each. Delhi Assembly elects three members of Rajya Sabha and Pondichery sends one member. Other Union Territories are not represented in the Rajya Sabha. 

Qualifications 

The qualifications for becoming a Rajya Sabha member are as follows:

  1. He/she should be a citizen of India and at least 30 years of age. 
  2. He/she should make an oath or affirmation stating that he will bear true faith and allegiance to the Constitution of India.
  3. Thus according to the Representation of People Act 1951, he/she should be registered as a voter in the State from which he is seeking election to the Rajya Sabha. But in 2003, two provisions have been made regarding the elections to Rajya Sabha- 

(i) Any Indian citizen can contest the Rajya Sabha elections irrespective of the State in which he resides; 

(ii) elections are to be conducted through open voting system.

 Tenure

Every member of Rajya Sabha enjoys a safe tenure of six years. One-third of its members retire after every two years. They are entitled to contest again for the membership. But a member elected against a mid-term vacancy serves the remaining period only. This system of election ensures continuity in the working of Rajya Sabha.

SL. No.Chapters Link
1Meaning and Scope of Political ScienceClick Here
2Nation and StateClick Here
3Distinction Between Society, Nation, State and GovernmentClick Here
4Major Political TheoriesClick Here
5Preamble and The Salient Features of The Constitution of IndiaClick Here
6Fundamental RightsClick Here
7Directive Principles of State Policy and Fundamental DutiesClick Here
8Indian Federal SystemClick Here
9Emergency ProvisionsClick Here
10Union ExecutiveClick Here
11Parliament of IndiaClick Here
12Supreme Court of IndiaClick Here
13Executive in the StatesClick Here
14State LegislatureClick Here
15High Courts and Subordinate CourtsClick Here
16Local Government: Urban and RuralClick Here
17Universal adult franchise and the methods of representationClick Here
18Electoral System in IndiaClick Here
19National Political PartiesClick Here
20Regionalism and Regional PartiesClick Here
21Public Opinion and Pressure GroupsClick Here
22Communalism, Caste and ReservationsClick Here
23Environmental AwarenessClick Here
24Good GovernanceClick Here
25Human RightsClick Here
26India’s Foreign PolicyClick Here
27India’s Relations with USA and RussiaClick Here
28India and its Neighbors : China, Pakistan And Sri LankaClick Here
29Contemporary World OrderClick Here
30The United NationsClick Here
31United Nations’ Peace ActivitiesClick Here
32United Nations and Economic and Social DevelopmentClick Here
33Public Service CommissionsClick Here
34Administrative Machinery at the Centre, States and District LevelsClick Here
35Political Executive and BureaucracyClick Here
36Public Grievances and Redressal MachineryClick Here

 Q. 2. Describe powers of the Speaker of Lok Sabha? 

Ans.: The presiding officer of Lok Sabha is known as Speaker. The members of the House elect him. He/she remains the Speaker even after Lok Sabha is dissolved till the next House elects a new Speaker in his place. In she absence, a Deputy Speaker who is also elected by the House presides over the meetings. Both the Speaker as well as the Deputy Speaker can be removed from office by a resolution of Lok Sabha passed by a majority of all the then members of the House.

 Some of the powers and functions of the speaker are given below: 

  1. The basic function of the Speaker is to preside over the house and conduct the meetings of the House in orderly manner. No member can speak in the House without she permission. He/ she may ask a member to finish his speech and in case the member does not obey he/she may order that the speech should not be recorded.
  2.  All the Bills, reports, motions and resolutions are introduced with the Speaker’s permission. He/she puts the motion or bill to vote. He/she does not participate in the voting but when there is a tie i.e. equal number of votes on both sides, he/she can use his casting vote. But he/she is expected to caste her vote in a manner so that her impartiality and independence is retained. 
  3.  His/her decisions in all parliamentary matters are final. She also rules, on points of order raised by the members and her decision is final.
  4.  He/she is the custodian of rights and privileges of the members. 
  5.  He/she disqualifies a member of his/her membership in case of defection. He/she also accepts the resignation of members and decides about the genuineness of the resignation. 
  6.  In case of joint sitting of Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha, the Speaker presides over the meeting.

 Q. 3. Discuss the functions of Parliament? 

Ans. The functions and powers of the Indian Parliament can be divided into legislative, executive, financial and other catagories.

(i) Legislative Functions 

Basically the Parliament is a law-making body. In an earlier lesson you have seen that there is a division of power between the Centre (Union) and the States. There are three lists – Union List, State List and the Concurrent List. Only Parliament can make laws on the subjects mentioned in the Union List. You know that the Union List has 97 subjects. Along with the State Legislatures, the Parliament is empowered to make laws on the Concurrent List. In case, both the Centre as well as the States make a law on the subject mentioned in the Concurrent List then the central law prevails upon the state law if there is a clash between the two. Any subject not mentioned in any list ie. residuary powers are vested with the Parliament. 

Thus the law making power of the Parliament is very wide. It covers the Union List and Concurrent List and in certain circumstances even the State List also.

 (ii) The Executive Functions

In a parliamentary system of government there is a close relationship between the legislature and the executive. And the executive is responsible to the legislature for all its acts. The Prime Minister and his Council of Ministers are responsible to the Parliament individually as well as collectively. The Parliament can dislodge a ministry by passing a vote of no confidence or by refusing to endorse a confidence motion. In India this has happened several times. This happened in 1999 when the Atal Bihari Vajpayee Government lost the confidence motion in the Lok Sabha by just one vote and resigned.

But the no-confidence motion or the confidence motions are the extreme ways of maintaining the accountability of the Parliament over the executive. They are employed in exceptional cases. Parliament also maintains its control over executive in a routine manner through several ways. Some of them are as follows: 

  1.  The members of Parliament can ask questions and Supplementary questions regarding any matters connected with the affairs of the Central Government. The first hour of every working day of Parliament relates to the Question Hour in which the Ministers have to answer the questions raised by the members.
  2.  If the members are not satisfied with the Government’s answer then they may demand separate discussion on the subject.
  3.  The Parliament also exercises control over the executive through several motions. For example calling attention notice or adjournment motion are such ways by which some recent matters of urgent public importance are raised. The government always takes these motions very seriously because the government’s policies are criticized severely and their likely impact on the electorate whom the government would have to face ultimately. If the motion is passed then it means that the government is censured. 

Censure Motion: 

This motion implies severe indictment of the government; but it does not require resignation of the Council of Members.

 d. The Lok Sabha can express its lack of confidence in the executive by disapproving the budget or money bill or even an ordinary bill. 

(iii) The Financial Functions 

The Parliament performs important financial functions. It is the custodian of the public money. It controls the entire purse of the Central Government. No money can be spent without its approval. This approval may be taken before the actual spending or in rare cases after the spending. The budget is approved by the Parliament every year.

 (iv) The Electoral Functions 

The elected member of Parliament one members of the Electoral College for Presidential election. As such, they participate in the election of the President of India. They elect the Vice President. The Lok Sabha elects its Speaker and Deputy Speaker and the Rajya Sabha elects its Deputy Chairman. 

(v) Power of Removal

 Certain high functionaries may be removed from office on the initiative of the Parliament. The President of India may be removed through the process of impeachment (you have read about it in Lesson No. 10). The judges of Supreme Court and of High Courts can be removed by an order of the President, which may be issued only if a resolution of their removal is passed by both Houses of Parliament by special majority (see Lessons 12 and 15). 

(vi) Functions Regarding the Amendment of the Constitution Structure of Government 

Most of the parts of the Constitution can be amended by the Parliament by special majority. But certain provisions only be amended by the Parliament with the approval of States. However India being a federal State, the amending power of the Parliament is highly limited. The Supreme Court has ruled that the Parliament cannot change the basic structure of the Constitution. You have already read about the amending procedure in another lesson. 

(vii) Miscellaneous Functions 

Besides the above-mentioned functions, the Parliaments also performs a variety of other functions. Some of them are as follows: 

  1.  While it is the power of the President to declare Emergency, the Parliament approves all such Proclamations of Emergency Both the Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha have to approve the Proclamation.
  2. Parliament may form a new State by separating the territory from any State or by uniting two or more States. It may also change the boundaries and the name of any State. In the recent years (2000), new states of Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand and Uttarakhand were created. 
  3. Parliament may admit or establish new States in the Indian Union (Sikkim in 1975).
  4. The Parliament can abolish or create Legislative Councils in the States. This is done only on the request of concerned States Assemblies. Thus the Indian Parliament, though limited by the federal nature of the political system, has wide functions to perform. In performing its functions, it has to mirror the aspirations and needs of the people of India. It also has to function as an agency for resolving socioeconomic or political conflicts: in the country. It also helps in building consensus on specific issues, which are crucial to the nation like foreign policy formulation.

 Q. 4. Describe the law-making procedure in India?

 Ans.: As pointed out earlier basically the Parliament is a law making body. Any proposed law is introduced in the Parliament as a bill. After being passed by the Parliament and getting the President’s assent it becomes a law. Now you will study how the law is made by the Parliament. There are two kinds of bills, which come up before the Parliament:-

(i) ordinary bill and (ii) money bill. Here we shall discuss the legislative procedure in each of these kinds of bills. 

(a) Ordinary Bills

 Every member of the Parliament has a right to introduce an ordinary bill and from this point of view, we have two types of bills – government bills and private member’s bills. A Minister moves a government bill and any bill not moved by a Minister is a Private Member’s Bill, which means that the bill has been moved by a member of parliament but not a minister in the Government. 

The Government bills consume most of the time of the Parliament The Bills pass through several stages. :

  1. With the introduction of the bill, the First Reading of the bill starts. This stage is simple. The Minister wanting to introduce a bill, informs the presiding officer. He/she puts the question of introduction to the House. When approved, normally by voice vote the Minister is called upon to introduce the bill. 
  2.  Second Reading: -This stage is the most vital stage. After general discussion the House has four options: (i) it may straightaway take the bill into detailed (clause by- clause) consideration or 

(ii) refer it to a select committee of the House or, 

(iii) refers it to the Joint Committee of both the Houses or 

(iv) circulate it among the people to elicit public opinion. If the bill is referred to a select committee of the House or the joint select committee of both the Houses, the concerned committee examines the bill very minutely. Each and every clause is examined. The committee may also take the opinion of professionals and legal experts. After due deliberations, the committee submits its repor to the House. 

C.       Third Reading:-After the completion of the second reading the Minister may move that the bill be passed. At this stage normally no discussion takes place. The members may oppose or support the adoption of the bill, by a simple majority of members present and voting. 

2. Bill in the other House: -After the bill has been passed by one House, it goes to the other House. Here also the same procedure of three readings is followed. The following consequences may follow: – 

  1.  It may pass it; then the bill is sent to the President for his assent.
  2. It may pass the bill with amendments. The bill will be sent back to the first House. In such a case, the first House will consider the amendments and if it accepts the amendments then the bill will be sent to the President for his assent. In case the first House refuses to accept the amendments, then it means there is a deadlock.
  3. It may reject it. It means there is a deadlock. In order to remove the deadlock between the two Houses, the President may call for a joint sitting of the two Houses. Such joint sittings are very rare in India and till now only three times such meetings have taken place. They were convened on the occasion of passage of Dowry Prohibition Bill 1959, Banking Service Commission (Repeal) Bill, 1978, and Prevention of Terrorism Bill, 2002.
  4. President’s assent to the Bill:- After being passed by both the Houses or the Joint Sitting of both Houses, the bill is referred to the President for his assent. The President also has some options in this regard: – (i) He may give his assent and with his assent, the bill becomes a law. (ii) He may withhold his assent, but may suggest some changes. In such a case the bill is sent back to the House from where it had originated. But if both the Houses pass the bill again with or without accepting the recommendations of the President, the President has no option but to give his assent. (iii) In 1986, the President Giani Zail Singh invented a new option. He neither gave his assent nor he returned it to the Parliament for reconsideration of the Postal Bill. He sought some clarifications, which were never provided. The bill thus, lapsed. 

(b) Money Bills 

The money bills are such bills which deal with money matters like imposition of taxes, governmental expenditure and borrowings etc. In case there is a dispute as to weather a bill is a money bill or not, the Speaker’s decision is final. The money bill has to undergo three readings like an ordinary bill but few considerations are also added here. They are 

  1.  Money bill can be introduced only in Lok Sabha and not in Rajya Sabha and that too with the prior approval of and on behalf of the President. 
  2. After being passed by the Lok Sabha, the bil goes to the Rajya Sabha Rajya Sabha has 14 days at its disposal for consideration and report. 
  3. The Rajya Sabha cannot reject the money bill. It may either accept it or make recommendations 
  4. In case Rajya Sabha chooses to make recommendations, the bill will return to Lok Sabha. The Lok Sabha may accept these recommendations or reject them. In any case the bill will not go back to Rajya Sabha. Instead it will be sent directly to the President for his assent. 
  5. If the Rajya Sabha does not return the bill within 14 days, it will be deemed to have been passed by both the Houses of the Parliament and sent to the President for his assent.

 The bill that deals with the money matters ie. imposition, abolition, alteration of any tax or the regulation of the borrowing of money or giving of any guarantee by the Government of India or amendment of law with respect to any financial obligation undertaken by the Government of India or related to Consolidated Fund or Contingency Fund of India, is called a Money Bill.

 (c) The Budget 

The Budget is an annual financial statement showing expected revenue and expenditure of public money. It is not a bill. Every year the budget is presented by the Finance Minister in the Lok Sabha. The budget – making is a big exercise. The Finance Ministry prepares the budget but it involves the entire government The budget in India is presented in two parts- Railway Budget and the General Budget. 

  1.  Presentation of the Budget: – The railway budget is generally presented by the Railway minister in the third week of February while the general budget is presented normally on the last working day of February. The general budget is presented along with the speech of the Finance Minister. The budget remains a closely guarded secret till its presentation. After the speech, the Finance Minister introduces the Finance Bill, which contains the taxation proposals of the government. The House rises thereafter and there is no discussion on the day of the presentation of the Budget

A new system of departmental select committees has been introduced in India since 1993-94. The Lok Sabha sets up committees for all major Ministries and Departments of Union Government. The select committees consider demand for grants in details and submit their recommendations to the Lok Sabha After general discussion on the budget, the Houses are adjourned for about three weeks. During this period select committees of Departments of Ministry scrutinise budget demands and may make recommendations. This saves time of the full House. The full Lok Sabha now does not discuss demands for grants, one by one, in details.

Quorum means the minimum number of members required to be present to enable the House to meet. This is one-tenth of the total membership of the House. This means the meeting of the Lok Sabha or Rajya Sabha can take place only if one tenth of the total membership of the House is present 

Q. 5. Analyse the relationship between the two Houses of the Parliament?

 Ans. The two Houses of Parliament differ in their composition. From the federal point of view the Rajya Sabha represents the States in the Indian Union while the Lok Sabha is the representative of the Indian people. This is also the reason why the method of election differs. The members of Legislative Assemblies of the States elect the members of Rajya Sabha while the people directly participate in the elections to the Lok Sabha, Rajya Sabha is a permanent House while the Lok Sabha is constituted for a specified term of five years. From the constitutional point of view, the relationship between the two Houses can best be studied from three angles which are as follows: –

  1. There are certain powers and functions in which Lok Sabha is superior to the Rajya Sabha. Introduction and adoption of money bills and removal of a cabinet by passing no confidence motion are two examples relevant here.
  2.  In certain areas Rajya Sabha has been vested with exclusive powers. It does not share these powers with the Lok Sabha. For example, it can declare a subject in state as a matter of national importance and facilitate a central legislation.
  3. In several areas, both the Houses enjoy equal powers. The examples are adoption of bills other than money bills, approval of proclamation of emergency, moving of adjournment and other types of motions. Members of both houses of Parliament get Rs. 2 Crore per annum from the Members of Parliament Local Development Fund. This fund is not directly allotted to the MP but to the respective district headquarters and the MP can use it for development projects in his area. 

Q. 6. Write short notes on the following: – 

  1.  Qualification for membership of Rajya Sabha 
  2. Second reading 
  3. The Budget 

Ans. : a. Qualification for membership of Rajya Sabha: 

The qualifications for becoming a Rajya Sabha member are as follows: 

  1.  He/she should be a citizen of India and at least 30 years of age. 
  2. He/she should make an oath or affirmation stating that he will bear true faith and allegiance to the Constitution of India. 
  3. Thus according to the Representation of People Act 1951. he/she should be registered as a voter in the State from which he is seeking election to the Rajya Sabha. But in 2003, two provisions have been made regarding the elections to Rajya Sabha-(1) Any Indian citizen can contest the Rajya Sabha elections irrespective of the State in which he resides; (ii) elections are to be conducted through open voting system.

 b. Second reading: 

Every member of the Parliament has a night to introduce an ordinary bill and from this point of view, we have two types of bills-government bills and private member’s bills A Minister moves a government bill and any bill not moved by a Minister is a Private Member’s Bill, which means that the bill has been moved by a member of parliament but not a minister in the Government. The Government bills consume most of the time of the Parliament. The Bills pass through several stages.

The Second Reading stage is the most vital stage. After general discussion the House has four options: –

  1.  it may straightaway take the bill into detailed (clause by-clause) consideration or
  2. refer it to a select committee of the House or,
  3.  refers it to the Joint Committee of both the Houses or 
  4. circulate it among the people to elicit public opinion. If the bill is referred to a select committee of the House or the joint select committee of both the Houses, the concerned committee examines the bill very minutely. Each and every clause is examined. The committee may also take the opinion of professionals and legal experts. After due deliberations, the committee submits its report to the House. 

c. The Budget: 

The Budget is an annual financial statement showing expected revenue and expenditure of public money. It is not a bill. Every year the budget is presented by the Finance Minister in the Lok Sabha. The budget-making is a big exercise. The Finance Ministry prepares the budget but it involves the entire government. The budget in India is presented in two parts Railway Budget and the General Budget. 

(i) Presentation of the Budget:-The railway budget is generally presented by the Railway minister in the third week of February, while the general budget is presented normally on the last working day of February. The general budget is presented along with the speech of the Finance Minister. The budget remains a closely guarded secret till its presentation. After the speech, the Finance Minister introduces the Finance Bill, which contains the taxation proposals of the government. The House rises thereafter and there is no discussion on the day of the presentation of the Budget. 

A new system of departmental select committees has been introduced in India since 1993-94. The Lok Sabha sets up committees for all major Ministries and Departments of the Union Government. The select committees consider demand for grants in detail and submit their recommendations to the Lok Sabha. After general discussion on the budget, the Houses are adjourned for about three weeks. During this period select committees of Departments of Ministry scrutinise budget demands and may make recommendations. This saves time for the full House. The full Lok Sabha now does not discuss demands for grants, one by one, in detail. 

Quorum means the minimum number of members required to be present to enable the House to meet. This is one-tenth of the total membership of the House. This means the meeting of the Lok Sabha or Rajya Sabha can take place only if one tenth of the total membership of the House is present.

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