Legislature (Upper and Lower house)

20/04/2024 0 By indiafreenotes

India’s Legislative framework is bicameral, consisting of two houses: the Rajya Sabha (Council of States) and the Lok Sabha (House of the People). This structure allows for both regional representation and direct representation of the populace, ensuring a more comprehensive review of legislation.

Rajya Sabha (Upper House)

Rajya Sabha is considered the upper house of India’s Parliament. It serves as a permanent body and is not subject to dissolution, but one-third of its members retire every two years, ensuring continuity in its operations.

  • Composition:

The Rajya Sabha can have a maximum of 250 members, of which 238 are elected indirectly by the states and union territories through proportional representation using the single transferable vote system, and the remaining 12 members are nominated by the President of India for their expertise in specific fields like arts, literature, science, and social services.

  • Representation:

Members of the Rajya Sabha are representatives of the States and the Union territories. The allocation of seats is based on the population of each State or Union territory.

  • Term:

Each member serves for a term of six years.

  • Functions:
    • Legislative: Although the Rajya Sabha shares legislative duties with the Lok Sabha, it has special powers regarding states’ rights and can make recommendations to the Lok Sabha, which can either accept or reject the recommendations.
    • Reviewing: It acts as a reviewing chamber, examining bills passed by the Lok Sabha.
    • Deliberative: Discusses and deliberates on important issues and bills being considered by the Parliament.
    • Financial: While the Lok Sabha has greater powers in financial matters, the Rajya Sabha can still influence legislation and budgetary allocations through discussions and recommendations.

Lok Sabha (Lower House)

Lok Sabha is the lower house but holds more power, especially in financial matters and in the overall legislative process. It is also the house where the Government is formed.

  • Composition:

The Lok Sabha is composed of up to 552 members of which up to 530 members represent the States, up to 20 represent the Union Territories, and 2 members can be nominated by the President from the Anglo-Indian Community if he/she believes the community is not adequately represented.

  • Representation:

Members of the Lok Sabha are directly elected by the eligible voters of India as representatives of single-member constituencies with the first-past-the-post electoral system.

  • Term:

The normal term of the Lok Sabha is five years, after which it is automatically dissolved, unless extended during a national emergency.

  • Functions:
    • Legislative: Has the power to make laws on all matters in the Union List, and concurrent subjects where legislatures of two or more states agree.
    • Financial: Holds significant powers regarding finance. A Money Bill may only be introduced in the Lok Sabha, and the Rajya Sabha can only suggest amendments, which the Lok Sabha may accept or reject.
    • Control over the executive: The government must have the support of the majority of the Lok Sabha. If the majority of the members pass a vote of no confidence, the government is obligated to resign.