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Centre of world’s Largest Democracy

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Brief History of Sansad Bhawan
History of Sansad Bhavan
1. Federal Setup in India

In a federal system of government, all the administrative powers are divided between the central and the state governments by the constitution and both are supreme within their respective spheres.

⇒ The state governments are not the agents of the central government nor they draw their authority from it.
⇒ On the other hand both the central and state draw their authority from the same constitution.
2.Importance of Federal Setup
⇒ INDIA – Large Country – 29 states. 7 Union Territories.
This is essential for maintaining the unity and integrity of India.
⇒ This is of utmost importance if India is to be saved from separatist forces fighting for fragmentation and provincialism of the country.
⇒ There is a division of legislative and administrative powers between the union and the State Governments.
So, no one can violate the limitations imposed by the constitution.
The Supreme Court stands at the head of Judiciary to safeguard this distribution of powers and to prevent any action which violates the limitations imposed by the constitution.
⇒ India has a bi-cameral legislature i.e. the Lok Sabha and the Rajya Sabha.
⇒ Regarding Financial resources – The Constitution of India has made provisions for the distribution of revenues between the Centre and the States.
3.Non-Federal OR Unitary Features
The Constitution of India has certain non-federal or Unitary features which says that it is not merely federal in form but unitary in spirit.

Important Unitary Features of our Constitution.

(i)  A Strong Centre  – Division of Powers  – Union List – 97 Subjects.
State List – 67 Subjects.  Concurrent List – 47 Subjects.

Union List – Only Union Parliament (i.e. Centre).
State List – State &
Concurrent List.
The Centre and the States have power to legislate, but the Central Govt. enjoys the strong position

(ii)   A Single Constitution for Union and States
The frames of the Constitution have provided for single common and unified constitution for both. The centre and the States.
Only state of Jammu and Kashmir had its own constitution( Article. 370) (now abrogated) 

(iii)  Flexibility of the Constitution
In India, the Parliament can amend most of the provisions of the constitution single handedly, either by a simple majority or by a two-thirds majority.

(iv) Single Citizenship
  The Indian Constitution provides for single citizenship of India, which is common to all the people of various states and Union Territories.
(v) Inequality of Representation in Rajya Sabha  –
According to the Constitution representation to all the States in the Rajya Sabha is on the basis of their populations.  Means …

The states with Larger population send more representatives in comparison to the States with smaller population.
Rajya Sabha has 12 members nominated by the president, who are specialized in the field of Arts, Literature, Science and Social Services.
vi.  Existence of Union Territories
The existence of Administrative units known as the Union Territories are directly governed by the Central Government and do not enjoy any independent Powers or Autonomy.


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4. The Union Parliament / The Union Legislature
⇒ The Union Legislature comprises the President and the two houses of Parliament.

The House of People (Lok Sabha)
The Council of States (The Rajya Sabha)

In a democracy, People are their own masters
Ours is a representative democracy where people exercise their sovereign power through their elected representatives.
The Parliament is the body of the people’s representatives who have supreme power of governance in democratic country.
Lok Sabha
House of the People – Members are directly elected by the people of India through Universal Adult franchise
TERM – 5 years. (according to constitution).
⇒ Can be dissolved before the expiry of normal term – by the President on the advice of the Prime Minister.

⇒ During Proclamation of an emergency – the period of the Lok Sabha may be extended by Parliament for One Year at a time.

New Lok Sabha should be elected within Six months after the National emergency is Lifted.
COMPOSITION –  According to the constitution.
Maximum Strength : 552
❶ State representation – not more than 530 members.
❷ Union Territories representation not more than 20 members
Nominated – Two members of Anglo India community by the President.
⇉ ✱ Allotment of members to the various states on a population basis.
✱ Uttar Pradesh is represented in Lok Sabha by 80 members.
✱ Maharashtra sends – 48 members.
✱ Goa, Manipur and Meghalaya -2 each
✱ Mizoram, Nagaland and Sikkim – 1 each
✱ The Union Territory of Delhi sends – 7 members.
Reservation Seats
Seats have been reserved in the Lok Sabha for :
a) Schedule Casts.
b) Schedule Tribes.
● In a reserved parliamentary constituency, persons belonging only to this castes and Tribes can contest a election but all electors are allowed to vote.
✱ in 2008, the number of reserved seats were raised –
→ for the Scheduled Castes from 79 to 84.
→ for the Scheduled Tribes from 41 to 47.
Qualifications for Membership
✱ Indian Citizen (compulsory to write but will not be taken as a point)
✱ Age at least 25 years.
✱ Name should be in the electoral rolls in some part of the country.
✱ Should not be insolvent i.e. should not be in debt and have ability to meet his financial commitments.
✱ Should not hold any office of profit under the government.
✱ Should not be proclaimed criminal.
✱ Should not be unsound mind.
Disqualification’s for Membership
A person shall be disqualified for being chosen as a member of either House of Parliament.
1)     If he holds any office of profit under the Govt. of India or the govt. of any state.
2)     If he is of unsound mind and stands so declared by competent court.
3)     If he is an undischarged solvent i.e. unable to pay his debts or fulfill financial commitments.
4)     If he is not a citizen of India or has voluntary acquired a citizen of a foreign state.
5)     If he is so disqualified by or under any law made by Parliament.
✱ If a member is subject to any of the above disqualifications –

The President’s decision, in accordance with opinion of the Election Commission shall be final.

✱ A disqualified person knowingly sits or votes in either House of Parliament can be penalized Rs. 500 per day.
Vacation of Seats –
The seat of a member of either House of Parliament becomes vacant in the following situations :-
1. If a member resigns his seat by writing to the Speaker or to the Chairman, as the case may be.
2. If a member is, without permission of the House, absent from all meetings for a period of 60 days.
3. If a member becomes subject to any of the disqualifications laid down in the constitution or an Act of Parliament.
4. If a person is already a member of the State legislative and is elected to the parliament
he has to vacate his seat in the state legislative or vice-versa.
5. If a person is disqualified from being a member on ground of Defection under the Anti Defection Law.
✱ According to the Anti defection Law, when a member of a House gives up the membership of his party or votes against the direction given by the party to which he belongs. He shall be disqualified from being a member of the House.
☞ provided there is not a split in the party with at least 1/3rd of its members
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Indian Parliament – Earlier image


Parliamentary Procedures
Thea b c’sofParliamentaryProcedure
✤ Some formalities which the legislators have to observe in the parliament or in State Legislatures are called Parliamentary Procedures.
Some of them are :-
ⅰ) The President summons (an official meeting) each House of Parliament.
ⅱ) Each House shall meet at least twice a year and the interval (gap) between the Two consecutive sessions shall be less than Six months.
ⅲ) There are three sessions in a year.
a) The Budget Session (Feb to May).
b) The Monsoon Session (July to August).
c) The Winter Session (November to December).
✤ The quorum means the minimum number of members required to be present in order to enable the House to transact business.
★ The quorum of Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha is One Tenth (1/10) of the total membership of each House.
★ This means that the House cannot conduct its proceedings and pass bills and resolutions without the presence of at least one-tenth of its total membership.
★ The Speaker may adjourn the House or suspend the meeting until there is a requisite quorum.
timetable parliament daily
Question Hour
The First Hour on every working day of the Lok Sabha is reserved for Questions unless otherwise decided by the Speaker.
✱ This Hour usually starts at 11 AM known as the Question Hour.
✱ It is intended to keep the functioning of the government open to scrutiny by the members.
✱ Any member of the House may ask questions from the Government on matters of Public interest.
✱ The right of the members to ask questions from the government is known as interpellation.
Questions :-
All questions are addressed to the Chair and if admitted, the government is obliged to answer them.
✱ A member has to give ten(10) days notice for a question.
There are Three types of Questions :–
1) Starred Questions
2) UnStarred Questions
3) Short notice questions
❶ Starred Questions are those to which a member wishes to have an oral answer on the floor of the House.
★ Such questions are indicated by an asterisk mark.
★ Supplementary questions may be asked after replies to starred questions are given by the ministers.
Unstarred Questions are questions to which answers are given in written form.
★ No supplementary questions can be asked there upon.
❸ Short notice Questions relate to a matter of urgent importance. Such as …
Questions are asked with a notice of shorter than of 10 days.
★ The minister concerned has to be asked whether he can reply to the question at a short notice.
It is for him to accept or not to accept short notice questions.
Zero Hour :-
The Zero Hour refers to the period which begins at 12°clock soon after the question Hour and continues till the Lunch Break. Which begins at 1.00 P.M.
★ During the Zero Hour, members raise all types of questions without any permissions or prior notice.
★ The presiding officer controls the House, when faced with heated discussions, charges and counter charges and constant interruptions by the members.
Types of Motions
✱ A Motion is a formal proposal made by a member stating that the House should take up some particular matter which is of public importance.
✱ With the help of the motion, the members draw attention of the government to take suitable action on a particular matter.
1. Adjournment Motion :-
It means a proposal to lay aside all other business and take up a
“definite matter of urgent importance.”
✱ Such a Motion leads to the interruption of normal business of the House
✱ Adjournment Motions are generally allowed on subjects such as e.g.
a) Railway accident resulting in death of several persons.
b) A daring Dacoity.
c) Some natural calamity like a devastating Flood, Tornado or an Earthquake.
d) Communal Tensions etc.
2. No-Confidence Motion :-
A No-Confidence Motion is a proposal expressing lack of confidence in the ministry.
✱ The council of ministers is collectively responsible to the entire Lok Sabha including the members of the opposition.
✱ No Confidence in the Government is moved by the opposition.
✱ The House grants leave to move no-confidence Motion only when it has the support of at least 50 members.
✱ It has to be taken up for discussions within 10 days from the day on which the leave is granted.
✱ After the debate, the Speaker puts the motion to vote. If the motion is passed, the government has to resign.
➔ Sometimes a No-Confidence Motion assumes much importance – even a single vote counts.
e.g. In the 12th Lok Sabha, the government headed by late. Shri Atal Bihari Vajpayee, Lost just by one vote.
As a result the government collapsed and general elections were held.
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Adjournment and Prorogation of the House.
∎ Adjournment of the House means suspensions of the sitting of the House by the Speaker.
∎ The Power of the adjournment of the House rest with the Speaker or Chairman as the case may be.
∎ Prorogation means termination of the session of Parliament.
∎ The Power of Prorogation of session belongs to the President.
∎ The House is also adjourned……..
a) After the business for the day is over.
b) When the death of sitting /ex member of the House occurs.
c) When there is so much disorder in the House that it is difficult to conduct the business.
d) For want of Quorum OR
e) As and when the Speaker finds it necessary.
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Set your goals clear High.

Federal Setup

for general reading of The Union Parliament-1
The Union Legislature
Slow paced Child

Civil Services Examination
The Union Parliament-2


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