Sample Material of Our Online Coaching Programme
Topic: Parliament of India
Indian democracy is based on the Westminster model (British
model of democracy is referred to as the Westminster model) where the importance
of Parliament in the political system is central. Preamble to the Indian
Constitution begins with the people.” which confers sovereignty on the
Parliament as ‘people’ in an indirect democracy means the representative body.
Art. 79 says that there shall be a
Parliament for the Union which shall consist of the President and two Houses to
be known as the Rajya Sabha or the federal chamber or Council of States or Upper
House and the Lok Sabha or the popular chamber or Lower House or House of the
Even though the President of India is not a member of the parliament, he is a
part of the Parliament for the following reasons
- in a parliamentary system, the Executive is a part of the Legislature
unlike the Presidential form of democracy where there is a strict separation
between the two institutions.
- Bills passed by the Parliament need Presidential assent before they
- President performs certain other legislative duties like summoning and
proroguing the Parliament; recommending the introduction of certain Bills in
the Parliament etc.
The term in Constitutional law, President-in-Parliament, is
used to refer to the President in his legislative role, acting with the advice
and consent of the two Houses of Parliament. It is similar to
Crown-in-Parliament which means the Crown acting with the advice and consent of
the British Parliament.
Role of the President of India with regard to Parliament
The President is the constitutional head of Republic of
India. He is elected by an electoral college that includes elected members of
both-Houses of Parliament and the elected members of the Legislative Assemblies
of the States. The President performs the following constitutional functions
- He invites the leader of the majority party to form the Government after
a new Lok Sabha is duly elected.
- He summons the two Houses of Parliament to meet from time to time.
- He has the power to prorogue a session in the two Houses and dissolve
the Lok Sabha.
- The President has to assent to a Bill before it can become a law.
- If the Houses are not in session, the President can promulgate
Ordinances having the same validity as a law passed in Parliament.
- The President has the right to address either or both houses of
- The President has the power to call both houses for a joint Sitting in
case a dispute arises over passing a Bill.
- He nominates 12 members of the Rajya Sabha and has the right to nominate
two members from the Anglo Indian community to the Lok Sabha if they are
Thus, President is a constituent part o the Parliament.
It is the federal house representing the States.
Maximum strength (sanctioned strength) of Rajya Sabha is two
hundred and fifty (250), of which 238 are to be elected and 12 are nominated by
the President of India. The actual strength of Rajya Sabha is two hundred and
forty five (245), of which 233 are elected and 12 are nominated by the
President. The actual strength is also known as total membership. Each State and
the two Union Territories of Delhi and Puduchery are represented in the Rajya
Sabha. The allocation of seats in Rajya Sabha is contained in the Fourth
Schedule to the Constitution.
Article 80 provides that the Rajya Sabha shall consist of:
- twelve members nominated by the President from amongst persons having
special knowledge or practical experience in respect of such matters as
Literature, science, art and social service; and
- not more than two hundred and thirty-eight representatives of the States
and of the Union Territories.
The elected members of the (233 Members) Rajya Sabha are
elected by the elected members of the Assemblies of States and the two
Union Territories of Delhi and Puduchery in accordance with the system of
proportional representation by means of the single transferable vote. Of the UTs,
only NCT of Delhi and Puduchery are represented in the Rajya Sabba. No other UT
has an assembly and so has any representation in the Rajya Sabha.
While the nominated members of Rajya Sabha have a right to vote in the
election of the Vice-President of India, they are not entitled to vote in the
election of the President of India.
The Council of States was set up under the Constitution in 1952. Dr.
Radhakrishnan was the first Chairman of Rajya Sabha. He was the longest serving