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Introduction to Parliament

The Union Legislative in India is named as Parliament, which consists of the two houses, i.e., Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha, and the President. Part V and Articles 79 to 122 deal with the Union Parliament. Article 79 expressly states that there shall be a Parliament for the Union of India.

Rajya Sabha

The Rajya Sabha is known by other names such as Council of States, the House of Elders and Upper House. The maximum number of seats in the Rajya Sabha is 250, of which 238 members are elected from the states through indirect elections and 12 members are nominated by the President from among those with special knowledge and experience in the field of art, literature science, social service, etc.


Term of Office 
The Rajya Sabha is a permanent body and is not dissolved like the Lok Sabha. The term of members is six years. One-third of the members retire on the expiration of six year term every second year.


Qualifications Required to Be a Member of Rajya Sabha

  1. Should be a citizen of India.
  2. Should not be less than 30 years of age.
  3. Should not be a person of unsound mind.
  4. Should not have been punished under law.
  5. Should possess the qualifications specified from time to time by the Parliament.

The Vice President of India shall be the ‘ex-officio chairman’ of the Council of States.

The Council of State will choose a member as deputy chairman.

Lok Sabha

The House of the People (Lok Sabha) is called the lower house of the Parliament and it is also called House of Representatives because members of Lok Sabha are directly elected by the people.

The maximum number of seats is 545. These 543 members are directly elected by the people whereas 2 Anglo-Indians are nominated by the President.


Term of Office
The term of Lok Sabha is 5 years. On the recommendation of the Prime Minister, the President may dissolve the Lok Sabha.


Qualifications Required to be a Member of Lok Sabha
Qualification to be a member of Lok Sabha is as same as being member of Rajya Sabha except the age. To become the member of Lok Sabha, one should not have been less than 25 years of age.


Lok Sabha Speaker and Deputy Speaker
The House of the People shall as soon as may be, choose two members of the House to be the Speaker and Deputy Speaker. The Speaker impartially conducts the proceedings of the House. When a bill gets equal number of votes for and againstit, the Speaker casts the deciding vote. The Deputy Speaker conducts the proceedings in the absence of the Speaker. If the offices of the both the Speaker and Deputy Speaker are vacant, the duties of the Office of Speaker shall be performed by a member who is appointed by the President for this purpose.

Powers and Function of the Parliament

  1. Legislative powers
    The Parliament frames laws on subjects mentioned in the Central List. Money bill or financial bill is presented only in the Lok Sabha. The other bills can be presented in either House of the Parliament. The approval of both the Houses is essential for a bill to become a law. After both the Houses pass the bill, it is forwarded to the President for his approval, after which it becomes a law.
    In case of disagreement between the two Houses on a bill, the Speaker calls a joint sitting.
  2. Financial powers
    Money bill or Financial bills cannot originate in the Rajya Sabha. The Rajya Sabha may discuss and suggest changes but have no right to reject or amend a money bill. If the Rajya Sabha does not send back a money bill back to Lok Sabha within 14 days from the date of receipt of the bill, the bill is deemed passed, in original form.
  3. Administrative powers
    The cabinet is responsible and accountable to the Parliament. The Parliament monitors day-to-day work of the executive.
  4. Judicial powers
    The Parliament has the authority to remove the President as well as the judges of the Supreme Court and High Court through a motion of impeachment. The impeachment must be passed by two-third majority in the both the Houses of the Parliament.
  5. Constituent functions
    An amendment to provisions of the Constitution can be initiated in either House of the Parliament and must be passed by two-third majority in the both the Houses of the Parliament.
  6.  Miscellaneous functions
    • The creation of All India Services.
    • Imposition and continuation of Emergency.
    • To establish one High Court for two or more states.
    • To create new states, rename them or determine the boundaries of states, etc.

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