Parliament of India – Notes GK [PDF]

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The Parliament of India is the supreme legislative body that consists of the President, lok Sabha and rajya sabha. The Parliament of India – a comprehensive note for IAS UPSC, SSC, and other competitive government job examinations.

The Parliament of India

India is a democratic country. The Parliament is the highest legislative body in India. It is located at Sangsad Marg in New Delhi. The name “Sangsad” is derived from the Sanskrit word Sangsad (i.e., Sabha or Parishad). The Indian parliament is one of the largest and very similar to the British parliament.

The parliament of India consists of two houses, one Lok Sabha and the other Rajya Sabha. To make a bill into law, it has to be passed in both the Houses of Parliament and also should be approved by the President. The lower house is called the Lok Sabha and the upper house is called the Rajya Sabha.

NameThe Parliament of India
Founded26 January 1950
245 members of Rajya Sabha
543 members of Lok Sabha

Structure of Indian Parliament: The Parliament of India is a bicameral legislature consisting of two houses: the Rajya Sabha (Council of States) and the Lok Sabha (House of the People).

  • The Central Legislative Assembly of India is called the Parliament.
  • The Parliament of India is composed of the President, Lok Sabha (Lower House), and Rajya Sabha (Upper House).
  • Edwin Lutyens and Herbert Baker had designed the Parliament of India.
  • Article 79 of the Indian constitution describes the structure of Parliament.
  • The first parliament in independent India was formed in 1952.
  • There must be a presence of 1/10 of the members for a legitimate session in Rajya Sabha. This is called “Quorum” in a parliamentary term.
  • The chairman of Lok Sabha is – the speaker. In the absence of the Speaker, the Deputy Speaker may preside over the Lok Sabha.
  • It is pertinent to note that with the 42nd amendment to the constitution, the duration of the Lok Sabha was extended for 6 years in 1976.
You may read Important Amendments of Indian Constitution

Sessions of Parliament

The Lok Sabha is convened at least twice a year. According to the Constitution, there shall be no interval between two consecutive Sessions. Or not more than six months between the end of one session of the Lok Sabha and the commencement of the next session.

The President of India convenes the Parliament at regular intervals (Article 75). It is mandatory to convene at least two sessions per year. There are usually three types of parliamentary sittings every year. These are –

  1. Budget sessions (usually held between February and May).
  2. Monsoon session (usually held between July and September).
  3. Winter session (usually held between November and December).

The maximum interval for two sessions of Parliament shall not exceed six months.

The session of parliament starts at 11 am and ends at 4 pm. There are two phases of the session in the diary of the parliament –

  1. From morning (11 am) to noon (1 pm)
  2. From 2 pm to evening (6 pm).

The Parliament of India meets in sessions, and each year, there are typically three main sessions:

Budget Session:

  • Longest of the above three sessions.
  • Usually starts in late January or early February and continues until mid-April.
  • Begins with the President’s Address, outlining the government’s policy agenda for the year.
  • The Union Budget is presented during this session.
  • Have two parts with a recess. The first part includes the presentation of the budget, second part focuses on discussions and passing of budget-related bills.
  • Other legislative and non-legislative business is also conducted during this session.

Monsoon Session:

  • Starts in July and continues until August.
  • The name comes from the fact that it occurs in the monsoon season of India.
  • It involves discussions, debates, and passing of various bills.
  • Important legislative and policy matters are addressed during this session.

Winter Session:

  • Starts in November and lasts until December.
  • Shorter session compared to the Budget Session and Monsoon Session.
  • Focuses on important legislative and policy matters.
  • Allows Parliament to address pending bills and important issues before the end of the calendar year.
With regular sessions, there may be extraordinary sessions by the President on the advice of the government.

The duration and specific dates of these sessions can vary from year to year. Allocated duration is the choice of the government and the Speaker of the Lok Sabha (in the case of the Lok Sabha) and the Chairman of the Rajya Sabha (in the case of the Rajya Sabha).

Eligibility criteria to be a member of Parliament.

  1. Must be a citizen of India.
  2. Age should be 25 for Lok Sabha.
  3. Age should be 30 for Rajya Sabha.
  4. Should be a voter in a parliamentary constituency.
  5. Additional qualifications also need to be prescribed by Parliament by law.
  6. If the court declares a person deranged or bankrupt, he will be disqualified from Parliament.
You may read the Age Limit for Various Constitutional Posts In India

Comparison: Lok Sabha vs Rajya Sabha

Lok SabhaRajya Sabha
The President appoints the Prime Minister as the leader of the majority party in accordance with Article 75 (1).

According to Section 75 (3), the Union Cabinet is responsible to the Prime Minister.

The President convened the joint session in accordance with Article 104.

The Chairman of the Lok Sabha will look into whether a Bill is a Finance Bill (Section 110), or a Revenue Bill (Section 117).

With the permission of 1/10 of the members of the Legislature, arrangements can be made to discuss emergency matters.
The Rajya Sabha may conduct a new all-India examination (in accordance with Article 312).

If the Rajya Sabha adopts a motion with the support of two-thirds of the members present, the Parliament may enact legislation in the national interest on matters which are required to be enacted by the State [According to section 249 (1)].

The Rajya Sabha has the exclusive power to create an all-India service

To make arrangements for the enactment of parliamentary laws on state-listed matters..
Lok Sabha Vs Rajya Sabha

Number of members in Lok Sabha (Lower House)

  • The highest number of members in the Lok Sabha – 552.
  • The highest elected members of the Lok Sabha are 550.
  • 2 members were nominated by the President from the Angla Indian (Article 331).
  • Out of 552 members, 524 are from the state, 26 are from Union Territories and 2 are nominated by the President.
  • The present number of Lok Sabha is 545.
  • The number of current elected members – 543.
  • Out of 545 members, 19 are from Union Territories, 524 are from the state, and 2 are nominated by the President.

Number of members in Rajya Sabha (Upper House)

  • The highest number of members in the Rajya Sabha – 250.
  • Maximum number of elected members in Rajya Sabha – 238
  • The President can appoint 12 members from fields such as literature, arts, science, social services, etc.
  • Out of 250 members of Rajya Sabha, 234 are from states, 4 are from UT, and 12 are nominated by the president.
  • The present number of members of the Rajya Sabha – is 245.
  • The present elected members – 233
  • Out of 245 members, 229 are from states, 4 are from UT, and 12 are nominated by the President.

Speaker and Deputy Speaker of the Lok Sabha

  • Article 93 deals with the Speaker and Deputy Speaker of the Lok Sabha.
  • The Speaker is the chief controller or director of the Lok Sabha.
  • The Speaker and Deputy Speaker are elected by the elected members of the Lok Sabha.
  • The Speaker controls the rules and regulations regarding the conduct of the meeting.
  • The Speaker controls the privileges of the members.
  • In the absence of the Speaker, the vice-speaker conducts the meeting.
  • The Speaker remains in his office until the dissolution of the Lok Sabha.
  • The Speaker and Deputy Speaker may be removed by special notice of Parliament (14 days in advance).
  • The Speaker may provide his adjudicating vote if it is equal in the case of voting for any subject in the Loke sabha.
  • After the general election, the Speaker presided over the meeting with a quorum.
  • The first session of Parliament was held on 13/5/1952.
  • Ganesh Vasudev Mavalankar was the first speaker of the Lakes Sabha (15/5/52 -27/2/56).
  • Neelam Sanjeev Reddy was appointed twice as a speaker in Lok sabha (17/3/1967 – 19/7/1969) and (26/3/77. – 13/7/77).
  • Current Lok Sabha – 17th
  • Current Speaker – Om Birla (19.6.2019-present).

Glossary of Parliamentary Terms:

[1] Cut Motion: Three types of Cut Motion can be proposed as per the rules of the Lok Sabha

  • Economy Cut
  • Disapproval of Policy Cut
  • Symbolic Token cut.
  1. Economy Cut: If the proposed budget allocation seems to be excessive, the economy cut may be proposed to reduce it.
  2. Disapproval of Policy Cut: Opponents may propose policy cuts to deny government spending in certain sectors. In this case, it is said that the demand for government expenditure will be reduced to a nominal amount.
  3. Symbolic Token cut: Usually 100 rupees are deducted from the amount demanded by the government for allocating unreasonable expenses.

[2] Question Hour: The proceedings of the Parliament begin with Question Hour. The first hour was spent questioning the workings of the government. This is the episode of raising questions. At this time the members ask various questions to the minister of the concerned department and later the minister of the concerned department gives his answers. The hours are from 11 am to 12 pm.

[3] Hung Parliament: Hung Parliament ‘or Triangular Parliament means no party has a majority in any Parliament.

[4] Zero Hour: The Zero Hour begins as soon as the Question Hour ends and continues until the end of the parliamentary process. During this time the members discuss important issues. Therefore, prior permission of Parliament is not required.

[5] Guillotine: If there is a deadline or incomplete discussion on the issue of expenditure allocation, the Speaker of the House arranges for a decision without discussion. This method adopted on the last day of the budget session is called a guillotine.

[6] Votes on Account: Votes on Account is used as an interim measure after the budget and during the period of budget approval. From the date of the commencement of the new financial year till the passage of the annual budget and disbursement law in Parliament, the Lok Sabha allows the government to spend money before the commencement of the new financial year. This system is called ‘Votes on Account‘.

[7] Point of order: If any member raises questions about the functions of Parliament or if he thinks that Parliamentary functions are not being conducted in accordance with the rules of Parliament, he raises a point of order and the Speaker takes necessary action.

[8] Quorum: The presence of a certain number of members is desirable before the completion of the proceedings of Parliament. This is one-tenth (1/10) of the total membership. The quorum is considered complete in the presence of 1/10 members. If there is no quorum, the Speaker can suspend the Parliament or certain parliamentary work (article 100).

[9] Adjournment Motion: The Speaker of the Lower House may declare an adjournment of Parliament related to debates and discussions. The sittings of Parliament are temporarily adjourned and the date and schedule of the next sitting are fixed. This is called an “Adjournment Motion“.

Parliamentary Bills:

Bills raised in the Indian Parliament can be divided into four parts. They are:

  1. Ordinary Bill
  2. Money Bill.
  3. Financial Bill
  4. Constitution Amendment Bill

1. Ordinary Bill

  • Ordinary bills may be raised in any house of parliament.
  • The Rajya Sabha has equal powers in passing general bills.
  • Approval of both houses of parliament is required for passing the general bill.
  • If there is a difference of opinion on the bill, the Lok Sabha or upper house may delegate more power or the President may convene a joint session with the permission of the Speaker.
  • Ordinary bills cannot become law without the consent of the President.
  • If the President does not consent, the bill becomes invalid.
  • The president can send the bill back to parliament for approval.
  • When reconsidered by Parliament, the President is obliged to consent or sign on return.
  • Can be raised without the approval of the President.
  • The Rajya Sabha can consider it as an amendment and repeal.
  • The Rajya Sabha can hold it for a maximum of 6 months.
  • The removal of the bill in the Rajya Sabha does not require the approval of the Speaker.
  • This bill can be raised by cabinet members.

2. Money bill:

  • Article 110 of the Indian Constitution mentions the Money Bill.
  • Money bills can only be raised in the Lok Sabha, not in the Rajya Sabha.
  • The money bill is raised by the ministers.
  • The Rajya Sabha cannot cancel or amend the budget but can withhold 14 days.
  • The opinion of the Rajya Sabha is not acceptable in the case of money bills.
  • The Lok Sabha may reject the Rajya Sabha’s recommendation.
  • The approval of the Speaker is required before sending it to the Rajya Sabha.
  • The President is obliged to consent to the Money Bill.
  • A joint session cannot be convened in case of a stalemate over the money bill.
  • Only with the consent of the President, it can be raised in the Lok Sabha.
  • The Speaker of the Lok Sabha issues a certificate on whether the bill is a money bill or not.

The seven topics mentioned in Article 110 are known as money bills. E.g.-

  1. Tax collection, imposition, lamentation, change and control;
  2. The regulation or provision of loans, controls or amendments to financial laws adopted by the Government of India;
  3. The payment and withdrawal of India’s Reserve Expenditure Fund and Contingency Expenditure Fund;
  4. The appropriation of money out of the Consolidated Fund of India;
  5. Declaring any expenditure to be an expenditure incurred from the Consolidated Fund of India;
  6. The accumulation and disbursement of funds in the Consolidated Fund of India or the supervision or disbursement of funds in the government account or the public accounts or the custody, or auditors of the Union and State Governments;
  7. 1 to 6 related topics.

3. Finance Bill

  • Article 117 of the Constitution of India mentions the Financial Bill.
  • The Financial Bill requires the credentials of the Speaker of the Lok Sabha.
  • In the case of tax and expenditure, additional matters are also included in the finance bill.
  • The finance bill is the external part of the seven issues mentioned in the Money bill.
  • The finance bill emphasizes matters of revenue and expenditure issues.
  • There are three types of Finance bills
  1. Money bill
  2. Finance Bill-1 [Article 117 (1)] or First Class Revenue Bill.
  3. Finance Bill-2 [Article 117 (3)] or second class revenue bill.

Note: All money bills are financial bills, but all financial bills are not money bills.

Finance Bill-1:

  • Money bills and other matters are attached.
  • Can only be raised in the Lok Sabha.
  • Cannot be raised without the approval of the President.
  • The Rajya Sabha can repeal and amend it.
  • The President may call a joint session for disagreement with the bill.
  • The President may consent or withhold or send it back to the relevant house for consideration.

Finance Bill-2:

  • Concerning the accumulated funds under this Bill, which is not mentioned in Section 110
  • It will not be passed in any house of the parliament without the consent of the President
  • Any house can cancel or modify it
  • The president may call a joint session because of the complexity of the bill.
  • Once the bill is sent to the President, the President may consent or withhold it or send it back to the relevant house for reconsideration.

Constitution Amendment Bill:

  • It can be raised in any house of Parliament.
  • Related to an amendment of the constitution.
  • It is mentioned in Article 368 of the Constitution.
  • The President is obliged to sign the Constitution Amendment Bill. In this case, the President cannot use his veto.

Bill Passing Procedure in Parliament:

First Reading: The bill is introduced in either the Lok Sabha or the Rajya Sabha by a minister or member. The bill is published in the Gazette of India. No discussion on the bill takes place in this stage

Second Reading: The bill is referred to a joint committee of the two Houses, a select committee (members of the house) for detailed examination. These committees review the bill clause by clause and discuss amendments without altering the principles underlying it. After that report back to the house. Members have the opportunity to discuss and further amend the bill at this stage.

Third Reading: The final form of this bill is put to vote for approval. The bill may accepted if majority vote, otherwise it will be rejected.

Bill in the Second House: First reading, second reading, and third reading are repeated here. The following four options are available to the second house:

  1. The bill as sent by the first house may be passed (i.e, without modifications)
  2. The bill could be passed with modifications and sent back to the first House for review.
  3. It might completely reject the bill.
  4. It might do nothing and let the bill remain pending.

President’s Assent: He/She can choose one of the following three actions:

  1. If the President gives his/her assent, the bill becomes law and is published statute book.
  2. may refuse to sign the bill (the bill expires and does not become law).
  3. May return the bill for reconsideration in to house(s). This is known as a suspensive veto.

This is the common process for passing a bill in the Parliament. however, for special case the process may vary depending on the type of bill (e.g money bill, ordinary bill, or amendment bill). Money bills have special procedures to pass. It must be introduced in the Lok Sabha. Constitutional amendment bills require a special majority in both houses.

Function of Parliament

  1. Lawmaking and Passing Bills
  2. Budget Approval and to levy and collect taxes
  3. Questioning the Government: Debates and Discussions
  4. Has the authority to amend the Constitution of India.
  5. Impeachment Power to the President, judges of the Supreme Court, and high court judges
  6. Crisis Management during national emergency.

Parliamentary Committees

Parliamentary committees has a great role to function the Parliament. They are smaller groups of Members of Parliament (MPs) from both the Lok Sabha and the Rajya Sabha.

Standing Committees examine the budgetary allocations and performance.

Select Committees examine and report on a particular bill. It is a temporary committee.

Joint Parliamentary Committees include members from both the Lok Sabha and the Rajya Sabha. Investigate and report on specific issues

Public Accounts Committee (PAC) examines the audit reports of the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG). The total number of members is 22. Member of Lok Sabha is 15, and in Rajya Sabha is 7. Duration 1 year.

Estimates Committee examines the allocation and utilization of funds. Member of Lok Sabha is 30. Duration 1 year.

Committee on Public Undertakings (COPU): examines the performance of government-owned public-sector enterprises. 15 members from Lok Sabha & 15 from Rajya Sabha.

Committee on Petitions: examines public petitions addressed to Parliament. Number of members 15. Speaker of Lok Sabha supervises this committee.

Rules Committees: deal with the rules and procedures functioning. Established in 1948. Number of members is 15. Speaker of Lok Sabha supervises this committee.

Business Advisory Committee: advises the Speaker of the Lok Sabha on the allocation of time for various parliamentary activities. Number of members 15. Speaker of Lok Sabha supervises this committee.

Committee on Privilege: Established in 1953. Members 15.

Committee on Government Assurances: Established in 1964. Members – 15.

You may read more about the parliamentary committee here.


These parliamentary committees provide a forum for the examination, discussion, and recommendations on issues. It ensures transparency, accountability, and efficient governance.

FAQs: Parliament of India.

How many Anglo-Indians can be nominated to the Lok Sabha by the President?

  1. 1
  2. 2
  3. 3
  4. none

[D] None

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parliament upsc mcq 2
The Parliament of India – 10 points