Union & State Legislature(Part - 2) - Polity and constitution, UPSC, IAS. Notes | Study Polity and Constitution (Prelims) by IAS Masters - UPSC

UPSC: Union & State Legislature(Part - 2) - Polity and constitution, UPSC, IAS. Notes | Study Polity and Constitution (Prelims) by IAS Masters - UPSC

The document Union & State Legislature(Part - 2) - Polity and constitution, UPSC, IAS. Notes | Study Polity and Constitution (Prelims) by IAS Masters - UPSC is a part of the UPSC Course Polity and Constitution (Prelims) by IAS Masters.
All you need of UPSC at this link: UPSC

Union & State Legislature

The Budget

• According to Article 112, the President shall in respect of every financial year, cause to be laid before both the Houses of the Parliament, an annual financial statement commonly known as the Budget.

• This statement gives out the estimated income and expenditure for that year.
The estimated expenditure is shown separately under two heads—

a) the sums charged upon the Consolidated Fund of India and

b) the sums required meeting the other expenditure out of the Consolidated Fund of India.
• The Budget provides an opportunity to review and explain financial and economic policies and programs of the Government.

• After introduction of the Budget, the Lok Sabha discusses the proposed expenditures (Demands for Grants) of various Ministries and Departments, and approves it one by one.
• All the expenditures approved through various Demands for Grants and expenses charged on the Consolidated Fund of India are then presented in the form of a single Bill called the 'Appropriation Bill'.

• The proposal for taxation to raise revenue is separately presented in the form of a 'Financial Bill'. Both these Bills are Money Bills and are passed accordingly.

Discussion on the Budget

General discussion: for 3 or 4 days: deal with fiscal and economic policy of the govt.

Discussion on Demands for Grants: related to expenditure part of the Budget.

Time is allotted to each ministry for discussing demands relating to that particular ministry. It is open to members to disapprove or suggest economy in the demands. The members can do so by cut motions.

Cut Motions. These are a part of the budgetary process which seeks to reduce the amount of grants. These are moved in the Lok Sabha only. They are classified into 3 categories:
i. Policy Cut. A policy cut motion implies that, the mover disapproves of the policy
underlying the demand. Its form of expression is "that the amount of the demand be reduced by Re 1".

  1. Economy Cut. This means reduction in the amount of the expenditure. It clearly states the amount to be reduced and its form of expression is "that the amount of the demand be reduced by Rs... (a specified amount)."

  2. iii. Token Cut. It is introduced where the object of the motion is to ventilate a specific grievance within the sphere of the responsibility of the Government of India.
  3. Its form of expression is "that the amount of the demand be reduced by Rupees 100".

Other Types of Motions in Parliament

  1. Censure Motion. This motion, seeking disapproval of the policy of the ruling Government, can be introduced in the Lok Sabha only by the Opposition parties under the Rule 184 of the Rules and Procedures of the Lok Sabha. If a Censure motion is passed in the House, the Council of Ministers is bound to seek the confidence of the Lok Sabha as early as possible. Further, if a Money Bill or the Vote of Thanks to the President is defeated, this also amounts to the censure of the Government policy and the Government needs to seek the confidence of the Lok Sabha.
  2. No-confidence Motion. This is introduced only in the Lok Sabha by the Opposition party. When such a motion is admitted in the House, the Members of Parliament have the right to discuss any acts of commission or omission on the part of the Government on any policy
  3. matter for which substantial time is allotted. When admitted in the House, it takes precedence over all other pending business of the House. After the adoption of a no- confidence motion in the Lok Sabha, the Council of Ministers is obliged to resign.
  4. Confidence Motion. The provision of Confidence Motion is not found under the Rules and Procedures of the Parliament but has come in vogue, under the Indian Parliamentary practice, with the emergence of the coalition Governments. The first incident of this was in February, 1979, when the then Charan Singh Government was asked by the President to seek the confidence of the Lok Sabha. It is similar to the 'No-Confidence Motion' in all respects, except that it is introduced by the Government itself to prove that it commands the approval of the House. Thus, if a Confidence motion is defeated, the Council of Ministers is obliged to resign. Examples of this are the fall of the V.P Singh Government in 1990 and of the Deve Gowda Government in 1997.

On the last day the Speaker puts all the remaining demands to vote and disposes them whether they have been discussed or not. This is called Guillotine.

Passing of Appropriation Bill

An Appropriation Bill is introduced to provide for the appropriation out of the Consolidated Fund of India all money required to meet:

  1. The grants voted by the Lok Sabha
  2. The expenditure charged on the Consolidated Fund of India

The Appropriation Bill becomes the Appropriation Act after it is assented to by the President. This Act authorises the payments from Consolidated Fund of India. This takes time and usually goes on till the end of April. But the government needs money to carry on its normal activities after 31st March. To overcome this functional difficulty, the Constitution has authorised the Lok Sabha to make Grant in advance in respect to the estimated expenditure for a part of the financial year, pending the completion of the voting of the demands for grants and the enactment of the Appropriation Bill. This provision is known as the Vote on Account. It is passed after the general discussion on the Budget is over.

Vote on Account

When the Budget for a particular year has not been passed then the govt may make grant in advance in respect of estimated expenditure for a part of any financial year which is generally speaking 1/6th of the total grant for entire financial year and it is generally granted for 2-3 months.

Vote of Credit

The House of People may make grant for meeting unexpected demand upon the resources of India when on account of magnitude or indefinite character of the service the demand can’t be stated with details in the financial statement

Passing of Finance Bill

It is introduced to give effect to the financial proposals of the Government of India for the next following financial year. It is subjected to all the conditions applicable to a Money Bill. Unlike the Appropriation Bill, the amendments can be moved in the case of Finance Bill.

 The Finance Act legalizes the income side of the Budget and completes the process of the enactment of the budget.

Parliamentary Control over Financial System

• In financial matters, the Parliament has effective control over the Executive.
• The Annual Budget is presented to the Parliament and is passed by it.

• The Appropriation and the Financial Bills are also passed by the Parliament.
• Unless the Appropriation Bill is passed, no money can be withdrawn by the Government from the Consolidated Fund of India.

• It also exercises control over financial matters through the Public Accounts Committee and the Estimates Committee.

• The Public Accounts Committee considers the Appropriation accounts.

 It also considers the report of the Comptroller and Auditor General. The report is submitted to the House.

• The Estimates Committee examines such estimates (presented to the Lok Sabha) Of the Budget as may seem fit to the Committee,, suggests economy in the expenditure and other steps for increasing efficiency, finds out whether the money is well laid out and also suggests the form in which the estimates should be presented to the Parliament.
Parliamentary Committees

• The Legislature has to perform complex and enormous quantity of work.
• Due to the paucity of time in the Legislature, the initial work is mostly done by the Committees, appointed or elected for specific purposes.

• These Committees essentially belong to the Lok Sabha and function under the Speaker to whom they submit their reports.

• These Parliamentary Committees are classified as- the Standing Committees and the Ad-hoc Committees. While the former are permanent in nature, the latter are constituted for specific purposes and they cease to exist after completion of the specific work.

• Most important Committees, with their strength in brackets, are as follows: Business and Advisory Committee (15), Estimates Committee (30), Committee on Public

Accounts (22), Committee on Petitions (15), Committee on the Welfare of the

Schedule Castes and Scheduled Tribes (30).

• Members of the Rajya Sabha are also given representation, usually about one-third, except in the Estimates Committee.

• Members of the Committees are generally elected or nominated for a term of not more than one year. As far as possible, all the parties in the Parliament are represented in these Committees in proportion to then strength in the Parliament so that they become a microcosm of the whole House of the Parliament.

• The Chairperson of all the Committees of Parliament are appointed by the Speaker, except that of the Joint Committee on Salaries and Allowances of the Members of the Parliament, who is elected by the Committee itself.

• Wherever the Speaker is a member of a Committee he is the ex-officio Chairman of that (those) Committee(s).
• The Chairman of the Committee on Public Accounts is appointed by the Speaker from amongst the Members of the Lok Sabha. and is generally an Opposition member.

Details of some of the important Committees are:

  1. Committee on Estimates. This Committee consists of 30 members wholly derived from the Lok Sabha. All the parties in the Parliament are given proportionate representation in this Committee. The Chairman is appointed by the Speaker from amongst its members. A Minister is not liable to be elected to the Committee and if its member is appointed a Minister, he ceases to be a member of the Committee. The term of the office is for not more than one year. The functions of the Committee are:
    • to report on the efficiency of the policy underlying the estimates;

• to examine whether the money is well laid out whosoever the policy implied in the estimates;

• to suggest the form in which the estimates are to be presented in the Parliament.

The Committee works well within the limits of the policy

pproved by the Parliament, but it may suggest a change if it thinks so.

  1. Committee on Public Accounts. The twenty- two member Committee is elected through a single transferable vote, 15 from the Lok Sabha and 7 from the Rajya Sabha. Externally, the Committee belongs to the Lok Sabha and its Chairman appointed by the Speaker and is from the Lok Sabha. A Minister is not eligible for election to the Committee and when its member is given the portfolio of a Ministry, he ceases to be a member of that Committee. The term of the office, is one year. The functions of the Committee include:

a. to examine the accounts showing the appropriation granted by the Parliament to meet the expenditure of the Government of India.
b. to examine the Annual Finance Accounts of the government of India and other accounts laid before the House.

c. to examine the reports of the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG) of India on revenue receipts

  1. Committee on Public Undertakings. This Committee consists of 15 members of the Lok Sabha and 7 associated members of the Rajya Sabha, elected by means of a single transferable vote in both the Houses. The Chairman of the Committee is appointed from amongst the members of the Lok Sabha by the Speaker. A Minister is not eligible to be elected as a member of the Committee.

The functions of the Committee are-

a. to examine the reports and the Accounts of the undertakings specified in the Fourth Schedule of the Rules of Procedure and Conduct of Business of the Lok Sabha and also the report of the CAG, if any.

b. to examine the efficiency and autonomy of the Public Undertakings.
c. to examine other specific subjects or matters referred to it by the House or the Speaker.

Committee on Welfare of the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes

This Committee consists of 20 members from the Lok Sabha and 10 members from the Rajya Sabha. The members are elected by means of a single transferable vote through the principle of proportional representation. The Chairman is' one of the members of the Committee and is appointed by the Speaker. A Minister is not eligible to become member of the Committee. The functions include:

  1. To consider the reports submitted by the Commissioner for the Schedule Castes and the Scheduled Tribes.
  2. b. To examine the representation of the Scheduled Castes and the Scheduled Tribes in services of the Central Government Departments, Central Public Undertakings, Nationalised Banks, and so on.

c. To review, the working of the welfare programs of the Central Government for the Scheduled Castes and the Scheduled Tribes and to examine such other matters referred to it by the House or the Speaker. May examine implementation of the welfare programme for the SCs and the STs, provided the funds for this, made available partly or wholly by the Central Government

Questions in Parliament Questions Hour: The Question Hour is of 60 minute duration. It is fixed every day from 11:00 -12:00hrs to allow the Members of Parliament to ask questions from the Government. Sometimes questions may be directed to the private members with respect to the Bills or motions for which the concerned member is responsible.

Every day, the sitting of Parliament begins with the Question Hour. The questions are of there kinds:

  1. Starred questions
  2.  Unstarred questions
  3. Short-notice questions

Starred Questions: If a member of either House desires an oral answer to his question, such questions are termed as starred questions. The starred questions are distinguished by putting on a star mark along with the question. The starred questions allow a member to ask supplementary questions, if the answer is not found satisfactory.

Unstarred Questions: These are questions whose answers are given in writing. These questions do not have star mark and hence called unstarred questions. Their answer is supplied in the written form, which is laid on the floor of the House on the prescribed day. The supplementary questions are, not allowed in unstarred questions.

Short notice Questions:

For asking a question in Parliament, a notice has to be' given before not less than 10 days. If there is an urgency that a member cannot wait for 10 days, he may resort to short notice question. Thus, a short notice question is one which relates to a matter of urgent public importance and can be asked with a notice shorter than 10 days required in the case of an ordinary question. If the Chair of the House is satisfied that the said question requires an immediate answer, the concerned minister shall be asked whether he is in a position to answer the question or not. If the minister agrees to answer the question he informs the date on which he is ready with the answer.

b. The short-notice questions are taken up immediately after the starred questions are answered. It should be noted that the answer to a short-notice question is given on a date suggested by the concerned minister.

c. If a minister express his inability to answer a question in short-notice, but the chair considers the question to be of urgent public importance, he may order that such question may be included as the first question in the list of questions to be answered on a particular day. However, only one question on a day can be included in the list of questions by special order.

d. If two or more members ask short-notice questions on the same subject, the question shall be marked in the name of the member who has given the first notice to ask such a question.

e. Various questions related to a particular subject matter may be grouped together as a single question which can be answerd by the minister as such.

f. The procedure to be followed with respect to other aspects of a short-notice question shall be the same as prescribed for the starred questions.
Parliamentary control over the Executive

The channels of the Parliamentary control over the Executive are the following:
• The Executive, that is the Council of Ministers, holds office only as long as it enjoys the confidence of the Parliament and especially of the Lok Sabha. If the Lok Sabha passes a no-confidence, motion successfully, the Council of Ministers is bound to resign.

• In the case of the formal Head of the Executive, the President, the Parliament is

given the power to impeach .the President if he violates the Constitution.
• If a B ill moved by a member of the Council of Ministers is defeated in the Parliament it is tantamount to loss of majority in the Parliament and the Council of Ministers is bound to resign.

• If a cut motion is moved for the budgetary proposals successfully in the Parliament, the Council of Ministers should resign.

o The control of the Parliament is also exercised through motions like the adjournment motions; short notice questions; call attention motions; censure motions; questions (starred and unstarred questions, the former to be answered by the Minister concerned, orally), and so on.

The State Legislature

It includes:

i.Governor

ii.Legislative Assembly

iii.Legislative Council (if exist)

Legislative Council

  • The Legislatures of Jammu and Kashmir, Bihar, Maharashtra, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana and Uttar Pradesh are bicameral i.e. having both the Legislative Assembly and the Legislative Council. Other States have unicameral legislatures i.e. there exists only the State Legislative Assembly.
  • As per the Constitution, the number of members of the Legislative Council is not to exceed one-third of the total strength of the State Assembly. However, its strength should not be less than 40 either.
  • The members of the Legislative Council are derived from various sections and streams of the society:
  • Not less than one-third to be elected by the Panchayats, Municipalities, District Boards, etc.
  • Not less than one-third to be elected by the Legislative Assembly.
  • Not less than one-twelfth to be elected by the graduates of three years standing residing in the State.
  • Not less than one-twelfth to be elected by the persons having teaching experience of three years in educational institutions.
  • The remainder one-sixth to be nominated by the Governor from among the distinguished persons of the society in the field of literature, science, arts, cooperative movement and social service.
  • Just like the Upper House at the Centre, the Legislative Council of a State is never dissolved. The members are elected for a term of 6 years and l/3rd of its members retires every two years.
  • The Parliament, under Art. 169, is empowered to create or abolish the Legislative Council in a State.
  • Where the Legislative Council is to be created or abolished, the concerned State Legislative Assembly should pass a resolution to this effect by a majority of two-third of the members present and voting.
  • After this, the Bill goes to the Parliament for approval, which may or may not pass it.
  • In Parliament, such a resolution is passed by a simple majority.

There was Bi-Cameral Legislature in the following state which was abolished:

State

Year of abolition

Punjab

1969

West Bengal

1969

Tamil Nadu

1986

Legislative Assembly
  • The Legislative Assembly is the popular House of the State Legislature where members are directly elected by the people for a term of five years, unless the House is dissolved by the Governor earlier.
  • The strength of this popular House should not be less than 60 or more than 500.
    This number and, in fact, the strengths of Goa (40) and Sikkim (32) Legislatures are less than 60.
  • The Governor may nominate one member from the Anglo-Indian community to this House, if he thinks that the community is not adequately represented.
  • The sessions of the State Legislature, and its officers as well as their functions are almost similar to those at the Union level.

Qualification for state legislature (Art. 173)

  • He must be a citizen of India.
  • He must be of 25 years of age in case of Legislative Assembly and 30 in

Legislative Council.

  • As may prescribed by Law
  • He shall not be elected to either House unless he is himself an elector for any Legislative Assembly constituency in that state.

Disqualification for membership (Art.191)

  • If he hold any office of profit under Govt. of India
  • If he is of unsound mind
  • If he is undischarged insolvent
  • If he is not a citizen of India
  • Or disqualified under any law made by Parliament e.g. conviction by a court, having been found guilty of a corrupt or illegal practice in relation to election, being a director or managing agent of a Corporation in which government has financial interest.
  • If any question arises subject to disqualification, it shall be referred to Governor of state who’ll act according to the opinion of the Election Commission. His decision will be final and not liable to be questioned in any court of law.
  • In a Unicameral Legislature, the procedure is very simple. Every Bill originates in the Vidhan Sabha, duly passed by it and then sent to the Governor for his assent.
  • However, in a Bicameral Legislature, the process is different. The Money Bill follows the similar procedure as in the Parliament.

Financial and Ordinary Bills

  • The Bill should be passed by both the Houses. The Vidian Parishad does not enjoy an equal status to that of the Vidhan Sabha, whereas in the Parliament, both the Lok Sabha and the Rajya Sabha enjoy equal status.
  • After a Bill has been passed by the Legislative Assembly of a State having a Legislative Council and transmitted to the Legislative Council, there are three possibilities namely:
    • The Bill is rejected by the Council;
    • More than three months elapse from the date on which the Bill is laid before the Council without the Bill being passed by it; or
    • The Bills passed by the Council with amendments, then the Bill returns to the Legislative Assembly.
  • The Legislative Assembly may or may not accept the recommendations.
  • If after a Bill has been so passed for the second time by the Legislative Assembly and transmitted to the Legislative Council:
    • The Bill is rejected by the Council; or
    • More than one month elapses from the date on which the Bill is laid   before the Council without the Bill being passed by it; or
    • The Bill is passed by the Council with amendments to which the Legislative Assembly does not agree;
  • The Bill shall be deemed to have been passed by both the Houses in the form in which it was passed by the Legislative Assembly for the second time.
  • The Legislative Council has the power to introduce the bill, but if the Vidhan Sabha(Legislative Assembly) rejects it, that is the end of the Bill.
  • Unlike at the Union level, there is no provision of joint-sitting in the State Legislature for resolving deadlock over the passage of a Bill.
  • The two Houses meet jointly on only one occasion- the Governor's address immediately after the general election to the Vidhan Sabha or at the

commencement of the first session of each year.

Money Bill

  • Legislative Coucil has no power to make recommendation to legislative assembly or to withhold Bill for a period of 14 days. The Legislative assembly is also not bound to accept any such recommendation if any.
The document Union & State Legislature(Part - 2) - Polity and constitution, UPSC, IAS. Notes | Study Polity and Constitution (Prelims) by IAS Masters - UPSC is a part of the UPSC Course Polity and Constitution (Prelims) by IAS Masters.
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