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Lok Sabha
Coat of arms or logo.
Type
Type Lower house
Leadership
Speaker Meira Kumar
since 3 June 2009
Deputy Speaker Karia Munda
since 8 June 2009
Majority Leader Pranab Mukherjee, (INC)
since 1 June 2009
Opposition Leader Sushma Swaraj, (BJP)
since 18 December 2009
Structure
Members 552 (550 elected + 2 appointed)
Political groups Left Front
NDA
UPA
Election
Last election April-May, 2009
Meeting place
Loksabha.jpg
Lok Sabha, Sansad Bhavan
Website
loksabha.nic.in

The Lok Sabha (Hindi: लोक सभा) (also titled the House of the People, by the Constitution) is the directly elected lower house of the Parliament of India. As of 2009 there have been fifteen Lok Sabhas elected by the people of India. The Constitution limits the Lok Sabha to a maximum of 552 members, including no more than 20 members representing people from the Union Territories, and two members to represent the Anglo-Indian community (if the President feels that that community is not adequately represented). The current strength of the Lok Sabha has 545 members including the Speaker and two appointed members, if any.

Each Lok Sabha is formed for a five-year term, after which it is automatically dissolved, unless extended by a Proclamation of Emergency which may extend the term in one-year increments. The 15th Lok Sabha was formed in May 2009.

An exercise to redraw Lok Sabha constituencies' boundaries has been carried out by the Delimitation Commission based on the Indian census of 2001. This exercise, which was supposed to be carried out after every census, was suspended in 1976 following a constitutional amendment to avoid adverse effects of the family planning program which was being implemented.[1] Today, the Lok Sabha has its own TV channel, Lok Sabha TV, headquartered within the Parliament premises.

Contents

Membership qualifications

Membership of the Lok Sabha requires that the person must be a citizen of India, aged 25 or over, mentally sound, should not be bankrupt and has no criminal procedures against him/her. For reserved seats one should be member of the scheduled castes and/or tribes.

Sessions and working hours

On normal business days, the Lok Sabha assembles from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., and again from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m. The first hour of every sitting is called the Question Hour, during which questions posed by members may be assigned to specific government ministries, to be answered at a fixed date in the future.

The Lok Sabha shares legislative power with the Rajya Sabha, except in the area of Money Bills, in which case the Lok Sabha has the ultimate authority. In the case of money bill it is only sent to the rajya sabha for recommendations and in the case of other related issues it is sent with a period of 14 working days. If it is not returned in that span of time it is considered as passed. If conflicting legislation is enacted by the two Houses, a joint sitting is held to resolve the differences. In such a session, the members of the Lok Sabha would generally prevail, since the Lok Sabha includes more than twice as many members as the Rajya Sabha.

Three sessions of Lok Sabha take place in a year:

  • Budget session: February to May.
  • Monsoon session: July to September.
  • Winter session: November to December.

Powers, including the special powers of the Lok Sabha

The special powers of the Lok Sabha is the reason why the Lok Sabha is de facto and de jure more powerful than the Rajya Sabha.

  • Motions of no confidence against the government can only be introduced and passed in the Lok Sabha. If passed by a majority vote, the Prime Minister and the Council of Ministers resigns collectively. The Rajya Sabha has no power over such a motion, and hence no real power over the executive. However, the Prime Minister may threaten the dissolution of the Lok Sabha and recommend this to the President, forcing an untimely general election. The President normally accepts this recommendation unless otherwise convinced that the Lok Sabha might recommend a new Prime Minister by a majority vote. Thus, both the executive and the legislature in India have checks and balances over each other.
  • Money bills can only be introduced in the Lok Sabha, and upon being passed, are sent to the Rajya Sabha, where it can be deliberated on for up to 14 days. If not rejected by the Rajya Sabha, or 14 days lapse from the introduction of the bill in the Rajya Sabha without any action by the House, or recommendations made by the Rajya Sabha are not accepted by the Lok Sabha, the bill is considered passed. The budget is presented in the Lok Sabha by the Finance Minister in the name of the President of India.
  • In matters pertaining to non-financial (ordinary) bills, after the bill has been passed by the House where it was originally tabled (Lok Sabha or Rajya Sabha), it is sent to the other house, where it may be kept for a maximum period of 6 months. If the other House rejects the bill or a period of 6 months elapses without any action by that House, or the House that originally tabled the bill does not accept the recommendations made by the members of the other house, it results in a deadlock. This is resolved by a joint session of both Houses, presided over by the Speaker of the Lok Sabha and decided by a simple majority. The will of the Lok Sabha normally prevails in these matters, as its strength is more than double that of the Rajya Sabha.
  • Equal Powers with the Rajya Sabha in initiating and passing any Bill for Constitutional Amendment (by a majority of the total membership of the House and at least two-thirds majority of the members present and voting).
  • Equal Powers with the Rajya Sabha in initiating and passing a motion for the impeachment of the President (by two-thirds of the membership of the House).
  • Equal Powers with the Rajya Sabha in initiating and passing a motion for the impeachment of the judges of the Supreme Court and the state High Courts (by a majority of the membership of the House and at least two-thirds majority of the members present and voting).
  • Equal Powers with the Rajya Sabha in initiating and passing a resolution declaring war or national emergency (by two-thirds majority) or constitutional emergency (by simple majority) in a state.
  • If the Lok Sabha is dissolved before or after the declaration of a National Emergency, the Rajya Sabha becomes the sole de facto and de jure Parliament. It cannot be dissolved. This is a limitation on the Lok Sabha.

Composition by states and territories

Subdivision Type No. of constituencies[2]
Delhi State 7
Andhra Pradesh State 42
Arunachal Pradesh State 2
Assam State 14
Bihar State 40
Chandigarh Union Territory 1
Chhattisgarh State 11
Dadra and Nagar Haveli Union Territory 1
Daman and Diu Union Territory 1
Andaman and Nicobar Islands Union Territory 1
Goa State 2
Gujarat State 26
Haryana State 10
Himachal Pradesh State 4
Jammu and Kashmir State 6
Jharkhand State 14
Karnataka State 28
Kerala State 20
Lakshadweep Union Territory 1
Madhya Pradesh State 29
Maharashtra State 48
Manipur State 2
Meghalaya State 2
Mizoram State 1
Nagaland State 1
Orissa State 21
Pondicherry Union Territory 1
Punjab State 13
Rajasthan State 25
Sikkim State 1
Tamil Nadu State 39
Tripura State 2
Uttarakhand State 5
Uttar Pradesh State 80
West Bengal State 42

Lok Sabha and general election

Lok Sabha is constituted after the general election as follows:

SN Lok Sabha General Election
1 1st Lok Sabha Indian general election, 1951
2 2nd Lok Sabha Indian general election, 1957
3 3rd Lok Sabha Indian general election, 1962
4 4th Lok Sabha Indian general election, 1967
5 5th Lok Sabha Indian general election, 1971
6 6th Lok Sabha Indian general election, 1977
7 7th Lok Sabha Indian general election, 1980
8 8th Lok Sabha Indian general election, 1984
9 9th Lok Sabha Indian general election, 1989
10 10th Lok Sabha Indian general election, 1991
11 11th Lok Sabha Indian general election, 1996
12 12th Lok Sabha Indian general election, 1998
13 13th Lok Sabha Indian general election, 1999
14 14th Lok Sabha Indian general election, 2004
15 15th Lok Sabha Indian general election, 2009

Members by party

Present members of Lok Sabha by political party and alliance:[3][4][5]

Alliances Party Seats
United Progressive Alliance
Seats: 262
Indian National Congress 206
All India Trinamool Congress 19
Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam 18
Nationalist Congress Party 9
National Conference 3
Jharkhand Mukti Morcha 2
Indian Union Muslim League 2
Viduthalai Chiruthaigal Katchi 1
Kerala Congress (Mani) 1
All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen 1
National Democratic Alliance
Seats: 159
Bharatiya Janata Party 116
Janata Dal (United) 20
Shiv Sena 11
Rashtriya Lok Dal 5
Shiromani Akali Dal 4
Telangana Rashtra Samithi 2
Asom Gana Parishad 1
Third Front
Seats: 79
Left Front
Left Democratic Front
24
Bahujan Samaj Party 21
Biju Janata Dal 14
All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam 9
Telugu Desam Party 6
Janata Dal (Secular) 3
Marumalarchi Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam 1
Haryana Janhit Congress 1
Fourth Front
Seats: 27
Samajwadi Party 23
Rashtriya Janata Dal 4
Other Parties and Independents
Seats: 16
Assam United Democratic Front 1
Jharkhand Vikas Morcha (Prajatantrik) 1
Nagaland People's Front 1
Bodaland Peoples Front 1
Swabhimani Paksha 1
Bahujan Vikas Aaghadi 1
Sikkim Democratic Front 1
Independents 9
Total 543

See also

References

  1. ^ Election Commission India
  2. ^ "Lok Sabha Introduction". National Informatics Centre, Government of India. http://parliamentofindia.nic.in/ls/intro/introls.htm. Retrieved 2008-09-22. 
  3. ^ [1]
  4. ^ [2]
  5. ^ [3]

External links








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