Displaying 1 - 83 of 83
Sanat Kanwar - September 19, 2019
Last week, the Departmentally Related Standing Committees were reconstituted for the first year of the 17th Lok Sabha.  In this context, we discuss the functioning and role of Standing Committees. The visible part of Parliament’s work takes... Read More
Suyash Tiwari - July 10, 2019
The Finance Minister, Ms. Nirmala Sitharaman, presented the Union Budget for the financial year 2019-20 in Parliament on July 5, 2019.  In the 2019-20 budget, the government presented the estimates of its expenditure and receipts for the year... Read More
The results of General Election 2019 were declared last week concluding the process for electing the 17th Lok Sabha.  Immediately after the results, the previous Lok Sabha was dissolved.  The next couple of days will witness several key... Read More
Manish Kanadje - May 22, 2019
The counting of votes for General Election 2019, which concluded on Sunday, will begin tomorrow, i.e., 23rd May at 8 AM.  The election was conducted in 7 phases for 543 constituencies of Lok Sabha.  The Election Commission of India (ECI)... Read More
The nominations for all phases of the General Election have been submitted.  We examine highlights from data on candidates who are participating in the ongoing elections.  There are 8,039 candidates contesting for 542 Parliamentary... Read More
Roshni Sinha - March 11, 2019
Yesterday, the Election Commission announced the dates for the 2019 Lok Sabha elections.  The voting will take place in seven phases between April 11, 2019 to May 19, 2019.  With this announcement, the Model Code of Conduct (MCC) has comes... Read More
Zarka Shabir - January 31, 2019
The budget session of Parliament every year starts with the President’s Address to both Houses.  In this speech, the President highlights the government’s achievements and legislative activities in the last year, and announces its agenda for... Read More
Prachee Mishra and Roshni Sinha - December 26, 2018
So far, both Houses of Parliament have been witnessing disruptions.  At the beginning of the session, 23 Bills were listed for passage, and 20 were listed for introduction.  Two weeks in, one Bill has been passed by both Houses, and three... Read More
Sanat Kanwar - July 17, 2018
The Monsoon Session of Parliament begins tomorrow and will continue till August 10, 2018.  It is scheduled to have 18 sittings during this period.  This post outlines what is in store in the upcoming session. The session has a packed... Read More
Vatsal Khullar - November 22, 2017
Parliament sessions are usually held thrice a year: once in February for the Budget Session, once around July or August for the Monsoon Session, and once in November for the Winter Session.  This year, the government is yet to announce the... Read More
Roopal Suhag - February 6, 2017
Budget Session 2017 commenced with the President, Pranab Mukherjee, addressing a joint sitting of Parliament on January 31, 2017.  This address by the President highlights the legislative and policy activities and achievements of the government... Read More
Trina Roy - November 14, 2014
Recently the Chairman of Rajya Sabha issued a direction to extend the sitting hours and change the timing of Question Hour in the Upper House. Beginning with the Winter Session, which starts on November 24, Rajya Sabha will meet from 11 am to 6 pm,... Read More
admin_2 - November 14, 2014
On 12th November, 2014, the Chief Minister of the newly formed government in Maharashtra won a confidence vote in the Maharashtra State Assembly. This trust vote was done by a voice vote, the outcome of which was contested by opposition parties. In... Read More
admin_2 - March 24, 2014
The 15th Lok Sabha recently concluded with the worst track record on a number of indicators. In the first of a four part series in Livemint, MR Madhavan of PRS Legislative Research discusses whether one can hope for an improvement in the performance... Read More
Joyita - September 23, 2013
In the recently concluded Monsoon Session of Parliament , the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Rural Development released a report on the implementation of the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Development Act, 2005 (MGNREGA).  This blog... Read More
Saumya - September 9, 2013
The depreciating Indian rupee was a recurring topic of discussion and debate in the Monsoon Session of the Parliament.  The USD/INR exchange rate depreciated 9% during this Monsoon Session, hitting a record low of INR68 to a dollar on August 28... Read More
Shreya - August 19, 2013
The ongoing Monsoon Session of Parliament is being widely viewed as the 'make or break' session for passing legislation before the end of the 15th Lok Sabha in 2014. Hanging in balance are numerous important Bills, which will lapse if not passed... Read More
Chakshu Roy - June 18, 2013
Source: www.pib.nic.in   Yesterday the Prime Minister reshuffled his Cabinet and inducted four cabinet ministers and four ministers of state.  Since the beginning of the UPA II government, there have been three major... Read More
admin_2 - May 2, 2013
The last few days have seen repeated disruptions in Parliament. In an Opinion Editorial published in the Indian Express, Chakshu Roy of PRS Legislative Research discusses the impact of the current disruptions on Parliament. His analysis points to... Read More
Vishnu - March 14, 2013
Authored by Vishnu Padmanabhan and Priya Soman The Budget speech may have already been scrutinised and the numbers analysed but the Budget process is far from complete.  The Constitution requires expenditure from the government’s... Read More
Jhalak - March 7, 2013
Yesterday the Rajya Sabha and Lok Sabha engaged in a debate on the President's speech, known as the Motion of Thanks. The President's speech is a statement of the legislative and policy achievements of the government during the preceding year and... Read More
Jhalak - February 28, 2013
The Budget session 2013 commenced with the President, Pranab Mukherjee, addressing Parliament on February 21, 2013.  The address is a statement of the policy of the government.  Yesterday a Motion of Thanks was moved in the Lok Sabha and a... Read More
Priya - February 19, 2013
In 2010, the Legislative Assistants to Members of Parliament (LAMP) Fellowship was conceptualised by PRS Legislative Research, creating a unique platform for young Indians to engage with policy making at the national level. The Fellowship, a first... Read More
Sakshi - February 6, 2013
There have been some recent developments in the sugar sector, which pertain to the pricing of sugarcane and deregulation of the sector.  On January 31, the Cabinet approved the fair and remunerative price (FRP) of sugarcane for the 2013-14... Read More
Jhalak - November 22, 2012
Recently, the government issued letters de-allocating coal blocks of various companies, based on the recommendations of the  Inter Ministerial Group (IMG).  This post discusses the history behind the de-allocations, the... Read More
M R Madhavan - November 22, 2012
Both Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha have seen disruptions this morning on the issue of FDI in multi-brand retail.  The issue may be discussed in Parliament under various procedures.  We have explained these in an Op-Ed in today’s Indian Express... Read More
Rohit - June 14, 2012
The Election Commission has announced the schedule for the election of the President of India.  The last date for nominations is June 30, elections will be held on July 19, and counting will take place on July 22.  The BJD and AIADMK have... Read More
Simran - May 11, 2012
In April last year the government had notified the Information Technology (Intermediary Guidelines) Rules, 2011  (IT Rules) under the Information Technology Act, 2000.  The IT Rules are listed for discussion in Rajya Sabha today in... Read More
Rohit - March 15, 2012
The Minister of Railways, Dinesh Trivedi, presented the Railways Budget 2012 to Parliament on 14th March.  While commenting on the financial position of Railways, the Minister said that 'the Indian Railways are passing through a difficult phase... Read More
Karan - March 12, 2012
The President addressed the Parliament on 12 March 2012.  Below are some items from the agenda of the central government as outlined in the speech. Legislation A Bill to eliminate manual scavenging and insanitary latrines shall be... Read More
Karan - March 12, 2012
The President addressed the Parliament after the 2009 Lok Sabha Elections on 4th June 2009.  She also addressed Parliament on 22nd February 2010, as well as on 21st February 2011.  The tables below highlight some items from the agenda of... Read More
Rohit - March 7, 2012
Several Rajya Sabha seats go to elections this year. The President and the Vice-President are also due to be elected by August. We analyse the impact of the recent State Assembly elections on the composition of the Rajya Sabha and the outcome of the... Read More
Rohit - December 28, 2011
The Lokpal and Lokayuktas Bill, 2011 was passed by Lok Sabha yesterday. The Bill will be discussed next by Rajya Sabha. Unlike the Lok Sabha, where the UPA government holds a majority in the House, the composition is different in Rajya Sabha. As on... Read More
Sachin - November 29, 2011
The Uttar Pradesh Legislative Assembly recently passed a resolution calling for the division of Uttar Pradesh [U.P] into four States. But the procedure for formation of new States laid down in Article 3 of the Constitution provides that a State has... Read More
Simran - November 16, 2011
Media in India is mostly self-regulated.  The existing bodies for regulation of media such as the Press Council of India which is a statutory body and the News Broadcasting Standards Authority, a self-regulatory organization, issue standards... Read More
admin_2 - September 26, 2011
The following piece by C V Madhukar appeared in the September,2011 issue of Governance Now magazine. The debate in Parliament in response to the recent Anna Hazare led agitation demanding a strong Lok Pal Bill was a fine hour for the institution of... Read More
Sana - September 1, 2011
We wrote an FAQ on Parliamentary Privilege for IBN Live. See http://ibnlive.in.com/news/what-puri-bedi-are-guilty-of-parl-privilege-faqs/179977-37.html The full text is reproduced below. Several MPs have given breach of privilege notices against... Read More
admin_2 - August 17, 2011
Parliament is expected to take up a motion for impeaching Justice Soumitra Sen of the Calcutta High Court.  We wrote an FAQ on the process of impeachment and the facts of this case for Rediff. See: http://www.rediff.com... Read More
Anirudh - June 20, 2011
The Union government’s Cabinet Committee on Security recently gave clearance to the Home Ministry’s NATGRID project.  The project aims to allow investigation and law enforcement agencies to access real-time information from data stored with... Read More
Anirudh - April 20, 2011
A recent case before the Supreme Court has once again highlighted the issue of judicial decisions potentially replacing/ amending legislation enacted by Parliament.  The case importantly pertains to the judiciary’s interpretation of existing... Read More
Rohit - March 14, 2011
The general discussion on the Railway Budget concluded in Parliament this week. During the discussion, several MPs made a reference to two important documents tabled by the Railway Minister in 2009 - the ‘White Paper' on Indian Railways and the 2020... Read More
Madhukar - March 3, 2011
The demand for a JPC has been accepted by the government. But disruptions in Parliament continue to plague its functioning. The speaker of Lok Sabha and the chairman of Rajya Sabha routinely ask the members who rush into the well to return to their... Read More
Rohit - March 1, 2011
In a recent judgement, the Karnataka High Court upheld the disqualification of five independent MLAs from the Assembly. These MLAs, who had previously served as Ministers in the Yeddyurappa government, were disqualified along with 11 others after... Read More
Anirudh - January 10, 2011
Recently the government released draft rules under the Right to Information Act for consultation before it finalised them.  This process of public consultation on draft rules is a welcome step which is not often followed. Many Acts passed by... Read More
Esha - December 24, 2010
The convention for passing Bills in the Parliament is by orally communicating agreement or disagreement with the proposed motion (whether a Bill should be passed or not, for example). When a motion is put to vote the speaker says, 'Those in the... Read More
Anirudh - December 23, 2010
In a recent case, the Supreme Court directed the appropriate government to enact a law by June 2011.  The case, Gainda Ram & Ors. V. MCD and Ors.[1], concerned the legal framework for regulating hawking in Delhi.  The judgement lays... Read More
Chakshu Roy - December 23, 2010
The Public Accounts Committee of Parliament has invited suggestions on "Recent Developments in the Telecom Sector including allocation of 2G and 3G Spectrum". Comments are invited from experts, associations, individuals, organisations and... Read More
Kaushiki - December 21, 2010
In India, one of the common threads that run through many of the corruption scandals is the issue of conflict of interest i.e. public officials taking policy decisions based on their personal interest.  For example, Shashi Tharoor in the IPL... Read More
Esha - December 21, 2010
One of our earlier posts (read here) tackled the question of whether the Public Accounts Committee could summon ministers or not. According to a direction of the speaker, a Minister cannot be summoned by a financial committee. There are no specific... Read More
Vivake - December 21, 2010
In the aftermath of the 2G scam, there has been a great deal of discussion on how Parliamentary Committees can be used for scrutinising the functioning of the government.  Committee Reports are generally put in the public domain, but how... Read More
Esha - December 20, 2010
Around 1400 reports have been tabled by the PAC since the first Lok Sabha till end of 14th Lok Sabha. In terms of absolute numbers, the largest number of reports were tabled during the 5th Lok Sabha (1971-77).  However, in terms of the... Read More
Anirudh - December 20, 2010
The recent 2G-controversy and the related debate over the role of the PAC as opposed to the JPC also raises a broader Issue regarding the general scrutiny of government finances by Parliament.  Oversight of the government’s finances involves... Read More
Chakshu Roy - December 20, 2010
It is common knowledge that individuals contesting elections have to file an affidavit, declaring (i) their criminal records (if any), (ii) assets & liabilities and (iii) educational qualification.  What is not widely known is that after... Read More
Chakshu Roy - December 18, 2010
The Departmentally Related Standing Committee on Information Technology has invited comments on the subject of "Isssues related to Paid News". Comments/Suggestions/Opinion/Views to be sent to: Additional Director (IT) Lok Sabha Secretariat, Room No... Read More
Tonusree - December 18, 2010
In recent public discourse over lobbying, two issues that have underscored the debate are: Greater transparency in the policymaking process, and Equality of access for all stakeholders in engaging with the process. There is a need to... Read More
Chakshu Roy - December 17, 2010
The winter session has come to an end, but parliamentary committees continue to meet to discuss important issues.  Some of them are: Lok Sabha Committee on Ethics | 21 Dec 2010 | Agenda: Adding to procedure of Lok Sabha,  rules to... Read More
Esha - December 16, 2010
The Public Accounts Committee  examines how the Government spends public money. It examines the amount granted by the Parliament and the amount actually spent. A Speaker in the past, has passed a direction which specifies clearly that a... Read More
Vivake - December 16, 2010
The following is a comparison of the rules regarding the transparency of MPs' private interests in India and South Africa. In India, conflict of interest amongst MPs has been debated extensively in the recent past. The primary check on preventing... Read More
Chakshu Roy - December 16, 2010
The Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister recently remarked that the Rajya Sabha should be abolished.  This is not a new thought.  In 1954 and 1973, resolutions were moved in the Lok Sabha seeking to abolish the Rajya Sabha.  Both these... Read More
Esha - December 15, 2010
Between 2002-06 the average number of sitting per year (May - April) was around 19 but since 2006 the average has dipped to around 11 sittings per year. The average number of committee sittings is around 15 per year from 2002-10. The committee met... Read More
Rohit - December 15, 2010
What is petitioning? Petitioning is a formal process that involves sending a written appeal to Parliament. The public can petition Parliament to make MPs aware of their opinion and/ or to request action. Who petitions and how? Anyone can petition... Read More
Sana - December 10, 2010
On December 1, 2010, the Judicial Standards and Accountability Bill was introduced in the Lok Sabha.  The Bill revamps the present system of inquiry into complaints against judges.  The case of Justice Sen was the one of the more recent... Read More
admin_2 - December 2, 2010
By Chakshu Rai and Anirudh Burman What is the difference between a JPC and a PAC? A structured committee system was introduced in 1993 to provide for greater scrutiny of government functioning by Parliament. Most committees of Parliament include MPs... Read More
Anil - October 25, 2010
At an event organised by the Hansard Society, a UK based political research and education charity, MPs spoke about what their role entails and the challenges the face in fulfilling their role.  It is striking to note the similarity... Read More
admin_2 - October 15, 2010
The trust vote drama in Karnataka has hit the national headlines. The incumbent chief minister, B.S. Yeddyurappa appears to have won the first round. It remains to be seen how the BJP responds to the governor’s direction that a second trust vote be... Read More
admin_2 - October 10, 2010
This month, PRS Legislative Research is 5 years old! The objective when we started out was to make the legislative process in India better informed, more transparent and participatory.  From what started off as an idea, we believe we... Read More
admin_2 - August 31, 2010
The Lok Sabha has passed the bill to revise the salary of members of parliament. Much of the debate in the media has been on the wealth of current MPs and the lack of accountability. It is important to focus as well on structural issues related to... Read More
Anirudh - August 12, 2010
The Prevention of Torture Bill, 2010 was introduced in the Lok Sabha on April 26, 2010, and was passed by the Lok Sabha on May 6 (See Bill Summary here).  The Bill was not referred to a Standing Committee of Parliament.  The Bill has been... Read More
Rohit - August 4, 2010
This post is pursuant to the discussion on population stabilization being held in Parliament currently. India is the second most populous country in the world, sustaining 16.7% of the world's population on 2.4% of the world's surface area. The... Read More
Anirudh - July 8, 2010
"Parliamentary approval of the creation, mandate and powers of security agencies is a necessary but not sufficient condition for upholding the rule of law. A legal foundation increases the legitimacy both of the existence of these agencies and the (... Read More
admin_2 - June 23, 2010
Rajya Sabha June 23 and 24, 2010: Committee on Science & Technology, Environment & Forests Agenda - The Civil Liability for Nuclear Damage Bill, 2010 June 29, 2010: Committee on Transport, Tourism and Culture Agenda - Duties,... Read More
Chakshu Roy - April 27, 2010
1.  Is the government empowered to intercept communication between two individuals? Answer: Yes. The Central and the State government can intercept communication.  Letters, telephone (mobiles and landlines) and internet communication (e... Read More
Anirudh - March 25, 2010
During the recess, the Departmentally Related Standing Committees of Parliament examine the Demand for Grants submitted by various Ministries.  The Demand for Grants are detailed explanations of that Ministry's annual budget which form part of... Read More
Avinash - March 18, 2010
Parliament has announced the ministries whose Demands for Grants will be discussed in detail in the Lok Sabha (after April 12 when Parliament reconvenes).  They are: Defence Rural Development Tribal Affairs Water Resources... Read More
M R Madhavan - March 17, 2010
Well, that is the number of seats to be reserved for women in Lok Sabha in the first round if the women’s reservation bill is passed.  The rules for determining number of seats to be reserved are as follows. The Bill does not reserve one-... Read More
Avinash - March 17, 2010
Because of the interest in the Women’s Reservation Bill and the Civil Liability for Nuclear Damage Bill, we’ve received a number of queries about the process by which a bill becomes an Act. We have a more comprehensive primer on the subject, but... Read More
Avinash - March 16, 2010
Parliament is set to go into recess this week and will convene again on April 12th.  Before going into recess, both houses will have completed general discussions on the budget. Once the recess begins, it’s time to go beyond the big budget... Read More
Tonusree - March 15, 2010
The Lok Sabha  adjourns today for a three-week recess.  The Rajya Sabha is scheduled to adjourned on March 18.  Here’s a brief look at the activity of Parliament this session (data till March 15): Productive Hours: The session has... Read More
Rohit - March 9, 2010
Indiscipline and disruptions in Parliament are much talked about issues.  Not only are disruptions a waste of Parliament's valuable time, these significantly taint the image of this esteemed institution.  Commotion in Rajya Sabha over the... Read More
Anirudh - March 4, 2010
The presentation of the Annual Budget before the parliament is one of the mechanisms available to any legislature to scrutinise and authorise revenues and expenditures of the country.   In this post I quote and summarise from two sources (... Read More
Madhukar - March 1, 2010
The budget process is covered by live TV and extensively by most newspapers each year.  Most large companies have their own analysis of the budget.  Increasingly, there is an effort by civil society groups to analyse the budget to decipher... Read More
Avinash - February 12, 2010
Unlike the Parliamentary system, the concept of 'question hour' or 'question time' doesn't really exist in the American legislature.  Here's an interesting report done by the Congressional Research Service on the possibility of a question... Read More
Anirudh - February 8, 2010
In the late 1960s and 70s, defections (elected legislators changing parties after the election) in Parliament and State Legislatures became very frequent, so frequent in fact, that the epithet "Aaya Ram Gaya Ram" was coined to describe the same.... Read More