NCERT Class 8 Political Science Chapter 3: Why do we need a Parliament? YouTube Lecture Handouts

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Participation of citizens in decision making

Democratic government to have consent of citizens

Why Should People Decide?

  • Growth of nationalism

  • 1885: Indian National Congress demanded that there be elected members in the legislature with a right to discuss the budget and ask questions

  • 1909: Government of India Act allowed for some elected representation

  • Under colonial rule, people lived in fear of British rule

  • Learnt need for freedom, equality and participation in decision making

  • Government had to be sensitive to people’s needs and demands

  • Principle of universal adult franchise: All adult citizens of the country have the right to vote

How?

  • By elections – people elect their representatives to Parliament

  • Parliament made up of all representatives together, controls and guides the government

Electronic Voting Machines

  • Used for 1st time in 2004 general elections

  • Saved around 1,50,000 trees that would be cut

  • About 8,000 tons of paper for printing the ballot papers saved

Composition of Parliament

  • Parliament of India (Sansad) is the supreme law-making institution. It has two Houses, the Rajya Sabha and the Lok Sabha.

  • Rajya Sabha (Council of States), with a total strength of maximum 250 members, is chaired by the Vice-President of India.

  • Lok Sabha (House of the People), with a total membership of 545, is presided over by the Speaker.

Elections to Parliament are held in similar manner as that of state legislature

Lok Sabha

  • Elected every 5 years

  • Country divided into constituencies

  • 1 person from each constituency

  • Candidates from different political parties (BJP, Congress)

  • When elected become Members of Parliaments (MPs)

  • MPs make up Parliament

Functions of Parliament

  • Select National Government: To form government, majority is required (543 elected+ 2 nominated) – have atleast half or more members (i.e. 272)

    • Opposition in Parliament: Formed by all parties that oppose majority/coalition. Largest party in opposition is Opposition Party

    • Select executive – who can implement the laws

    • PM is the leader of the ruling party in Lok Sabha

    • Ministers selected for health, education, finance etc.

    • Coalition Government: When one or more parties join together to form government (no clear majority)

    • Rajya Sabha: As representative of states, can initiate legislation & bill must pass through Rajya Sabha to become law – review and alter laws of Lok Sabha (233 elected + 12 nominated)

  • Control Guide and Inform Government: Parliament session begins with question hour

    • Question Hour raises shortcomings of government, brings in opinion of people

    • Opposition helps in healthy functioning of democracy – they highlight drawbacks in programs and policies of government & mobilize popular support

    • In financial matter – Parliament’s approval is crucial

  • Law Making: In Next Lesson

Image of Example of Question Asked In The Parliament

Image of Example of Question Asked in the Parliament

Image of Example of Question Asked In The Parliament

Who Forms Parliament?

  • People from rural background

  • Minorities – Dalits and Backward castes

  • Historically marginalized communities must be given representation

  • Reservation of seats for SC/STs

  • MP from backward constituencies will be familiar with local problems

  • Proportion of Women MPs increased from 4% to 11% (in 2014) (no reservation – still debated)

Profile of MPs (1952 to 2014) - Trend Speaks

Image of Percentage of Women In Lok Sabha

Image of Percentage of Women in Lok Sabha

Image of Percentage of Women In Lok Sabha

Image of Age Profile of MPs - 1st to 16th Lok Sabha

Image of Age Profile of MPs - 1st to 16th Lok Sabha

Image of Age Profile of MPs - 1st to 16th Lok Sabha

Image level of MPs - 1st to 16th Lok Sabha

Image Level of MPs - 1st to 16th Lok Sabha

Image level of MPs - 1st to 16th Lok Sabha

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