This GSEB Class 8 Social Science Notes Chapter 8 Role of Parliament in a Democratic Country covers all the important topics and concepts as mentioned in the chapter.
Role of Parliament in a Democratic Country Class 8 GSEB Notes
→ In a democracy supreme power is vested in the people and is exercised by them or by their elected agents.
→ In a democracy people elect their leaders by casting a vote. These leaders form the government.
→ In a democracy the government has to give clarifications and provide reasons for the decisions taken.
→ The most important characteristic of democracy is that the sole power / power to rule is not in the hands of one person or group but every citizen is a member in the decision making process. Democracy is known as ‘Lokshahi’ in Gujarati.
→ A democratic government is for the people. The welfare of the people is the main aim of democracy. India has adopted ‘Parliamentary Democracy’. The Parliament is the supreme institution in India. The Parliament of India consists of the President and the two houses, the Lok Sabha and the Rajya Sabha. The Lok Sabha (total members 545) is known as the ‘Lower House’ and the Rajya Sabha (total members 250) is known as the ‘Upper House’.
→ In our system of governance, the Parliament enjoys complete power since it comprises the elected representatives of the nation.
→ The functions of the Parliament are:
- To control the government and provide information and guidance to it.
- To make new laws and make amendments in old laws.
→ The Lok Sabha (House of the People) elections are held every 5 years. Each constituency is represented in the Parliament by one elected member. The elected candidate is known as the ‘Member of Parliament’ (M.E). The elected members collectively form the ‘Lok Sabha’.
→ After the Lok Sabha elections, party-wise list of elected members is made to ascertain which party has a clear majority. The party that forms the government must have a clear majority or form a coalition to gain majority. The leader of such a party is appointed as the Prime Minister by the President. The Prime Minister of India is the head of the ruling party.
→ The Prime Minister forms the council of ministers by selecting members of his party. He hands over one or more departments to each minister. The ministers along with the Prime Minister together take administrative decisions.
→ The elected members of the Legislative Assembly of each state elect the members for the Rajya Sabha.
→ There are 250 members in the Rajya Sabha, out of which 238 are elected and the remaining 12 are nominated by the President of India.
→ The Rajya Sabha is a permanent house. It is never dissolved completely. This is because ^ of the members retire every two years (after completing their 6-year term) and new members are inducted.
→ The person who presides over each session is known as the Chairman. The Vice-President of India acts as the Chairman of the Rajya Sabha.
→ When the Parliament is in session, the time for the Question Hour is decided in the beginning itself. During this time, Members of Parliament ask questions through which they gain information about the working of the government. Thus, the Parliament controls the Executive. Members draw attention to loopholes in government functioning as well as to people’s opinions with the help of these questions.
→ It is an important responsibility of the members to question the government.
→ In a democracy, the opposition party plays a major role to ensure effective administration by highlighting any loopholes in the policies/programmes of the government.
→ The President is the most important and an integral part of the Parliament. A bill that is passed by both houses becomes a law only after his signature.
→ The President has the power to decide about the meetings of the Parliament and announce the completion of sessions.