Membership of Parliament

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An essential component of parliamentary democracy is the electing of representatives to serve in the legislative body and make decisions on behalf of the people. MPs are essential to how the government operates and how legislation are passed. They serve as the link between the people and the government and are in charge of communicating the wants, needs, and aspirations of the people they represent.

Requirements for Parliamentary Membership

The Representation of the People Act, 1951 and the Indian Constitution both specify the requirements for becoming a Member of Parliament (MP). These are the essential requirements:

  1. Citizenship: To be eligible for membership in the Lok Sabha (House of the People) or the Rajya Sabha (Council of States), a person must be an Indian citizen.
  2. Age: The minimum age needed to serve in the Lok Sabha is 25, while the minimum age to serve in the Rajya Sabha is 30.
  3. Voter Registration: In order to run for office in any Indian parliamentary district, a candidate must be registered to vote. As a result, MPs are guaranteed to have a direct line to the electorate.
  4. Disqualifications: There are several things that exclude you, like having a government job that pays well, being mentally ill, being an insolvent who hasn’t been dismissed, or having been convicted of a specific crime.

Different types of parliamentary membership

There are normally two houses of parliament in a parliamentary system: the lower house, or Lok Sabha, and the upper house, or Rajya Sabha. These houses have different membership categories:

  • Members of the Lok Sabha are chosen by the Indian public directly under the first-past-the-post electoral system. One MP is chosen from each Lok Sabha constituency. Members of the Lok Sabha are the principal delegates of the will of the people because they represent particular geographic regions.
  • Members of the Rajya Sabha are chosen by the elected representatives of the State Legislative Assemblies and the Electoral College for Union Territories rather than being chosen directly by the general public. One-third of the permanent Rajya Sabha, which represents the states and union territories, retires every two years. This maintains continuity throughout the home.

Members of Parliament’s Role and Responsibilities

Members of Parliament have a number of significant duties and obligations, including:

  1. Legislative Role: MPs have a legislative role in which they debate and vote on bills as part of the legislative process. They can put forth bills and amendments, examine government legislation, and have a major impact on how the law is written.
  2. Representative Function: Members of Parliament are the people’s chosen representatives. They represent their constituents’ needs and desires in Parliament, ensuring that the government is still answerable to the people.
  3. Oversight Role: Parliament has a role in overseeing the executive branch of government. Ministers are questioned by lawmakers, who also hold the executive branch responsible for its policies and actions.
  4. Constituency Work: As a bridge between the people and the government, MPs take care of the concerns and requests of their constituency. On behalf of their constituents, they are able to bring up problems in Parliament.
  5. Membership in Committees: MPs frequently serve on parliamentary committees with expertise in fields including finance, military, and health. These committees carry out in-depth analyses of particular issues and are very important in determining policy.
  6. Policy Advocacy: MPs, especially those from opposition parties, push for regulations and changes that are consistent with the beliefs of their party and the needs of their supporters.
  7. Representation of Diverse Interests: A varied nation like India has MPs who represent a variety of interests, including regional, cultural, linguistic, and social concerns. In the legislative process, they work to balance these interests.

Importance of Membership in Parliament

The composition of Parliament is essential to how a parliamentary democracy operates. Here are some major arguments for why being a member of parliament is important:

  1. Democratic Representation: MPs serve as the physical representation of the will of the people, ensuring that policies reflect the preferences and interests of the electorate.
  2. Accountability: By posing inquiries, arguing points, and keeping an eye on executive operations, MPs hold the administration responsible for its deeds and policies.
  3. Lawmaking: Enacting and changing laws, which have a significant impact on citizens’ lives, is the responsibility of parliamentarians.
  4. Diversity and Pluralism: MPs’ differences represent the diversity of a country’s people, and they endeavor to advance inclusivity and pluralism in government.
  5. Checks and Balances: Members of parliament, particularly those from the opposition, act as a vital check on the authority of the executive branch and assist avoid abuses of power.

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