Lok Sabha adjourned amid continued sloganeering by Opposition
24, Mar 2023
Why in News?
- As Opposition MPs resorted to sloganeering over demand for JPC probe into the Adani issue, proceedings in the Lok Sabha were adjourned.
- A sitting of Parliament can be terminated by adjournment or adjournment sine die or prorogation or dissolution (in the case of the Lok Sabha).
- Adjournment: It suspends the work in a sitting for a specified time, which may be hours, days or weeks.
- Adjournment sine die: It means terminating a sitting of Parliament for an indefinite period.
- In other words, when the House is adjourned without naming a day for reassembly.
- The power of adjournment as well as adjournment sine die lies with the presiding officer (Speaker or Chairman) of the House.
What the Constitution says on Parliamentary Sessions?
- Article 85 requires that there should not be a gap of more than six months between two sessions of Parliament.
- Please note, the Constitution does not specify when or for how many days Parliament should meet.
- The maximum gap between two sessions of Parliament cannot be more than six months. That means the Parliament should meet at least twice a year.
- A ‘session’ of Parliament is the period between the first sitting of a House and its prorogation.
Who shall convene a session?
- In practice, the Cabinet Committee on Parliamentary Affairs, comprising senior ministers, decides on the dates for parliament’s sitting and it is then conveyed to the president.
- So, the executive, headed by the prime minister, which steers the business to be taken up by parliament will have the power to advise the president to summon the legislature.
What are the other different sessions in Parliament?
- Summoning of Parliament: Summoning is the process of calling all members of the Parliament to meet.
The President summons each House of the Parliament from time to time. The gap between two sessions of the Parliament cannot exceed 6 months, which means the Parliament meets at least two times in one year.
- Prorogation: Prorogation is the end of a session. A prorogation puts an end to a session. The time between the Prorogation and reassembly is called Recess. Prorogation is the end of session and not the dissolution of the house (in case of Lok Sabha, as Rajya Sabha does not dissolve).
- Quorum: Quorum refers to the minimum number of the members required to be present for conducting a meeting of the house.
The Constitution has fixed one-tenth strength as quorum for both Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha. Thus, to conduct a sitting of Lok Sabha, there should be at least 55 members present while to conduct a sitting of Rajya Sabha, there should be at least 25 members present.
Why is a Parliamentary Session important?
- Law-making is dependent on when Parliament meets.
- Also, a thorough scrutiny of the government’s functioning and deliberation on national issues can only take place when the two Houses are in session.
- Predictability in the functioning of Parliament is key to a well-functioning democracy.