Winter Session of Parliament
08, Dec 2022
Prelims level : Parliament Mains level : GS-II Indian Constitution- Historical Underpinnings, Evolution, Features, Amendments, significant provisions and basic structure.
Why in News?
- Both Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha conducted business as usual on the first day of the 2022 Winter Session, as opposed to a turbulent previous session.
- Article 85 says the President can summon a session of Parliament “at such time and place as he thinks fit”. Thus, a session can be called on the recommendation of the government, which decides its date and duration.
- As per parliamentary records, there have only been three instances in the past of the winter session not being held — in 1975, 1979 and 1984.
What the Constitution says?
- Article 85 requires that there should not be a gap of more than six months between two sessions of Parliament.
- Therefore, with the monsoon session of Parliament held in September, the government has no constitutional compulsion to hold a winter session.
- Besides, the Constitution does not specify when or for how many days Parliament should meet.
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 a key to a well-functioning democracy.
How does it help to have Parliament in session throughout the year?
- There are three main advantages.
- It enables detailed planning of legislative and policy work all year round.
- It negates the need for enacting Ordinances.
- It enables accountability of government functioning by Parliament throughout the year.