Day 10 – Q.3 Does the Parliament seem to have lost its luster as the temple of democracy in recent years? Critically comment.

  • IASbaba
  • December 7, 2022
  • 0
GS 2, Indian Polity, TLP-UPSC Mains Answer Writing
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Does the Parliament seem to have lost its luster as the temple of democracy in recent years? Critically comment. 

क्या हाल के वर्षों में संसद की लोकतंत्र के मंदिर के रूप में चमक फीकी पड़ गई है? समालोचनात्मक टिप्पणी करें।

Approach – 

In this question candidates need to write about how does parliament seems to have lost it luster as temple of democracy in recent years . examine it critically .

Introduction –

As an institution, Parliament is central to the very idea of democracy and was assigned a pivotal role in our Constitution by the founding fathers of the republic. It is responsible for legislation and should engage in discourse and debate on issues that concern the nation and the citizens.

Body  –

Parliament is the temple of democracy which provides the highest forum to discuss, debate and decide issues for the well being of the people,

Significance of parliamentary debates-

  • These debates provide a forum for MP’s to express their opinions and concerns, and contribute towards making policy.
  • It allows parliamentarians to voice the interest of the people of their constituencies.
  • Better policy formulation,Diverse views,and assist in informed decision making.

Indian Parliament as the temple of democracy has declined in the recent years,

  • There are mainly two reasons for this decline. Parliament does not meet or work long enough. And there are institutional constraints on its performance while working.
  • Incomes and assets apart, the Criminalization of politics is a reality. ADR, Association for Democratic Reforms, reports that 43 % of sitting MP’s have criminal records as of 2019, compared to 34% of the MP’s in the 2014 .
  • The ‘competitive hooliganism’ is common sight in parliament in recent years .
  • There are institutional constraints on the performance of MP’s as well. The allocation of time for MP’s to speak is proportional to the strength of their political party in the house and its leadership decides who gets to speak and for how long.
  • The speaker of the Lok Sabha or the chairman of the Rajya Sabha have little discretion in the matter. The only other opportunities for MP’s are during question hour or zero hour.
  • In zero hour, the speaker or the chairman have the discretion to invite an MP to speak, but time is too little and speeches are often drowned out in pandemonium
  • In India, the anti-defection law stipulates that a three-line whip can be violated only if more than one-third of a party’s MP’s do so. This is the unintended consequence of a law that might have mitigated one problem but created another, which is emasculating our Parliament as an institution.
  • The excruciatingly slow process of legislating big policy decisions, with months and even years of acrimonious stalemate in parliament, interspersed by the all too rare breakthrough.

Indian parliament stood the  test of time –

  • Despite the decline in reputation in recent times, the Indian Parliament continues to reflect the deepening of democracy.
  • In the past 75 years, the Indian Parliament has many achievements to its name despite its growing unpopularity.
  • The parliament reflects the deepening of democracy, which has also had an impact on its functioning. This has, however, led to a fundamental re-imagining of the British parliamentary system and its procedures that the Indian Constituent Assembly opted to follow after independence.
  • At the same time, the Parliament has only fitfully lived up to its responsibility of deliberating on and crafting legislation and ensuring accountability and transparency in government.

Steps need to be taken to improve functioning of parliament –

  • Parliament can amend its rules to give MP’s more clout when confronting the government and to enable its committees to play a larger role in the legislative process.
  • For greater knowledge and subsequent legal review, every legislative proposal must include a full analysis of social, economic, environmental, and administrative impacts.
  • In order to supervise and coordinate legislative development, a new Legislation Committee should be established in Parliament
  • In order to keep the values of our parliamentary democracy we should elect only morally trained representatives; and the members of the Parliament and State Assemblies should set themselves as an example for the public, especially the youth.

Conclusion –

The parliament is frequently referred to as the “temple of democracy.” It is because it is one of the highest institutions in which representative democracy is implemented. Its work is crucial to India’s government and the fulfillment of the preamble’s promise.

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