Member of Parliament (MP)                                                                                  


Members of the parliament (MPs)

Members of the parliament or MPs are elected to the Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha. The majority party in the Lok Sabha then chooses the Prime Minister. He should be a member of either house. If he is not a member then he needs to get elected to either house within six months. For contesting the Lok Sabha elections, candidate of a recognized political party needs one proposer from his constituency for his nomination. However, an independent candidate needs ten proposers. A person can contest elections only from a maximum of two constituencies. Eligible candidates are required to make a security deposit; currently the amount is 10,000.

Rajya Sabha is a permanent body; however, one third of its members retire every second year and elections are held for those seats. The eligibility criteria are same as that of Lok Sabha. The only difference is that Indian nationals 30 years and above are eligible and serve a full term of six years. The Rajya Sabha members are the representatives of the states thus an electoral college of the elected members of the State Assembly elects them with a system of proportional representation by a single transferable vote.

Power & Duties of MP

Although the exact roles and responsibilities of an MP are not codified in the Constitution of India, Section 3 of Article 105, which discusses the powers and privileges of MPs and of committees, lays the responsibility of defining the responsibilities of an MP and committees on Parliament. It says: "..the powers, of each House of Parliament, and of the members and the committees of each House, shall be defined by Parliament by law from time to time."

However, through various laws and otherwise, an MP is required to perform various responsibilities in Parliament and outside, which can be broadly classified into the following: (An MP’s major role is legislative and over the years some executive functions have been assigned).

1) Legislative Role:

a) Making laws for governance of our country (on subjects enumerated in the Union list and the residuary subjects). An MP participates in the discussion of a bill and suggests amendments to a Government bill. Separately, any MP who is a non-Minister can also propose legislative changes to the government, through Private Members’ Bills. An MP also participates in voting for amending the Constitution of India (subject to the basic structure.) Legislative matters on issues such as creation of state legislative councils; to increase or decrease area or boundaries of a state, change the name of a state and Union territories; regulation of the organization and jurisdiction of the Supreme Court and High Courts and allot one High Court to two or more states etc. are also discussed by MPs in their respective House. An MP also participate in the process for impeachment of the President; removal of the Vice-president, and judges of High Court and Supreme Court.

b) Delegated legislation: Once a bill is signed into law, the powers to make detailed rules and regulations within its framework rest with the executive. An MP’s role is to keep a check on executive overreach and ensure that the powers of delegated legislation are not abused by the government. For E.g.: RS MP, P.Rajeeve raised objections to the IT rules drafted by the government in 2011.

2) Supervisory Role:

a) The MPs exercise control over the executive through Parliamentary interventions such as Question Hour, Zero Hour, Calling Attention Motion, Adjournment Motion, No-confidence Motion, Censure Motion and other discussions.

b) MPs also supervise the executive by participating in committees like Public accounts, estimates, Public undertakings and various other department related standing and ad-hoc committees. For E.g.: I am part of the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Public Undertakings, Consultative Committee for the Ministry of Finance and Parliamentary Standing Committee on Home Affairs and I participate in debates on issues pertaining to these committees regularly.



3) Electoral Role:

a) An MP participates in the election of the President and the Vice-president.

b) On the one hand, a Lok Sabha MP elects the Speaker of the House and the Deputy Speaker. On the other hand a Rajya Sabha MP elects the Vice-Chairman of the Rajya Sabha.

4) Power of the Purse:

No tax can be levied and no expenditure incurred by the government except with the approval of the Parliament. The Budget is therefore presented to the Parliament.

Parliamentary control over executive in matters of Finance is: 1) Budgetary control 2) Post-budgetary control (through financial committees –that some MPs in rotation are a part of)


5) Representative Responsibility

Every MP is the voice for his/her constituency. Every MP has to raise issues of his constituency in Parliament through questions, debates etc. An MP can also play a role in implementing projects in his/her constituency by following up on projects at the level of the District Collectorate or at the State government and Central government level. For instance, I frequently follow up and monitor projects in my constituency, Kendrapara, by meeting with State and Central ministers.

From 1993, MPs have also been given the responsibility to recommend projects in their constituency to the District Collector. A separate scheme called Member of Parliament Local Area Development Scheme, which allocates 5 crores per MP per year (Earlier 2 crores, revised in 1998) was instituted in 1993. There are detailed guidelines which specify the nature of projects for which this fund can be utilized, which can be accessed here: Page on mplads.nic.in

Even in case of MPLADS, an MP only has powers of recommendation of projects; however the onus of implementation and sanction lies with the District Collector.

The new government has also assigned a responsibility to every MP to develop model villages in his/her constituency under the Sansad Adarsh Gram Yojana. Although, no new funds have been allocated under this scheme, the MPs are required to take efforts to leverage funds from different schemes of the State and Central government and channelize them to develop the model village.

6) Other powers

As a Member of the Parliament an MP approves all three emergencies: (national, state and financial).




More about MP...

A study on MP in Hindi
gov. of India MP Website
Corruption in India Hindi


        I am sure that in this colloquium, these and all other aspects relating to the new statutory member of parliament will be discussed and assimilated. I wish the discussions all success.
Thank You,

-Admin        
Parivartan India