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EDITORIAL ANALYSIS : This Winter, Let’s Speak


Source: Indian Express


  • Prelims: Parliamentary democracy, functions of whip, parliamentary committees etc
  • Mains GS Paper II: Parliament-Structure, organization, functioning and conduct of business etc



  • The winter session of the Parliament begins and will continue till December 29.
    • The session will have a total of 17 working days.
    • Centre’s agenda for the winter session of Parliament includes 16 new bills





  • Parliament is the most important symbol of Indian democracy.
  • It is through summoning the House and calling MPs to participate in legislative and other business through:
    • discussion, debates, committee dispensations, and other mechanisms
  • Parliament enables the citizens of the country: through their representatives, to participate in decision-making and hold the government to account.


Parliamentary Committee:

  • A Parliamentary Committee is a panel of MPs that is appointed or elected by the House or nominated by the Speaker/Chairman.
  • The committee works under the direction of the Speaker/chairman and it presents its report to the House or to the Speaker/chairman.
  • Parliamentary Committees have their origins in the British Parliament.
  • They draw their authority from Article 105 and Article 118.
  • Article 105 deals with the privileges of MPs.
  • Article 118 gives Parliament authority to make rules to regulate its procedure and conduct of business.


Two types of Parliamentary Committees:

  • Standing Committees
  • Ad Hoc Committees


The Standing Committees:

  • They are permanent (constituted every year or periodically) and work on a continuous basis.
  • Example: Financial Committees, Departmental Standing Committees, Committees to Enquire etc


Ad Hoc Committees:

  • They are temporary and cease to exist on completion of the task assigned to them.
  • The principal Ad hoc Committees are the Select and Joint Committees on Bills.


 Current Parliamentary issues:

  • Far fewer bills are now being referred to committees.
  • In the first term of this government (2014-19): About 27 percent of bills were referred to committees.
  • During the 17th Lok Sabha: Less than 10 percent have been referred to committees(compared to 71 percent in the 15th Lok Sabha).
  • Less opportunity for opposition to speak on public matters.


Current economic problems in the country:

  • The World Bank (in October 2022) estimated: India will grow at 5(six point five)percent in the current fiscal year (FY 22-23)
    • which is a downward revision by one percentage point since June.
  • Inflation soaring above the 6 percent target
  • Interest rates are rising
  • Macroeconomic policies are becoming restrictive
  • Rupee is plunging to all-time lows against the US dollar.
  • According to the Centre for Monitoring Indian Economy (CMIE): India’s unemployment rate was at 3(eight point three)percent in August 2022.


Other issues:

  • ED, CBI or Election Commission: They are facing ideological subversion and destruction.
  • The latest UN Universal Periodic Review (UPR) report: since 2017, India has undergone a serious regression in human rights.
  • The traditionally marginalised Dalit and Adivasi communities have been denied justice and equitable protection.
  • The Environment Performance Index (EPI): India at the bottom of 180 countries.
  • Deteriorating air quality and rapidly increasing greenhouse gas emissions.
    • According to the 2021 World Air Quality Report: India is home to 10 of the 15 most polluted cities in the world.





Way Forward

  • Discuss the current challenges: It is high time for Parliament to discuss the advancing challenge and for the government to open the floor for the same.
  • UPR mechanism: The Indian government said that the “UPR is an important mechanism that India fully supports” and “as the world’s largest democracy.
    • India is committed to the highest standards of human rights.
  • Amrit Mahotsav: It cannot be celebrated by disrespecting Parliament, curtailing the independence of institutions, suffocating free expression, restricting the space to the political leaders,
  • Allow committees to be formed: Governments and the opposition party should not be wary of these committees, as in most of these committees, the government has a majority and the final decision is always by the process of majority voting.
  • Fostering the trust of parliamentarians: Both from the ruling party and the Opposition parties, the relevance and usefulness of the system of the committees is of paramount importance.



Q. To what extent, in your view, the Parliament is able to ensure accountability of the executive in India?(UPSC 2021) (200 WORDS, 10 MARKS)