Lok Sabha - Indian Polity Notes

Indian Parliament consists of Lok Sabha, Rajya Sabha and the President of India. Lok Sabha is the lower house of the parliament and is termed as the popular chamber of the Indian Parliament. Understanding Lok Sabha is very important for IAS Exam as it forms the basis of Indian Polity.

This article will in detail mention about Lok Sabha, Lok Sabha elections, Lok Sabha seats and more. The article will answer a few questions that cross an aspirants’mind while preparing for UPSC 2020. IAS candidates should know that the topic ‘Lok Sabha’ is very important for civil services examination as it comes under Political Science subject which is a significant subject both for Prelims and Mains GS-II and also for optional papers.

Lok Sabha – Indian Polity Notes:- Download PDF Here

What is Lok Sabha and who are Lok Sabha members?

Indian Parliament is bicameral in nature i.e. that it has two houses. Lok Sabha is one of those two houses. The other house is the Rajya Sabha. (You may check the differences between Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha in the linked article.) Lok Sabha is the first chamber of the parliament and represents the people of India as a whole. The members elected by universal adult suffrage are part of Lok Sabha.

Composition of Lok Sabha:

Composition of Lok Sabha
Maximum Strength – 552 530 represent the States
20 are the representatives of Union Territories
2 are nominated by the President from Anglo-Indian Community
Current Strength – 545 530 represent States
13 represent Union Territories
2 are nominated from the President from Anglo-Indian Community

Lok Sabha Elections

The members of Parliament (MPs) are elected/appointed from states, union territories or are appointed from a field of particular expertise. The elections to Lok Sabha occur every 5 years in the name of general elections. The Indian Constitution has adopted universal adult franchise as a basis of elections to the Lok Sabha and the state legislative assemblies.

Representation of States in Lok Sabha:

  • Members are directly elected by the people from the territorial constituencies in the states
  • Election Principle used – Universal Adult Franchise
  • Eligibility to Vote: Any Indian Citizen of/above 18 years of age

Note: Voting age was reduced from 21 to 18 years by the 61st Constitutional Amendment Act, 1988.

Representation of Union Territories in Lok Sabha:

  • Parliament is empowered to choose the members from the UTs in any manner as it desires
  • Election Principle used – Direct Election

Note: Union Territories (Direct Election to the House of the People) Act, 1965, has been enacted by which the members of Lok Sabha from the union territories are chosen by direct election.

Representation of Nominated Members in Lok Sabha:

President nominates 2 members from Anglo-Indian Community if they are not adequately represented.

Note: The provision to nominate Anglo-Indians was extended till 2020 by 95th Amendment Act, 2009.

Facts about Lok Sabha elections for UPSC

  • 1st Lok Sabha Election took place in 1952. There were 489 seats elected. Congress won 364 out of 489 seats. Jawaharlal Nehru became the first Prime Minister.
  • 2019 Lok Sabha elections were country’s 17th General Elections. Elections took place for 552 seats. BJP won 303 seats out of 552. Narendra Modi is the Prime Minister.
  • In 1952, only 22 women were elected while in 2014, 49 women candidates were elected.
  • Elections to Lok Sabha are carried out using a first-past-the-post electoral system.

Who is Lok Sabha Speaker?

The speaker of Lok Sabha is a member who elected from amongst the members of the house. He chairs the house and no proceedings in the house take place in his absence.

Facts about Lok Sabha Speaker for UPSC:

  • 1st Lok Sabha Speaker – Ganesh Vasudev Mavalankar (1952-1956) (died in the office)
    • Ananthasayanam Ayyanagar was elected as Lok Sabha Speaker in 1956 who worked till 1957
  • After 16th Lok Sabha elections, Ms Sumitra Mahajan was elected as the Lok Sabha speaker
  • Following 17th Lok Sabha elections (2019 General Elections), Om Birla is the speaker of Lok Sabha. (To read more on the Lok Sabha Speaker, check the linked article.)

Lok Sabha Constituencies

There are 543 constituencies in India that take part in Lok Sabha elections. There are various doubts related to Lok Sabha constituencies which strike an aspirants’ mind. Below-given are answers to a few questions related to Lok Sabha constituencies which you may know for UPSC Prelims:

Which is the largest constituency (area-wise)? Ladakh (173266.37 sq.km)
Which is the smallest constituency (area-wise)? Chandni Chowk (10.59 sq.km)
Which is the largest constituency (electors-wise) Malkajgiri (29,53,915)
Which is the smallest constituency (electors-wise) Lakshadweep (47972)

Lok Sabha and important articles of the Indian Constitution

The following are important articles of the Indian Constitution in relation to Lok Sabha:

Articles Provision
Article 326 (Part XV) Elections to Lok Sabha shall be on the basis of adult suffrage
Article 83 (2) Lok Sabha will continue for 5 years, unless sooner dissolved, from the date appointed for its first meeting and no longer and the expiration of the said period of five years shall operate as a dissolution of the House
Article 75 Council of Ministers are collectively responsible to Lok Sabha
Article 324 Power, superintendence of Election Commission w.r.t. Lok Sabha elections and more

To read more on the important articles of Indian Constitution, aspirants may check the linked article.

What are the important amendments acts related to Lok Sabha?

The following table provides the list of important amendment acts and their relationship with Lok Sabha:

Amendment Act Amended Provisions w.r.t. Lok Sabha
2nd Amendment Act, 1952 Readjusted the scale of representation in the Lok Sabha
23rd Amendment Act, 1969 Extended the reservation of seats for the SCs and STs, and special representation for the Anglo-Indians in the Lok Sabha for a further period of ten years (i.e., up to 1980)
31st Amendment Act, 1972 Increased the number of Lok Sabha seats from 525 to 545
41st Amendment Act, 1976
  • Froze the seats in the Lok Sabha and state legislative assemblies on the basis of 1971 census till 2001
  • Raised the tenure of Lok Sabha and state legislative assemblies from 5 to 6 years
44th Amendment Act, 1978
  • Restored the original term of the Lok Sabha and the state legislative assemblies (i.e., 5 years)
  • Omitted the provisions which took away the power of the court to decide the election disputes of the Lok Sabha Speaker
45th Amendment Act, 1980 Extended the reservation of seats for the SCs and STs and special representation for the Anglo-Indians in the Lok Sabha
51st Amendment Act, 1984 Provided for reservation of seats in the Lok Sabha for STs in Meghalaya, Arunachal Pradesh, Nagaland and Mizoram
61st Amendment Act, 1989 Reduced the voting age from 21 years to 18 years for the Lok Sabha
62nd Amendment Act, 1989 Extended the reservation of seats for the SCs and STs and special representation for the Anglo-Indians in the Lok Sabha
79th Amendment Act, 1999 Extended the reservation of seats for the SCs and STs and special representation for the Anglo-Indians in the Lok Sabha
84th Amendment Act, 2001 Extended the ban on the readjustment of seats in the Lok Sabha for another 25 years (i.e., up to 2026) with the same objective of encouraging population limiting measures
91st Amendment Act, 2003 Article 75(1A): The total number of ministers, including the Prime Minister, in the Central Council of Ministers, shall not exceed 15% of the total strength of the Lok Sabha
95th Amendment Act, 2009 Article 334: Extended the reservation of seats for the SCs and STs and special representation for the Anglo-Indians in the Lok Sabha for a further period of ten years i.e., up to 2020

To read more about the important amendments in Indian Constitution, you may check the linked article.

Questions related to Lok Sabha for UPSC

Check below the important questions that are related to the topic ‘Lok Sabha’ in the table below:

When was NOTA introduced in Lok Sabha? NOTA was introduced in 16th Lok Sabha Elections of 2014
When was VVPAT was introduced in Lok Sabha?
  • A voter-verifiable paper audit trail was first used in an election in India in September 2013 in Noksen in Nagaland
  • Later, introduced in 8 of 543 parliamentary constituencies in 2014
How many Department Related Standing Committees (DRSC) are there in Lok Sabha? There are 16 Standing Committees in Lok Sabha. (To read more on Parliamentary Committees, check the linked article.)
What is the role of Lok Sabha in the introduction on Money Bill? Money Bill can only be introduced in Lok Sabha. Lok Sabha speaker decides the credibility of the money bill.
Who is the leader of Lok Sabha? Prime Minister is the leader of the house
What is the qualification of Lok Sabha members?
  • Must be an Indian Citizen
  • He must be not less than 25 years of age
  • Must be registered as an elector for a parliamentary constituency
  • Those who want to contest election from the seat reserved for SC/ST must be a member of a scheduled caste or scheduled tribe in any state or union territory

Lok Sabha – Indian Polity Notes:- Download PDF Here

1 Comment

  1. Thank you for providing such valuable information

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