Stages of Passage of Bills

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Stages of Passage of Bills :: Parliaments in India | Representation of State and Union Territories | Joint Session of Indian Parliament | Committee System in Indian Parliament |

Bills may be classified under four heads viz., Ordinary, Money, Financial and Constitutional Amendment Bills.

Money and Financial Bills cannot be introduced in the Rajya Sabha. The other Bills can be introduced in either House.

Bills are of two type’s viz., Government and Private Member’s Bills.

Money, Financial and an Ordinary Bill under Article 3 can be introduced only on the recommendation of the President.

It means they cannot be introduced as Private Member’s Bill.

The legislative procedure adopted for passing Government and Private Member’s Bills is the same.

The different stages in the passage of Bills other than the Money Bills are as follows :

a. Introduction of the Bill: It involves introduction of Bill embodying the provisions of the proposed law, accompanied by the ‘Statement of Objects and Reasons’.

If a private member wishes to introduce a Bill, he must give one month notice of his intention to introduce the Bill.

After the Bill has been introduced in the House it is published in the Gazette of India.

The introduction of the Bill and its publication in the Gazette constitutes die First Reading of the Bill.

General Studies Question Bank CDb. Second Reading of the Bill: In the second reading principles of the Bill are discussed in thoroughness and the treasury and the opposition members make speeches in support or against the Bill.

The second reading is divided into two stages.

The first stage consists of a general discussion of the principles of the Bill and the second stage relates to discussion of clauses, schedules and amendments.

There are four alternate courses of action open at the second stage:

  • The Bill may be taken into consideration at once;
  • The Bill may be referred to a Select Committee of the House;
  • The Bill may be referred to a Joint Committee of the House;
  • The Bill may be circulated for the purpose of eliciting public opinion on it.

If the Bill is referred to the Select Committee or Joint Committee it is expected to give its report within a specified date.

The Committee submits its report to the House. The report and the Bill as amended by the Committee are printed and made available for the use of members of the House.

This is called the report stage of the Bill. The Bill then undergoes long discussions clause by clause and may undergo substantial change.

c. Third Reading of the Bill :

The third reading is the final reading. It is more or less a formal affair.

The debate is confined to the acceptance or rejection of the Bill.

The Bill is submitted to the vote of the House and has to be accepted or rejected in Toto.

After the Bill has been passed by one House, it is transmitted to the other House, where it has to pass through the same process.

The other House has four alternatives before it. These are :

  • It may pass the Bill with no amendments. In this case, will be deemed to have been passed by both the Houses;
  • It may pass the Bill with amendments. In this case, the Bill will be returned to the originating House. If the House which originated the Bill accepts the Bill as amended by the other House, it will be deemed to have been passed by both the Houses. However, if the originating House does not agree to the amendments made by the other House and if there is final disagreement as to the amendments between the two Houses, the President summons the Joint Session;
  • It may reject the Bill altogether. Again the President can summon a Joint Session;
  • It may take no action on the Bill by keeping it lying on the table. In such a case if six months passes from the date of reception of the Bill, the President summons for the Joint Session.

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