Introduction

Origin and Structure :

The evolution of the House of people's representatives in Rajasthan has an important place in the constitutional history of India as it was the outcome of the merger of 22 princely States of the erstwhile Rajputana with the Union of India.
As per the provisions of Article 168 of the newly framed Constitution of India, every state had to establish a legislature consisting of one or two Houses. Rajasthan opted for unicameral character and its legislature is known as the Rajasthan Legislative Assembly.
The legislature, which is running its Fourteenth term, was first elected by adult franchise in 1952 and this process is continuing with the exceptions of 1967, 1977, 1980 and 1992 when the Presidential Rule was in force.
The strength of the Rajasthan Legislative Assembly which is determined by delimitation Commission, was 160 in 1952 and presently stands as 200 after many more recommendations of the same Commission.

The evolution of the House of people's representatives in Rajasthan has an important place in the constitutional history of India as it was the outcome of the merger of 22 princely States of the erstwhile Rajputana with the Union of India.
As per the provisions of Article 168 of the newly framed Constitution of India, every state had to establish a legislature consisting of one or two Houses. Rajasthan opted for unicameral character and its legislature is known as the Rajasthan Legislative Assembly.
The legislature, which is running its Fourteenth term, was first elected by adult franchise in 1952 and this process is continuing with the exceptions of 1967, 1977, 1980 and 1992 when the Presidential Rule was in force.
The strength of the Rajasthan Legislative Assembly which is determined by delimitation Commission, was 160 in 1952 and presently stands as 200 after many more recommendations of the same Commission.

Process for Conduct of the Business :

The Rajasthan Legislative Assembly has framed 'Rules of Procedure and Conduct of Business in Rajasthan Legislative Assembly for regulating the business of the House and its Committees. They were first framed in 1956 and after many amendments, the latest Fourteenth Edition has been printed in 2014.

The Governor of the State summons the House from time to time keeping in mind that the intervening period between the last sitting in one session and first sitting in next session does not exceed six months. As per the Rules, Rajasthan Legislative Assembly shall have at least three sessions in a calendar year. The business of the House is decided by the House on the recommendation of the Business Advisory Committee.

Committees Devices :

Legislative Committees can be divided into two categories - the Standing Committees and the Ad-hoc Committees. In Rajasthan Legislative Assembly, there are 18 Standing Committees out of which four are financial and the rest relates to various other subjects. The financial committees are - Public Accounts Committee, Public Undertakings Committee and two Estimates Committees. The financial committees are elected on the basis of proportional representation through single transferable vote and the rest are nominated by the Speaker. The Chairmen for all these committees are nominated by the Speaker from out of the members of these committees.
The basic function of the Public Accounts Committee is to examine the Secretaries to Government on various irregularities in their Departments as pointed out in the Report of the Comptroller and Auditor General. Similarly, Public Undertakings Committee is required to go into the functions of the various pubic undertakings and is expected to examine the Undertakings on various irregularities pointed out by the Report of the Comptroller and Auditor General under their control.
The job assigned to the two Estimates Committees is to report as to what economies can be effected and what improvements in particular organisation may be made and also to suggest alternative policies in order to bring about efficiency and economy in administration, as also changes in the form of budget estimates.
Besides the above mentioned four financial committees, the Rajasthan Legislative Assembly has following other 17 standing committees.

1. Business Advisory Committee 2. Committe on Government Assurances
3. Committee on Environment 4. Committee on Ethics
5. Committee on Local Bodies and Panchayati Raj Institutions 6. Committee on Petitions
7. Committee on Priviledges 8. Committee on Subordinate Legislation
9. Committee on Welfare of Backward Classes 10. Committee on Welfare of Minorities
11. Committee on Welfare of Schedule Caste 12. Committee on Welfare of Schedule Tribe
13. Committee on Welfare of Women & Children 14. General Purpose Committee
15. House Committee 16. Library Committee
17. Question & Reference Committee 18. Rules Committee/Rules Sub Committee

These committees are constituted from the members of the ruling as well as opposition parties generally in proportion to their strength in the House. The term of office of the members of the committee is generally one year. No minister can be a member of the committee except in the case of Select Committees on Government Bills. This provision does not apply in case of the Leader of the House who happens to be the Chief Minister, as far as the Business Advisory Committee is concerned. Normally, the Reports of these committees are presented to the House by the Chairman of the Committees but in inter-session period the Chairman may submit the Report to the Speaker. These Reports, with the exception of the Report of the Privileges Committee and the Business Advisory Committee are generally not raised in the House.

These committees are constituted from the members of the ruling as well as opposition parties generally in proportion to their strength in the House. The term of office of the members of the committee is generally one year. No minister can be a member of the committee except in the case of Select Committees on Government Bills. This provision does not apply in case of the Leader of the House who happens to be the Chief Minister, as far as the Business Advisory Committee is concerned. Normally, the Reports of these committees are presented to the House by the Chairman of the Committees but in inter-session period the Chairman may submit the Report to the Speaker. These Reports, with the exception of the Report of the Privileges Committee and the Business Advisory Committee are generally not raised in the House.

Privileges :

The powers, privileges and immunities of the House of Legislature and of its members and committees have been laid down in Article 194 of the Constitution of India. Some of the important privileges are freedom of speech in the legislature, immunity to members from any proceedings in any court in respect of anything said or any vote given by them in the legislature or any committee thereof ; prohibition on the courts to inquire into proceedings of legislature and freedom from arrest of members in civil cases during the continuance of the session of the House.

Close Circuit Television :

A close circuit television system has been functioning in the Assembly Secretariat Premises for the benefit of members who are not in the House at a particular point of time and also for those who cannot have first hand view of the Assembly sittings.
Rajasthan Legislative Assembly is reputed for its high standard of parliamentary debates and disciplined conduct of the proceedings in the House as also for some radical legislation which have earned accolades all over the country.

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