Performance of the 15th Lok Sabha

Performance of the 15th Lok Sabha

March 27, 2014

As far as performance goes, the 15th Lok Sabha has scored a moderate first division. Only 62% of its scheduled time could be turned productive though it had 345 sittings against 356 scheduled sittings.

It also needs to be pointed out that in one of the sessions – Budget Session of 2009 – Lok Sabha worked for 162 hours, four more than scheduled. In terms of hours, out of 2070 available hours, only 1330.9 hours were productive. Some sessions were a washout. For instance, the Winter Session of 2010 had only 7.62 productive hours as against 138 available hours for work. In many other sessions, productive time as percentage of available time ranged from 21% during the Monsoon Session of 2012 to 49% during the Budget Session of 2013. This has come out in the latest analysis by PRS Legislative Research.

                                                                                                                                               Image courtesy: Down To Earth

                                                                                                                  Data courtesy: PRS India

Question Hour, the crucial first hour in both houses of Parliament when MPs get to ask questions on various issues, has been the worst casualty. In many sessions not even one per cent of time could be given to the Question Hour. Take the case of the Winter Session of 2010, when only 0.78% of the time was devoted to questions, or the Monsoon session of 2012 when only 1.23% of the time could be given to questions. The best performance so far was in the Budget Session of 2009 when 19.75% of time was spent on Question Hour.

                                                                                                                      Data courtesy: PRS India
Question Hour in the 15th Lok Sabha

When it comes to legislative business, time spent ranges from the low of 1.12% in the Winter Session of 2010 to the high of 39.53% in the Winter Session of 2011. The time spent discussing financial bills has been very healthy. Though no financial bills could be cleared in the Monsoon Session of 2012, at the beginning of the Lok Sabha’s term in 2009, 81.35% of the time was spent on them. Non-legislative debates have also consumed the time of the Lok Sabha. Some percentage of the Parliament's time has been consumed by other matters like laying of documents, reading obituaries, etc.

                                                                                                                          Image courtesy: The Hindu

                                                                                                                             Image courtesy: Down To Earth

During the period of the 15th Lok Sabha, the upper house fared slightly better: 67% of its time was productive. Out of the 1785 hours that the house was scheduled to sit, it could transform only 1198.93 hours to productive work. In some sessions, the Rajya Sabha performed abysmally bad. In the Winter Session of 2010, only 2% of the time was productive. Like in the Lok Sabha, the best session was the Budget Session of 2009 when the upper house worked for 147.45 hours against the scheduled 130 hours. The trend was similar when it came to hours spent on questions, legislation and financial legislation.

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Comments (2)
Pinaki Pal Reply
March 27, 2014
The graphs show that things cannot get worse than this. Hope things would look up in the 16th LS.
Anubrata Reply
March 27, 2014
Incidents in, and the performance of, the 15th Lok Sabha has ensured that the Indian Parliament has become the laughing stock of the world. Hope the 16th Lok Sabha, and the Rajya Sabha as well, recover the lost glory.
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