IAS Gyan

Daily News Analysis


30th June, 2023 Polity

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Context: The Election Commission of India (ECI) has declared the dates for the election of 10 Rajya Sabha members from three states - Goa, Gujarat and West Bengal. The election will take place on July 24, 2023.


  • According to the ECI, the 10 Rajya Sabha seats will fall vacant due to the expiry of the term of office of the sitting members in July and August. The states and the number of seats are as follows:
    • Goa: 1 seat
    • Gujarat: 3 seats
    • West Bengal: 6 seats
  • The last date for making nominations is July 13, 2023. The scrutiny of nominations will be done on July 14, 2023. The last date for withdrawal of candidature is July 16, 2023.

Rajya Sabha

  • The Rajya Sabha, or the Council of States, is the upper house of the Indian Parliament. It represents the interests of the states and union territories in the federal system of India.
  • The members of the Rajya Sabha are elected indirectly by the elected members of the state legislative assemblies and the union territory assemblies.
  • The Rajya Sabha has a maximum strength of 250 members, out of which 238 are elected and 12 are nominated by the President of India from among eminent persons in the fields of literature, science, art and social service.

Rajya Sabha Election

  • The Rajya Sabha election is held every two years when one-third of its members retires and vacate their seats.
  • The election is conducted by the Election Commission of India, which is an independent constitutional body responsible for conducting free and fair elections in the country.
  • The election process involves several steps, such as filing of nominations, scrutiny of nominations, withdrawal of candidature, allotment of symbols, polling, counting of votes and declaration of results.
  • The election is conducted using the system of proportional representation by means of a single transferable vote.
    • This means that each voter ranks the candidates in order of preference, and the votes are transferred to the next preference if the first preference candidate is either elected or eliminated. The candidates who secure a certain quota of votes are declared elected.


  • The Rajya Sabha (RS) election is not based on universal adult franchises but on the indirect representation of the states and union territories.
  • The RS election is not held on a fixed date but depends on the expiry of the term of the members.
  • The RS is not subject to dissolution, unlike the Lok Sabha, which can be dissolved by the President before its term ends.
  • The RS election is not influenced by the anti-incumbency factor, as the members are not directly accountable to the people.
  • The RS election is not affected by the delimitation of constituencies, as the members are elected from the states and union territories as a whole.


  • It ensures that the states and union territories have a voice in national legislation and policy-making.
  • It provides a platform for regional parties and interests to participate in central governance.
  • It provides a platform for eminent personalities from various fields to contribute to parliamentary debates and discussions.
  • It acts as a check and balance on the lower house, the Lok Sabha, which is directly elected by the people.
  • It enables the ruling party or coalition to secure a majority in both houses of Parliament, which is necessary for passing key bills and constitutional amendments.
  • It enables the representation of diverse and eminent personalities who can contribute to the quality and richness of debate and discussion in Parliament.
  • It facilitates the continuity and stability of the Parliament, as it is not affected by political uncertainties and upheavals.

Challenges and Controversies

  • The issue of defection and cross-voting by some legislators, who may switch their allegiance or vote against their party's choice for various reasons.
  • The allegation of horse-trading and bribery by some candidates or parties, who may try to influence or buy the votes of some legislators.
  • Lack of transparency and accountability in the nomination process of the President's nominees, who may not reflect the diversity and merit of the society.

Therefore, there is a need to reform and improve the Rajya Sabha election process to make it more transparent, fair, accountable and effective.

Possible ways forward are:

  • Introducing an open ballot system instead of a secret ballot system to prevent malpractices and ensure accountability.
  • Introducing a proportional representation system instead of a single transferable vote system to ensure fair representation of all parties and groups.
  • Introducing a direct election system instead of an indirect election system to enhance popular participation and legitimacy.
  • Introducing a fixed term system instead of a staggered term system to synchronize with the Lok Sabha election cycle and reduce costs and inconveniences.
  • Introducing clear guidelines and rules for nomination, withdrawal, voting and counting to avoid confusion and disputes.


  • The Rajya Sabha election is an important aspect of India's parliamentary democracy that reflects its federal and diverse character. It should be conducted in a manner that upholds its dignity and credibility and serves its purpose and role in the constitutional scheme. It should also be responsive to the changing needs and aspirations of the people and society. It should be a source of pride and inspiration for all Indians.

Must-Read Articles:

Rajya Sabha Election: https://www.iasgyan.in/daily-current-affairs/rajya-sabha-election


Q. Which of the following is a special power of Rajya Sabha?

1. To initiate impeachment proceedings against the President

2. To pass a resolution to create new states or alter the boundaries of existing states

3. To declare a state of emergency in the country

4. To pass a resolution to create or abolish an All India Service

How many of the above statements is/are correct?

A) Only 1

B) Only 2

C) Only 3

D) All

Answer: A

Explanation: Rajya Sabha has some special powers that are not enjoyed by Lok Sabha. One of them is to pass a resolution by a two-thirds majority to create or abolish an All India Service, such as the Indian Administrative Service or the Indian Police Service.

Q. Which of the following motions can be moved only in Lok Sabha and not in Rajya Sabha?

1. Motion of no-confidence

2. Motion of adjournment

3. Motion of censure

4. Motion of thanks

How many of the above statements is/are correct?

A) Only 1

B) Only 2

C) Only 3

D) All

Answer: A

Explanation: A motion of no-confidence is moved by the opposition to express its lack of confidence in the government. It can be moved only in Lok Sabha, as it is directly elected by the people and represents the majority opinion. Rajya Sabha cannot move such a motion, as it is indirectly elected and represents the federal principle.