[Polity] Short Questions and Answers on Constitution of India

1. What do you mean by Institutions?
For the performance of its various functions, several arrangements are made in the country. These
arrangements are called institutions. The guidelines about the composition and working of these institutions are generally provided in the Constitution of the country.

2. Which are the three main institutions in a Parliamentary democracy?
The three main institutions in a Parliamentary democracy are:
(i) Legislature, (ii) Executive and (iii) Judiciary.
The legislature makes laws, the executive enforces or executes those laws and the judiciary decides the disputes.

3. What do you understand by Parliament?
In all democratic countries, there is an assembly of representatives who are elected by the people which exercise supreme political authority on behalf of the people. In India, England and France this Assembly is known as 'Parliament'. In USA, it is known as 'Congress'.

4. Is Indian Parliament Unicameral or Bicameral?
Indian Parliament is Bicameral- it consists of two houses known as (i) House of the People (Lok Sabha), and (ii) Council of States (Rajya Sabha).
The maximum strength of Lok Sabha can be 552 members. At present, it has 545 members. Rajya Sabha can have a maximum strength of 250 members. At present, it has 245 members.

5. How are members of House of the People (Lok Sabha) and Council of States (Rajya Sabha) elected?
The members of Lok Sabha are elected directly by the people. The entire country is divided into as many constituencies as there are members to be elected. One member is elected from each constituency.
In Rajya Sabha, 12 members are nominated by the President from among those persons who have distinguished themselves in the fields of art, literature, science, and social science. The remaining members of Rajya Sabha are elected by the members of the Legislative Assembly (MLAs) of the state they represent.

6. What is the tenure of the two houses of Indian Parliament?
The members of Lok Sabha are elected for 5 years. However, President has the power to dissolve the house earlier also.
The tenure of a Rajya Sabha member is 6 years. One-third of members retire after every two years. So Rajya Sabha is a permanent house.

7. Who presides over the meetings of Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha?
The presiding officer of Lok Sabha is known as 'Speaker'. He is elected by the Lok Sabha itself.
Vice-President of India is the ex-officio Chairman of Rajya Sabha. He presides over its meetings.

8. What is the tenure of the Prime Minister of India?
The tenure of the Prime Minister is not fixed. According to the Constitution, the Prime Minister holds office during the pleasure of the President. In actual practice, the Prime Minister remains in office as long as he enjoys the support of majority in Lok Sabha.

9. What is the salary of the President of India?
The President gets a monthly salary of Rupees one lakh and fifty thousand.

10. Mention any two situations where Indian Parliament can legislate on the subjects given in the state list.
Parliament can legislate on state subjects during the following conditions:
(i) If the Rajya Sabha by its two-third majority declares any state subject to be of national importance.
(ii) When the declaration of emergency is in operation.

11. What procedure is followed for the removal of the Judges of the Supreme Court?
The Constitution provides that the President can remove a Judge from office after an address by the Parliament in each House by a simple majority of its total membership and two-thirds majority of its members present and voting, and presented to the President.

12. How many Judges are there in the Supreme Court in India? How are they appointed?
At present, number of Judges in the Supreme Court is 26-one Chief Justice and 25 other Judges. They are appointed by the President of India in consultation with other Judges.

13. What is the tenure of a Judge of the Supreme Court?
The Judges of the Supreme Court of India remain in office till they retire after having completed the age of 65 years.

14. Mention any two functions of the Supreme Court of India.
(i) The Supreme Court of India acts as the guardian of the constitution.
(ii) The Supreme Court acts as the guardian of Fundamental Rights of the citizens.
(iii) It hears appeal against the decisions of the High Courts.

15. How many Judges are appointed in a High Court? Who appoints them?
The number of Judges of a High Court is not fixed by the constitution-it is fixed by the President of India on the basis of the population and the work. It varies from one High Court to another High Court.
The Judges of High Court appointed by the President of India.

16. What qualifications have been laid down for appointment as a judge of the Supreme Court of India?
(i) He must be a citizen of India.
(ii) He must have worked as a judge of High Court for at least 5 years.
Or
He must have worked as an advocate in the High Court for at least 10 years.
Or
In the opinion of the President of India, he must be a distinguished jurist.

17. What do you mean by 'Independence of Judiciary'?
By 'Independence of Judiciary' we mean that the Judiciary should not be under the control or influence of any individual or authority. If the legislature or the executive is in a position to influence the judges, the judges will not be able to deliver independent and impartial justice.

18. What salary do the Judges of the Supreme Court get?
The Chief Justice of India gets a monthly salary of Rupees one lakh per month and other judges get Rupees 90,000 per month.

19. Why the Supreme Court is called the Guardian of the Constitution?
Guardian of the constitution:
The Supreme Court acts as the guardian and final interpreter of the constitution, therefore, it is called the Guardian of the Constitution of the country. If the government passes any law or issues any order which is in violation of the constitution, the Supreme Court has the power to declare that law or order unconstitutional.

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