In a parliamentary system, the lower house always plays a more important role. Accordingly, in our country also, the Lok Sabha is more powerful and effective. The following points are important for understanding the comparative position of both the Houses:
- Lok Sabha is directly elected and the true representative of the people of India. Rajya Sabha, on the other hand, is indirectly elected. Moreover, Rajya Sabha is a permanent body, whereas the Lok Sabha is elected for a definite period of 5 years. Its tenure can be increased and it can be dissolved even earlier than the expiry of the term.
- In the case of an ordinary bill, both the Houses have equal powers. But if the differences between both houses continue and a joint session is convened, the Lok Sabha gets an upper hand, as its membership is more than double of that of the Rajya Sabha.
- In respect of having control over the Council of Ministers, once again the Lok Sabha is more effective. Rajya Sabha can have some control by debating on the policies and programs and criticizing the government. But only the Lok Sabha has the power to pass a no-confidence motion which if done, the Council of Minister resigns.
- With regard to the constitutional amendments, the election of the President and the Vice-President and impeachment or removal of President, Vice President, Chief Justice and Judges of the Supreme Court and High Courts, both the Lok Sabha and the Rajya Sabha have almost similar powers.
- Whereas in financial matters, the Lok Sabha has an upper hand, it is only Rajya Sabha that may create a new All India Service and declare a subject in the State List to be of national importance.
In view of the above comparison, Lok Sabha is definitely more powerful than the Rajya Sabha. But it will not be appropriate to state that the Rajya Sabha is not only the second chamber but also a secondary chamber. We have seen how important a role Rajya Sabha also plays and there are certain functions that only Rajya Sabha can perform.