Rajya Sabha can vote on the proposed law it if is brought in the budget session
With the government asserting its intention to take up the Lokpal and Lokayuktas Bill, 2011 for passage during the budget session of Parliament, the Rajya Sabha would have the opportunity to vote on the proposed legislation.
As per procedure, the government can bring forward the Bill before the House by mentioning it in the List of Business, Parliament officials said here.
The earliest opportunity for the Council of States (Rajya Sabha) to take up the Bill would of course be the next budget session that usually commences towards the end of February. In the event of the Bill not coming up during the next or subsequent sessions, it would remain alive till the dissolution of the 15th Lok Sabha.
Article 107 (5) of the Constitution reads: “A Bill which is pending in the House of the People, or which has been passed by the House of the People is pending in the Council of States, shall, subject to the provisions of article, lapse on dissolution of the House of the People.''
Otherwise, once the Rajya Sabha takes a view and passes the Lokpal and Lokayukta Bill with amendment(s) — official or moved by a Member —, the Bill will have to go back the Lok Sabha for consideration and passage of the amended Bill. The House has the option of re-considering and passing the Bill so amended or rejecting it.
The government then has the option to work on the passage of the Bill through a joint session of Parliament. Article 108 states that such a session can be called if after a Bill has been passed by one House and transmitted to the other House (a) the Bill is rejected by the other House; or (c) more than six months elapse from the date of the reception of the Bill by the other House without the Bill being passed by it.
The last time Parliament passed a Bill at a joint session was the Prevention of Terrorist Activities Act in 2002 by the Atal Behari Vajpayee-led National Democratic Alliance government. The Congress-led UPA repealed it after coming to power in 2004.
Keywords: Lokpal Bill