The Parliamentary committees are established to study and deal with various matters that cannot be directly handled by the legislature due to their volume. They also monitor the functioning of the executive branch.[1]

The Parliamentary committees are of two kinds – standing or permanent committees and ad hoc committees. The former are elected or appointed periodically and they work on a continuous basis. The latter are created on an ad hoc basis as the need arises and they are dissolved after they complete the task assigned to them.[1]

Standing committees

A standing committee is a committee consisting of Members of Parliament. It is a permanent and regular committee which is constituted from time to time according to the provisions of an Act of Parliament or Rules of Procedure and Conduct of Business. The work done by the Indian Parliament is not only voluminous but also of a complex nature, hence a good deal of its work is carried out in these Parliamentary committees.

Standing committees are of the following kinds :

  1. Financial standing committees (FSC)
  2. Department related standing committees (DRSC)
  3. Other standing committees (OSC)

Financial standing committees

There are three important standing committees dealing with financial affairs. These committees involve further sub-committees.

  1. Public Accounts Committee – It examines various expenditure reports and accounts under the purview of the Parliament. Till 1966-67, a senior member of the ruling party used to be appointed by the Speaker as Chairman of the Committee. In 1967, however, for the first time, a member from the Opposition in Lok Sabha, was appointed as the chairperson of the committee by the Speaker of the Lok Sabha. This practice continues till date.
  2. Estimates Committee – The committee on Estimates, constituted for the first time in 1950, is a committee consisting of 30 members, elected every year by the Lok Sabha from amongst its Members.
  3. Public Undertakings Committee – It analyses the accounts, and workings of the state owned PSU firms. It also keeps a check on the disinvestment policies of the various PSUs.
Finance Committees Details for the 16th Lok Sabha (2014 – 2019) ; Updated as of August 2018 [4][5][6][7]
S.No. Committee Chairperson Composition Tenure Nominated / elected Sub-committees
1 Public Accounts

Committee

MP Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury 22 members

(15 LS + 7 RS)

1 Year Elected from Lok Sabha & Rajya Sabha MPs Sub-Committee – I : Non Compliance in Timely submission of Action Taken Notes on the Non-selected Audit Paragraphs & Excess Expenditure

Sub-Committee – II : Direct and Indirect Taxes
Sub-Committee – III : Implementation of Recommendations of PAC
Sub-Committee – IV : Railways

2 Estimates Committee MP Girish Bapat 30 members (LS) 1 Year Elected from Lok Sabha MPs Sub-Committee – I : Drought situation in the country pertaining to the Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare

Sub-Committee – II : Education with special reference to the recent development regarding autonomy in Education

3 Public Undertakings Committee MP Meenakshi Lekhi 22 members

(15 LS + 7 RS)

1 Year Elected from Lok Sabha & Rajya Sabha MPs *Currently None*

Department-related standing committees

During the year 1989 – 8th Lok Sabha the Rules Committee considered and approved a proposal that three subject committees, on (i) Agriculture; (ii) Environment & Forests; and (iii) Science & Technology. related to these committees were finally approved by the House and the committees were formally constituted with effect from 18 August 1989.

The Reports of Rules Committees of the 10th Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha adopted by the two Houses on 29 March 1993 paved the way for the setting up of the 17 departmentally related standing committees covering under their jurisdiction all the Ministries/Departments of the Union Government.

These DRSCs replaced the earlier three subject committees constituted in August, 1989. The 17 departmentally related standing committees were formally constituted with effect from April, 1993. After experiencing the working of the DRSC system for over a decade, the system was re-structured in July, 2004 wherein the number of DRSCs was increased from 17 to 24. Till 13th Lok Sabha, each of these standing committees used to consist of 45 members— 30 nominated by the Speaker from amongst the members of Lok Sabha and 15 members nominated by the Chairman, Rajya Sabha from amongst the members of Rajya Sabha. However, with re-structuring of DRSCs in July, 2004 each DRSC consists of 31 members—21 from Lok Sabha and 10 from Rajya Sabha.

There are 24 department-related standing committees (DRSCs). Each of these committees have 31 members – 21 from Lok Sabha and 10 from Rajya Sabha. These members are to be nominated by the Speaker of Lok Sabha or the Chairman of Rajya Sabha respectively. The term of office of these committees does not exceed one year. These committees are serviced either by Lok Sabha secretariat or the Rajya Sabha secretariat, depending on who has appointed the chairman of that committee.

Department-related Standing Committees Details for the 16th Lok Sabha (2014 – 2019) ; Updated as of August 2018 [7][8][9]
S.No. Committee Ministries Chairperson Tenure Chairman nominated by
1 Committee on Agriculture [10] MP Hukmdev Narayan Yadav 1 year Speaker of Lok Sabha
2 Committee on Chemicals and Fertilizers [11] Chemicals and Fertilizers MP Anandrao Vithoba Adsul 1 year Speaker of Lok Sabha
3 Committee on Coal and Steel [12] MP Rakesh Singh 1 year Speaker of Lok Sabha
4 Committee on Commerce Commerce and Industry MP V. Vijayasai Reddy 1 year Chairman of Rajya Sabha
5 Committee on Defence Defence MP Kalraj Mishra 1 year Speaker of Lok Sabha
6 Committee on Energy MP Kambhampati Hari Babu 1 year Speaker of Lok Sabha
7 Committee on External Affairs External Affairs MP P. P. Chaudhary 1 year Speaker of Lok Sabha
8 Committee on Finance MP Veerappa Moily 1 year Speaker of Lok Sabha
9 Committee on Food, Consumer Affairs and Public Distribution Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution MP J. C. Diwakar Reddy 1 year Speaker of Lok Sabha
10 Committee on Health and Family Welfare Health and Family Welfare

AYUSH

MP Ram Gopal Yadav 1 year Chairman of Rajya Sabha
11 Committee on Home Affairs MP P. Chidambaram 1 year Chairman of Rajya Sabha
12 Committee on Human Resource Development MP Satyanarayan Jatiya 1 year Chairman of Rajya Sabha
13 Committee on Industry MP Ramchandra Prasad Singh 1 year Chairman of Rajya Sabha
14 Committee on Information Technology MP Shashi Tharoor 1 year Speaker of Lok Sabha
15 Committee on Labour MP Kirit Somaiya 1 year Speaker of Lok Sabha
16 Committee on Personnel, Public Governances, Law and Justice MP Bhupender Yadav 1 year Chairman of Rajya Sabha
17 Committee on Petroleum and Natural Gas Petroleum and Natural Gas MP Pralhad Joshi 1 year Speaker of Lok Sabha
18 Committee on Railways Railways MP Sudip Bandyopadhyay 1 year Speaker of Lok Sabha
19 Committee on Rural Development MP Ponnusamy Venugopal 1 year Speaker of Lok Sabha
20 Committee on Science & Technology and Environment & Forests MP Anand Sharma 1 year Chairman of Rajya Sabha
21 Committee on Social Justice and Empowerment MP Ramesh Bais 1 year Speaker of Lok Sabha
22 Committee on Transport, Tourism and Culture MP Derek O’Brien 1 year Chairman of Rajya Sabha
23 Committee on Urban Development MP Pinaki Misra 1 year Speaker of Lok Sabha
24 Committee on Water Resources Ministry of Jal Shakti MP Rajiv Pratap Rudy 1 year Speaker of Lok Sabha

Other standing committees

Other Standing Committees Details for the 16th Lok Sabha (2014 – 2019) ; Updated as of August 2018 [7][9]
S.No. Committee Chairperson Composition Tenure Nominated / elected
1 Business Advisory Committee MP Sumitra Mahajan 15 members Not fixed. May continue in office till reconstituted. Nominated
2 Committee of Privileges MP Meenakshi Lekhi 15 members Not fixed. May continue in office till reconstituted. Nominated
3 Committee on Absence of Members from the sittings of the House MP P. Karunakaran 15 members 1 Year Nominated
4 Committee on Empowerment of Women MP Bijoya Chakravarty 30 members

(20 LS+ 10 RS)

1 Year Nominated
5 Committee on Government Assurances MP Ramesh Pokhriyal 15 members 1 Year Nominated
6 Committee on Papers Laid on the Table MP Chandrakant Khaire 15 members 1 Year Nominated
7 Committee on Petitions MP Bhagat Singh Koshyari 15 members 1 Year Nominated
8 Committee on Private Members' Bills and Resolutions MP M. Thambidurai 15 members 1 Year Nominated
9 Committee on Subordinate Legislation MP Dilipkumar Gandhi 15 members 1 Year Nominated
10 General Purposes Committee ** MP Sumitra Mahajan Varies Not fixed. Ex-Officio
11 House Committee MP Suresh Angadi 12 members 1 Year Nominated
12 Joint Committee on Offices of Profit MP Kalraj Mishra 15 members

(10 LS+ 5 RS)

For the duration of one Lok Sabha Elected
13 Joint Committee on Salaries and Allowance of MPs MP Bandaru Dattatreya 15 members

(10 LS+ 5 RS)

1 Year Nominated
14 Library Committee MP Prem Das Rai 9 members

(6 LS+ 3 RS)

1 Year Nominated
15 Rules Committee MP Sumitra Mahajan 15 members Not fixed. May continue in office till reconstituted. Nominated
16 Committee on the Welfare of Scheduled Castes & Scheduled Tribes MP Kirit Premjibhai Solanki 30 members

(20 LS+ 10 RS)

1 Year Elected

** In each House there is a GPC. All members are ex-officio members by virtue of being chairmen of respective standing committees and leaders of respective parties.

Ad hoc committees

As of August 2018, the following ad hoc committees are in operation:

Ad hoc Committees Details for the 16th Lok Sabha (2014 – 2019) ; Updated as of August 2018 [7][13][9]
S.No. Committee Chairperson Tenure Composition
1 Committee on Ethics MP L. K. Advani 1 year 15 members

(15 LS )

2 Committee on Food Management in Parliament House Complex MP A. P. Jithender Reddy 1 Year 15 members

(10 LS + 5 RS)

3 Committee on Installation of Portraits/Statues of National leaders and Parliamentarians MP Sumitra Mahajan For the duration of one Lok Sabha 12 members

(8 LS + 4 RS)

4 Committee on MP Local Area Development Scheme MP M. Thambidurai 1 Year 24 members
5 Committee on Provision of Computers to Members of Lok Sabha MP P. Kumar For the duration of one Lok Sabha 10 members
6 Joint Committee on Maintenance of Heritage Character and Development of Parliament House Complex MP Sumitra Mahajan For the duration of one Lok Sabha 10 members

(7 LS + 3 RS)

7 Joint Committee on Security in Parliament House Complex MP Sumitra Mahajan 1 Year 10 members

(7 LS + 3 RS)

8 Railway Convention Committee MP Bhartruhari Mahtab For the duration of one Lok Sabha 18 members

(12 LS + 6 RS)

9 Committee on Violation of Protocol Norms and Contemptuous Behaviour of Government Officers with Members of Lok Sabha MP Rayapati Sambasiva Rao For the duration of one Lok Sabha 15 members
10 Committee to Inquiry into the Improper Conduct of a Member MP Kirit Somaiya **For the year 2016 only** 9 members

Notable ad hoc committees

The Government of India has appointed a number of committees ad-hoc committees. Some of the notable ad-hoc committees are as follows :

Pre-independence

Committee Appointed in Submitted report in Mandate Recommendations
Rowlatt Committee 1918

After Independence

Committee Appointed in Submitted report in Summary Report
Shah Nawaz Committee 1955 1956 The three-member committee was formed by the Nehru-government to address the public demand to investigate the disappearance of Subhas Chandra Bose. The committee was led by Shah Nawaz Khan, and included Suresh Chandra Bose, brother of Subhas, and S. N. Maitra.[14] The committee came to the conclusion that Bose was killed in a plane crash. But, Suresh Chandra Bose did not agree with the report.[15]
Balwant Rai Mehta Committee 1957 1957 Examine the working of the Community Development Programme and the National Extension Service Establishment of the scheme of 'democratic decentralisation' (Panchayati Raj)
Ashok Mehta Committee 1977 1978 In December 1977, the Janata Government appointed a committee on Panchayati Raj institutions under the chairmanship of Ashoka Mehta. The committee submitted its report in August 1978 and made 132 recommendations to revive and strengthen the declining Panchayati Raj system in the country
JVP Committee Review Dhar Commission's report on formation of States
Narasimham Committee 1998 1998 various Banking sector reforms
Sachar Committee 2005 2006 Examine social, economic and educational condition of the Muslim community of India
Srikrishna Committee 2010 2010 The committee was formed to look into the demand for separate statehood for Telangana or keep the State united in the present form, Andhra Pradesh.
Naresh Chandra Committee 2012 Defence reforms
Swaran Singh Committee 1976 to make recommendations about fundamental duties The committee recommended the inclusion of a separate chapter on fundamental duties in the Constitution. It stressed that the citizens should become conscious that in addition to the enjoyment of rights, they also have certain duties to perform as well.

See also

References

  1. ^ a b "Parliamentary Committees". Parliament of India. Archived from the original on 24 July 2012. Retrieved 6 August 2012.
  2. ^ "The Importance of Parliamentary Committees". PRS Legislative Research. Retrieved 29 November 2021.
  3. ^ "Only one bill in monsoon session sent to parliamentary committee". mint. 13 August 2016. Retrieved 29 November 2021.
  4. ^ "Committee : Loksabha". 164.100.47.194. Retrieved 30 August 2018.
  5. ^ "Committee : Loksabha". 164.100.47.194. Retrieved 30 August 2018.
  6. ^ "Committee : Loksabha". 164.100.47.194. Retrieved 30 August 2018.
  7. ^ a b c d "Loksabha Introduction – Committees" (PDF).
  8. ^ "PRS | Parliament Track | Parliamentary Committees | Composition of Standing Committees". www.prsindia.org. Retrieved 30 August 2018.
  9. ^ a b c "Committee : Loksabha". 164.100.47.194. Retrieved 30 August 2018.
  10. ^ "Committee : Loksabha". 164.100.47.194. Retrieved 30 August 2018.
  11. ^ "Committee : Loksabha". 164.100.47.194. Retrieved 30 August 2018.
  12. ^ "Committee : Loksabha". 164.100.47.194. Retrieved 30 August 2018.
  13. ^ "Committee : Loksabha". 164.100.47.194. Retrieved 30 August 2018.
  14. ^ Sugata Bose (2011). His Majesty’s Opponent. Harvard University Press. p. 314. ISBN 978-0-674-04754-9. Retrieved 11 March 2016.
  15. ^ Kingshuk Nag (18 November 2015). Netaji: Living Dangerously. AuthorsUpFront. p. 29. ISBN 978-93-84439-70-5. Retrieved 11 March 2016.