Focus: GS-II Governance, Prelims
Why in news?
President Ram Nath Kovind on 16th March 2020, nominated former Chief Justice of India (CJI) Ranjan Gogoi to the Rajya Sabha.
In exercise of the powers conferred by sub-clause (a) of clause (1) of article 80 of the Constitution of India, read with clause (3) of that article, President is pleased to nominate Shri Ranjan Gogoi to Council of States to fill the vacancy caused due to the retirement of one of the nominated members.
Members of Rajya Sabha
Currently the Rajya Sabha has 245 members, including 233 elected members and 12 nominated. As per the constitutional limit, the Upper House strength cannot exceed 250.
Members of States:
Members are elected by the elected members of state legislative assemblies by Proportional Representation by means of Single Transferable Vote.
The population of the state is a factor that decides the representation of states in Rajya Sabha.
Members of Union Territories:
Members of Rajya Sabha belonging to Union Territories are indirectly elected by members of an electoral college, that is constituted for this purpose by Proportional Representation by means of Single Transferable Vote.
12 people are nominated by the President in Rajya Sabha for their contribution and expertise in the fields of:
- Social Service
- As per Article 80 (Part V) of the Constitution, President can nominate 12 members in the Council of States (Rajya Sabha).
- These persons should have special knowledge or practical experience in the field of Art, Science, Literature and Social Service.
- The rationale behind principle of the nomination is to facilitate the representation of eminent professionals and experts who cannot face direct elections.
Difference between Nominated and Elected members:
- Nominated members enjoy all powers, privileges and immunities available to an elected member of Parliament.
- They, however, are not entitled to vote in the election of the President of India.
- But in the election of the Vice-President of India, they have a right to vote.
- A nominated member is allowed six months, should he decide to join a political party after he has taken his seat in the House in terms of article 99 of the Constitution.
- A nominated member has also been exempted from filing his assets and liabilities under Section 75A of the Representation of the Peoples Act, 1951 which requires the elected member to do so within 90 days of his making or subscribing oath/affirmation.