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Rajya Sabha
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HANDBOOK FOR MEMBERS OF RAJYA SABHA

Contents

CHAPTER II

35. Important places In Parliament House and Parliament House Annexe

A new member visiting the Parliament House and its Annexe should know and make himself familiar with different rooms, gangways and corridors. He should particularly know the locations of the following:-

PARLIAMENT HOUSE

Rajya Sabha Chamber,
Lok Sabha Chamber,
Chairman's Chamber,
Speaker's Chamber,
Secretary-General, Rajya Sabha's Room
Secretary-General, Lok Sabha's Room
Ministers' Rooms,
Central Hall,
First Aid Post,
Lobby Telephone Booths,
Common Lounges for Members,
Party Offices,
Members' Waiting Hall,
Parliament Library,
Committee Rooms,
Refreshment Rooms,
Notice Office,
Sales Counter,
Publications Counter,
Stenographers' Pool
Other Office Rooms,
Posts and Telegraphs Office,
Railway Booking & Reservation Office,
Air Booking Office,
Pay Office of the State Bank of India,
Press Rooms.

PARLIAMENT HOUSE ANNEXE

Basement:-
Medical Centre
Post Office
Telecom Centre
Ground Floor:-
Committee Rooms
State Bank of India
Banquet Hall
Auditorium
Dining Room
Party Meeting Room
Second Floor:-
Pay and Accounts Office
Members' Amenities Section
Members' Salaries and Allowances Section
Questions Branch
Third Floor:-
Income Tax Cell
Liaison Officer (NDMC)
Fifth Floor:-
Accommodation and Rent Branch
Liaison Officer (Telephones)

36. Procedure regarding allegations against members (Rule 238A of the Rules of Procedure)

No member should make any allegation of a defamatory or incriminatory nature against any other member or a member of the Lok Sabha unless the member making the allegation has given previous intimation to the Chairman and also the Minister concerned.
The Chairman may prohibit the member from making the allegation if he is of the opinion that such allegation is derogatory to the dignity of the Council or that no public interest is served by making such allegation.

37. Rulesto be observed by members desiring to participate in a debate

In the case of Half an Hour discussion, clarification on suo-moto Statement of Ministers or Statement in response to Calling Attention notices, Members wishing to seeking clarifications may send their names to the Table of the House or may catch the Chairman’s eye, and speak when called.
In case of Short Duration Discussions Bills, Resolution etc. where time is generally fixed or allocated by the Business Advisory Committee, time is allocated partywise in proportional to their numerical strength and Members wishing to participate may send their names to the Table  through the Leader/Whip of the Party, for inclusion in the List of Speaker of that Party subject to availability of time.  Members permitted may participate when called on to do so by the Chair.

38. Languages to be used by members in Debate

Under article 120 of the Constitution, the business of the House is transacted in Hindi or English. However, a member who cannot adequately express himself in Hindi or in English can, with permission of the Chairman, address the House in his mother tongue. Such a member should  seek the permission of the Chairman   in writing, at the earliest possible opportunity, before making his speech.

39. Simultaneous Interpretation of Proceedings

The entire proceedings of the House in Hindi are simultaneously interpreted in English. Similarly the entire proceedings in English are interpreted in Hindi. Arrangements also exist for providing simultaneous interpretation in Hindi as well as in English of speeches made in Assamese, Bengali, Gujarati, Malayalam, Marathi, Oriya, Tamil, Telugu and Urdu. A member who wants to make a speech in any of these languages is required to give at least one hour's notice to that effect to the Officer at the Table stating the language in which the speech is to be made. Such interpretation is  not available during the period immediately after Question Hour, when miscellaneous matters not entered in the List of Business are raised, nor is it available for remarks, observations or interruptions in the midst of a regular debate.

 A member in whose name a Question appears in the List of Questions for Oral Answers and who gives advance intimation for asking supplementary question in any of the aforesaid languages may put supplementaries during the Question Hour in that language. A member who wishes to avail of this facility is required to give advance notice in this behalf in writing not later than 3.00 p.m. on the working day preceding the day on which the Question in listed for oral answer.

In the printed debates (original version) only an English version of the supplementary questions asked in a language other than Hindi, Urdu and English would be incorporated as is already being done at present in respect of speeches delivered by members in a language other than Hindi, Urdu and English while participating in debates on Bills, Resolutions etc.

Members can follow the proceedings in Hindi or in English by using headphones and language selector switches attached to their seats. Hindi interpretation is transmitted on Channels 2 and 5 and English interpretation on Channels 3 and 6. Floor language can be heard on Channels 1 and 4.

Necessary information as to how the simultaneous interpretation equipment should be used is given in Para 40 below.
Ministers/Members who make written statements or who make speeches with the help of notes are required to send texts of their statements or notes to the interpreters in advance to assist the latter in giving an authentic and unabridged Interpretation of their statement and speeches.

40. Simultaneous Interpretation Equipment

Each seat in the House is provided with a head-phone and a LANGUAGE SELECTOR.
The LANGUAGE SELECTOR switch consists of the following three parts--

(1)  Language Selector Knob-The Switch is marked by figures 1 to 6 indicating the channels and has a rotating knob in the centre. While channels 1 to 4 are earmarked for the floor language, members may turn the knob to 2 or 5 for listening to the Hindi interpretation and to 3 or 6 for listening to the English interpretation.

(2) Volume Control Knob--This knob may be turned clockwise for increasing the volume of the sound and anti-clockwise for decreasing it.

(3) Socket for Head-phones--The two-pin plug at the end of the wire of the head-phone has to be inserted into the socket.

SOME GENERAL HINTS:

(a) To disconnect the head-phone, the plug may be held firmly and pulled out of the socket. Tugging of the wire may be avoided, otherwise the plug might become detached from the wire.

(b) When a member has to pass through the seat of another member, the latter may pull out the plug from the socket to give way to the former.

(c)The volume control knob may be adjusted at a suitable position, frequent turning may damage the knob.

(d) The language selector knob may be adjusted for one language. If that language is the floor language, it may be heard over the loudspeaker. Frequent turning of the knob might damage it.

(e) The headphone may be dispensed with if a member can follow the floor language and finds the general sound level adequate for his purpose.

(f) When a member is not using his headphone or when he leaves his seat, he should  make sure that volume control knob is turned off so that the proceedings of the House are not disturbed by the sound coming out of the head-phone not in use.

(g) When not in use the, head-phone may be placed on a hook fixed in front of the seat. In the case of seats with desks, the headphone may be placed inside the desk.

41.Official Report of Proceedings

(i) Rule 260 of the Rules of Procedure and Conduct of Business in the Rajya Sabha requires that a full report of the proceedings of the Rajya Sabha be prepared and published.

(ii) The work relating to the preparation of a verbatim record of the day to day proceedings of the Rajya Sabha is handled by a team of English and Hindi Reporters working under the charge of the Principal Chief Parliamentary Reporter who is the Head  of the Reporting Service in the Secretariat. The Reporters' Section is located in Room Nos. 120 and 121 in Parliament House. During the  sittings of the  Rajya Sabha (and if so required, of any of  its Committees), teams of  Reporters (one English, one Hindi)  are assigned in 5 minute  terms to  take down in short hand the  speeches/discussions. The notes taken down in shorthand by the Reporters  are transcribed on the computer quickly so that copies of debates become available within a few hours after the House rises for the day except on days when the House sits for unusually long hours in which case the later portion of the proceedings may be issued as a Supplement on the next day. The copies of Debates are generally issued in two Parts, Part-I containing Questions, starred and unstarred and their replies as well as  supplementary questions  to starred question and their replies,  and Part-II containing proceedings other than Questions.

(iii)Proceedings in English and Hindi/Urdu are covered by the Reporters as they take place in the House. Arrangements exist for simultaneous translation into English and Hindi of speeches made in Assamese, Bengali, Gujarati, Kannada, Malayalam, Marathi, Oriya, Punjabi, Tamil and Telugu. The Members intending  to speak in any of these language has to give at least one hours' notice at the Table to enable arrangements to be made and in such cases the text supplied by the Interpreters appears in the Debates with a foot-note indicating the language in which the original speech was delivered in the House. According to established practice, a member wishing to speak in any language other than English and Hindi and the aforesaid ten languages may do so with the prior permission of the Chair and furnish an authenticated English or Hindi version of the speech to be included in the Debate. If the authenticated English or Hindi version of the speech is not provided then the speech in question will not find a place in the Debates. In such cases a foot-note is added to the effect that the member spoke in such and such language but did not furnish a Hindi or English version of his speech.

(iv) When prepared speeches or statements are read out by Ministers or members and also when speeches are delivered with the help of copious notes, the prepared speeches, statements notes, etc. are to be handed over to the Reporters by the Member after the speech has been made in the interest of accurate transcription; for the same reason, quotations etc. read out by members should also be supplied to Reporters. In the case of quotations in regional languages, shlokas, etc., the quotations, followed by their meaning in Hindi or English, if that has not already been given, should  be filled in by the member concerned when the transcript of his speech comes to him for approval.

(v) After the transcripts of speeches, interventions, etc. are ready, relevant copies thereof are sent to the members who had taken part in the Debates for confirmation and for correction of any inaccuracies which might have crept in. These are not sent for the purpose of getting the literary form improved nor  for any alteration, additions or deletions which will substantially change the content. Only minor corrections in respect of grammatical errors, misreporting of quotations, figures, names, etc. are permissible. The transcript after correction is required to be returned within 24 hours to the Secretariat.  In case the transcript is  not returned by 1200 of the 2nd day following the day of the speech, the  transcript is taken as being  confirmed and will be put on Internet and used for publishing the  edited Debates which  forms the official Report.

(vi) A member desirous of having spare copies of his own speech can get one copy free from the Distribution Section. Additional copies can be had from the Sales Counter at 50 paise per page. Other members' speeches are also available at the sales Counter at the same rate.  Members are  also welcome to download the  proceedings free of cost, from the Rajya Sabha  Internet website.

42. Leave of Absence from the sittings of the Rajya Sabha

(i) Article 101 (4) of the Constitution provides that if for a period of sixty days, a member of either House of Parliament is without permission of the House absent from all meetings thereof, the House may declare his seat vacant:

Provided that in computing the said period of sixty days no account shall be taken of any period during which the House is prorogued or is adjourned for more than four consecutive days.

(ii) A member wishing to obtain permission of the Rajya Sabha for remaining absent from meetings thereof under the said article has to make an application in writing to the Chairman, stating the reasons and the period for which he may be permitted to be absent from the meetings of the Rajya Sabha.

(iii) After the receipt of an application the Chairman will read out the application or give a purport of it to the House and ask: "is it the pleasure of the House that permission be granted to the member for remaining absent from the meetings of the House for such and such period?" If no one dissents, the Chairman announces: "Permission to remain absent is granted." But if any dissentient voice is heard, the Chairman takes the sense of the House and if he feels that the sense of the House is against leave being granted, he announces: "The sense of the House is that leave should not be granted. Permission to remain absent is not granted." The Secretary-General then communicates the decision of the House to the member.

(iv) The seat of a member may be declared vacant under article 101 (4) of the Constitution, on a motion by the Leader of the House or by such other member to whom he may delegate his functions in this behalf. When the motion is carried, the Secretary-General causes the information to be published in the Official Gazette and forwards a copy of the notification to the Election Commission for taking steps to fill the vacancy thus caused.

43. Resignation of seat in the House (Rule 213  of the Rules of Procedure)

(i) As per provision of clause (3) (b) of article 101 of the Constitution a member of the House can resign his seat by writing under his hand addressed to the Chairman of the Rajya Sabha and when his resignation is accepted by the Chairman his seat thereupon becomes vacant, if the Chairman is of the opinion that the resignation is not voluntary or genuine, he shall not accept such resignation.

(ii) The Chairman,  after he has accepted the resignation of a member, informs the House that the member has resigned his seat in the House and that he has accepted the resignation. If the House is not in session, the Chairman informs the House immediately after the House reassembles. 

(iii) Information of the resignation is published in the Gazette and in Rajya Sabha Bulletin Part II.

44. Notice Office

The Notice Office acts as a liaison between Members of the Rajya Sabha and the Rajya Sabha Secretariat. It also serves as the Reception Office for the Members. The main functions are four fold:-

(i) receiving notices from the members in respect of Bills, Calling Attentions, Special Mentions, Questions, Short Duration Discussions, Half-an-Hour Discussions, Motions, Resolutions and Amendments to Bills etc.

(ii) receiving and processing applications for various passes like Press Gallery, DVG, Public Gallery and Official Gallery, etc.

(iii) receiving miscellaneous papers of Members such as Members TA/DA Bills, invitation Cards etc. and

(iv) receiving letters from Members addressed to Secretariat or to Ministers of the Government.

A: Notices of Bills, Motions etc.

Notice forms for various matter such as Bills, Calling Attentions, Special Mentions, Questions, Short Duration Discussions, Half-an- Hour Discussions,  Motions, Resolutions and Amendments to Bills etc. are available in Notice Office and Members may take the blank forms and also deliver the filled in notices to Notice Office for onward transmission to the Section concerned in the Secretariat.   Information regarding special Mentions admitted are put up on the Notice Office Notice Board.  Queries of Members on fate of other notices will also be answered in the Notice Office who will which check up with the Section concerned if necessary.

B:  Passes for Admission to Visitors’ Galleries

(i)  Admission to the Visitors' Galleries of the Rajya Sabha is regulated in  pursuance of rule 264 of the Rules of Procedure and Conduct of Business in the Rajya Sabha.

(ii)  Admission Cards are required for the following galleries:

 (a) the Chairman's Gallery;

 (b) the Distinguished Visitor's Gallery;

 (c) the Public Gallery; and

(d) the Press Gallery.

(iii) The Chairman's Gallery is mainly intended for use by the visiting Heads of foreign Governments, distinguished visitors from the foreign countries, Governors of States in India and the like. Application for cards for admission to this Gallery  in the prescribed form addressed to the Secretary-General may be left at the Notice Office and the Card collected from there after  when it is  ready.

(iv) The Distinguished Visitors' Gallery is intended for use by members of State Legislatures in India, ex-members of Central Legislature or of Parliament, wives/husbands of sitting members of Parliament, high officials, men of standing in public life, members of the Diplomatic Corps and distinguished visitors from foreign countries. Cards for admission to this Gallery may be obtained by members on application addressed to Secretary-General in the prescribed form in accordance with the regulations made in that behalf.  The application form may be left in the Notice Office and Cards collected from there when it is ready.

(v)  The Public Gallery is intended for the use of members of the public generally. Application for cards for admission to this Gallery should be made to the Notice Office before 3.00 p.m. on the day previous to the date of the sitting of the House for which cards are required. In this regard the following procedure is observed:

(a)  Members are required to give full particulars in the application forms for Visitors’ Cards in accordance with the printed instructions thereon. Printed application forms for Visitors’ Cards are available in the Notice Office. No action can be taken on an application form which is incomplete

(b)  A Member has to deliver the application form personally to the Notice Office furnishing all the particulars of the visitors.

(c)  As no person is allowed entry in the Parliament House without a proper pass, the persons for whom the pass is applied for should wait in the Reception Office outside the Parliament House and the card would be delivered to him by the Member.


(d)  Cards are not issued for the whole day of the sitting of the Rajya Sabha. These are generally issued for a complete hour and not a part of an hour.

(e)   Children below 10 years of age are not allowed admission to the Galleries.

Members are advised to bear in mind that the persons for whom Visitors' cards are applied should be known to them personally since they are responsible for any untoward or undesirable conduct of the Visitor  in the Galleries/Parliament House.

C:  Central Hall Passes

Central Hall Passes on day-to-day basis for sitting members of State Legislatures, Ministers and ex'-Ministers of States and children of members are issued on an application from members in the prescribed form (Form No.RSNO5) available in the Notice Office. Entry Passes for Members' spouses entitling them for entry to the Rajya Sabha Distinguished Visitors' Gallery, Central Hall and the Parliament Library are also issued by the Notice Office.

D: Pass for PAs/PSs to Members

Notice Office issue general Photo Pass for one PA/PS of Members of Rajya Sabha at a time for entry into Parliament House Complex to enable such PA/PS to assist the Member in his Parliamentary work.  Member has to submit the application in the prescribed Performa (Form No.RSNO3) available in the Notice Office, containing complete details of the person along with two photographs in whose respect the pass is required.  After receiving the application, a photo pass is prepared by the Notice Office and given to the PA/PS concerned.  A Member can change his PA/PS at his discretion.  In such a case the previous pass is required to be surrendered before the issuance of a pass to new PA/PS.

E: Members’ Temporary Identity Cards 

Identity Cards for Members of Rajya Sabha are issued by the MS&A Section.  However  Notice Office issue Temporary Identity Cards to newly elected Members of Rajya Sabha to facilitate their entry in Parliament House Complex, till the Permanent Identity Card is issued by the MS&A Section.

F:  Entry Pass for Member’s Spouse

On the request of a sitting Member on Performa available in the Notice Office, entry pass in favour of his/her spouse is issued, such a pass is valid for entry into Central Hall, DVG and Parliament Library during Session period.

G:  Library Pass

A Library Pass (with photo) can be issued to a person for 14 days during the inter-session period on the recommendation of a Member to enable interested persons to visit the Parliamentary Library. There is a prescribed Performa (Form No.RSNO6), which requires complete particulars of a person so sponsored along with a declaration taking full responsibility of the person concerned by the sponsoring Member.  Library Passes are also issued on orders of Secretary-General, Rajya Sabha.

H:  Car Park Labels

To enable members to have unhindered entry of their personal vehicle to the precincts of Parliament House Complex, Car Park Labels are issued by the Notice Office for each calendar year on receipt of an application in the prescribed form available in the Notice Office. A Label is issued for a specific vehicle only, which should be registered in the name of the Member or his spouse and not in the name of any third party.  In case a Member disposes off a vehicle for which a Label has been issued, he is required to return the Label to Notice Office.  A new Label for another vehicle in lieu thereof can only be issued after return of the old Label. A label is valid for a year only and a new label is issued only against the return of the previous years' labels.

It is desirable in the interest of security, that members do not allow use of their labeled vehicle in the Parliament House premises by other persons.

I:  Instant Photographs of Members

Arrangements have been made for members, for taking their Polaroid coloured photographs in the Notice Office on payment of Rs. 25/- for two copies of passport size photographs.

45.Stenographic Assistance to Members

The services of English and Hindi stenographers are made available to members to assist them in typing out their notices of amendments, questions, resolutions, motions and other allied matters of public importance pertaining to the business of the House. The assistance is available in the Stenographers' Pool situated near the Rajya Sabha Chamber. Members may however personally visit the pool for their Parliamentary work during session of Rajya Sabha, keeping in view the rush of work in this period, so that their work receives adequate priority.

Reprographic service for MPs :--

A photocopier  is working in Room No 26-C (situated in outer lobby). Copies of documents on the photocopier are done on payment for MPs

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