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Why Do We Need a Parliament: Class 8

The concept of a parliament is an integral part of democratic governance. It serves as a representative body that plays a crucial role in decision-making, lawmaking, and ensuring accountability. In this article, we will explore the importance of a parliament and why it is essential for a functioning democracy. Let’s delve into the topic and understand why we need a parliament.

What is a Parliament?

A parliament is a legislative body that represents the citizens of a country. It is responsible for making laws, discussing important issues, and overseeing the government’s functioning. The parliament consists of elected representatives who voice the concerns and aspirations of the people they represent.

Importance of a Parliament

A parliament serves several crucial functions in a democratic society. Here are some key reasons why we need a parliament:

1. Representation of the People

A parliament ensures that the voices of the people are heard and represented in the decision-making process. Elected representatives act as a bridge between the citizens and the government, conveying their concerns, needs, and demands. This representation is vital for a democracy to function effectively.

2. Lawmaking

One of the primary functions of a parliament is to make laws. The parliament discusses, debates, and passes legislation that governs the country. These laws are formulated to protect the rights and interests of the citizens and maintain social order. Without a parliament, there would be no mechanism to create and enforce laws.

3. Ensuring Accountability

A parliament plays a crucial role in holding the government accountable for its actions. Elected representatives have the power to question the government, scrutinize its policies, and demand explanations. This oversight function ensures transparency and prevents misuse of power by the government.

4. Debate and Discussion

Parliament provides a platform for open debate and discussion on various issues. It allows different perspectives to be heard, encourages dialogue, and facilitates the exchange of ideas. This democratic process helps in making informed decisions and shaping policies that benefit the society as a whole.

5. Representation of Minority Groups

A parliament ensures that the interests of minority groups are not overlooked. It provides a platform for marginalized communities to voice their concerns and seek redressal. The presence of diverse representatives in the parliament ensures that the needs of all sections of society are taken into account.

Examples of Parliament’s Role

Let’s look at some real-life examples that highlight the importance of a parliament:

1. Passing of Laws

In India, the Parliament passed the Right to Education Act in 2009, which made education a fundamental right for all children between the ages of 6 and 14. This legislation aimed to ensure free and compulsory education for every child and improve the overall literacy rate in the country.

2. Questioning the Government

In the United Kingdom, the Prime Minister’s Questions (PMQs) is a weekly session in the House of Commons where Members of Parliament (MPs) can question the Prime Minister directly. This practice allows MPs to hold the government accountable and seek clarifications on various issues.

3. Representation of Minority Groups

In South Africa, the Parliament has reserved seats for different ethnic groups, ensuring their representation in the legislative body. This system promotes inclusivity and prevents the dominance of any particular group.

Q&A

1. What is the role of a parliament in a democracy?

A parliament plays a crucial role in a democracy by representing the people, making laws, ensuring accountability, facilitating debate and discussion, and representing minority groups.

2. How does a parliament ensure accountability?

A parliament ensures accountability by questioning the government, scrutinizing its policies, and demanding explanations for its actions. Elected representatives have the power to hold the government accountable for its decisions and actions.

3. Can a parliament make laws without public input?

No, a parliament cannot make laws without public input. The elected representatives in the parliament are responsible for voicing the concerns and aspirations of the people they represent. Public input is essential for the democratic process and helps in formulating effective laws.

4. Why is representation of minority groups important in a parliament?

Representation of minority groups in a parliament is important to ensure that their interests are not overlooked. It provides a platform for marginalized communities to voice their concerns and seek redressal. This representation promotes inclusivity and prevents the dominance of any particular group.

5. How does a parliament facilitate debate and discussion?

A parliament provides a platform for open debate and discussion on various issues. Elected representatives present their viewpoints, engage in dialogue, and exchange ideas. This democratic process helps in making informed decisions and shaping policies that benefit the society as a whole.

Summary

A parliament is an essential institution in a democratic society. It represents the people, makes laws, ensures accountability, facilitates debate and discussion, and represents minority groups. Through its various functions, a parliament plays a crucial role in shaping the governance of a country and safeguarding the rights and interests of its citizens. Without a parliament, a democracy would lack the necessary checks and balances, leading to an imbalance of power. Therefore, it is imperative to recognize the significance of a parliament and its role in upholding democratic values.

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