Assent to Bills: President Assent

By K Balaji|Updated : November 15th, 2022

Assent to Bills when a bill gets passed by both Houses of Parliament, it is forwarded to the President, and the President will declare if he assents or withholds the bill. The ultimate law-making authority in India is the Parliament. A bill will only become a law if it is agreed upon by the both Houses of Parliament and gains the President's Assent. Here we will discuss Assent to Bills and when a president can withhold his/her Assent to Bills in India.

Assent to Bills - UPSC Notes

Assent to Bills is an important part of the UPSC Syllabus as it comes under the Indian Constitution. That’s why every UPSC aspirant must be aware of this topic to answer all the possible questions.

What is a Bill?

A bill is a new law proposal or a draft of a legislative proposal to change the existing law. A bill is presented for debate before Parliament. A bill can be introduced in any House for examination, discussion, and changes. The government, private individuals or organizations and Individual MPs can introduce different bills. There are various types of bills - Financial Bills, Ordinary Bill, Ordinance Replacing Bill, etc.

Assent to Bills (President’s Assent)

There are three actions that a President can usually take when a bill is sent:

  • President can give his/her assent
  • He/she can withhold his/her assent
  • The President can return the bill for reconsideration

Assent to Ordinary Bills

If it is an ordinary bill, there are some actions that the president can take:

  • Grant consent - this implies that the bill is authorized and will become law.
  • Withhold AssentAssent - which signifies that the President ends the bill and it will not become a law.
  • Return the bill for reconsideration - the Houses are asked to make changes and reconsider the bill; later, it is sent to the President for Assent again.

Assent to Money Bills

In the case of a money bill, the President of India has only two options. He can either give or withhold assent to the money bill. Money bills can’t be returned to the house by the president for reconsideration under the constitution of India.

Assent to Constitutional Amendment Bill

In the case of constitutional amendment bills, the President of India must give assent. Here he can’t return or withhold the bills. If the president passes the constitutional amendment bill, then it becomes a constitutional amendment Act.

President’s Veto Power

When both houses of parliament pass the bill, then it goes to the president of India for his assent. The president has the power to grant consent or return it as per the type of the bill. This choice is termed as Veto Power of the president.

Important Notes for UPSC
8th Schedule of Indian ConstitutionCoastal Plains of India
ColonialismArmy Chief of India
Revolutionary Movement in IndiaFreedom of Speech
Direct Tax and Indirect TaxAgro Climatic Zones of India
Moderate Phase (1885 to 1905)Motions in Parliament

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FAQs on Assent to Bills

  • If a bill is passed by both houses of parliament, but the President doesn’t give his assent, then the bill will return for reconsideration based on the type of the bill. This choice of the president is also called a veto.

  • Yes, the President can reject a bill; it is called an absolute veto. This is when the President withholds the Assent to Bill.

  • Before passing the bill for the President's Assent, it is essential to pass it to the Chief Executive to get the final stamp of legality.

  • Yes, the president can reject the money bill or give assent. However, it cannot be returned to the House for reconsideration.

  • When a constitutional amendment bill is passed by both houses of parliament, then the president can’t reject it. The president must give assent, unlike ordinary bills.

  • Yes the president can either withhold or give assent to the money bill. ill. However, it cannot be returned to the House for reconsideration under the constitution of India.

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