Difference Between State Legislative Assembly and Parliament

By BYJU'S Exam Prep

Updated on: November 14th, 2023

The difference Between State Legislative Assembly and Parliament is that State Legislature is primarily concerned with lawmaking, and Parliament is the apex legislature. Parliament and State Legislature are legislative bodies that operate on different levels in India. While state legislatures operate on the state and union territory level, the Parliament of India is the country’s supreme legislative body. The Parliament and State legislatures have representatives chosen by an electoral method.

Difference Between State Legislative Assembly and Parliament PDF

An important difference between Parliament and Legislature is that the Parliament has a fixed bicameral structure, whereas the legislature does not. The legislature in India has a unicameral structure in most Indian states and a bicameral structure in limited states. This article will explain all the important difference between State Legislative Assembly and Parliament, along with their functions.

Difference Between State Legislative Assembly and Parliament

The primary difference between a state legislative assembly and the parliament is that the Parliament is the apex legislative body of the country. It has more power than the state legislatures.

  • The Parliament and State Legislature both have unique functions.
  • The parliament is the supreme legislative body of the country.
  • It governs the government and holds power to pass the country’s budget.
  • However, in certain areas, the state legislature is responsible for lawmaking.

Parliament vs Legislative Assembly

Difference Between State Legislative Assembly and Parliament



State Legislative Assembly


The Parliament of India has a bicameral structure.

State Legislature has a unicameral structure in 28 states and 3 union territories.

However, in 6 states, it is the lower house of a bicameral legislature.

Moreover, 5 union territories of India have no legislature and are governed directly by the union.


The Indian Parliament comprises of two houses:

Rajya Sabha (Council of States)

Lok Sabha (House of the People)

State Legislative bodies with a bicameral structure comprise:

State Legislative Council or Vidhan Parishad (Upper House)

State Legislative Assembly or Vidhan Sabha (Lower House)


President of India

Different Leaders of the House for different states/UTs.


Lok Sabha MPs: 543 (maximum),

Rajya Sabha MPs: 245 (maximum)

Legislative Assembly MLAs: Between 60 and 500,

Legislative Council MLAs: Not more than one-third of the membership of the State Legislative Assembly, and cannot be under 40.


The Lok Sabha MPs are elected directly by the public.

Members of all state legislative assemblies elect the Rajya Sabha MPs.

The President of India can also elect MPs directly for both Houses.

In every electoral district, voters can directly choose their representatives for their State Legislative Assembly.


The Parliamentary Meetings are held at the Sansad Bhavan in New Delhi.

The State Legislatures meet in their respective states.


If one House of the Parliament introduces and passes the bill, the other House of the Parliament holds power to:

– Reject the bill.

– Pass the bill.

– Modify the bill and return it to the prior House to reconsider the modifications.

– Hold the bill.

– Legislative Assemblies can pass a vote of no confidence against the Chief Minister of a state, leading the CM and his/her council of ministers to resign.

– The Legislative Assembly can create or dissolve the Legislative Council by passing a resolution with majority votes.

– Only State Legislative Assemblies can act upon and pass a Money Bill.

Parliament and State Legislative Assembly

The legislature in India operates differently on a state level and national level. Consequently, the Parliament and the State Legislature have unique functions. State Legislative Assemblies have a very important function of lawmaking and passing important money bills.

Here, we have shared the functions of the Parliament and State Legislature in detail:

What is a Parliament?

The functions of the Parliament of India include, but are not limited to, the following:

  1. Planning and Coordinating legislative and other businesses in both the Parliamentary Houses.
  2. Allocating time in the Parliament for discussions by the Government and giving notice of the same to the Members of the Parliament.
  3. Liaising with Leaders of Parties and groups represented in the Indian Parliament.
  4. Appointing the Members of Parliament on Committees and other unique bodies set up by the Union Government.

What is a Legislative Assembly?

The functions of the Legislative Assembly are shared below:

  1. Lawmaking is the primary function of the Legislative Assembly.
  2. The Legislative Assembly can make a law on the areas on which the Parliament of India cannot legislate, including prisons, agriculture, police, public health, burial grounds, etc.
  3. Money Bills can only be introduced in the legislative assembly.
  4. It becomes valid if the Legislative Council passes the bill within 14 days.
  5. The Council can also suggest changes to the Bill within a 14-day period and give it back to the Assembly for reconsideration.
  6. The Parliament and at least half of the State Legislatures can together amend certain parts of the Indian Constitution.
  7. The State Legislature also has electoral power.
  8. Elected members of the Legislative Assembly and the Indian Parliament can elect the President of India together.

Functions of the Legislative Council

Here, we have shared information about the functions of the Legislative Council.

  1. The Legislative Council only enjoys limited powers as per the Constitution of India. Due to its limited functions, the existence of a Legislative Council has often been questioned in India.
  2. The State Legislative Council has no say in the passing of Money Bills.
  3. It also cannot create or dissolve a state government.
  4. The Chairman and Deputy Chairman of the State Legislative Council have the exact status as the Cabinet Ministers of a particular state.

Comparison Between Parliament and State Legislature

The Parliament and State Legislature both have legislative functions but operate differently. The Indian Parliament has a bicameral structure consisting of the Rajya Sabha and the Lok Sabha.

  • In comparison, the structure of the State Legislature differs from state to state.
  • In India, the State Legislature has a unicameral structure in 28 states and 3 union territories.
  • Only the Legislative Assembly is responsible for carrying out legislation in these areas.
  • However, in the other 6 Indian states, there is a bicameral structure, with the Legislative Assembly being the lower house and the Legislative Council being the upper house.

The states in which there is a bicameral legislature are –

  • Karnataka
  • Maharashtra
  • Andhra Pradesh
  • Telangana
  • Bihar
  • Uttar Pradesh

Legislature in India

The Indian legislature is divided into the Parliament and State Legislature. The former is the supreme legislative authority of India, with the President as the head of the legislature.

  • On the other hand, the state legislature is the legislative body of the Indian states and Union Territories.
  • The functions and power of the Parliament and State Legislature differ significantly.
  • The Indian legislature is primarily concerned with lawmaking, whereas the parliament is mostly concerned with planning, coordinating, and executing functions.

Here is a brief overview of the Parliament and State Legislature:

Overview of the Legislature in India


State Legislatures

The Union Parliament is the supreme legislative body of the country.

State legislatures have power over only their states or union territories.

Parliament of India has a bicameral structure, comprising the President and two Houses: Rajya Sabha and Lok Sabha.

The state legislature is mostly unicameral, with only 6 states being bicameral.

The bicameral state legislature is divided into Legislative Assembly (lower house) and Legislative Council (upper house).

The maximum number of Parliament Members (MPs) are: Lok Sabha: 552 and Rajya Sabha: 250.

The maximum number of State Legislature Members (MLAs) are: Legislative Assembly: Between 40 and 500; the Legislative Council: Not more than one-third of the membership of the State Legislative Assembly, and cannot be under 40.


Key Difference Between State Legislative Assembly and Parliament

The key Difference Between State Legislative Assembly and Parliament is that State Legislative Assembly has a unicameral or bicameral structure with distinct leaders of the house for various states/UTs. In contrast, the Parliament of India has a bicameral structure with two houses – Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha.

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