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--------------- Print Magazine --------------
  May 2016
  April 2016
The Constitution of India is the fountainhead from which all our laws derive their authority and force. This is next article in the series on constitutional provisions in order to aid our readers in understanding them.


89. "The Chairman and Deputy Chairman of the Council of States .-(1) The Vice-President of India shall be ex-officio Chairman of the Council of States.

(2) The Council of States shall, as soon as may be, choose a member of the Council to be Deputy Chairman thereof and, so often as the office of Deputy Chairman becomes vacant, the Council shall choose another member to be Deputy Chairman thereof."

Article 89 speaks about the appointment of two important posts of Rajya Sabha i.e. Chairman and Deputy Chairman. The Article has two clauses. Clause (1) provides that the Vice-President of India is the ex-officio Chairman of the Council of States i.e. Rajya Sabha. In this clause the word ex-officio means "by virtue of office". Its elaborate and practical meaning is that such appointment to the post is, without any warrant than that resulting from the holding of a particular office. This word originates from the very ancient British Archbishop courts. This first clause uses this word in the sense that the sitting Vice-President of India can only hold the post of the Chairman of the Rajya Sabha.

Clause (2) has made the provision for the Deputy Chairman to this office. His post is filled up by any member of the Rajya Sabha, and also provides that when his post becomes vacant within the meaning of the succeeding Article i.e. Article 90, then another Member is appointed for such post.

Most importantly clause (2) states that it is upto the Rajya Sabha to select any member as its Deputy Chairman, whereas clause (1) provides exclusively that the already elected Vice-President shall be the Chairman of the Rajya Sabha.

This Article is the original Article in the sense that since the framing of the Constitution of India, it has not yet been amended and also no litigation has come to either the High Courts or the Supreme Court by any direct suit or through any writ petition.

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