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Delimitation UPSC NOTE

 Why in news

  • The BJP is delaying the Census because it wants to fast-track the “delimitation” exercise in anticipation of the 2029 Lok Sabha elections.

  • 84th amendment of the Constitution clearly states that the next delimitation exercise is to be based on the first census after 2026

  • If the next census happens, say, in 2024 or 2025, then delimitation will have to wait until after the following census, i.e. sometime in the 2030s

  • So, if the BJP wants delimitation before the 2029 elections, then it must continue to drag its feet on the census until 2026 or even 2027 (since a 2026 census may not qualify as “after 2026”).

What is delimitation?

  • Delimitation refers to periodic attempts to ensure that the shares of different States in Lok Sabha seats are similar to their respective population shares, and also that all constituencies have the same population size as far as possible, as required under Article 81 of the Constitution

  • The Delimitation Commission is to work without any executive influence.

  • The Constitution mandates that the Commission’s orders are final and cannot be questioned before any court as it would hold up an election indefinitely.

  • When the orders of the Delimitation Commission are laid before the Lok Sabha or State Legislative Assembly, they cannot effect any modification in the orders.


  • The Delimitation Commission is appointed by the President of India and works in collaboration with the Election Commission of India.

    • Retired Supreme Court judge

    • Chief Election Commissioner

    • Respective State Election Commissioners

  • The last delimitation exercise that changed the state-wise composition of the Lok Sabha was completed in 1976 and done on the basis of the 1971 census.

  • Under Article 82, the Parliament enacts a Delimitation Act after every Census.

  • Under Article 170, States also get divided into territorial constituencies as per Delimitation Act after every Census.

  • The first delimitation exercise was carried out by the President (with the help of the Election Commission) in 1950-51.

  • The Delimitation Commission Act was enacted in 1952

84th amendment

  • The 84th Amendment amended provisions to Articles 82 and 170(3) of the Constitution to readjust and rationalize the territorial constituencies in the states, without altering the number of seats allotted to each state in the House of People and Legislative Assemblies of the state and including the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes; Constituencies to remove the imbalance cause due to uneven growth of population electorate in different constituencies.

Article 81

  • Article 81 of the Indian Constitution defines the composition of the House of The people, Lok Sabha. 

  • The House of Representatives shall have no more over 550 members elected, with little than 20 from Territories.



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Learnerz IAS | Concept oriented UPSC Classes in Malayalam: Delimitation UPSC NOTE
Delimitation UPSC NOTE
Learnerz IAS | Concept oriented UPSC Classes in Malayalam
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