What is a ‘no-confidence’ motion:
According to rule 198 of the Rules of Procedure and Conduct of the Lok Sabha, a no-confidence motion is “a motion expressing want of confidence in the Council of Ministers.”
According to the Constitution, a government is eligible to remain in power only if it has the required numbers for a majority in Lok Sabha. Article 75(3) of India’s Constitution lays the down provision that Council of Ministers are collectively responsible to Lok Sabha. The rules of Lok Sabha has a mechanism called ‘no-confidence motion’ to test the collective responsibility. According to the rules, a Lok Sabha MP needs to garner the 50 lawmakers to introduce a no-confidence motion against the government.
Important One Liners for Prelims:
A ‘motion of no-confidence’ can be moved only in the Lok Sabha.
The procedure is laid down under Rule 198 of the rules of procedure and conduct of business of the Lok Sabha.
A no-confidence motion need not set out any grounds on which it is based. Even when grounds are mentioned in the notice and read out in the House, they do not form part of the no-confidence motion.
The motion has to be supported by at least 50 MPs.
Sometimes the Speaker can refuse to admit the motion too (as in the previous Budget session).
Interesting Data (may be useful for Prelims): Acharya Kripalani moved the first no confidence motion against Jawaharlal Nehru in August 1963, immediately after the India–China war. Indira Gandhi as Prime Minister faced the most number of no-confidence motions. Lal Bahadur Shastri and Narasimha Rao both faced it thrice, Morarji Desai twice and Jawaharlal Nehru, Rajiv Gandhi, Atal Bihari Vajpayee faced once each. All the no-confidence motions have been defeated except when Prime Minister Morarji Desai resigned during the discussions in July 1979.