PARLIAMENT LIBRARY INFORMATION SYSTEM (PARLIS) 
THE COMPUTER CENTRE


Computerization in the Parliament

 

The Parliament Library made a modest beginning towards automation in December 1985 when a Computer Centre for managing the Parliament Library Information System (PARLIS) was set up. Later an Expert Committee was set up in 1991 under the Chairmanship of Secretary- General, Lok Sabha, to identify relevant areas for introduction of IT and to suggest an integrated scheme for implementing the same. After considering the report of the Expert Committee, the work of automation was entrusted to the National Informatics Centre (NIC) and Computer Maintenance Corporation Ltd. (CMC). NIC was made responsible for introduction of IT in Questions, Legislative procedures, Administration, Office automation and LARRDIS. CMC was assigned the job of automating the Reporters’ and Committee Branches. CMC was also assigned the work of maintenance of the hardware.

Over the years, the Computer Centre has played a key role in the modernization and computerization not only of the Parliament Library but also of the entire Lok Sabha Secretariat. It has also been providing necessary technological support for managing different activities of the Secretariat and also to meet the information requirements of the members of Parliament. Keeping pace with the continuous growth in the requirements of members of Parliament and the rapid development in the field of information technology, almost all the activities of Lok Sabha Secretariat have since been computerized.

It has been the effort of the Lok Sabha Secretariat to procure the latest hardware from time to time.  A number of latest server machines and personal computer system has been installed and necessary software programmes developed.

 

Parliament of India Home Page

The Parliament of India Home Page was inaugurated by Dr. Shanker Dayal Sharma, the then President of India on 15 March 1996. In a very short period, the Home Page containing the information generated within the Rajya Sabha and Lok Sabha has become an important source of information and reference tool about the Constitution of India, history of Indian Parliament, its practice and procedure, biographical profiles of members of Rajya Sabha and Lok Sabha, socio-economic background of members and the proceedings of Constituent Assembly, Rajya Sabha and Lok Sabha. The major components of parliamentary information now available on the Parliament of India Home Page are:

-           Constitution of India;

-           Constituent Assembly Debates;

-           General Budget from 1997-98 onwards;

-           Indian Parliament - Introduction to Lok Sabha/Rajya Sabha;

-           Rules of Procedure and Conduct of Business in Lok Sabha;

-           Directions by the Speaker;

-           Decisions from the Chair;

-           Parliamentary Committees and their Reports;

-           Who’s who of present (Fourteenth) Lok Sabha;

-           List of 1st to 9th Lok Sabha members;

-           Biographical sketches of members of Tenth, Eleventh, Twelfth and Thirteenth Lok Sabhas;

-           List of Business from 1999 onwards;

-           Bulletin Part-I and Part-II from 2000 onwards;

-           Lok Sabha Debates (Proceedings) from July 1991 onwards;

-           Synopsis of Debates from July 2000 onwards;

-           Parliamentary Questions (Index only) from 1984 to 1999;

-           Parliamentary Questions with Answers from February 2000 onwards;

-           Supplementary Questions and replies from July 2000 onwards;

-           Addresses/E-Mail Addresses of members;

-           Handbook for Members of Lok Sabha; and

-           Members of Parliament Local Area Development Scheme (MPLADS)

The proceedings of Rajya Sabha and Lok Sabha are telecast live on television. The live audio and video screening of proceedings of both the Houses of Parliament are also made available through Parliament of India Home Page to the people around the globe.

The links to the Websites of Rajya Sabha (contains the information on various parameters as released on to the Lok Sabha Home page), Government of India, States and UTs, Indian Courts, Supreme Court, High Courts, Election Commission and other Parliaments have also been provided at the Home page. Access to these site can be had at the Internet address: http://parliamentofindia.nic.in from anywhere in the world, round the clock through the NIC’s satellite based network known as NICNET.

 

Parliament Library

            The activities of Parliament Library have been automated by using an indigenously developed commercial software package ‘LIBSYS’. The libsys is an integrated library application web enabled software package covering almost all functions of the library. The library database can be accessed on Internet as well as on Intranet by members of Parliament and other users of the library.

            The Parliament library uses a locally developed Unix based software for managing activities related to procurement and receipt of journals and periodicals received in the library since 1989. The data related to the Serials Control is being transferred to the Linux based Libsys package.

To keep pace with the advances in information technology, the Documentation Section was computerized in the year 1989. The computerized database is designed to cater to the reference needs of members and officers of Parliament, Committees, Research and Reference personnel and other staff members. Indexes of important articles published in newspapers and journals and publications of national and international organizations are also available through the Internet. Subject bibliographies and select lists of publications on various subjects can be compiled and provided to members on request. This has facilitated the availability of instant and up-to-date information to members of Parliament.

The Press Clipping Service is being computerized by using a commercially developed software ‘Stex’. Important press clippings of editorials, articles, important news items and other information on different subjects from various Hindi and English newspapers are scanned and stored in the computer as image files. Keywords are also assigned keeping in mind the contents of the clippings. The online subject-wise retrieval of the press clippings is available on internet.

A Digital Library of electronic publications on DVDs, CDs, tapes and floppies was set up in 1997 to cater to the information needs of members of Parliament and officers of Lok Sabha Secretariat. The collection of the Digital Library is being developed keeping in view the core areas of interest of members of Parliament and latest technological advances. A network DVD/CD Mirror Hybrid Server which is capable of supporting 600 GB data has been installed in the Computer Server room. The digital collections such as reference books, yearbooks, reports, atlases, e-journals, directories etc. can be accessed either through Local Area Network (LAN) or through www.browser at the address: http://164.100.24.230. A member is entitled to borrow two DVDs/CDs at a time for his own reference and use.
 

Speaker’s Home Page

The Speaker’s Home Page titled “The Office of the Speaker Lok Sabha” was released by Shri G.M.C. Balayogi, the then Speaker, Lok Sabha on 25 January 2002. The Home Page at present inter alia contains the profile of the present Speaker, Lok Sabha (Shri Somnath Chatterjee), his political and personal achievements, role of the Speaker, events attended by him along with photographs, Press Releases and Speeches delivered. Besides, the profiles along with their respective terms of office of all the former Speakers are available in this section. A link to the Speaker’s Home Page has also been provided in the Parliament of India Home Page.

 

MPs’ Home pages

Each member of Parliament has his own web page which contains his bio-data, information about his participation in the parliamentary proceedings, Questions, Bills, Motions and information pertaining to the development of his constituency. Links to members’ Home pages are available on the Parliament of India Home page.

Development of websites

The Computer Section of the Lok Sabha Secretariat has developed a website on ‘Legislative Bodies in India’ with technical support from the NIC. The site was inaugurated by the Hon’ble Speaker, Lok Sabha, Shri Somnath Chatterjee, on 8 October, 2004 on the occasion of Presiding Officers’ Conference held at Kolkata, from 8 - 11 October 2004.  Besides, the photographs of the buildings housing the two chambers of our Parliament and State Legislatures alongwith those of the President of India and Governors of the States, the site contains information on evolution, role and functions of the Legislative bodies and brief profiles of the presiding officers viz. Speakers/Deputy Speakers, Chairmen/Deputy Chairmen of Legislative Bodies in India together with their pictures.

Websites of the State Legislative Assemblies can be accessed either in the main Page of the State Legislative Assembly site under ‘State Legislative Assembly’ icon or under the icon ‘More Information’.  Among other things, the website also contains information about the dates, venues and aims and objectives of various Presiding Officers’ Conferences held so far. In addition, a list of Chairmen of various Presiding Officers’ Conferences held since 1921, information on the Conferences of Secretaries of Legislative Bodies in India and the Conferences of Chairmen of various committees of Parliament and State Legislatures (viz. Committee on Public Accounts, Estimates Committee, Committee on Public Undertakings, etc.) has also been placed on to the site.

Other websites developed by Computer Centre includes, International Parliamentary Conference to mark the Golden Jubilee of the Parliament of India; Association of Parliamentary Librarians of Asia and the Pacific (APLAP); and Second India and Asia Regions CPA Conference.

   

Intranet

Parliament House Precinct has three main buildings viz. Parliament House, Parliament Library Building and Parliament House Annexe. The Computers used in offices located in these buildings have data, which needs to be shared with other Branches located in any of the three buildings. To facilitate sharing of data and access Internet, a high speed Local Area Network (LAN) has been laid. The LAN has been laid in star configuration having CISCO 6513 Central Switch and CISCO Catalyst 3524 edge switches. The switches have layer 3 routing capabilities. The central switch 6513 is ideally suited for high performance, high port density, fast ethernet and gigabit ethernet aggregation in all parts of the network including the access, distribution and backbone layers as well as the server farm and data centre environments.  The independent Local Area Network (LAN) of the three buildings and reception offices is connected with each other through Optical Fibre Cables for providing high speed connectivity. The computer connectivity to outside world including Internet is being provided through National Informatics Centre Network known as NICNET. The NICNET is connected to state capitals, important institutions and all the District Headquarters of the country. The LAN of all the three buildings of Parliament House Precinct are independently connected with NICNET through 2 mbps ISDN lines.

 

Training

Orientation programmes are organized regularly at the Bureau of Parliamentary Studies and Training for the benefit of the MPs/Officials in acquiring knowledge and developing/sharpening their skills in various uses of information technology for parliamentary work. These are conducted by specialized agencies like CMC, NIC and the Ministry of Communications and Information Technology. A Computer Training Room has been set up in the Parliament Library Building to conduct regular training programmes for members of Parliament, their staff and officers of Parliament.

 

Members’ Query Booth

A Members’ Query Booth is set up in Room No. G-127 of the Parliament Library Building where computer hardware, software and internet or Parliament of India Home page related assistance is being provided to members of Parliament.

 

Touch Screen Computer Kiosks

Touch Screen Computer Kiosks have been set up at vantage points in the Parliament House complex. These kiosks provide information relating to Parliamentary Debates, Questions, Committees, Who’s Who of Members, List of Business, Parliamentary Bulletins, etc.