Each year, after the Budget is presented in the floor of the Lok Sabha by the Finance Minister, the House has the opportunity to discuss the financial proposals contained in it. The process of deliberations on the Budget sets off with a general discussion followed by the Vote on Account, debating and voting on the Demands for Grants and finally, consideration and passing of the Appropriation and Finance Bills.
Guillotine refers to the exercise vide which the Speaker of the House, on the very last day of the period allotted for discussions on the Demands for Grants, puts to vote all outstanding Demands for Grants at a time specified in advance. The aim of the exercise is to conclude discussions on financial proposals within the time specified.
All outstanding Demands for Grants must be voted by the House without discussions once the guillotine is invoked.
Once the pre-specified time for invoking the guillotine is reached, the member who is in possession of the house at that point in time, is requested by the Speaker to resume his or her seat following which Demands for Grants under discussion are immediately put to vote. Thereafter, all outstanding Demands are guillotined.
Invoking the guillotine ensures timely passage of the Finance Bill and the conclusion of debates and discussions on the year’s Budget.