Patna: With bicameral legislatures existing only in six states, Vice President and Rajya Sabha Chairman Hamid Ansari  on Thursday batted for legislative councils, saying they can act as a "check" on hasty and ill-conceived legislation of the lower house.

Strongly advocating bicameralism of the legislature, Ansari said it provided a balance of constituent interests within its institutional structure and gives opportunities for the elected representatives to have a second thought at proposed legislations.

Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Jammu and Kashmir, Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka have legislative councils after they were disbanded in several states.

 "The bicameralism of the legislature is relevant as it provides a balance of the constituent interests within its institutional structure and gives a second opportunity to the elected representatives to have a second thought at the proposed legislations," he told the concluding function of the Bihar legislative council centenary celebrations at the Srikrishna Memorial Hall here.

The second chamber in parliamentary democracies assumed significance in decentralization of the state legislative structures by giving representation to the unrepresented and under-represented segments of opinion, Ansari said.

Even the founding fathers of the Constitution had specifically noted the importance of the second chamber for representation of special interest of classes as  a check on hasty and ill-conceived legislation of the lower house and to provide equal representation to different constituent units, he said.

A member of the constituent assembly Gopalaswami Aiyangar had supported the creation of the upper house for similar reasons and concluded that "the balance of consideration is in favour of having such a chamber and taking care to see that it does not prove a clog either to legislation or administration," he said.

Lauding the upper houses in the six states, Ansari said they have served useful role in strengthening parliamentary democracy in the country so much that the people of these states have found this institution useful and retained it.

(Agencies)