Floor Test


  • Recently, it was found that Haryana is facing a ‘Floor Test’ amidst independent MLAs withdrawing support from the government.

About Floor Test (aka Trust Vote)

  • It is a constitutional mechanism used to determine whether the incumbent government enjoys the support of the legislature.
  • Under it, a Chief Minister appointed by the Governor can be asked to prove a majority on the floor of the Legislative Assembly.
  • It is primarily taken to know whether the executive enjoys the confidence of the legislature.
Do you know?

1. The appointed chief minister usually belongs to the single largest party or the coalition which has the ‘magic number’.

2. The magic number is the total number of seats required to form a government, or stay in power. It is the half- way mark, plus one.

a. In case of a tie, the Speaker casts the deciding vote.

Composite Floor Test

– It is conducted only when more than one person or party stakes a claim to form the government.

– When the majority is not clear, the governor might call for a special session to see who has the majority.

– The majority is counted based on those present and voting and this can be done through voice vote also.

Role of the Governor

  • Under Article 175(2), the Governor can summon the House and call for a floor test to prove whether the government has the numbers.
  • However, the Governor can exercise the above only as per Article 163 of the Constitution which says that the Governor acts on the aid and advice of the Council of Ministers headed by the Chief Minister.
  • Article 174(2)(b) of the Constitution gives powers to the Governor to dissolve the Assembly on the aid and advice of the cabinet.
  • When the Assembly is not in session, the Governor’s residuary powers under Article 163 allow him to call for a floor test.
  • But, when the Assembly is in session, it is the Speaker who can call for a floor test.