What's New :
6th November 2023 (13 Topics)

Action and authority

Context:

Governors ought to avoid creating opportunities for criticism by contesting elected governments.

Governors' Interference in State Decisions

  • Recent Concerns: In recent times, two Indian states, Tamil Nadu and Kerala, have raised concerns about the conduct of their Governors and the delay in granting assent to important legislative Bills passed by their respective state legislatures.
  • Unethical use of authority: They feel that some Governors are using their authority to hinder or delay the implementation of decisions made by elected state governments.
  • Hindrance in working of elected regime: This issue highlights the problem of political appointees in Raj Bhavan (the official residence of the state's Governor) interfering with the decisions of democratically elected regimes.

Challenges:

  • Legislative Bills and Governor’s assent: State governors play a crucial role in the legislative process by providing assent or approval for bills passed by the state legislature.
  • Delay in granting assent: The delay in granting assent to Bills, especially in states not governed by the ruling party at the national level, has raised questions about the Governors' intentions.
  • Recommendations: It is suggested that a national prohibition should be implemented, as recommended by the Justice M.M. Punchhi Commission, to relieve Governors from the role of chancellor in any university.

Constitutional Authority and Prudent Decision-Making

  • Absence of a defined time-frame: The absence of a defined time-frame for granting assent to Bills has allowed some Governors to potentially stall important legislation indefinitely.
  • Re-emphasis by Supreme Court: The Supreme Court has emphasized the need for constitutional authorities to act promptly when considering Bills, reminding Governors that the phrase "as soon as possible" in the Constitution carries significant constitutional weight.
  • Constitutional Framework: While Governors have a certain degree of discretion, they are bound by the 'aid and advice' clause in the Constitution and should not misuse their discretionary powers.
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