The State Executive

Our Constitution provides for a federal Government, having separate systems for administration, the Union, and the States. The Constitution comprises provisions for the governance of both. It provides a uniform structure for the state Government, in Part VI of the Constitution, which applies to all the states including the erstwhile State of Jammu and Kashmir.

The Governor:- At the head of the executive of a State stands the Governor. The executive powers of the state are vested in the Governor. Generally, there shall be a Governor for every state, but an amendment of 1956 makes it possible for the appointment of some person as the Governor for two or more States[Article 153].

Appointment and term of Office of the Governor:- The Governor of a State is not elected but is appointed by the President and holds his office at the pleasure of the President. Any citizen of India who has completed the age of 35 years is eligible for the office, but he must not hold any other office of profit, and should not be a member of the Legislature of the Union of any State [Article 158]. There is no bar for the selection of a Governor amongst the members of a Legislature, but if a Member of any Legislature is appointed as Governor, he should cease the position of member immediately after such appointment.

The normal term of a Governor’s Office shall be five years, but he can be terminated for the following reasons—

(i) Dismissal by the President, at whose pleasure he holds office [Article 158].

(ii) Resignation [Article156 (2)].

The President’s power can be used only in cases of gross delinquency, such as bribery, corruption, reason, and violation of any provision of the Constitution. There is no bar to a person begin appointed as Governor more than once.

Powers of the Governor:- The Governor has no diplomatic or military powers like the President, but he possesses executive, legislative, and judicial powers similar to those of the President.

(1) Executive Powers– The Governor has the power to appoint his Council of Ministers, the Advocate General, and the members of the State Public Service Commission and holds office during his pleasure. But the members of the State Public Service Commission cannot be removed by him [Article 317]. The Governor has no power to appoint the Judges of High Court he is entitled to consult the President in the matter [Article 217(1)]. He can also nominate 1/6th part of the total members of the Legislative Council.

(2) Legislative Power:- The Governor has a right to addressing and sending messages and summoning, prorogue, and dissolving, in association with the State Legislature, just like the President.

(3) Judicial Powers- The Governor has the power to grant pardon, reprieve, respite, or remission of punishment or to suspend, remit, or commute the sentence of any person convicted of any offense against any law relating to a matter to which executive power of the State extends [Article 161]. The Chief Justice and the Judges of the High Court of the State are appointed with the consultation of the Governor by the President.

(4) Emergency Powers- The Governor has no Emergency powers to perform.