Laxmikanth Test: Federal System

15 Questions MCQ Test Indian Polity for UPSC CSE | Laxmikanth Test: Federal System

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Country 'A' is said to be a federal country. Which of the following are the features of a federal government? 

1. There are three levels (or tiers) of government, 

2. The fundamental provisions of the constitution can be unilaterally changed by one level of government.

3. Courts have the power to interpret the constitution and the powers of different levels of government. 

4. Sources of revenue for each level of government are clearly specified to ensure its financial autonomy.

Q. Which of the following statements is/are correct?


Federalism is a system of government in which the power is divided between a central authority and various constituent units of the country.

Key features of federalism: 

1. There are two or more levels (or tiers) of government. 

2. Different tiers of government govern the same citizens, but each tier has its own jurisdiction in specific matters of legislation, taxation and administration. 

3. The jurisdictions Of the respective levels or tiers of government are specified in the constitution. So the existence and authority of each tier of government is constitutionally guaranteed. 

4. The fundamental provisions of the constitution cannot be unilaterally changed by one level of government. Such changes require the consent of both the levels of government. 

5. Courts have the power to interpret the constitution and the powers of different levels of government. The highest court acts as an umpire if disputes arise between different levels of government in the exercise of their respective powers. 

6. Sources of revenue for each level of government are clearly specified to ensure its financial autonomy.




Which of these countries practice federalism? 

1. Pakistan 
2. Russia 
3. Brazil 
Q. Choose the correct answer here'. 


Pakistan, Russia and Brazil practice federalism.


Indian model of the federation is closer to that of which of the following nations/ nation-states? 


2. Canada. 

3. USA

Choose the correct answer using the codes below: 

Solution: US model is based on powerful states. USSR was based on an authoritarian centre. Canada is a federal country with a Union bias, the same as India.


Which one of the following statements correctly depicts the true nature of the Indian Federal System? 

  • Indian federation is both functional and institutional as we have a vertical distribution of power between different levels of government.

  • Federal features are not subsidiary in India.

  • Today, we have a coalition party regime rather the one dominant party.

  • Option c: Indian federation is not a result of an agreement between states. Hence, states cannot secede from the union.


Which of the following ensures that the principle of federalism is upheld in the Indian polity? 

1. Any change to the constitution dial affects the power of the states must be ratified by a majority of state assemblies. 

2. The Judiciary plays an important role in overseeing the implementation and amendment of constitutional provisions. 

3. The Centre administers Union Territories (UTs).

Q. Choose the correct answer using the codes below



  • There are some units of the Indian Union which enjoy very little power. These are areas which are too small to become an independent State but which could not be merged with any of the existing States. 

  • These areas, like Chandigarh, or Lakshadweep or the capital city of Delhi, are called Union Territories. These territories do not have the powers of a State. The Central Government has special powers in running these areas. Therefore, option 3 has no connection with the Principle of federalism. Rest two options ensure that the Union government does not subordinate the state government.





Consider the following about Federalism in India. 

1. The Constitution does not mention the sources of finance for each tier of Government and leaves it for the executive to decide. 

2. The states are not merely agents of the Central government but draw their authority from the Constitution.

Q. Which of the above is/are correct? 

Solution: While each state in India enjoys autonomy in exercising powers on certain issues, subjects of national concern require that all of these states follow the laws of the central government. 
  • The Constitution contains lists that detail the issues that each tier of government can make laws on. 

  •  Besides, the Constitution also specifies where each tier of government can get the money from for the work that it does. So, 1 is wrong. 

  • Under federalism, the states are not merely agents of the federal government but draw their authority from the Constitution as well. All persons in India are governed by laws and policies made by each of these levels of government.


The Constitution of India establishes a federal system of government. It contains all the usual features of a federation which are? 

1. Division of powers between Central and Regional governments 

2. Flexibility of the Constitution 

3. Independent Judiciary 

4. All India Services 

Q. Select the correct answer using the codes below, 

Solution: The usual features of a federation, viz., two government, division of powers, written Constitution, the supremacy of Constitution, the rigidity of Constitution, independent judiciary and bicameralism.


Which of the following is/are the federal features of the Constitution? 

1. The Constitution is written and not easily amendable. 

2. State governments derive authority from the Centre. 

3. Equal representation of all states in Rajya Sabha.

Q. Select the correct answer using the codes below, 

  • The division of powers established by the Constitution as well as the supremacy of the Constitution can be maintained only if the method of its amendment is rigid. Hence, the Constitution is rigid to the extent that those provisions which are concerned with the federal structure. 

  • State governments derive their authority from the constitution, not the Centre. 

  • The states are given representation in the Rajya Sabha based on population. Hence, the membership varies from 1 to 31. 


Which of the following trends in the working of the Indian political system reflects its federal spirit? 

1. Territorial disputes between states 

2. Demand for creation of new states 

3. Demand of the states for more financial grants from the Centre to meet their developmental needs 

4. Emergence of Regional parties and their contribution to national politics 

5. Opposition of the State to the Goods and Services Tax (GST) 

Q. Select the correct answer using the codes below. 

  • Although the Constitution of India has created a strong central government, it has not made the state governments weak and has not reduced them to the level of administrative agencies for the execution of policies of the Central government.

  • Indian federation has been described as 'a new kind of federation to meet India's peculiar needs'.

  • The state governments are autonomous units working under the Constitutional framework in tandem with the Centre to achieve common goals.


Which of the following strengthens the practice of 'Federalism' in India? 

1. An independent judiciary 

2. Principle of Subsidiarity 

Q. Which of the above is/are correct? 

  • To prevent conflicts between the centre and the State, there is an independent judiciary to settle disputes. The more independent the judiciary is, the more effective it will be able to settle the disputes and enforce the rule of law rather than the domination of the Centre. The judiciary has the powers to resolve disputes between the central government and the States on legal matters about the division of power.

  • Certain subjects, which concern the nation as a whole, for example, defence or currency, are the responsibility of the union or central government. Regional or local matters are the responsibility of the regional or State government.

  • Appropriate division of responsibility at the appropriate level (for example, local sanitation at the PRls level and national defence at the Central level) is called the principle of subsidiarity.


Which of the following factors have possibly strengthened federalism in India? 

1. Rise of coalition politics at the Centre 

2. Rise of regional parties 

3. More financial and functional autonomy to the states.

Choose the correct answer using the codes below: 

  • Over the last three decades, the number and strength of these parties have expanded. This made the Parliament of India politically more and more diverse. 

  • No one national party can secure on its own a majority in Lok Sabha (except the last general elections 2014). As a result, the national parties are compelled to form alliances with State parties. 

  • Since 1996, nearly every one of the Stale parties has got an opportunity to be a part of one or the other national-level coalition government; This has contributed to the strengthening of federalism and democracy in our country.


The practice of 'Fiscal Federalism' in India involves 

  • Federalism refers to the division of responsibilities and functions between the Centre and States. Fiscal federalism is an important component of federalism. It refers to all financial matters conducted between the Centre and states with a view of a political federal structure in mind.

  • For example, the 14th FC has radically enhanced the share of the states in the central divisible pool from the current 32 per cent to 42 per cent which is the biggest ever increase in vertical tax devolution. This is supposed to strengthen fiscal federalism.


Consider the following statements: 

Assertion (A): All states In India have the same number of assembly constituencies.

Reason (R): Indian political system is federal in nature.

Q. In the context of the statements above, which of these is correct? 

Solution: All states do not have the same number of constituencies. India being a federal nation, has nothing to do with the number of assembly seats in a state. The federal character of India has more to do with the representation of states in the Rajya Sabha.


The idea of cooperative federalism indicates a constitution 

Solution:  Cooperative federalism, also known as marble- cake federalism, is a concept of federalism in which national, state and local governments interact cooperatively and collectively to solve common problems, rather than to make policies separately but more or less equally (such as the dual federalism of the nineteenth-century United States) or clashing over a policy in a system dominated by the national government.


Which of the following factors do NOT justify a strong central government in the Indian federal structure? 

1. Balanced regional development 

2. Territorial integrity of India 

3. Growing financial needs of states 

4. Increasing volume and funds allotted to Social sector schemes 

Choose the correct answer using the codes below.

  • Besides the concern for unity, the makers of the Constitution also believed that the socio-economic problems of the country needed to be handled by a strong central government in cooperation with the Slates. 

  • Poverty, illiteracy and inequalities of wealth were some of the problems that required planning and coordination. Thus, the concerns for unity and development prompted the makers of the Constitution to create a strong central government.

  • The central government has very effective financial powers and responsibilities. In the first place, items generating revenue are under the control of the central government. Thus, the central government has many revenue sources, and the States are mostly dependent on the grants and financial assistance from the centre.

  • Secondly, India adopted planning as an instrument of rapid economic progress and development after independence. Planning led to considerable centralisation of economic decision making.

  • But as the needs of states grow, a central control will become obsolete. Instead, Indian federalism will have to give more space and autonomy for the states.

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