Union State Relations and Federal system ( Part -2) - Indian Polity and Governance Notes | Study Polity and Constitution (Prelims) by IAS Masters - UPSC

UPSC: Union State Relations and Federal system ( Part -2) - Indian Polity and Governance Notes | Study Polity and Constitution (Prelims) by IAS Masters - UPSC

The document Union State Relations and Federal system ( Part -2) - Indian Polity and Governance Notes | Study Polity and Constitution (Prelims) by IAS Masters - UPSC is a part of the UPSC Course Polity and Constitution (Prelims) by IAS Masters.
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Union State Relations and Federal system ( Part -2)

  • Bridge the vertical imbalances between the centre and the states by recommending adequate devolution to the states
  • Promote state fiscal autonomy and efficiency
  • Various reforms, on being refered by the President of India, for infrastructure and good governance.

The above role can be comprehended by looking into the recommendations of the 13th FC(2010- 15) and the basis of the recommendations.

Federalism and Fiscal and Economic Imbalances

Vertical and horizontal imbalances are common features of most federations and Indians no exception to this. The Constitution assigned taxes with a nation-wide base to the Union to make the country one common economic space unhindered by internal barriers to the extent possible. States being closer to people and more sensitive to the local needs, have been assigned functional responsibilities involving expenditure disproportionate to their assigned sources of revenue resulting in vertical imbalances. Horizontal imbalances across States are on account of factors, which include historical backgrounds, differential endowment of resources, and capacity to raise resources. Unlike in most other federations, differences in the developmental levels in Indian States are very sharp. In an explicit recognition of vertical and horizontal imbalances, the Indian Constitution embodies the following enabling and mandatory provisions to address them through - the transfer of resources from the Centre to the States.

  1. Levy of duties by the Centre but collected and retained by the States (Article 268)
  2. Taxes and duties levied and collected by the Centre but assigned in whole to the States (Article 269).
  3. Sharing of the proceeds of all Union taxes between the Centre and the States under Article

270. (Effective from April 1, 1996, following the eightieth amendment to the Constitution replacing the earlier provisions relating to mandatory sharing of income tax under Article 270 and permissive sharing of

Union excise duties under Article 272).

4. Statutory grants-in-aid of the revenues of States (Article 275)

5. Grants for any public purpose (Article 282).

6. Loans for any public purpose (Article 293).

Vertical imbalances are taken care of by the FC with tax devolution. It was further consolidated with the ASD since 2000 when all central taxes and duties became shareable.

Horizontal imbalances are rectified by tax devolution and the criteria adopted for the distribution among the states and UTs( each UT counts for a State for the FC and each UT gets its own funds); and the grants under Art.275.

 In addition to provisions enabling transfer of resources from the Centre to the States, a distinguishing feature of the Indian Constitution is that it provides for an institutional mechanism to faci litate such transfers. The institution assigned with such a task under Article 280 of the Constitution is the Finance Commission. There is Planning Commission working on the guidelines of the NDC. Interstate Council under Art.263 can advise on such matters.

TFC

The five member team, headed by economist Dr.Vijay L Kelkar submitted report of the Thirteenth Finance Commission to the Government and was tabled in the Parliament during the Budget session 2010. It focused on three key objectives of inclusive and‘green’growth, macro • economic stability and fiscal consolidation for both the Centre and the States particularly in view of the global recession since 2009 when the economy had to undertake fiscal expansion in response to domestic economic slowdown.

On sharing of Union taxes, the Commission recommended the share of States in the net proceeds ofUnionTaxes be fixed at 32 per cent, against the 12th FC prescribed transfer of 30.5 percent, an increase of 1.5 per cent. It has also said that the total transfers to the States,, inclusive of grants, be subjected to an indicative ceiling of 39.5 per cent of the gross tax revenues of the Centre.

The Commission has recommended a grant of Rs 51,800 crore for eight States that have a revenue deficit chronically(Art.275).

With elementary education at State level remaining a problem area, the Commission has accorded a grant, based on the Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan norms, Of Rs 24,068 crore.

In a bid to de-carbonize development in line with growing interests in promoting green growth, the Commission favoured a grant of Rs 15,000 crore, each Rs 5000 crore for forest grant, promotion of renewable energy and for water sector. As there remains a gap between outlay and outcome due to deficiency in delivery mechanism or designing of proper schemes to help the needy, the Commission recommended six grants for improving outcomes, amounting to Rs 14,446 crore over the award period. An incentive grant for reduction in infant mortality of Rs 5000 crore is to be released to States starting 2012-13 depending on the reduction in infant mortality rate (IMR) achieved by the States with reference to the baseline level of2009-10 figures. Grant of Rs 5000 crore for improved delivery of justice has been proposed for Lok. Adalats and Legal Aid, Alternate Dispute Resolution Centre, Heritage Court Buildings, State Judicial Academy and training of judicial officers and public prosecutors. With legal cost becoming dearer and lakhs of poor people denied access to justice, this move would help address the aberrations and anomalies in the system. Other components under this include, Rs 2989.10 crore for the Unique Identification (U!D) programme based on the number of people covered under the UD1 database, two grants of Rs 616 crore eaeh for District Innovation Funds and ' improving statistical systems at district and State levels and a grant of Rs 225 crore for setting up database of employees and pensioners. There are also grants for the requirement of roads in a State amounting to Rs 19930 crore for four years of the award period beginning 2011-12.

Finally, under grants, the Commission has provided Rs 27,945 crore for various State-specific needs of the States.

The above grants were recommended by the 13th FC as their terms of reference include the need to improve the quality of public expenditure to obtain better outputs and outcomes and the need, to manage ecology, environment and climate change consistent with sustainable development.They are connected to fiscal management as they have growth implications and thus fiscal consequences.

On the Goods and Services Tax (GST), the Commission has put in place a model GST structure that includes features such as single rate of 12 per cent of goods and service tax, zero rating of exports, inclusion of various indirect taxes at the Central and State level in GST ambit, major rationalization of the exemption structure. It has recommended a grant of Rs 50,000 crore for implementation as per the recommended model.                                             •

On fiscal consolidation, the Commission has drawn a roadmap for fiscal deficit reduction and spelt out a combined debt target of 68 per cent of GDP, against 75 per cent'in 2009-10. It has stressed the need for achieving and maintaining revenue account-in balance and containing the fiscal deficit to 3 per cent of Gross State Domestic Product (GSDP) for the respective States by 2014-15.

An important recommendation that might satisfy the interests of States relates to its proposal allocating revenues arising from the ‘fiscal commons’ such as ‘profit petroleum, profit gas and revenue shares from spectrum’. Since these are national resources and must perforce be the collective disposal of the Central and all States, there is a case to yiew such non-tax revenues that were predominantly in the domain of the Centre “as being sharable between the Centre and the States collectively”. In order to execute this proposal it needs to be included as a pait of the divisible pool which entails Constitutional amendment.

At a time when coalition governance has become a rule rather than an exception in national politics, the whole recommendations of the 13th Finance Commission, most of which have been' accepted by the Government, would go a long way in reducing the federal trust deficit and bring about good governance and national welfare.

Any FC adopts certain criteria with respective weights for giving to the states and the UTs their individual share from the total quantum that they are accorded from the net proceeds. For example, the TFC under Vijay Kelkar recommended for the states and UTs 32% of the total. The issue is which state gets how much. That is decided by the criteria and weights. Fiscal capacity distance is the criterion that replaces the earlier criterion of per capita income- the state that has the least per capita income is given the maximum share. Therefore, it is called the ’inverse of per capita’- the lower the per capita the more the share. Fiscal discipline measures the improvement in the financial performance of each State during during a certain period over a selected base year in terms of the ratio of its own revenue receipts to total revenue expenditure- essentially how effective is its tax effort; how much is its borrowing and how wasteful or. otherwise its expenditures.

Criteria and Weights adopted by the TFC

  • Population in 1971-25.0%
  • Area-10.0%
  • Fiscal Capacity Distance -47.5%
  • Fiscal Discipline- 17.5%

FC and Performing states

FC has so far taken into consideration regional equality and the need to bridge it, as one of the objectives of the recommendations. The criteria of per capita income and Grants in aid(Art.275) are used to assist the economically backward states. Developed states have made the following three arguments against it

  • It punishes performance and laggards are helped at their expense
  • The moral hazard is that it incentivizes backwardness
  • Such FC recommendations have not helped and inequalities and imbalances persist and have become worse.                                                                           ,

The answer of the FC is: Indian federation can be stable and be sustained only if all regions and states enjoy an element of regional balance for which FC has an obligation. Secondly, if regional imbalances persist, it is because of other structural factors like not attracting investment etc.

It must also be recognized that the leading states develop when the savings of the laggards are used for the trade and industrial development of the leaders. Also, cheap labour from all over the country fuels development of the so called performing states.

Finally, the criterion of fiscal discipline encourages better performance and has no bias.

FC and Planning Commission

Green Federalism

The Constitution of India has generally remained silent on the environmental issues in Indian federal system. In the original Seventh Schedule of the Constitution, all the natural resources - land, water, forests and minerals - were assigned to the States, while the central government was given the responsibilities to regulate the development of mines and mineral resources.

Constitution made separate arrangements for resolving inter-State disputes on sharing of river water among the States. The 42nd Constitution (Amendment) Act 1976 amended the Seventh Schedule to include 'Forests' and 'protection of wild animals and birds’ in the Concurrent List, thereby enabling a formal role of the central government on the subject.

The Ministry of Environment and Forests came into existence in 1980 and starting with the Forest Conservation Act, 1980, several measures have since been initiated by the Government to protect and manage the environment. These include the Environmental (Protection) Act, 1986; Air (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act, 1^81; Water (Prevention and Control) Act, 1974; as well as certain rules viz. Hazardous Wastes (Management and Handling) Amendment Rules, 2003 and Ozone Depleting Substances (Regulatiomand Control) Rules, 2000. These powers were exercised by the Parliament under Art.253.

It is felt thanhe Central government should have more definite and coordinating role on environmental issues. The Commission on Centre-State Relations headed by Punchi hgs recommended that the Constitution needs to be amended again to provide a specific Entry in List I - Union List of the Seventh Schedule empowering the Union on matters concerning 'Environment, Ecology and Climate Change'.

Apart from the jurisdictional issues there are larger issues of governance, research, resources and capacity building to deal with the complex issues of environment management, which cannot be handled by just one layer of government, but requires sustained efforts of all the three layers of governance - national, state and local - and involvement of all relevant stakeholders in the process. ’Green Federalism' refers to the holistic management of all these issues of environmental matters. Federal countries around the world are facing new challenges and opportunities to deal with the issues of environment and therefore sharing of knowledge and experiences among the federal countries shall be mutually useful and beneficial.                           .

14th FC

Union Government in January 2013 constituted the 14th Finance Commission under former Reserve Bank of India (RBI) governor Yaga Venugopal Reddy. The commission under YV Reddy is going to primarily review finances of the governments keeping in mind the fiscal consolidation road map that was laid out by his predecessor Vijay Kelkar, the head of 13th finance Commission.The Commission would have three full-time members-

  • Sushma Nath
  • M. Govind Rao
  • Sudipto Mundle

It has Prof.Abhijit Sen , the Member of Planning Commission as its part-time member. Also, Ajay Narayan Jha had been appointed Secretary to the Oommission.The commission has to give its report by October 2014 and the recommendations will come into effect from April, 2015 for a five-year period.

Terms of reference of the 14th Finance Commission-The FFC is asked 0 suggest changes to the Fiscal Responsibility and Budget Management (FRBM) Act, assess the impact of the proposed goods and services tax (GST) on government finances and also the mechanism to compensate states for revenue losses, if any. The FFC has also been asked to look at the need to insulate the pricing of public utility services - drinking water, irrigation, power and public transport from policy fluctuations through statutory provisions. FFC has also been asked to look at the level of subsidies needed for inclusive growth, and equitable sharing of subsidies between the Centre and the states.                                                                                   .

 

Fiscal Federalism

.The fiscal relations between the Centre and the States have been defined under the Constitutional provisions of distribution of revenues between the Union and the States.

Under the scheme of distribution of taxing powers, the major sources of revenue assigned to the Union are: taxes on income other than agricultural income; customs duties including export duties; excise duties on goods manufactured in India except alcohol and liquors for human consumption; taxes on capital value of the assets, exclusive of agriculture land, of individuals and companies; taxes on the capital of companies; estate duty and succession duty in respect of property other than agricultural land; etc.

The major sources of revenue allocated to the States, on the other hand, are: land revenue; taxes on agricultural income; succession duty in respect of agricultural land; estate duty in respect of agriculture land; taxes on land and” buildings; taxes on mineral rights; excise duties on alcoholic liquors for human consumption; sales tax; professional taxes; taxes on the consumption of electricity; taxes on advertisements; etc.

While the resources of the States are limited, they have larger responsibilities for social, educational and economic development of the people. Further there are wide differences in the level of development of the States. In order to address the issues of this vertical and horizontal imbalance in the Centre-State and inter-State relations, the Constitution of India has provided for inter-governmental transfers through the mechanism of Finance Commission which is constituted once in five years to recommend transfers of central revenue to the States for a five yearly fiscal cycle. Thirteen such Finance Commissions have been set up so far.

Further such transfers also take place through the Planning Commission. There are three main channels of Central transfers to States; the finance commission transfers, plan transfers and assistance for central sector and centrally sponsored schemes. Today such transfers constitute about 44 per cent of state's total revenues, 42 per cent of the state's current expenditure; and almost 36 per cent of the revenues collected,by the central government.

The figures show that the transfers have grown at a faster rate than the revenues collected by both the centre and the States. Still the resources available to the States have not been found adequate for discharging the responsibilities of the State governments.

Centre and states are having friction in the financial relations based on the following issues:

  1. Gst
  2. FD1- MBR
  3. Royalties for minerals
  4. Centrally sponsored schemes

Cooperative Federalism

Although the Constitution of India has nowhere used the term 'federal', it has provided for a structure of governance which is essentially federal in nature. First of all, Constitution has provided separate governments at the Union and the States with separate legislative, executive and judicial wings of governance. Secondly, Constitution has clearly demarcated the jurisdictions, powers and functions of the Union and the State Governments. Third, Constitution has spelt out in detail the legislative, administrative and financial relations between the Union and the States.

Within this basic framework of federalism, the Constitution has given overriding powers to the Central government. States must exercise their executive power in compliance with the laws made by the Central government and must not impede on the executive power of the Union within the States. Governors are appointed by the Central government to oversee the States. The Centre can even take over the executive of the States on the issues of national security or breakdown of constitutional machinery of the State.

Considering the overriding powers given to the Central government, Indian federation has often been described as 'quasi-federation', 'semi-federation', 'pragmatic federation^ a 'federation with strong unitary features'.

Indian federation should be seen in the context of its democratic system of governance at the national, state and local levels and the pluralities of its culture in terms of ethnic, linguistic, religious and other diversities which cut through the States. India is the largest democratic country as also the largest federal and the largest pluralist country of the world. While democracy provides freedom to everybody, federation ensures that governance is distributed spatially and a strong central government enables that the 'unity amidst diversity’ is maintained and the country mobilizes all its resources to maintain its harmony and integrity and marches ahead to progress.

A strong Centre in India is therefore necessary for strong States and vice versa. Since the seventies when different political parties are in power in the centre and the states and more recently when national parties were eroded.and coalition governments became the norm in the Centre, there are signs of stresses and tensions in intergovernmental relations between the Centre and the States.:

The federal challenges in the country today requiring cooperation include national security( NCTC etc), food security, inflation management, education, land acquisition and so on.

Article 263 of the Constitution has provided for the setting up of an Inter-State Council for investigation, discussion and recommendation for better coordination of relation between the Centre and the States. The Zonal Councils set up under the State Reorganization Act 1956 provide another institutional mechanism for centre- state and inter-state cooperation to resolve the differences and strengthen the framework of cooperation. The National Development Council .and the National Integration Council are the two other important forums that provide opportunities for discussion to resolve differences of opinion. Central councils have been set up by various ministries to strengthen cooperation. Besides Chief Ministers, Finance and other

 

Ministers have their annual conferences in addition to the regular meetings and discussions of the officials of the Centre and the States to share mutual concerns on various issues.

One of the challenges of Indian federation would be how best these mechanisms of cooperative federalism can be strengthened further to promote better coordination and cooperation between the Centre and the States.

Federal Flashpoints

NCTC

National Counter Terrorism Center(NCTC) India is federal anti-terror organisation which gained urgency after the26/l 1 attacks as it was strongly felt that India lacked a federal agency with real time intelligence inputs of actionable valtie specifically with respect to terrorism. Much blame had been put on the states which failed to act on intelligence inputs provided prior to the Mumbai attacks.

The NCTC's function will include drawing up of plans and coordinating all actions and integrating all intelligence pertaining to counter-terrorism. It will coordinate with relevant investigation and intelligence agencies to make sure that the perpetrators of terror are brought to justice, besides maintaining a comprehensi ve database of terrorists, their associates and supporters.

The agency derives its powers from the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act, 1967. It includes among other things, the power to carry out searches and issue arrest warrants throughout India in the interest of preventing terror attacks.

The UAPA Act was amended in December 2008, and the Lok Sabha added Section 43 (a) to 43(I) Section 43 (a) refers to designated agency, saying “designated agency may, under certain circumstances, counter terrorism, arrest and seize articles.”

The “moment arrest is made, the accused must be handed over to the nearest police station. This is a law made by Parliament and thus any criticism that it is unfederal is answered.

States say that it is antagonistic toward the federal structure of India and encroach into state list - police and law and order.

Union Home Ministry has assured the States that “in normal course, arrest/search/seizure shall be. carried out by the ATS or police units of the State concerned.”

Experts stress on the shared responsibility of the Centre and the States in dealing with crucial issues of internal security and terrorism.

Dwelling upon the Constitutional provisions, experts point out that in List II, law and order is the responsibility of the State governments, lri Article 355, it is the responsibility of:he Central Government to protect every State against external aggression and internal threat.

Another objection'of the Chief Ministers pertains to the proposed NCTC being part of the Intelligence Bureau (IB), which is controlled by the Home Ministry. Some ofthe Chief Ministers have suggested giving an independent status to it.Some suggested that it be accountable directly to the Parliament if such a procedure is feasible. Chief Ministers’ Conference on internal security held in June 2013 remedied it and said that theNCTC will directly report to the Home Minister.

There were other changes also proposed in the new draft the CMs conference was shown in 2013 June: keeping the NCTC out of the purview of the Intelligence Bureau, and taking States into confidence before carrying out any operation in their territories.

Some CMs say NCTC shouldn't be given wide powers to search, sei£e and arrest anyone from the States as such powers are not given to IB anywhere in the world.

RPF Act Amendments

The proposed amendment in 2012 is meant to make the Railway Protection Force (RPF) more effective, since the central force deployed on moving trains and railways premises has to take up cases in various states.The RPF has to take the help of local police in each state when offences take place. To ensure that the force is more effective, the railway ministry had proposed that it be given powers to register cases against offenders and move’against them. But this proposal ran into trouble with some states.

However, it has become a bone of contention in the Indian federal system. Some CMs have criticized it as RPF is unwarranted, violation of the constitutional spirit and blow to federal structure of India. It also usurps power of the state legislature.

"Public order" and "police" are state subjects and proposing an amendment on these subjects under entry 22, 30 and 93 of Union List with entry 2 ofthe concurrent list in schedule VII of the Constitution of India is, not only a step to infringe upon powers of the state but also a serious blow to the federal structure of the Country-some critics hold.

BSF Act Amendments

 BSF (Amendment) Bill 2012 wants the BSF that is deployed in the hinterland like Jharkhand and Chattisgarh to have some powers additionally. As per the present legal position, BSF can be deployed only along or adjoining the borders of India. However in recent times, BSF has been deployed in the hinterland, especially in Chhattisgarh and Odisha. The said deployments have been questioned.Government has proposed to amend the relevant provisions of the Act to permit deployment of this force in other parts of the territory (hinterland) as well.The major objections raised by the CMs are related to conferring of powers of arrest, search and seizure to BSF, when deployed in hinterland as states bejjeve that such powers m^y be in conflict with functions of the local police. The states have also argued that such powers given to the BSF would weaken the federal structure as it would violate the'rights'of states.

Chidambaram had explained that such powers are already available in Section 139 of the BSF £ct, 1968, when deployed in the local limits of such area adjoining the border.

Minerals

In the federal structure of India, the State Governments are the owners of minerals located within their respective boundaries. The Central Government is the-owner of the minerals underlying the ocean within the territorial waters or the Exclusive Economic Zone of India.

In this context, the entry 23 of List 11 (State, list) to the Constitution of India states, ‘Regulation of mines and mineral development subject to the provisions of List I with respect to regulation and development under the control of the Union.’                                 ,

The entry at serial No. 54 of List 1 (Central list) to the Constitution of India states, ‘Regulation of mines and mineral development to the extent to which such regulation and development under the control of the Union is declared by Parliament by law to be expedient in the public interest.

Communalism and federalism: Punchi Commission

Maintenance of communal harmony in the country is one of the key responsibilities of both the Union and the State Governments. It is the duty of the States under the Constitution, to maintain public order (List II, entry 1, Schedule 7) and thus prevent communalism. However, if such violence gets prolonged, and threatens to cause internal disturbances in a large area of the State, or which has potential for escalation in other parts of the country, then it becomes the duty of the Union under Article 355 to protect all its citizens and the property and bring the situation back to normal as quickly as possible. As in the case of communal incidents, violence is also quite common in caste, sectarian, ethnic or-other social conflicts. Such incidents have the potential of assuming evil proportions. As such, the Government has the responsibility to nip in the bud the problems threatening communal, caste, sectarian, ethnic and social harmony.

The Centre’s role should generally include Issue of timely advisories and intelligence-inputs, monitoring of the situation and for providing para-military forces support at the specific request of the States for enabling the State Governments to bring the situation under control aj; the earliest. Centre’s support to the State Governments would be of paramount importance in the relief and rehabilitation efforts.

Centre’s responsibility to act under Article 355 was well recognized. Enlarging the provisions of Article 256 so that the Union Government may give appropriate and time-bound direction to the Slates. Thus.while maintenance of Law and Order is in the domain of States, maintenance of communal harmony is a joint responsibility of the Centre and States.

Punchi Commission suggests that National Integration Council (NIC) could be utilized as a forum for preparing a comprehensive strategy involving all political parties for fighting communal conflicts in the society. The Liberhan Commission recommended that NIC be conferred with statutory powers in this regard for it to play proactive and effective role.

Naxalism and centre state relations

The most important Internal Security problem which needs extensive Centre- State co­operation and coordiiition to ensure effective handling is Naxal issue. The process of effective implementation of land reforms and extending Panchayati Raj to the Scheduled Areas (PESA) has already been initiated by State Governments. Similarly, under the ForestRights Act, 2006, the vesting of forest rights of the scheduled tribes and other traditional forest dwellers who have been residing in such forests for generations but whose rights could not be recorded a framework has been provided for recording the forest rights so vested. Special schemes for development of states and districts affected by left wing extremism are also in place.A positive aspect is that most of these schemes are being implemented at the Panchayat level.

Since the Naxal problem has spread over a large geographical area in the country, covering several States, a collective approach and coordinated action will be a pre-requisite as response mechanism. In respect of improving the Centre-State and Interstate coordination in containing Naxal violence, as such, several measures have been adopted by the Centre in co-operation with the affected States. Inter-State coordination is being ensured through joint action by .neighbouring States. The initiatives includeregular security reviews, more frequent and intensified.joint anti-Naxal operations, intelligence sharing on Naxal activities and activities of other criminals, hot pursuit of extremists even across the border of the State, general information sharing, police modernization and fortification of Police Stations etc. The deployment of Central Para Military Forces has also been increased substantially in the affected areas. Creation of joint local resistance groups against Naxalite movement with adequate security cover.

Centre pays salaries of the SPOs.

Unmanned aerial vehicles(UAVs) are being used.

Unified commands for streamlining anti-Naxal operations in four Maoist-affected states of the country are in place.The commands, based in capitals of the four states of Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand, Orrvsa and West Bengal, are headed by their respective chief secretaries. The other members are state DGP,CRPF, Intelligence Bureau (IB) along with a retired major general rank officer of the Army.

Naxal issues are being discussed in the Zonal Council meetings.

National Investigating Agency (N1A) may also proble naxal acts of violence, if necessary

Federal polity and internal security

Under the Constitutional scheme, ‘National Security’ is not a subject specifically listed in any of the three Lists f.e the Union, the State or the Concurrent List.The subject of Security under the Article 352 and under the Emergency Provisions in Part XVIII of the Constitution has been assigned to the Union Government. However, ‘Security’is a subject in which the States and the Union have a common interest and are expected to act in a co-ordinated manner.

Under the co-operative relationship, the duties and obligations of the Union and the States are covered primarily in Article 256 ( Union Government’s directions to the states), 355, 356 and 365 and also under relevant provisions. Entries pertaining to Defence of India and control and deployment of the armed forces of the Union are covered in List-l of the Seventh Schedule.

Public order and Police feature as Entries 1 and 2 in the List II.

Criminal law, Criminal procedure and Administration of Justice are covered in List III as Entries I, 2 and 11A.

Problems of internal security have conspicuous external dimensions. Several States affected by internal disturbances are at the nation’s frontiers, and external support and sanctuaries in neighbouring countries have exacerbated the internal challenge. Also, increasingly, there is a pernicious nexus between domestic miscreants and international criminal networks.

National security has internal security as a dimension .Therefore, the close co-operation between the Centre and the States has been provided under the Constitution as it is a vital subject with multiple challenges.

Executive/Administrative relations

Articles 256 - 263 on Administrative Relations Articles 256 - 261 - General 256. The executive power of every State shall be so exercised as to ensure compliance with the laws made by Parliament and any existing laws which apply in that State, and the executive power of the Union shall extend to the giving of such directions to a State as may appear to the Government of India to be necessary for that purpose.

257 (I) The executive power of every State shall be so exercised as not to impede or prejudice the exercise of the executive power of the Union, and the executive power of the Union shall extend to the giving of such directions to a State as may appear to the Government of India to be necessary for that purpose.

(2) The executive power of the Union shall also extend to the giving of directions to a State as to the construction and maintenance of means of communication declared in the direction to be of national or military importance.

 (3)The executive power of the Union shall also extend to the giving of directions to a State as to the measures to be taken for the protection of the railways within the State.

The costs incurred for the above functions will be borne by the GOI.

Article 258(1). Notwithstanding anything in this constitution, the President may, with the consent of the Government of a State, entrust either conditionally or unconditionally to that Government or to its officers functions in relation to any matter to which the executive power of the Union extends.

Article 262 - on Disputes relating to waters(given ahead)

Article 263 - on Co-ordination between States-Inter State Council ' '

In a federal system , executive powers of the respective governments and their distribution and implementation is complex and requires elaborate detail

The provisions mentioned above are meant to prevent conflicts - largely taken from Government of India Act of 1935.

According to Article 256, the executive power of every State is to be exercised in such a way as to ensure compliance with the laws made by Parliament. Further, the Union Executive is empowered to give such directions to a State as may appear to the Government of India be necessary for the purpose.The idea of the Union giving directions to the States is foreign to most federations. It is looked upon with suspicion and distrust in the United States. In Australia too, the position is more or less the same.

Explaining the object of Article 256, Ambedkar said that it envisaged two propositions:

"The first proposition is that generally the authority to execute laws which related to what is called the Concurrent field, whether the law is passed by the Central Legislature or is passed by the State Legislature shall ordinarily apply to the State.

The second proposition it lays down is that if in any particular case Parliament thinks that in passing a law which relates to the Concurrent field, the execution ought to be retained by the Central Government, Parliament shall have the power to do so."

Ambedkar also said that if the Centre did not have such power, it would become impossible to secure the proper execution of the laws which Parliament was obliged to enact. For example: laws such as the untouchability abolition law, factory legislation, and child marriage abolition law. 

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