In this article, we will discuss Centre State Relations (Part-6). So, let’s get started.
Administrative Relations (Contd.)
Public Service Commissions
In the field of public service commissions, the Centre-state relations are as follows:
(i) The Chairman and members of a state public service commission, though appointed by the governor of the state, can be removed only by the President.
(ii) The Parliament can establish a Joint State Public Service Commission (JSPSC) for two or more states on the request of the state legislatures concerned. The chairman and members of the JSPSC are appointed by the president.
(iii) The Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) can serve the needs of a state on the request of the state governor and with the approval of the President.
(iv) The UPSC assists the states (when requested by two or more states) in framing and operating schemes of joint recruitment for any services for which candidates possessing special qualifications are required.
Integrated Judicial System
Though India has a dual polity, there is no dual system of administration of justice. The Constitution, on the other hand, established an integrated judicial system with the Supreme Court at the top and the state high courts below it. This single system of courts enforces both the Central laws as well as the state laws. This is done to eliminate diversities in the remedial procedure.
The judges of a state high court are appointed by the president in consultation with the Chief Justice of India and the governor of the state. They can also be transferred and removed by the president.
The Parliament can establish a common high court for two or more states. For example, Maharashtra and Goa or Punjab and Haryana have a common high court.
Relations During Emergencies
(i) During the operation of a national emergency (under Article 352), the Centre becomes entitled to give executive directions to a state on ‘any’ matter. Thus, the state governments are brought under the complete control of the Centre, though they are not suspended.
(ii) When the President’s Rule is imposed in a state (under Article 356), the President can assume to himself the functions of the state government and powers vested in the Governor or any other executive authority in the state.
(iii) During the operation of a financial emergency (under Article 360), the Centre can direct the states to observe canons of financial propriety and can give other necessary directions including the reduction of salaries of persons serving in the state.
The Constitution contains the following other provisions which enable the Centre to
exercise control over the state administration:
(i) Article 355 imposes two duties on the Centre: (a) to protect every state against external aggression and internal disturbance; and (b) to ensure that the government of every state is carried on in accordance with the provisions of the Constitution.
(ii) The governor of a state is appointed by the president. He holds office during the pleasure of the President. In addition to the Constitutional head of the state, the governor acts as an agent of the Centre in the state. He submits periodical reports to the Centre about the administrative affairs of the state.
(iii) The state election commissioner, though appointed by the governor of the state, can be removed only by the President.
In addition to the above-mentioned constitutional devices, there are extra-constitutional devices to promote cooperation and coordination between the Centre and the states. These include a number of advisory bodies and conferences held at the Central level.
The non-constitutional advisory bodies include the NITI Ayog (which succeeded the planning commission), the National Integration Council, the Central Council of Health and Family Welfare, the Central Council of Local Government, the Zonal Councils, the North-Eastern Council, the Central Council of Indian Medicine, the Central Council of Homoeopathy, the Transport Development Council, the University Grants Commission and so on. The important conferences held either annually or otherwise to facilitate Centre-state consultation on a wide range of mattersare as follows: (i) The governors’ conference (presided over by the President). (ii) The chief ministers’ conference (presided over by the prime minister). (iii) The chief secretaries’ conference (presided over by the cabinet secretary). (iv) The conference of inspector-general of police. (v) The chief justices’ conference (presided over by the chief justice of India). (vi) The conference of vice-chancellors. (vii) The home ministers’ conference (presided over by the Central home minister). (viii) The law ministers’ conference (presided over by the Central law minister).