GENERAL STUDIES – Daily Answer Writing Challenge

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Question 1

 Article 356 has become one of the most controversial and most criticised provision of the Constitution. Comment. (200 words)

Question 2

All India Services violate the principle of federalism. Comment. (200 words)

Question 3

The constitution of India has deviated from the traditional federal system and incorporated a large number of unitary or non-federal features. Critically analyse.  (200 words)

Next Topic:

Functions & responsibilities of The Union & The States (Paper-2)



  • Excellent! 🙂

    • @Insights !!! “Excellent” for what sir???? I hope this is not sarcasm:)

    • basant

      I request you to please dont stop this inititative. This is very useful for those who have started their preparation recently and refering answers to frame their answer.It wii be a big loss for them.

    • s1

      Why people are saying Dnt stop,
      This initiative does not getting appropriate support from students coz of its varying nature of covering topics .It’s practically very hard to cover up diverse issues on alternative days. So people are loosing their interest. As this model gives replication of scattered preparation while may be helpful for repeaters or senior players.
      So I would urge insightians that please break this program subject wise ,taking particular same topics for atleast one week.
      Please consider this advice ,othervise we beginers may not get its ripple .
      Ps. What I felt as common man ,i said if I am wrong than I am Sorrry for that.

    • शाश्वत मिश्र

      @Insights.. sir, i concur with s1. I must request that, a majority of your followers are working professional like me or beginners. There are many like me who have access to internet only when they are on duty. On the top of that we have to prepare for prelims and optional too.

      Therefore sir, please be patient with us. We will write as much we can. After all its our responsibility only.

      We all have reasons to believe that you initiated this fabulous enterprise primarily to help people like us. However, lately the syllabus is indeed difficult to follow. Though a week is niether feasible nor smart but 3 days per topic is prudent enough.
      Sir, you could choose a larger topic and increase the no. of questions to 4 per day. 12 question per topic is more than enough.

      But ofcourse those are just suggestions. I still find your website indispensable anyway. And all the above blabbering could well be considered as lame excuses.

      • Thanks. From next time we will try to give questions on single topic every week i.e. for four days we will post questions on a specific topic and you will have 3 days gap too. Henceforth we will try to name sources too.

        There is no question of stopping this. Was just surprised to see no one write answers as it used to be the most popular one! 🙂

        • basant

          Thanx a lot sir..:)

        • ABHI

          @insights sir,
          The gap of 3 days is just excellent.We can now have sufficient time to divide everything.
          As someone rightly pointed out,ur site is indispensable..It has surely helped all of us a alot…Mere words would’nt suffice ur credibility…Thnks a lot INSIGHTS…Waiting for your latest developments on GS Answer Writing

  • Question 1: Article 356 has become one of the most controversial and most criticised provision of the Constitution. Comment. (200 words

    • basant

      Constitution of India has provided article 356 for Presidents rule at the condition of failure of the Constitutional machinery of an Indian state. When governor understand that state is unable to function according to constitutional provisions, he advices president to take the state government under his direct rule. In this situation Governor works as president’s agent.
      This article gives government a unitary character. Although its aim is to maintain security and integrity of state but it is often misused. Many a time it has been used as a pretext to dissolve state governments ruled by political opponents. It is perceived as a threat to federalism. Since the adoption of Indian constitution in 1950, the central government has used this article several times to dissolve elected state governments and impose President’s rule. The Indira Gandhi regime and post-emergency Janata Party were noted for this practice. Because of political ambitions, article 356 has been misused many a times, which created situation of re-election consequently loss of money.
      Unfortunately Dr Ambedkar’s hopes and assurances have been sadly belied. History has testified to the flagrant misuse of Article 356 which has been invoked by the Centre so far about 100 times and has become a matter of criticism. In the context of high criticism, Bommai vs Union of India case the misuse of Article 356 was curtailed by SC.

      • Mohan

        gud one……..should have included the emergence of coalition govts which is a barrier to the use of Article 356……….

        • basant

          thanx for reviewing..and yes your point is very imp..

      • Mohan

        if possible review my answer……..

      • vijay

        dont mention any person or party in your answer…….avoid beating around the bush… could have mention other articles which supports 356 before its invoke, otherwise its a good answer

        plz review my answer also

        • basant

          thanx for pointing out mistakes. I will keep your points in mind. Thanx for your valuable review.

    • Mohan

      Article 356 of the constitution deals with the imposition of president’s rule. In the initial years after independence, the government at the centre and states is run by the same party. But, after 1967 elections, many state governments are formed by non-congress parties. Thereafter, the proliferation of Article 356 continued.
      Many state governments are dismissed in the name of breakdown of constitutional machinery in the respective state and president’s rule has been imposed. However, the situation has come under control to some extent with the recommendations of ARC. The first ARC recommended that, Article 356 can be used as a last resort and in the mean time other ways of solving the problem should be found. If this attempt fails, then the same should be informed to the state government and then president’s rule should be imposed.
      However, the turning point in the usage of Article 356 is the landmark judgement of SC in SR Bommai case, 1993. The SC gave judgement taking into consideration the federal structure of Indian state. Since then, the use of Article 356 has been curtailed to the rare instances.Further, with the emergence of regional and coalition governments, the imposition of president’s rule is done in a pragmatic and democratic way.
      To sum up, in the recent period, Article 356 has been used in a rational manner which has been satisfactory.

      • basant

        In my opinion your answer is very good within word limit. You have captured the right path to answer this question.

        • Mohan

          thanks…for ur comments………

    • Jai

      Article 356, and the way it has been put to use in recent years, is a matter of debate. This article was referred to as “dead letter” by B. R. Ambedkar, Chairman of the Drafting Committee. He intended it to be used only as the last resort, but it has hardly ever been so. Article 356 not only negates the federal character of the Indian Political System, but also militates against the democratic doctrine of “popular sovereignty” since an elected government is suspended whenever President’s rule is enforced.

      Judicial review of President’s rule clamping Article 356 was completely shut out during the emergency by the 38th Amendment. However, it was revoked by the 44th Amendment. A time came when judiciary had to intervene to interpret the scope of Article 356, and it happened when the Supreme Court made its ruling in “S. R. Bommai Vs. Union of India” case(1994). The apex court made it clear that the President’s rule is justiciable. The Supreme Court or the High Court can strike down the proclamation if it finds it to be malafide. Also, powers of the President under Article 356 are not absolute – he must have taken the decision based on some pre-condition. As far as the advice of the Council of Ministers is concerned, the advice itself cannot be reviewed BUT the material on which the advice is given can be scrutinized. The court can also invalidate a proclamation if it finds suitable reasons for doing so and can also overrule Parliament if need be.

      Thus we can say that because of the arbitrariness to which Article 356 has been subjected to over the years, it has defeated the very purpose for which it was included in our Constitution. And at the same time, judiciary has made it clear that the scope of Article 356 is limited and it should only be used when there is no other option.

      • Jai

        Vinay sir, it would be great if you could take some time out and review my answer. It’s a great initiative and I would try to be regular with writing and posting answers. Thanks and regards. 🙂

    • Vipin

      Please find the observations below.
      1.Indian govt. system is although Federal in presentation yet it is called a quasi federal system.
      2.Article 356 impose the superiority of central government over the state governments.
      3. This provides the authority for the President to control state administration if it fails to abide by the central policies on the recommendation of the State Governor.
      4. Sarkaria commission was established in order to recommend its views over the center state relations and distribution of power between them.
      5. One of the most important recommendation was not to use Article 356 powers by center in the state as much as possible.
      6. After this report was submitted we have seen very less president rules in states.
      7. This recommendation was made in order to promotes state governing mechanisms in independent manner.
      8.But problem arises when it state governing mechanism fails and people start expecting the complete intervention of center in order to control the situation, which they are avoiding.
      9.As of now there is no defined boundary for the use of article 356, that is why it is becoming a controversial subject.

    • vijay

      Article 356 authorises the President to issue a proclamation imposing President’s rule over a state if he is satisfied that a situation has arisen in which the state government can’t be carried on in accordance with the provisions of this constitution (breakdown of constitutional machinery). In this situation, a report from the governor is final.

      Article 356 is not the only one to take care of a situation of failure of constitutional machinery; it is read with articles 355, 256, 257, 365. Unfortunately this is not happening while issuing a proclamation under article 356, no efforts have been made to ensure that, i) Union government had done all that it could in discharge of its duty under article 355 and ii) State had failed to comply with directions.
      The article has been used, more often for political and partisan purposes by the ruling party at the centre, usually to dismiss state governments of opposition parties.

      In State of Rajasthan Vs Union of India case, supreme court held that a proclamation under article 356 depends on the subjective satisfaction of the president. Later in Bommai case, court added that if any malafide is involved in proclamation, it may strike it down and restore the government. The constitution Commission (NCRWC) also recommended that before invoking article 356, the concerned state should be given an opportunity to explain its position and if necessary, the Union government should take the required steps, to enable legislative assembly to meet and freely transact its business.

      Article 356 converts the Federal system of our polity into unitary system, so as per the view of our constitutional makers, the ruling parties at the centre are in need to use the article 356 as a last resort when everything else has failed.

      plz review friends
      thanx & regards

      • basant

        you have nicely explained what question demanded..very good answer. 🙂

        • vijay

          thank you very much….i feel Subhas Kashyap books on constitution helps a lot in mains…..many a times the sentences from that book is picked and asked to comment on that….i observed it in 2011 and 2012 mains papers…..

          • basant

            thanx for telling..currently I have only laxmikant..I will buy that also..You helped a lot 🙂

    • Abhishek Kumar (C7)

      Article 356 of the constitution of India generally refers as the ‘President Rule’ is one of the most controversial sections owing to its large scale misuses by the union government against those states where the opposition was ruling.

      It was inserted by the constitution makers to make the union powerful enough to take the state under its direct control in the event of failure of constitutional machinery and when the state is not able to function as the per the constitution. In president’s Rule, the executive authority is exercised by the governor instead of elected state assembly representative.

      Article 356 though provided to maintain the integrity and unity of India, is often criticised due to its irrational usages in dissolving state governments led by opposition parties. During 1970s to 1980s, it was most heavily used and ultimately the Supreme court with its decision in S R Bommai Vs. Union of India case curtailed to certain extent the misuse of Article 356.

      The supreme court in S R Bommai Vs union of India judgement established strict guidelines for invoking Article 356. The sarkaria commission on Centre state relationship has also strongly asserted that Article 356 may be used on rare occasions to preserve the federal nature of the constitution.

  • Question 2 : All India Services violate the principle of federalism. Comment. (200 words)

    • basant

      India has a federal political system but its administrative services are integrated. Historically the administrative services were formed when India had centralized and unitary type of governance. They were ideally suited to the requirements of that time as their members acquired experience in both central and provincial government. They had equal power while working in center and provinces.
      Post Independence after adopting federal type of government, India created a dualism in administrative services by creating state administrative services and central administrative services. Though government implemented dualism in administrative services but All India services was empowered with higher power. They have awarded with high decision making rights and are dominating over state administrative services. A Canadian scholars defines administrative federalism as a federal-regional relations are characterized a “high level of inter dependence” which puts great emphasis on multilateral and bilateral consultation, negotiation and functional operations. While most of the time most of the state enjoys federalism but in the situation of president rules (article 356) this federalism is violated and all India administrative persons hold a huge rights which is completely against the concept of federalism. Most of the government institutions are headed by all india administrative persons.
      These provisions, though, have implemented for better governance but are against the concept of federalism and many a time is being misused.

    • Vipin

      Governing mechanism is of two types (1) Federal and (2) Unitary. Depending on the circumstances and their political philosophy countries have adopted either of the two systems. In India we have adopted Federal structure of the govt. Although the Word Federal is no where mentioned in the constitution. Again Federal govt. may be an integration of states who wants to join for making a strong community(Ex, US)or disintegration of states , for convenient administration(Ex. Canada).

      In India we have opted for Federal govt based on Canadian model.(Indestructible States). But sometimes political scientist calls it a quasi federal structure due to various reasons, All India service is one of them.
      In Federal Structure of govt. state and central govt both recruit their own public service employees(Ex. US),but in our country we have opted for the common All India services employees for the appointment of strategic posts(As mentioned in constitution). The aim of this service is to maintain National Integrity as Mentioned by Dr. B. R Ambedkar.

      The employees of this service are recruited and trained by center but they are deployed to key posts of state administration.They work as center’s employee under state administration.That is why some times it is said that they are violating the federalism principle by restricting the complete autonomy of the state govt.

      • Mohan

        gud answer……..if possible review my answer…….

      • ABHI

        @ Vipin
        You have answered what is All India Services,but the demand of the question is how it violated federalism..

    • Mohan

      India adopted a federal system which is more unitary in spirit followed on the lines of Canadian constitution. The very existence of All India services violate the principle of federalism.
      In the initial years after independence the All India services are needed which played a crucial role for the unification of the country. But with the passage of time, these All India services are used by the union government in a way that grossly violate the principle of democratic federalism.
      Although , the civil servants work for the state govt, the actual control of these civil servants rests with the union govt. Hence, many state govts contend that All India services be removed. The Tamil nadu govt went a step further and appointed Rajmannar commission which recommended the abolition of All India services. As this commission is appointed by a state govt, the centre did not considered its recommendations.
      To sum up, although the All India services violate the principle of federalism, the existence of these services is necessary considering the nature of Indian society which is divided on the basis of caste, class, religion etc.

    • ABHI

      Initially All India Services had Indian Civil Service & Indian Police.After Independance Indian Civil service was replaced by Indian Administrative service,Indian police by Indian Police Service and introduced the Indian Forest Service in 1966.

      Article 312 of the constitution empowers the parliament to create All India Civil services on the basis of Rajya Sabha resolution.Although,they have different divisions in different states,they enjoy common rights,status and uniform pay scales all over the country.

      Thus,India although acclaimed as a Federal polity,such differences which hamper the patronage and autonomy of the state affects the principle of federalism.To solve these issues.government had appointed the Rajamannar commission which demanded the abolition of All India Services.The west bengal memorandum too suggested the same. Sarkaria commission had suggested further strengthening of All India Services

      Strong centre with dominancy over states is an issue since a long time.It clearly violates the principle of federalism and appropriate measures to ensure balanced jurisdiction is called for

      • Jugband Blues

        Please note the following. We are not strictly a federal polity, we are federal with a unitary bias. The All India Services do not really violate federalism because they are under the joint control of the Centre and the States, though the ultimate control rests with the Centre, they work for the states.

        Please try and give balanced views in your answer. Avoid extreme opinions.

        • ABHI

          @jugband blues
          Got dragged away due to short time for preparing…You have rightly pointed out a very important opinion….Will surely keep ur valuable points in mind….Thnks a lot for finding time to review..

          • niksew

            federalism and the tug of war within has not left the AIS (IAS,IPS,IFS) untouched which is often decried by critics of violating the federal feature of indian polity.Recruited on all india basis and department of personnel being the overall coordinating agency with respect to transfer,deputation,welfare has meant that it has drawn sharp criticism sometimes from the states and their political masters even to the point of recommending its abolishment (Rajamannar committee). The constitution provides for rules related to its service,appointment,removal,introduction of new services under various articles namely from 309-312.These safeguards in the constitution itself means that the officers can give an impartial advice to their state political bosses.
            Its advantage have been that there are certain administrative posts which require consideration of merit,efficiency,uniformity,integrity,equity,objectivity,impartiality rather than being based on a person’s place of birth.
            Over the years they have served the country proficiently and strengthened the feature of unity within diversity a unique feature of indian society and polity.
            States however contend that the AIS unduly increase the influence of the centre and the best talent is taken away from them and they are left with second rate officers to handle the public affairs,officers are unaware of local culture and language and it is difficult to discipline the erring officials.
            The way out is removing the deficiencies in the system rather than overhaul of the system by ensuring that officials placed in charge of states are well versed with its intricacies ,ensuring empanelment results in equal distribution of talent within and between states and centre. The centre has not imposed any fresh AIS on the states and the AIJS is yet to be created despite it finding mention in the Constitution so AIS being considered to be violating federal features is more based on apprehensions rather than actual experiences

            • ashish

              All India Services violate the principle of federalism. Comment. (200 words)
              The all-India-services, in Constitutional theory and practice, are federal services, governed by Art 312 of COI. They are recruited, trained and paid by the Government of India. They are appointed by the President, who is their disciplinary authority. They serve their respective state cadres and also the Government of India from time to time. Although Centre has no services of its own, but their ultimate control lies with GOI. Once an all-India service officer goes on deputation to the Centre, it is participation by the states in the affairs of the Union. This can be said to be federalism in practice. The members of AIS maintain a standard and uniform administration through the country both at Centre and state level while the documentary and record keeping work is done by state level employees. They facilitate liaison, cooperation, and joint action on the issues of common interest between Centre and the states. The govt ministers and state bureaucrats frame the policy but its actual implementation is done in the districts by AIS officers through state employees. Still, there have been instances of demeaning AIS officers by the state govts when the former has averted the implementation of unethical policies of latter . Ex the suspension of durga shakti Nagpal when the state govt went upto the level of saying that AIS officers are not required in their governance. Such demeaning treatment of officers defy the true spirit of federalism .

            • Satya Brat

              Great answer !!!

  • Question 3 :The constitution of India has deviated from the traditional federal system and incorporated a large number of unitary or non-federal features. Critically analyse. (200 words)

    • ASHISH

      Indian constitution though incorporates federal features like division of administrative, legislative and economic powers, separate legislative assembly for states, organically linked judiciary, state level service for administration, power to levy taxes, state list etc.

      On the other hand constitution begins by stating “India shall be a union of states” and incorporates plethora of provision deviating from federal structure. Most prominent being Special provisions of president rule, national emergency and financial emergency as country was facing severe secessionist tendency due to internal and external factors.

      Unlike federal system in US, boundaries of states can be changed by parliament and state does not have the right to secede from the union. All india service officer control the state bureaucracy but they are under the control of union. Governor is appointed by president and state remain dependent on union for fulfilling financial requirement. Union reserves the power to dissolve state government and implement president rule. Laws made by union prevails on residual list, single citizenship, central institution controls the state institution etc.

      Several deviations are observed from the traditional federal system and constitution does not pass many of the criteria of features akin to US constitution which is considered to be the oldest and ideally close to federal constitution. Indian constitution is a mix bag of provisions borrowed from various constitutions. It cannot be compared from any other constitution and is a unique quasi federal with unitary bias.

      • Lloyd

        i guess u need to mention Planning Commission too… an enchroachment to federalism

    • basant

      The Constitution provides a federal system of government in the country by providing many attributes like Independent judiciary system, states role in many policy implementation, center and state list, provision of parliament and state legislatures but there many features in constitution which are non-federal nature and on the basis of this can be said that Indian constitution deviated from traditional federal system.
      Creation of a very strong center, absence of separate constitutions for sates, the right of parliament to amend a major portion of constitution, single citizen, The presence of All- India Services which hold key positions in the Centre as well as the States appointment of the Governor by the President, Single judiciary that is SC on the apex in judicial system, Inequality of representation in the Rajya Sabha, center list having important subjects etc are the major features which declares India as a non –federal nature.

    • Vipin

      The constitution of India has a federal structure,, although the makers of constitution has mentioned the word “Union of states”, because it represents that the states are indestructible. We have a number of features which represents the federal nature of constitution, some of them are as follows.
      1. Dual Govt system.
      2. Written Constitution
      3. Supremacy Of constitution
      4. Bicarmel legislature.
      5.Distribution of powers between center and states.
      6.Center and States derive their power from Constitution and the power is not vested in Central govt.
      7. Judicial Review

      Although some features which were included in constitution were for maintaining the National Integrity, during the exceptional circumstances are unitary in nature. Ex . Emergency provisions, All India Service,Single citizenship, Integrated Judiciary, Appointment of Governor etc. But as Dr. B R Ambedkar said that Indian constitution provide separate working sphere for center and state in normal circumstances but Under special situations where a strong union is required in order to maintain National Unity and Integrity, we have opted few mechanisms which are unitary in nature.

      • ABHI

        u have mentioned federal features…question demands non-federal or unitary features…

    • ashish

      The constitution of India has deviated from the traditional federal system and incorporated a large number of unitary or non-federal features. Critically analyse. (200 words)
      The COI has many unitary features which defies the spirit of federalism many time s of conflicting interest.
      • A system of single Constitution for both Centre and States except for J&K acc to art 370.
      • Strong Centre : with more vested powers.
       The Parliament can change the territories, borders and names of states anytime by simple majority acc to Art 3.
       Th Parliament can also make law on any item of state ist if RS passes a resolution to that effect in national interest acc to Art 249
       The COI is more flexible than rigid as major portions of it can be amended by the Parliament alone.
      • COI provides for single citizenship common to all the people of states and union territories.
      • There is a single judicial system headed by the SC to enforce laws of both Centre and state govt.
      • The Governor who is the head of the state can be appointed and removed by the President anytime and acts as an agent of the Centre as per Art 155 and 156
      • The states are represented in RS in unequal manner on the basis of population
      • The COI provides for all india services IAS IPS IFS acc to ART 312 .These officers serve at the higher levels in state admin and are appointed removed by Centre
      • The COI grants extraordinary powers to Centre in times of emergencies, national, state or financial.
      • Centralised election machinery to conduct elections to both Parliament and state legislatures .Art 324
      • The accounts of the states are audited by CAG who is appointed removed by President.

  • basant

    Q1-Article 356 has become one of the most controversial and most criticised provision of the Constitution. Comment. (200 words)

  • Answer to Question1:
    Article 356 provides for President’s rule in a state in case of failure of constitutional machinery in the state. The powers of the executive are no longer with the Council of Ministers and the Governor acts on the behalf of the President with the help of civil servants. This provision has come under a lot of criticism over the years because of its misuse by Central governments over the years. The centeral government has removed many state governments in many states in India by using this act. Rampant use of this provision was done in the post emergency period by both the Congress and Junta Dal governments. This provision is also antithetical to the federal structure of the constitution. The use or the threat of use of this provision may force state governments to toe the centre’s line.
    While the framers of our constitution only intended for this provision to be used in the rarest if rare cases it has not been so in practice.


    @Insights : Sir, Kindly dont stop this initiative.

    • durga

      sir plz dont stop

  • Question 2

    The constitution of India was never truly federal. The constitution defines India as a “Union of States” and not as a federation. Undoubtedly, there are plenty of features that may be termed as federal but the Central Government has always been more powerful than the states. The structure of the Justice system, all India services and the dependence of states on the centre for financial assistance.
    There is a distribution of powers between the centre and the states. The states have the right of legislating on the subjects in the state list but the number of subjects in the state list has decreased over time. The centre also has to seek the opinion of the states before deciding on important matters but is not bound to accept those. The use of article 356 and 365 has made the centre even stronger. All India services and the importance accorded to them in a way undermines the authority of the state bureaucracy. And the proposed reforms in the tax system would only make the structure more unitary.

  • Santosh

    Sir plz dont stop….

  • Tinku

    Q2. 06/02/14 All India Services vs Federalism :

    Federalism means the rule of two Independent Governments function at the National Level & State Level subjected to distribution of Powers through the Constitution,Which is the Supreme Law of land.
    Ideally in Federalism state level administration is the baby of state government. All India Service officers are recruited & trained by the Central Government(National Government)
    & then posted for providing services to state government in the matter of administration,policy implementation,Law & Order, Forests etc.
    Since all India service officers are subjects of Central Government it is quite clear that they work as agents of Central Government.
    So it is not hard to precipitate that Central Government control the affairs of state government through all India services & Hence violate the principal of federalism.

  • Tinku

    Question 3

    The constitution of India has deviated from the traditional federal system and incorporated a large number of unitary or non-federal features. Critically analyse. (200 words)

    Federal system has following key features :
    1)Indestructible federation of indestructible states
    2)Citizenship at National & other at state level
    3)Legislature & Executive Independent Organs
    4)Independent judiciary for states & federation
    5) Rigid Constitution
    In the Indian constitution deviations point-wise :
    1) Indestructible union of destructible states i.e. Central government can alter the state boundaries,name,area without the consent of state government.
    2)only one citizenship :Indian
    3)Legislative & Executive organs are both provided by the same selected government
    4)Integrated Judiciary
    5)Constitution is a mixture of rigidity & flexibility

    Hence we can say Indian constitution is a deviation from the federal structure of government.

    • Mohan

      u have mentioned points……..but they should be framed in a logical way in paras……..if possible review my answer……………

  • vivek jasele

    sir i want to kindly ask u that how many times ur covering one topics in gs writing challenge since it is very tough to prepare before one day of given topic.hence pls give us write strategies to prepare gs because one topic requried at east 5 days to preapre . i m not able to finish topic in only one day.pls clarify sir.thanx sir

  • vivek jasele

    can some of you clarify it?

  • Satya Brat

    Q.All India Services violate the principle of federalism. Comment. (200 words)
    Ans.All India Services (AIS) is considered the steel frame of our country.We inherited it from Britishers.During freedom struggle,ICS was criticized for authoritarian rule.At the time of independence there were 556 princely states,many of them harbouring the hope of secession.Founding fathers of our constitution felt that continuance of all India services was necessary unity of India.
    India has a federal polity with a unitary bias.Given the diversity of culture,region,religion etc diverse interests are bound to crop up which can be conflicting many a times.In such a scenario it is necessary that a uniform,impartial and non political is maintained.Moreover since the officers
    of AIS are selected and trained through a rigorous process,high quality administration can be maintained.
    Further AIS also ensures interconnectedness of various aspects of administration like policing,revenue collection,law and order etc.Officers of AIS serve central and state government during different phases of their career thereby creating a vast pool of talented and experienced civil servants who can handle various conflicting socio-economic issues at country level.
    Even though they are members of AIS they are under their political bosses while serving State government.So we can say that while AIS violates federalism,it is not to the extent of creating disharmony in the polity.

    • Mohan

      ur answer is good in content…….but didn’t address the question……..u should mention how All india services violate federalism………

    • Mohan

      if possible review my answer………

  • Mohan

    The constitution of India has deviated from the traditional federal system and incorporated a large number of unitary or non-federal features. Critically analyse. (200 words)
    India adopted a federal system which is more unitary in spirit, followed on the lines of Canadian constitution. Contrary to the US constitution, the Indian constitution incorporates a large number of unitary or non-federal features.
    For instance, the state boundaries can be altered without the consent it by the parliament. The very recent decision to create Telengana is a case in point.
    Also, the All India services violate the principle of true federalism. The bureaucracy of state govt is controlled by these All India servants. Further, there is unified judiciary in India. Although, the states have High courts, they are controlled by the highest judicial body in the country i.e., Supreme Court.
    Moreover, the Indian citizens have only single citizenship. On the other hand, in the US, there is dual citizenship viz., for the country and for the state where citizen resides.
    And, the states do not have equal representation in Rajya sabha. It differs from state to state based on its population. On the other hand, in a true federation like US, every state have two members for the upper house.
    Last but not least, the state governments can be dismissed by the centre with the perception that the constitutional machinery has broken down in the state ( i.e., Article 356 ).

  • NEHA 126

    Question 1
    Ans- Constitutional issues are inherently controversial but there is a striking unanimity of opinion on the persistent misuse of the Article 356 of the Constitution which empowers the President of India to impose President’s rule in states and dissolve State assemblies. This power of President under Article 356 is intended to be used only in emergency situations when other Constitutional remedies fail to meet the threatening situation or in the case of “failure of constitutional machinery ” in the State.

    The present situation in India shows that the “dead letter” provision of the Article 356 as Dr Ambedkar hoped it would be , has become frequently invoked as it has been activated more than hundred times till today. The National Commission to Review the Working of the Constitution (NCRWC) established on 22nd feb, 2000, also stated in its analysis that in at least twenty out of more than hundred instances , the invocation of Article 356 might be termed as a misuse.

    Article 356 is a necessary consequence of Article 355 which provides that it shall be the duty of the Union to protect every state against external aggression and internal disturbance. Thus the power of the President under Article 356 has a very important bearing on Centre-State relations.
    But the use of the word “otherwise” in this Article has been severely criticised by many like HV Kamath and Justice Bhagwati. They considered it to be a mischievious word and assessed that it is a constitutional crime to empower the President to interfere not merely on the report of the Governor or the ruler of a state but otherwise.

    Thus it is evident from the above facts that there is lack of effective safeguards against the abuse of the Article 356 of the Indian Constitution. However the repeal of this Article is not advisable because the Indian polity is rife with crises and there has to be some contingency against a Constitutional deadlock in a State. Therefore the most practical course left open may be to let history take its course. Eventually, the public opinion in India , we frequently hope, will awaken to the fact that Article 356 may veritably have become a noose that is slowly tightening around the neck of Indian democracy, suffocating constitutional rights of the people. In the meantime, the power of Judicial review of the Supreme Court should be used to nurture the budding public opinion towards the use of Article 356 in rarest of the rare case.

  • NEHA 126

    Question 2
    Ans – Indian has federal structure ie division of powers between the centre and the state. Article 312 of the Indian Constitution provides for the creation of All India services who can function both as central and state services.

    The All India Services is criticised for raising a variety of problems in the field of inter -governmental relations. The All India Services officers must be recruited, trained and appointed by the Union government. This removes a considerable area of patronage from the domain of the states. Recruitment to All India services must be based on nation wide competition. States which are backward in the field of higher education tend to go unrepresented or underrepresented in such a competition. The control over the services is divided between the Union and the States with the former having ultimate word in discipline matters. Thus the autonomy of State is restricted.

    Also these services involve larger expenditure on state government due to high salary scales. These services violates the principle of ministerial responsibility at the state level. Also, the members of state services are made to work under the officers of All India services,. This goes against the federal principle of division of powers between the centre and the states. The States of the Union have felt that the All India services look to two masters, one dominant and the other subordinate in substance which leads to dilution of authority in the states.

    Despite differences and incompatibility with principle of federalism, these services do bring to the fore expertise resulting from All India perception of administrative issues and implications. They facilitate liaison, cooperation, coordination and joint action on the issues of common interest between the centre and the states.

  • NEHA 126

    Question 3
    Ans- Typically, democratic Constitutions are classified into two categories, Unitary and Federal. In a Unitary Constitution, all the powers are concentrated in a central authority. The States or the Constituents of the country are subordinate to such central authority. In a federal Constitution, powers are distributed among the centre and the states. States are not subordinate of the centre.

    A Constitution should be called federal if it displays federal character predominantly. The following are defining features of federalism:-
    – Distribution of powers between centre and states.
    – Supremacy of the Constitution.
    – Written Constitution
    -Rigidity of the Constitution.
    -Independent judiciary.
    All these characteristics are present in the Indian Constitution. However there are certain provisions which are unitary or non -federal , that affect its federal character, like
    – strong centre.
    – Power of the Parliament to make laws on subjects in the State list.
    -Power to form new states and change existing boundaries under
    Article 3.
    – Appointment of Governor of a State by the Union.
    – Emergency provisions.
    – Single citizenship.
    – No equality of State representation.
    Thus it is quite obvious from all these that the Indian Constitution which is based on Canadian model, is more unitary than federal in nature. This shows clearly that the Constitution of India has deviated from the traditional federal systems like US, Switzerland and Australia and incorporated a large number of Unitary or non federal features , tilting the balance of power in favor of Centre. Also nowhere in Constitution, the term “federation” has been used and Article 1 of the Constitution also describes Indiaas “Union of States”.

    Therefore all these have promoted the Constitutional experts to challenge the federal character of Indian Constitution. Thus it is true to say that Indian Constitution is only federal in form but Unitary in spirit.

  • NEHA 126

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