News Polity & Governance


Written by Talent KAS

Related Topic in KAS Prelims Syllabus:

Indian Constitution [Paper-I]: Indian Constitution and its salient features, Functions and Responsibilities of the Union and the States, Parliament and State Legislatures, Issues and challenges pertaining to Federal Structure


  • President Ram Nath Kovind approved a proclamation imposing President’s Rule in Maharashtra, following a recommendation from Governor Bhagat Singh Koshyari.
  • Prior to that, Union Cabinet, led by Prime Minister approved the recommendation of Governor to the President to issue the proclamation under Article 356(1) of the Constitution.
  • While recommending President’s Rule, Governor noted that a situation has arisen when the formation of a stable government is not possible even 15 days after the election results had been declared.

How President’s Rule is imposed?

It is imposed through the invocation of Article 356 of the Constitution by the President on the advice of the Union Council of Ministers.

Key Features

  • Once the President’s Rule has been imposed on a state, the elected state government will be temporarily dissolved.
  • The Governor, who is appointed by the government at the Centre, will replace the Chief Minister as the chief executive of the State.
  • The state will fall under the direct control of the Union government, and the Governor will continue to be head the proceedings, representing the President of India.
  • The imposition of the President’s rule requires the sanction of both the houses of Parliament by simple majority.
  • If approved, it can go on for a period of six months.
  • However, the imposition cannot be extended for more than three years, and needs to be brought before the two houses every six months for approval.

Grounds to impose President’s Rule

  • Breakdown of Constitutional Machinery in the State.
  • Failure of the state to comply with or to give effect to any direction given by centre.

Critical Aspects

  • Article 356 has been widely criticised for giving provisions for the party/coalition in the Centre to misuse democratic powers for political gains.
  • BR Ambedkar called the Article as ‘the death letter of Indian Constitution‘.
  • The opposition parties running governments in various states were dissolved by those at the Centre by making use of this provision.

[Source: The Hindu, Indian Express]

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