Cooperative federalism vs. Competative federalism

Cooperative federalism is where state and centre cooperate to frame, implement and regulate the national policies in the larger interest of public and growth of the economy as well as it is specified in schedule 7 of the Indian Constitution but in case of any clash between centre and state, centre will always override state laws. Competitive federalism is where competition is between state and centre and between states as well for their own benefit. This article will analyse that will the government succeed? What obstacles will the government have to face?

India is shifting from cooperative federalism to competitive federalism:

The present NDA government is focusing on holding the grip of competitive and cooperative federalism to achieve development in India. Past experiences of India faced centralized federalism from 1947 to 1967 because, at both centre and state, the same government was in power so there were hardly any clashes between them. After 1967, confrontational federalism emerged as other political parties came in existence at the state level. After 1990, the state started involving at the centre level and at present, the concept of competitive federalism is born in which the government is stressing to collaborate it with cooperative federalism to promote growth to the Indian economy.  The Planning Commission which incorporated in 1951 as centralised planning for India is being replaced by NITI AAYOG as the former institution overlooked the diversities of India and followed the policy of “one size fits all”. Now with the empowering and strengthening attitude of NITI AAYOG, states can actively participate in forming a policy by making aims of double-digit, inclusive growth. The state which does not need the financial resources from the centre can make policies based on their preferences which are in the national interest.

The main loophole in competitive federalism is altering the basic structure of the Indian Constitution, a need for super legislative majority to organize people in a multi-party system.

Suggestions to encourage competitive federalism:

  1. The strategy that states decide in its interest should be properly implemented along with the contract and consultation of an authenticated forum which should be set by the centre so that there will be interaction on the subject having the common interest between centre and state and centre can guide state to frame its policies.
  2.  The fields which are in the hands of the centre should be complied and applied on the assistance of local and state the government so that problems of state and local level can come under consideration with the cooperation of the centre at the political level to enhance competition among states at the economic level.

The concept of cooperation and competition federalism is the part of the same coin, and both are interdependent to develop India. Cooperation from the centre has to form the ground base from where the competition among states will start and states which are not enough capable to take part in competition needs the upper hand of the centre like a big brother and both the concept are complementary which born out cooperation is competition. Unleashed dynamism is what drives the vehicle of competitive federalism. GST which brings the unifying tax system is a pooled sovereignty affect the federalism of the country at large and NITI AAYOG are the think tanks which want the Indian Constitution to consider economics.

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One comment

  1. New generation of scholars of federalism and fiscal federalism point out that over time the theory of fiscal federalism has evolved considerably. The goal of modern fiscal federalism is not just to ensure the efficient allocation of resources, but also to protect liberty and restrain the power of government, to share legislative and fiscal competencies, to foster political participation and preserve markets.

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