In the scheme of parliamentary system of governance, president is the de jure executive authority, whereas the prime minister is the de facto executive. Article 75 says only that the prime minister shall be appointed by the president. This doesn’t mean president is free to appoint anyone as the prime minister.
But if no party has a clear majority then president can exercise personal discretion. In 1997, the Supreme Court held that a person who is not a member of either house of parliament can be appointed as PM for 6 months, within which the PM must become a member of either house of the parliament. President administers oath to PM’s office.
PM is the principle channel of communication between the president and the council of ministers, according to article 78. PM recommends the persons to be appointed as ministers by the president. Council of ministers can’t function if PM resigns or unfortunately dies. Because PM is the head of the council of ministers.
Article 74 states that there shall be a council of ministers with the prime minister as the head to aid and advise the president who SHALL , in the exercise of his functions, act in accordance.
This binding nature of advise on the president has been kept unchanged since 44th amendment act of 1978.
Article 75 also states of the collective responsibility of the council of ministers to the Lok Sabha. This induces answerability on the part of the ministers who can be questioned for not causing a difference in their constituencies through various schemes.
A prime minister’s role has been described by many political scientists. Few interesting ones have been elaborated below.
Lord Morley : he described prime minister as “primus inter pares” i.e. first among equals. And as the “key stone in the arch of the cabinet”.
Herbert Marrison : he too had similar views and called the PM as “primus inter pares”.
Sir William Vernor Harcourt : he described the PM as ” inter stellas Luna minores” i.e. a moon among lesser stars.
Jennings : he said, ” all roads of the constitution lead to the prime minister”.
H.R.G. Greaves : he has interestingly said, “the government is the master of the country and he(the PM) is the master of the government”.
Munro : he has called the PM as “the captain of the ship of the state”.
Above few examples showcase the utter importance of the prime minister in our parliamentary system of democracy. A prime minister is truly supposed to be the embodiment of the spirit of our country.
I have always been against Glorifying Over Work and therefore, in the year 2021, I have decided to launch this campaign “Balancing Life”and talk about this wrong practice, that we have been following since last few years. I will be talking to and interviewing around 1 lakh people in the coming 2021 and publish their interview regarding their opinion on glamourising Over Work.
If you are interested in participating in the same, do let me know.
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