The Union Executive And Council Of Ministers


In India, the constitution establishes a Parliamentary sort of government. The essence of the Parliamentary type of government is that the head of the state is the constitutional head of the real Union Executive powers are vested in the council of Ministers. The prime minister is the head of the Council of Ministers. Though the Union Executive power is vested in the President he exercises the power with the aid and advice of the council of Ministers.

The Union Executive

In Article 52 to 78, the principal of Executive of the union are:

  1. President
  2. Vice president
  3. Council of Ministers
  4. Attorney general of India

The President:

Article 52 provides that there shall be a President of India. Article 53 provides that the Executive power of the union shall be vested in the President and it shall be exercised by him in accordance with the con Constitution either directly or through officers subordinate to him. In Rao v/s Union of India, 1971, the supreme court held that the Executive power must be exercised in accordance with the provision of Article 14.


The President of India isn’t directly elected by the people Article 54, provides that the President shall be elected by a body consisting of:

  1. The elected members of both Houses of parliament.
  2. The elected members of the legislative assembly of the state in accordance with the system of proportional representation by means of a single transferable vote by secret ballot

70th Amendment Act of 1992

It added a replacement explanation to Article 54 which provides that the word state includes the capital Territory of Delhi and therefore the Union Territory of Pondicherry. Article 55 provides the way of election of President. The system adopted for voting is vote.

Term of the office

Article 56 says that the President shall hold the office for a term of 5 years from the date on which he enters upon his office. This period can be shortened by:

  1. Resignation- by writing under his hands addressed to the vice president.
  2. Death Dr Zakhirhusain and Fa khuruddiniAli
  3. By reprimand The President may, by infringement of constitution be expelled from office by the prosecution in the way gives in Article 61. In India, no President has been reprimanded.
  4. Re-election- A person who holds or who has held office shall be eligible for re-election to that office (Article 51).

Qualifications for President

Article 58 lays down the qualification which an individual must possess for being elected to the office of the president of India.

  1. He must be a citizen of India.
  2. He must have completed the age of 35 years.
  3. He must be qualified for election as a member of the House of the people, he must be registered as a voter in any Parliamentary constituency.
  4. He must not hold any office of profit under the government of India or the government of any state or under any local or other authority subject to the control of the government of the union of any state.

Conditions of President’s Office

Article 59 says that the President can’t be a member of either House of Parliament or of a House of the legislature of any state. The President shall not hold the other office of profit.

Oath of the President

According to Article 60 before entering upon his office, the President has to take an oath or an affirmation in the presence of the Chief Justice of India, or in his absence, the Senior most Judge of the Supreme court available to preserve, protect and defend the constitution and the law and to devote himself to the service and well being of the people of India.

Salary of President

The President shall be entitled to use his official residence freed from rent. The President salary has been raised to Rs 1,50,000 per month from Rs 50,000 per month, His salary cannot be diminished during his term of office.

Procedure for impeachment of the President

Article 61 of the constitution sets out the Procedure for the indictment of the President. The President is frequently faraway from his office by a procedure of prosecution for the infringement of the constitution.


  1. The impeachment charge against him may be initiated by either House of Parliament.
  2. The charge must come in the form of a proposal contained in a resolution signed by not less than one-fourth of the member of the members of the house and moved after giving a minimum of 14 days advance notice.
  3. Such a resolution must be passed by a majority of not less than two-thirds of the total membership of the House.
  4. The charge is then an investigation by the other House. The President features a right to seem and to be represented at such investigation.
  5. On the off chance that the other House after examination passes a goal by 66% larger part pronouncing that the charge is demonstrated, such goals will have the impact of expelling the President from his office from the date on which the goals are so passed.

Powers of the President

  1. Administrative Powers
    • He is the head of Union of India.
    • All the administrative actions of the union are done or carried in his name.
    • The appointment transfers and removal of the high official are done under his power and in his name.
  2. Military Powers
    • The President is the incomparable authority of the Defense Forces of the Country.
    • He has powers to declare war and peace.
    • The President is empowered to regulate or control the exercise of the military powers by the president.
  3. Diplomatic Powers
    • The President sends and receives Ambassadors and other diplomatic representatives.
    • All treaties and international agreements are made in his name though subject to ratification by Parliament.
  4. Executive Powers
    • According to Article 53, the Executive power of the Union vested in the President.
    • According to Article 77, the Executive action of the government of India is to be taken in his name.
    • Power in relation to the council of Ministers President appoints prime- minister and other members of the council.
    • It is the duty of the prime ministers to communicate to the President all decisions of the council of Ministers and to furnish information, which he calls for.
  5. Legislative Powers
    • Power in relation to House of Parliament, The President is an integral part of Parliament as Article 79 provides that Parliament shall consist of the President and two House to the council of state and House of people, therefore, the President has various important in relation to the parliament which is as under:
    • Nominations of certain members to the council of states, President has the power to nominate 12 members in the council of state, i.e. Rajya Sabha under Article 80(1).
    • To address and send messages to House Article 86, the President may address either or both the House of Parliament assembled together.
    • To send messages as to pending Bill’s Article 86(2), The President may send to either House of Parliament with respect to pending Bill’s or otherwise.
    • Ascent to bill Article 111, every bill after being passed by both the House of the parliament it becomes law only after he gives his assent to the bill.
    • Powers to make rules: President has the power to make rules according to the provision of the constitution.
    • Power to issue ordinances:  Article 123 empowers the President to issue ordinances, if at any time when both Houses of the Parliament is not in session and the President is satisfied that circumstances exist which render it necessary for him to take immediate action, he may issue such ordinances as the circumstances appear to him require. The purpose of the provision is to meet some urgent situation while Parliament is not in session,  An ordinance cannot violate the fundamental rights.
  6. Judicial Powers
    • Under Article 124 (2), the judge of the supreme court or High court shall be appointed by the President.
    • Under Article 76 the President shall appoint attorney general.
    • Under Article 72 the President may grant pardon, reprieves,  or remission of punishment or to suspend remit or sentence of any person convicted of any offences
  7. Emergency Powers
    Article 352 to 360 of the constitution arms the President with enormous emergency powers, the emergence of envisaged under the constitution are of three kinds:
    • Emergence arising out of the war, external aggression or armed rebellion.
    • Emergency due to the failure of constitutional machinery in the state.
    • Financial emergence.

Pardoning powers for The Union Executive

The pardon means to forgive a person of his offences, Pardon can be granted at any stage after the commission of the offence, before legal proceedings are taking during the pendency of proceedings or after the conviction.

Under Article 72, President has the power to grant pardons, reprieves, remission of punishment or to suspend the sentence of any person convicted of any offence.

  1. By court-martial
  2. An offence against any law relating to a manner to which the Executive Power of the Union extends.
  3. In all cases in which the sentence is one of death.

In Kuljeet Singh v. Let. Governor of Delhi, it held that the President cannot issue pardon because it was a clear case where no other Punishment could possibly be imposed.

Position of India President under The Union Executive

The Executive Power of the union is vested in the President under Article 53. This power is to be exercised in accordance with the constitution. The supreme command of the Defence Forces of the union is vested in the President but the exercise of supreme command is to be regarded by law. The President is to make rules for the transition of the government of India and for the Ministers to carry on administrative and take decisions in their department.

Article 53 provides that the Executive power of the union shall be voted in the President and shall be exercised by him either directly or through officers subordinate to him in accordance with the constitution.

Article 74 provides that there shall be a council of Ministers with the prime ministers as the head to advise the President in the exercise of his functions.

Article 75 says that the prime minister shall be appointed by the President and other ministers shall be appointed by the President on the advice of the prime minister.

Article 78 obliges the prime minister to furnish information regarding the affairs of his government. Supreme court had a member of decisions expressing the constitution position of the President. In Shamsher Singh vs. the State of Punjab, 1974 the supreme court held that the President is only a formed or constitutional head, who exercises the power and functions under the constitution on the aid and advice of his council of Ministers. In Maru Ram vs. Union of India, 1980 the supreme court held that it is not opened to the President to take an independent decision or to direct release or refuse the release of anyone of his own choice. In Ram Jawaya vs. the State of Punjab, 1955 the supreme court held that our constitution has adopted the British system of Parliamentary Executive that the President is only a formal or constitutional head of the Executive and the real Executive Powers are vested in the Ministers of the cabinet.



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