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President’s Oath of Office
|by Dr. Rajinder Puri|
President Pranab Mukherjee took the following solemn oath before he was allowed to occupy India’s highest political office. The President said:
Is the President discharging his functions?
Since he is the only office-holder in the nation to take an oath to preserve and protect the Constitution and law, clearly the major part of his functions is to ensure that the Constitution and the laws of the land are obeyed in letter and in spirit. The Prime Minister and all other Ministers in both the centre and in the states take the oath not to protect laws and Constitution but to abide by them before they occupy office. The final responsibility to ensure that the Constitution and laws are observed at all times devolves on the President. He alone must oversee the functioning of all Ministers in the centre and in the states to ensure that they function within the Constitution and law.
In discharging this function the President is aided by the Governors of all States. The President appoints the Governors. To safeguard our federal system the Governor is in no way accountable to the Union Cabinet. That is why the Supreme Court ruled in the Dr Raghulal Tilak case of 1979 that the Governor in no manner can be “subordinate or subservient” to the Union cabinet. Thereby the Governor becomes accountable to the President who formally is his appointing authority. Therefore as the ultimate protector of the Constitution and law throughout the nation the President appoints Governors to all the states to assist him in discharging the function of preserving and protecting the Constitution and law in the administration of the states. The President alone has the federal mandate of Parliament and all the States of the Union . That is why he may directly or through the aid of Governors ensure that laws are observed by both the central and the state governments.
Last week three events occurred in different states.
In all three cases there has been either violation of law by authority or the misuse of public office to subvert the law. Since the perpetrators of these law violations are Ministers in the government, only the Governor under authority of the President can intervene. In all three cases the rule of law was violated or public office was misused, and democracy was rubbished.
In none of the three cases up till now has any Governor reacted. In none of the three cases up till now has the President demanded action by any of the Governors concerned. Therefore one would like to pose President Mukherjee a few questions.
One hopes that President Mukherjee will ponder these questions and if not by word then by deed he will indicate his answers. At stake is not the role of the President. At stake is the future of India’s democratic system.
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Comments on this Article
Dinesh Kumar Bohre
08/15/2012 13:15 PM
Dr .Sivanand Veluri
08/14/2012 09:46 AM
08/14/2012 04:09 AM
08/14/2012 03:12 AM
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