(Last Updated on : 19/12/2012)
The Constitution of India
describes that the powers are divided in the union and the state. India comprises of twenty-eight states and seven Union Territories of India
and consists of a Sovereign, Secular, and Democratic Republic with a Parliamentary form of government. Thus in every state, like the centre, the Governor is the representative of the President. He is the head of the State Government in India. Nevertheless the functioning of government in states is quite similar to the system of Union. It is constitution of India that describes the structure of the state government.
According to Article 153 of the constitution, the executive power of states will rest with the Governor and there would be a council of ministers that is headed by Chief Minister
. The main function of the Chief Minister
is to advice the governor to give out his executive functions.
As the Parliament, the states also include state assemblies. The legislature of the state consists of the Governor and the Legislative Assemblies. In India few states posses bicameral legislature that is the existence of two houses such as the Legislative Assembly and the Legislative Council. There are certain states like Andhra Pradesh
, Uttar Pradesh
, Tamil Nadu
have a Legislative Council. Whereas other states of India are unicameral in nature. In a unicameral state only one house exists and thus most of the states have a Legislative Assembly.
According to the constitution, the Legislative Assembly of a state shall consist of not more than 500 and not less than 60 members who are chosen by direct election from the territorial constituencies. The Legislative Assemblies function with a period of five years and the Council remains continuing and is not subject to dissolution. All powers of the State Government in India vests in the Governor of a state and the Head of a state is the Chief Minister, is the member of the Lower House.
The figurehead of the state, the Governor is appointed by the President according to the advice of the national government. The governor calls for the suitable candidate to form the government. Moreover, the governor can also call for early elections in the state if he thinks there is a failure in the State government machinery. At the state level, Chief Minister in India is the voted by the head of the government. They are provided with most of the executive powers. The chief minister is elected and the election also requires an assembly majority. The Chief Minister serves a five-year term with a requirement of re-election. Furthermore, the composition of Council of Ministers in a state effects the administration of the state. The Council of Ministers of India
comprises of the Ministers of important departments and the Ministers of the State.
The Council of Ministers are elected by the citizens of state in the general elections held after every five years. The MLA`s or the Members of the Legislative Assembly unanimously choose their leader as the Chief Minister of the State. The Chief Minister then assigns the portfolios to the various members who form the Council of Members. The other elected members are appointed as the Minister of State.
State Government in India functions on the basis of federal relations between the state and central government. However, the central government has more authority on state matters than the state government. Moreover, if the political conditions in any state declines, the national government allows the President to declare President`s rule in that specific state. As the Parliament has the power to make laws for the whole of or any part of the territory of India.
The State Government in India also possesses power to make laws for the States. The subjects on which legislation can be enacted are specified in the Seventh Schedule of the Constitution. There are certain subjects that provide exclusive power to the State Legislatures to make laws in relation to items appearing in List II. This list is termed as the "State List". This list includes items like public order, police, public health, communications, and agriculture, taxes on entertainment and wealth, and sales tax. There are certain items appearing in List III of the Constitution known as ``Concurrent List`` that include items like electricity, newspapers, criminal law, marriage and divorce, stamp duties, trade unions, price controls and both Parliament and the State Legislatures have the power to legislate.