PRESIDENT

President is the head of the state and the first citizen of India. He acts as the symbol of unity, integrity, and solidarity of India.

Election of The President

Article 54

  • The President of India is elected by an electoral college which consists of the elected members of the two houses of t1itparliament and the legislative assemblies of the states (In this context, the term (state) includes the national capital territory of Delhi and the union territory of Puducherry also).

Article 55

  • It provides that, as far as practicable, there shall be uniformity in the scale of representation of the different states at the election of the President. The President's election is held in accordance with the system of proportional representation by means of a single transferable vote and the voting takes place by secret ballot.

Article 58

  • A person to be eligible for the election of the President should fulfil the following conditions:
    i. The person willing for the President's election should be a citizen of India
    ii. He should have completed the age of thirty-five (35) years
    iii. He should be qualified for election as a member of the house of the people, i.e., the Lok Sabha
    iv. He should not hold any office of profit under the union government or any local or other authority

Article 59

Lays down a few more conditions of the President's office:

  • The President should not be a member of any house of union or state legislature
  • He should not hold any office of profit
  • He is entitled to the free use of his official residences; such emoluments, allowances, and privileges are determined by the parliament by law 
  • During the President's term of office his emoluments and allowances shall not be diminished

President's term at the Office

  • The President holds office for a term of five years. 
  • He can resign from his office at any time by addressing the resignation letter to the Vice-President of India. 
  • Any resignation addressed to the Vice-President shall forthwith be communicated by him to the speaker of Lok Sabha. 
  • The President can also be removed by impeachment for violation of the Constitution. Either house may prefer the charge of violation of the Constitution before the other house which shall be either investigated. 
  • When a vacancy occurs in the President's office due to his death, resignation or removal or otherwise, the Vice-President acts as the President until a new President is elected. 
  • An election to fill such a vacancy should be held within six months from the date of occurrence of such vacancy. 
  • A person who holds, or who has held the office of the President is eligible for re-election to that office. 

Article 60 

The oath of office to the President is administered by the Chief Justice of India and in his absence, by the senior most judge of the Supreme Court available. 

Article 61 

Provides that the President may be removed by impeachment from his office on grounds of violation of the Constitution. 

  • The impeachment charges may be initiated by either house of the parliament or the charges should be signed by 1/4th of the members of the house which framed the charges 
  • Regarding these charges fourteen days notice should be given 
  • The resolution of the charges for impeachment of the President should be passed by the majority of not less than 2/3rd of the total membership of the house
  • Afterwards the charges are investigated in the other house of the parliament. If the resolution is passed in this house also with the majority of 2/3rd of its total membership, then the President stands removed from his office from the date on which bill is so passed 

The Power and Functions of the President 

Executive Powers 

Article 53 provides the executive powers of the President: 

  • All executive powers of the union government are vested in him 
  • He can make the rules specifying the manner in which the orders and other instruments made and executed in his name shall be authenticated 
  • He appoints the Prime Minister and the other ministers; and they hold office during his pleasure 
  • He appoints the Attorney General of India and he too holds the office during the President's pleasure 
  • The President also appoints the Comptroller and Auditor General of India, the Chief Election Commissioner and other election commissioners, the chairman and members of the UPSC, the governors of the states, the chairman and the members of the finance commissions, etc 
  • The President can appoint a commission to investigate into the conditions of SCs, STs, and OBCs (Other Backward Classes) 
  • He directly administers the union territories through administrators appointed by him 
  • He can seek any information relating to the administration of affairs of the union and the proposals for legislation from the Prime Minister

Legislative Powers 

The President is an integral pan of the parliament. He enjoys the following legislative powers: 

  • He can summon the parliament and dissolve the Lok Sabha. 
  • He can address the parliament at the commencement of the first session after each general election and the first session of every year. 
  • He can also summon a joint sitting of both the houses of the parliament which is presided over by the speaker of the Lok Sabha. 
  • He can appoint any member of the Lok Sabha to preside over its proceedings when both the speaker's and deputy speaker's office fall vacant and also can appoint any member of the Rajya Sabha to preside over its proceeding when both the chairman's and deputy chairman's office fall vacant. 
  • He nominates twelve members of the Rajya Sabha from amongst the persons having special knowledge or some practical experience in respect of literature, science, art, and social service and can nominate two members to the Lok Sabha from the Anglo-Indian community. 
  • For introducing bills in the parliament regarding a bill involving expenditure from the Consolidated Fund of India or a bill for alternation of boundaries of states or creation of new state. President's prior recommendation or permission is needed.
  • When a bill is sent to the parliament after it has been passed by the parliament, the President can give his assent to the bill or return the bill (if it is not a money bill or a constitutional amendment bill) for reconsideration of the parliament. 
  • When a bill is passed by a state legislature it is reserved by the governor for the consideration of the President. The President can give his assent to the bill, or withhold his assent to the bill or direct the governor to return the bill (if it is not a money bill) for reconsideration of the state legislature 
  • According to the Article 123, the President can promulgate ordinances when both the houses of the parliament are not in session. These ordinances must be approved by the parliament within six weeks of its reassembly. The ordinance can be effective for a maximum period of six months and six weeks. 

Emergency Powers 

The President deals with the following three of emergencies:

National Emergency 

  • According to Article 352, the President can proclaims national emergency after the approval by both the houses of the parliament within one month, and after approval the emergency continues for six months. 
  • During the period of a national emergency, the President acquires certain extraordinary powers. 
  • He can pass directions to any state with regard to the manner in which its executive power is to be exercised.  
  • He can modify the pattern of distribution of the financial resources be-tween the union and the states. 
  • The President can suspend the fundamental rights of citizen except Article 20 and Article 21. 

President's Rule 

  • President's rule is also known as a state emergency or a constitutional emergency. 
  • On the grounds of Article 356, i.e., failure of constitutional machinery in the states; and Article 365, i.e., failure to comply with or to give effect to directions given by the union, the President proclaims the President's rule. 
  • The proclamations should be approved within two months by both the houses of the parliament, and then it remains in force for six months. 
  • If a national emergency is in force in the entire country or in any part of the concerned state and the Election Commission certifies that due to difficulties the general elections to the concerned state Legislative Assembly cannot be held then the President's rule can be extended beyond the first year of implementation; it can be extended six months at a time.
  • During the President's rule, the state governor on behalf of the President carries on the administration of the state with the help of the advisors appointed by the President or the chief secretary of state. However the President cannot interfere with the jurisdiction of the concerned state high court. 

Financial Emergency 

  • The President proclaims financial emergency under Article 360 if he is satisfied that the financial stability or credit of India or any part is threatened. 
  • A proclamation has to be presented in both the houses of the parliament and it will become null and void after two months if it is not approved through a resolution passed by the houses of the parliament.

Vice-President 

  • The Vice-President is elected by the members of two Houses of the Parliament in accordance with the system of proportional representation by means of single transferrable vote.
  • The eligibility conditions for election of a person as Vice-President are the same as those for election as President except that for the former, the candidate must be qualified for election as a member of the Council of States.
  • He holds the office for a term of five years before which he could give his resignation to the President or can be removed by the Rajya Sabha through a resolution passed by a two-third majority of its members and likewise agreed to by Lok Sabha.
  • The Vice-President is the ex-officio Chairman of the Rajya Sabha and presides over all its meetings.
  • He discharges the functions of the office of President in case that post falls vacant on account of the death, resignation, and removal of the President.