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President Rule, its Impact and Current Political Scenario in Uttarakhand

    Harish Rawat spotted after having a meet-up with Governor K.K. Paul at Raj Bhawan in Dehradun on Monday.       Photo Src:The Hindu

The Uttarakhand which had seen many Chief Ministers come and go was brought under the President’s rule on March 27, 2016, on the grounds of noticing a severe “breakdown of governance”. The decision of having a President Rule in the state comes when the state government is going through a severe political crisis caused by a rebellion in the ruling party.

How it got started?

On 18th march 2016, 35 members of Uttarakhand assembly voted against the appropriation Bill and 32 in the favor. While 9 members of the ruling party Congress, voted against the appropriation bill in the assembly after which the ruling party failed to clear the bill. Amidst the political incompetence in Uttarakhand, it is unconstitutional for Harish Rawat’s government to rule the state.

What is President Rule?

In the Republic of India, the phrase “President’s rule” refers to the imposition of Article 356 of the Constitution of India on a state whose constitutional machinery has failed. In the event that the State Government is not able to function as per the Constitution, the state comes under the direct control of the Central Government; in other words, it is “Under President’s Rule”. Subsequently, executive authority is exercised through the centrally appointed Governor, who has the authority to appoint retired civil servants or other administrators, to assist him.

Political crisis in Uttarakhand:

India is a democratic country where we choose our desired candidate through vote to run the government. A stable government is not only the demand of the system but also the need of common man because the unstable government can directly affect the everyday work of the people. Recently Uttarakhandis witnessed political crisis when Harish Rawat’s Government failed to prove its majority in Legislative Assembly when 9 of his MLA’s left his party before imposing President Rule in Uttarakhand.

The possible impacts of imposing President Rule in Uttarakhand:

Abusing the voting power: The people of Uttarakhand voted for their desired government where they sent their local representatives in the Assembly to run the system but imposing President Rule is against their democratic values.
Development: Uttarakhand is a new state with a tough geographical region where the rate of development is very slow and because it shares international borders with China and Nepal so the development is must in both local and border areas of Uttarakhand. A stable government works in a planned manner where they increase the rate of development and prepare themselves for next elections because in a democracy if you are not working then nobody is going to vote you next time. In Uttarakhand, 4th Assembly Election was scheduled for 2017 but imposing President’s Rule in Uttarakhand will affect the rate of development.
Decisions on Important Bills/Major Policies: 2017 was the year of 4th Assembly Elections in Uttarakhand. Undoubtedly, many decisions on the important bills and major policies were to be presented this year by Harish Rawat’s government, but as they are not in power all the important decisions in the favor of Uttarakhand government will remain pending till the political crises will not be resolved.
State Budget/financial crises: On March 11, Harish Rawat’s government presented a pre-poll deficit budget in the Assembly of Rs 40,422.20 crore for 2016-17 laying emphasis on education, disaster management, rural development but now centre and make the changes in the budget. State government presents budget according to their work experience and state’s needs. It will directly affect the budget and the common man will face financial crises like:
  •  Uttarakhand’s Appropriation Bill, Sanctioning expenditure from April 1, has not been approved.
  • Salaries of state employees will not be paid; all government work will come to a halt.
  • Centre has to step in must promulgate ordinance by March 31 to pass the budget.
Control over Executive/Powers and Functions: In President’s Rule administration will come directly to the highest man of India. Uttarakhand has always been in news because of its corrupted government and its officials. It will affect the daily government work of common man because, without a stable government or Chief Minister, the government executives will pull their hands from their duties.
Law and Order: Law and order is not a big issue in Uttarakhand because most of the population live in the mountains and the crime graph of Uttarakhand is very low, but during the President Rule the State Legislative Assembly is dissolved or suspended and the parliament takes over the role and make laws for the state. On the other hand, local representatives know everything about the state they know which law to enforce and which not. By transferring this power to the centre, will not only increase the risk of balancing law and order in the state but it will also affect the instant decisions. Taking more time in decision making will also delay the enforcement of the law. Thereby, creating an emergency.

Current Political Scenario in Uttarakhand:

Scenario 1: President’s Rule is revoked:
  •  The Centre revokes President’s Rule before it takes it up, clears decks for government formation.
  • BJP and Congress – With 27 MLAs each can form the government if disqualification of nine rebels stands. Support of six PDF MLAs vital.
  • If disqualification is revoked, BJP will need rebels to form the government.
Scenario 2: Parliament Ratifies President’s Rule
  •  Governor can explore the possibility of government formation.
  • If both sides fail to get the numbers, he can dissolve the assembly.
  • The election will be called.
Scenario 3: Parliament or Court Strike down President’s Rule
  • Rawat’s government will be revived and he will have to prove majority
  • If he defeated, BJP can be asked to form a government.
According to the three scenarios, Doors are still open for Harish Rawat to prove their majority in Assembly. But, after the completion of 15 years of this new state, a stable government is still a dream to the common man of Uttarakhand.
"As per latest orders released by Nainital High Court President Rule is on hold in Uttarakhand till 31st March where Harish Rawat has to prove his majority to revive his government. The other nine rebels legislatives will also get the chance for voting on 31st March to decide the political scenario of Uttarakhand."
Inputs from: Quora and Hindustan Times
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